MONEY: BEAUTY MADNESS

Posted by queenmadison

Beauty obsession sending women broke

A report says women are getting in financial strife to be beautiful
American women spend $US7bn a year on beauty products

AN obsession with beauty is posing serious problems for the health and economic well-being of women and young girls, according to a report on the pursuit of physical perfection and the rise in cosmetic surgery.
The nonprofit YWCA in the US said women and girls are spending increasing amounts of money in their bid to look like idealized, air-brushed magazine models.
The report, Beauty at any Cost, noted US women spent some $US7 billion ($8 billion) a year, or an average of about $US100 each, on cosmetics and beauty products.
That $US100 a month, if saved and invested for five years, would pay for a full
year of tuition and fees at a public college, the report calculated.
"We believe that the obsession with idealized beauty and body image is a lifelong burden that takes a terrible toll on all young girls and women in this country," said YWCA USA chief executive, Lorraine Cole.
"What's really new here is the sheer extent to which women and girls are now willing to go...to be 'beautiful,' according to standards perpetuated by a youth-obsessed media culture with literally thousands of messages, 24 hours a day," she said.
Nearly 11.7 million cosmetic surgical and nonsurgical procedures were performed in the US in 2007 -- a 446 per cent increase in 10 years, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Surgery.
Botox injections and liposuction are the most popular nonsurgical and surgical procedures.
The report cites other research linking smoking to attempts by women and girls to control their weight. It notes that some ingredients in US cosmetics, such as hair sprays and nail polishes, contain phthalates that have been shown to cause liver and reproductive system damage in animals.
The YWCA teamed up with the makers of a new documentary on the issue, "America the Beautiful", in a bid to alert the 2.5 million women and girls the YWCA serves in the United States

Money: Money Matters

Posted by queenmadison

Save money by swapping, not shopping
Australian mothers are swapping rather than shopping to try to save money.
New websites set up by enterprising mums allow parents to swap services such as babysitting, odd jobs, holidays, and clothes.
One woman has signed up to new site mumswap.com.au to swap her husband's lawnmowing for clothes for her daughter.
Another new site, matchandmind.com.au has been set up to help parents wanting to look after each others' children for free.
As grocery and petrol prices soar, and families battle crippling interest rates, these savvy mums are keen to give families a break -- often for no personal profit.

Melbourne mum Christie is the brain behind mumswap.com.au which is a free bartering hub. It has been going only since the beginning of August, but is on track to get 2000 visitors a month.
Christie, 29, a mother of one from the southeastern suburbs, said the idea was born when she "realised everything mums were saying they wanted could be provided by another mum''.
"Mums offer to do someone's chores and borrow their boat for the weekend or do some babysitting and get some cooking lessons,'' she said.
Babysitting swap site, matchandmind.com.au, was set up by Carol Stephenson, a Malvern mother of five.
"Not having family in Melbourne, we would swap babysitting as we needed to with friends, and I thought there must be some way we could help others do the same. And so the website was born,'' she said.
"If you want a morning off once a week, it's like a play date -- it gives you a break. And then you might return the favour another day.''
Mums pay $39.95 a year to contact others, but no money changes hands for babysitting.
Another website, runrabbitrun.com.au begun by Eltham mum Michelle Caird two weeks ago, offers designer kids' clothes at cost prices.
One keen money-saver is Jodie Daniel, 40, a Keysborough mother of two.
She's signed up to mumswap.com.au to help promote her home-based business deadsea.com.au, selling beauty products, and to swap some of her kids' clothes and toys.

Money: Credit Cards Guides

Posted by queenmadison

Choose a credit card

CREDIT cards are evolving all the time as a spending tool, a short term borrowing tool and a useful transaction tool for our increasingly cashless society ( from the parking meter to shopping online).
Step 1 - Choose the right card

Choose the appropriate credit card for your income and lifestyle. Compare all the options you want at cannex.com.au or infochoicecom.au.
Students and low income earners who do not pay off the card each month, should choose a budget card with low interest rates. Interest rates vary from 7 per cent to 24 per cent, so if you don’t pay off your credit card at the end of the month, shop around for a budget card.
Remember, paying the monthly minimum repayment will never clear a debt.
Don’t use credit cards for long term borrowing.
For bigger spenders, compare ‘package’ deals with ‘gold’ credit card at discount rates and fees for customers with big mortgages and spending. High credit limit cards can be a front line spending tool for cash flow management, linked to a line of credit account, where income goes into a bank account or mortgage account which then automatically pays the monthly bill, at a lower interest rate for outstanding balances.
A high credit limit can be useful in an emergency or overseas holiday. Compare cards by rewards programs, travel insurance (worth up to $400 for a family trip abroad) free extended warranties (e.g. from 6 to 12 months on appliances etc) and other exotic features such as concierge service - if you’re likely to use them.
Step 2 - Check out reward cards
Average rewards cards charge more in annual fees than you’ll earn in rewards, although they can make sense for big spenders who put everything through their card. Consumer group Choice recommends sticking to a card with no annual fee if you only spent $1000 per month or less.
No frills cards without reward schemes are useful as a line of credit for day to day spending and small loans, but can still be expensive if not paid off quickly.
Step 3 - Look at fees and credit limits
Compare cards by these fees and charges as well as interest rates.
Check how high fees can be for cash advances. Is BPAY considered a cash advance?
Credit limits restrict debt but be realistic as there are $35 penalties for exceeding them or not repaying the low monthly minimum amounts.
Go for a financial institution that will automatically directly debit the minimum payment – or the whole debt monthly if your funds are available.

Money: Investing Guides

Posted by queenmadison

Getting rich: the basics
Step 1 - Borrow to invest
BORROWING to invest is the key to serious wealth accumulation, whether it be through investment property or geared shares.
That’s simply because it increases your exposure to investment markets (bringing market risk) but also more rewards (sharemarkets have always gone up in the long term). How much risk you take should be in proportion to how secure your income flow is and economic conditions.
Step 2 - Choose shares wisely
The best companies listed on the sharemarket are currently growing and paying dividends at around 17 per cent a year.
It makes sense to borrow when interest rates are 7 per cent to invest in, say, the banks. While some choices like BHP are obvious for the long term, most investors are not good at picking stocks and do well to take advice of stockbrokers or professionals, such as by investing in listed investment companies such as Argo, Australian Foundation Investment, Milton Corp or unlisted managed investment funds (which carry higher fees and have tax traps).
Step 3 - Think quality and long term
Successful long-term investing is about buying quality assets that pay income, which is the key to its value as a stock and wealth creation.
Share prices might go up or down and even occasionally ‘crash’, but the best companies still make profits and pay dividends.
With investments, look forward to prospects, not to past performance, consider the merits of the investment not the tax breaks. diversify your holdings and keep an eye on the economy at home and abroad (China is currently a major factor in investment horizons now)
Step 4 - Time your run
It makes sense to buy blue chip shares when the market dips, when shares are going cheap. Investors soon get the hang of the market's boom and bust cycles - but are often slow to take advantage of opportunities because they focus on the falling share price and don’t take a long term view of the value of a company.
Investors are more inclined to buy shares in a bull market when prices are high, as they don't want to miss out, but this is often the worst time to buy.
Step 5 - Tax deductible borrowing
Tax deductible borrowing against your home, shares or other investment allows you to build wealth while reducing your overall tax bill.
Australian share investments often pay imputation credits for tax already paid at the company level; 12 months’ interest can be paid in advance. This is a good way to offset one-off income that could push your overall tax rate up; and borrowing against an existing portfolio unlocks cash without creating a capital gains tax (CGT) liability.

Money: Property Guides

Posted by queenmadison

Top 10 buyers' questions

1 - Do I have to pay GST on my home purchase?
THE purchase of an already established home does not attract GST.
However, this is not as simple as it appears, so be careful – services by professionals do attract GST. Check with your professional adviser about GST before you sign the contract.
2 - Do I have to go to the settlement myself?
No. You can have a representative at settlement. This can be anyone who represents you. As long as you send the cheques made out to the right amount it will be fine. You should give the representative written authority to act on your behalf. If the seller sends a representative, they should also have a written authority to accept the purchase money from you or your representative.
3 - Do I have to pay for statutory certificates?
The charges are different for different authorities. To be sure, ring the statutory authority for the right charge and address.
If you are using a lawyer or a conveyancing company, they will know these details.
4 - What happens if settlement is delayed?
This depends on why it is delayed.
If it's your fault, the seller will probably ask you to pay penalty interest.
5 - Should I use a buyer’s agent?
A buyers’ agent acts exclusively for the buyer.
It appeals to some and not others, and in general you will be charged a fee (which you should be able to negotiate).
Some also act as real estate agents – check it out and decide if you are better off than simply using an estate agent, but make sure you do your research.
6 - What sort of special conditions are likely to be in a contract?
They can cover many issues. Some of the conditions you should be wary of include: releasing the deposit before settlement, penalty payments if you don't settle on time, etc.
7 - What if I do a title search and discover a caveat on the property?
A caveat is a warning that another person or company has an interest in the property.
For example, it may be to secure a personal loan. If there is a caveat, make sure that it is removed before or at settlement.
8 - When should I get insurance?
You should think carefully about insuring the property after you exchange contracts. Although it is not strictly necessary until settlement, you are entitled to have insurance from the time of exchange.
Check with your solicitor or conveyancer.
9 - Can I buy a house with another person?
There are two types of co-ownership.
Joint tenants are just that – they own the property “jointly”. This is usually the way property is owned by married and de facto couples. Joint tenants own equal shares of the property.
Tenants in common can sell their share of the land or leave it to any person in a will. Tenants in common can own the property in equal shares or on any other basis, eg 70 per cent - 30 per cent.
10 - Who does conveyancing?
Mainly solicitors. In some states there are also licenced conveyancers. There are also do-it-yourself kits produced for some States.
When you are deciding which to use, some of the issues you should think about are: • What's the cost? • What protection is there if they make a mistake? Is there indemnity insurance which covers faulty work? • Are there other issues that you may need advice about? • Does the conveyancing looks straightforward (are there caveats, covenants, has the house been owner-built)? • Do you have the time and energy to do-it-yourself?

Ten sex secrets about men, orgasms, bowel movements, unusual sex

Posted by queenmadison


Anyone who has anything to gain - academics, the media, even men themselves - love to portray the male gender as the lesser of sexual beings.
We've been told the male's sexual response is linear and uncomplicated, that his reproductive purpose is straightforward and easy to figure out. His sexual needs can be met as easily as giving a dog a bone.
Here are 10 things you may not know:
1. Trapped Sperm?

An interesting tidbit left out of the birds and bees discussion is that not all sperm go racing for the egg at once. Once sperm has been deposited into the vaginal canal, some of these cells are temporarily trapped in a semen coagulate or clot. They are eventually decoagulated by enzymes, which set them free to swim about a females reproductive system like th





ose that went earlier. Scientists believe this clotting is meant to pace the release of sperm into the uterus, increasing the chance that one of these buggers will reach the prize.




2. Oxytocin Affects Males Too
We typically hear about oxytocin affecting females during sex (and breast-feeding). But this cuddle hormone, which is released by both sexes during intimacy, can influence males. Research from Switzerland found that oxytocin is associated with increased feelings of trust in males. Males who participated in a study where they inhaled a nasal spray spiked with the hormone gave more money to their partners during a risky investment game than those men who sniffed a placebo.
3. High Testosterone = Less Sex
Having higher testosterone levels is typically considered a good thing for men when it comes to their sex drive. Yet research continually finds that males with higher testosterone levels marry less often, are more abusive in their marriages and divorce more regularly. Why does this hurt him? Married men see more action than single men. A University of Chicago National Sex Survey found single men are 20 times more likely to be celibate than married men.
4. Death During Sex Has a Prototype
In examining the incidence of death during sex, a 1975 study found a pattern for males: the deceased is usually married; he is not with a spouse and in unfamiliar surroundings," and death usually occurs after "a big meal with alcohol. A 1989 study found further evidence for the extramarital sex bit. Fourteen of the 20 cases of la mort damour, or coital death, happened during an affair. Talk about swift karma!
5. Orgasm ... or Lack of ... May Prevent Breast Cancer in Males
A 2000 Greek study found evidence that the frequency of adult orgasms may have an impact on the incidence of breast cancer in men. Findings revealed that males with breast cancer had experienced fewer orgasms on average than men who didnt have the disease.
6. You Can Tell a Guys Size by His Fingers?
Research out of the University of Liverpool in England indicated the size of a man's ring fingers and genitals are directly related to how much testosterone he received in the womb. The more testosterone he received, the longer his penis.
In Sex on the Brain, Dr. Daniel Amen further explains how this measures up. If a mans ring fingers are longer than his index fingers, this means there were healthy testosterone levels in the womb. If the ring fingers are the same size or smaller than the index fingers, then the male received lower levels of testosterone. Thus, by knowing this information, you can estimate the length of his member.
7. Men Fall in Love Faster Than Women
When it comes to falling in love, women are usually depicted as being out of control and head over heels, while men are calm, cool and collected. However, brain research indicates men show more activity than women in the brain regions associated with visual processing, especially the face. So given the right time and the right attractive face, these visual features are going to flood him with feelings of romantic passion, according to love researcher Dr. Helen Fisher.
8. Family Affects Testosterone
According to a 2001 study out of the Mayo Clinic, as a man becomes increasingly attached to his family, his testosterone level goes down. In particular, fathers experience a significant decline in levels of testosterone with the birth of his child, especially when he holds the baby.
9. Can a Bowel Movement Make for Bliss?
A 2002 study documented a male who had a history of orgasmic-like feelings after going to the bathroom. After doing his duty, his body went through the rest of the male sexual response cycle. His pulse rate increased as he reached climactic state, followed by relaxation, then extreme fatigue.
10. Males Like Unusual Sex
Men outnumber women an estimated 20 to 1 when it comes to practicing an unusual and often socially unacceptable or illegal behavior, for example exhibitionism. The reasons for this could be biological, psychoanalytical, sociobiological, or a combination of any of those. But they're so inconclusive, it cant be said with any certainty why there would be such a huge gender difference.

Beauty secrets of the famous celebrities

Posted by queenmadison


IN OUR celebrity-sodden society, famous people rule. And with good reason: Generally speaking, headliners are pretty people. Their face is their fortune.


For them, front-row fabulous means being high-def, camera-ready all the time.
Here are some tips from a variety of sources to help you achieve the same results - without the Hollywood bank account.
IMAN
Iman suggests using bronzer year-round, not just during the summer, to camouflage imperfections. She says bronzing powder can be used for all-over colour or just to highlight cheekbones.
Even if you're not a makeup maven, Iman suggests you invest in eye shadow to warm up the face and draw attention to the eyes. Current hot hues, such as purples and pinks, accomplish that and blend with the popular colours in fashion right now.

QUEEN LATIFAH
In The Black Book of Hollywood Beauty Secrets by Kym Douglas and Cindy Pearlman, Queen Latifah confesses that she likes to give her face "a break" and not wear any makeup during certain times of the day. Her other royal proclamation? "My grandmother turned me on to baking soda as an exfoliant ... It's very gentle and works as well as any of the expensive products."
SARAH JESSICA PARKER
If you feel a little "shiny," excuse yourself for the ladies room then do what Sarah Jessica Parker does: Pull out one of those tissue toilet-seat covers and dab a piece over your T-zone (chin, nose and forehead). The tissue absorbs oil just like fancy blot papers sold at cosmetics counters.
BROOKE SHIELDS
Actress Brooke Shields suggests mixing bronzing lotion with body lotion and a self tanner, which will allow you to achieve a bronzed, even skin tone without having to apply foundation to the face.
She also suggests carrying a little bottle of jojoba oil around to moisturise cuticles and nails.
JESSICA SIMPSON
In The Black Book, Jessica Simpson says, "I swipe a nude pencil along my inner eyes to brighten my eyes before I get off the plane." Also try concealer in the inner corners of your eye to brighten the whole area and minimise darkness.
JENNIFER LOPEZ
Jennifer Lopez's aesthetician, Christopher Watt, told SheKnows.com that sunscreen is vital every day because "sun exposure is accumulative." He also loves honey in your skin-care routine (masks, facials, moisturisers). "Honey is loaded with natural vitamins and nutrients and also contains antioxidants, making it an important part of any anti-aging program for staving off lines and wrinkles."
JENNIFER JASON LEIGH
According to Shape magazine, Jennifer Jason Leigh makes her fine hair look thicker by using dry shampoos. Sprinkle in the roots for density and then douse all over to set your style.
SHARON STONE
Sharon Stone told Harper's Bazaar magazine she uses a light concealer under her eyes and cream blush for a sun-kissed look. She also grooms her eyebrows and carries lip balm at all times.
CATHERINE ZETA-JONES
Catherine Zeta-Jones brushes her teeth with mashed-up strawberries mixed with baking soda, according to ModelBeautyTip.com. Strawberries contain malic acid, which is a mild astringent. She also keeps her hair shiny by brushing castor oil in it.
JESSICA ALBA and HILARY DUFF
Both see facialist Kate Somerville, who suggests perking up dull skin with a refrigerated spray bottle of mint tea. "It cools the skin and stimulates blood flow," she told In Style magazine. Also in In Style, Kara Yoshimoto Bua, who puts makeup on Hilary Swank, Rosario Dawson and Michelle Williams, suggests you hide pimples with a concealer that's a shade darker than your skin so that the blemish recedes into your face. Also, deepen lashes by dipping the edge of a stiff Shu Uemura 60B brush into already wet mascara bristles and run it from the roots to the tips. Multiple layers of mascara become too clumpy.
TERI HATCHER
According to CelebrityBeautySecrets.net, Teri Hatcher pours her leftover red wine into her bath. Grapes have resveratrol, an antibiotic-like substance that protects the vines from fungus. Resveratrol is supposed to make the skin surface firm, improve elasticity and stimulate cell multiplication.
SHERYL CROW
Sheryl Crow doesn't apply blush on the apple of her cheeks, preferring instead to start about an inch under the middle of the eye and extend out over the top of the cheek. "It visually pulls everything up," Crow says in The Black Book. "It makes you look as if you've had a natural face-lift."

Can weight loss turn you on?

Posted by queenmadison



The added benefits of shifting those kilos can often be surprising...
You already know that weight loss can improve your quality of life, from reducing risks of heart disease to increasing life expectancy. But weight loss can also transform your life in another important area: the bedroom.
It's common knowledge that weight loss can improve your quality of life, from reducing risks of heart disease and diabetes to increasing self-esteem and life expectancy.
But according to psychologist Thomas Collingwood, weight loss can also transform your life in another important area: the bedroom. Next time you're on the verge of quitting your diet, consider the benefits that a smaller dress or waist size can have on your sex life.
Feeling sexy?Before there can be any sex, there first has to be two people who want to have sex - and the desire to be intimate is usually all about how we feel about ourselves. If we feel sexy and seductive, we'll be more likely to act sexy and seductive. When we feel fat and self-conscious, it's less likely that we'll want to take off our clothes and share our bodies.
The truth is, most people say that they are attracted to their partner regardless of weight. Sex is about intimacy and connection and a few extra kilos won't lessen a person's desire to experience those things with his or her partner. But again, if you don't feel sexy yourself, it can be difficult to get in the mood, even if your partner is clearly feeling amorous.
"As you get in better shape and begin to lose weight, you start to see your body getting tighter and your muscles becoming defined and you feel better about yourself," Collingwood says. The result? "You'll be more prone to take some initiative and maybe feel more confident about getting intimate with your partner."
The ultimate workoutIn addition to helping you feel better about yourself, Collingwood says that weight loss also can make sex actually easier and more enjoyable. When you're at a healthy weight and in good aerobic condition, you'll be able to have sex longer without getting winded and exert yourself to a fuller extent, which can lead to better sex. This can tie back into self-esteem; feeling strong and virile can be an excellent aphrodisiac. Being in good shape also provides you with more energy, which means you're likely to have sex more often.
"When you're at a good weight and in shape, you do seem to have more energy," Collingwood says. "You're not as tired, so at 10pm you have a better chance of being awake and alert enough to feel turned on. That definitely can be a factor in a good sex life."
Exercise also helps you stay flexible as you get older, which means you can assume more sexual positions than you might otherwise. Variety is the spice of life and that certainly includes your sex life!
Lastly, consider the positive benefits of the sex act itself. Besides releasing mood-enhancing chemicals and providing intimacy with someone we love, sex burns kilojoules. And it's a heck of a lot more fun than jogging around the block! Like any exercise, frequent lovemaking can help us lose weight, which can improve our self-esteem and physical prowess, which then leads to more sex – a pretty wonderful cycle to get caught up in.

US mums launch high heels for babies

Posted by queenmadison

TWO US mums have launched a firm that sells baby high heels.


They sold their first shoes 14 weeks ago and haven't looked back.
"Oh yeah, it draws attention," Jenelle Kulaas said. "People see them and are like, 'Those are hilarious'."
The booties are only made for children up to 6 months old, and the heel is squishy for safety reasons.
The shoes are the brainchild of Washington woman Britta Bacon, who thought up the idea and the brand name,
"Heelarious" on her daughter's fourth birthday.
The shoes are described as "extremely funny, completely soft shoes for babies 0-6 months designed to look like high heels."
"That's kind of all I could think about at her birthday party and came home and registered the website, and called Hayden," Bacon said. Hayden Porter is Britta's childhood friend, her current partner, and an admitted high-heel addict.
In just three months, the shoes have found their way into 350 stores worldwide and more than 1500 pairs have been bought off the website.
The women admit some have criticised them, saying heels even fake ones are inappropriate for babies, but they insist it's all meant to be in good fun.
To get the word out about their new product, the women have been sending shoes to celebrities who have just had baby girls.
They also are getting ready to send boxes to the Emmys, where they're going to be included in gift bags for nominees.
What do you think? Would you buy these shoes for your child

SALSA

Posted by queenmadison


Music and dance is an important part of culture in many parts of the world. In Latin America it may be or is considered the most important part of life. Yoga helps one internalize and realize one-self. Dance can help one externalize and become in tune with an important aspect of being socially human. Together there is balance.
The health benefits of dance are numerous: coordination, balance, rhythm (fluidity and ease of motion), flexibility, strength, endurance, BODY AWARESS, just to name a few.
Awareness extends much beyond one's own body. Social dance requires an awareness of the music, of the partner, of the dance space. These are all terrific skills to acquire and develop.
Social dance helps breaking the ice in social environments. In our technological world of specialized work, socializing is not ease for many people - dance can help. In many social dance settings people are usually friendly; invitations to a dance is seldom turned down. Being in a postive social environment can be mentally stimulation and emotionally uplifting.
Latin music is rich in acoustic flavour. The plethora of sound can be very stimulating mentally. Dancing latin is also very physically stimulating. Dance it properly and you will move every joint and every muscle. Nervous triggers of happiness will fire like never before. Amaze yourself as you realize every cell in you is working together like a concert orchestra - the way it should.
Dance if historically considered an art. The fitness of dance is seldom emphasized but it would not be surprising to have a dancer put an athlete's fitness to shame.

YOGA

Posted by queenmadison



Yoga is an Indian practice or path towards spirituality discussed in the philosophies of Hinduism. There are many religious references in Yoga but one need not devote to Hinduism in order to practice. Yoga translates to have many meanings: to control to unite to join means mode or manner(Wikipedia 2008 July 12) The aim of the practice is to cleans and purify one’s body and mind, to control one’s inner impulses and to develop an understanding and appreciation in life in order to unite with a supreme consciousness, the attainment of enlightenment. For simplicity one may look at Yoga as a practice to realize the meaning of life and to find a peaceful journey to our next stage of existence.
Controlling our inner impulses is not an easy task for most everyone. Dogs are often required to be on leashes because they are easily distracted and attracted to stray away from their owners; dogs are easily drawn by the stimulation of sensual excitement. The developing brain of humans has similar effects on children. Even adults have difficulty focusing their concentration. People often need to seek external stimulation for pleasure. Sitting quietly in mediation without being disturbed by surrounding activities is a difficult task.
Astanga and Hatha Yoga teach practitioners to control theirs sense and to purify their mind and body in effort to achieve enlightenment. In doing so Yoga has health and therapeutic benefits to many ailments. This is particularly true today in our highly stimulated and engaged society. In the 1950’s Dr. Hans Selye researched and wrote extensively about the effects of diSTRESS. Today’s health issues are referred to as the “Diseases of Civilizations.” They were born with the onset of the industrial revolution and grew exponentially with technology. They have spread sparingly to the developing world hand-in-hand with idea of democracy.
Highly specialize and repetitive work has placed new strains on our body faster than we are able to adapt to the changing work environment. Biased food consumption and indulgence on simply sugar and fats contribute to food allergies, diabetes and heart disease. Increase economic demands, rampant population growth and social inequalities along with urbanization and environmental exploitation have created an explosion in mental illnesses and substance abuse. The insurgence of technology, the electrical, radiowaves, microwaves etc. have yet to present their share of ailments.
Yoga helps to improve the overall well-being and function of the person including the immune system, our body’s natural system for self maintenance and defence against foreign organisms. Yoga conditions our body to make us strong and supple to weather the storms of change. It counsels us on food consumption for balance and moderation. It trains us to control our senses to avoid impulsive behaviour and temptation. It teaches us to meditate, to achieve a state of nurturing relaxation to conserve, rebuild and rejuvenate. It gives us guidance and courage to look within ourselves and to understand.



Types of Yoga
As with religions there are many paths of Yoga, different philosophies toward the achievement of enlightenment or union with the supreme consciousness. Due to different conceptual usage of words, it is difficult to fully appreciate the philosophies behind different Yoga. The concept of a single word in the traditional Indian language may not be well described even by and entire sentence in English.
There are four classical paths of Yoga and many more novel paths in India. In the Western Culture the spread of Yoga has very much focus on the Asanas of Yoga, the postures, and have given rise to many more styles. These styles of Yoga present different applications and combinations of asanas. Some styles also practice breath control (pranayama) and meditation (dyan). But only a small percentage of participants actually partake in the full philosophical approach to life that is Yoga.
Four Classical Paths of Yoga (Wikipedia 2008 July 12)


Bhakti yoga is a path devotion to a deity.


Karma Yoga is a path of discipline action devoted towards duty while being detached from reward


Jnana Yoga is a path of knowledge


Raja Yoga is a path to discipline the body and mind, also known as Astanga Yoga.
Astanga Yoga include 8 principles:


1. Yama (Principles or moral code) Develop understanding of, and confidence and respect for oneself

* Ahimsa - A principle of non-violence* Satya - A principle of Truthfulness* Asteya - A principle of non stealing* Brahmacharya - Continence / celibacy* Aparigah - A principle of non-hoarding or non possessiveness
2. Niyama (Personal Disciplines) cultivate consciousness for and balance with our environment, the people and organisms within

* Shoucha - Purity* Santosh - Contentment* Tapa - Endurance* Swadhyaya- Self study* Eshwar Pranidhan- Dedication
3. Asana (postures) A stable and comfortable posture which helps attain mental equilibrium.
4. Pranayama - (Yoga Breathing) Extension and control of breath.
5. Pratyahara - (Withdrawal of Senses)
6. Dharana - (Concentration)
7. Dhyan - (Meditation) Internalizing awareness realizing the subconscious
8. Samadhi - (Enlightenment) preparedness for a peaceful passage to our next stage of existence


Novel Paths of Yoga

Hatha Yoga
Novel Paths of Yoga


Agni Yoga


Anahata Yoga


Ashtanga


Vinyasa Yoga


Dream Yoga


Hatha yoga I


ntegral yoga Kriya yoga


Kundalini yoga


Natya Yoga


Six Yogas of Naropa (Tummo)


Sahaja Yoga


Surat Shabd Yoga


Viniyoga Yantra Yoga


Yoga Nidra
Styles of Yoga


Bikrham Yoga


Power Yoga


Iyengar YogaYin Yoga


Prana Yoga

Warts

Posted by queenmadison



Flat. Plantar. Common. While most people carry the virus that causes these and other types of warts, you can treat your warts and stop the spread. According to research or other evidence, the following self-care steps may be helpful:

+Turn up the heat
Apply a heating pad set to 122°F (50°C) for 30 seconds at a time, one to four times, to regress common warts and prevent regrowth
+Control contact
If you have warts of any kind, avoid scratching them; if you have genital warts, limit sexual contact with others and see a healthcare professional
+Use salicylic acid
Treat common warts with a daily topical over-the-counter preparation containing salicylic acid

Weight Loss and Obesity

Posted by queenmadison



Get the skinny on weight loss. Discover what works for you to improve your chances of losing weight and keeping it off. According to research or other evidence, the following self-care steps may be helpful:

+Aim for total nutrition with a multivitamin
Extra vitamins and minerals will help ensure your body gets the nutrition it needs, especially if you are avoiding certain foods
+Find a diet that fits
+For long-term success, choose a healthy diet that you can stay with
+Create a custom exercise plan
+Exercise you truly enjoy is much easier to stick to, so find activities that fit your personal style, fitness level, and workout opportunities
+Find support
+Improve your chances for long-term weight loss by joining a group while you adjust to new diet and exercise habits
+Get a boost from pyruvate
Combining exercise with 6 to 10 grams a day of this supplement may help speed up your metabolism

Jet Lag

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Traveling across time zones can trigger jet lag, a common condition that usually goes away within several days. According to research or other evidence, the following self-care steps may be helpful:

+Rest easy with melatonin
Improve sleep quality and avoid daytime drowsiness by taking 0.5 mg of this natural hormone at bedtime for four days after arriving at your destination
+Take time to adjust
Give your body a chance to adapt to a new time zone by relaxing and limiting your activity for the fir st day or
two

HYPERTENSION

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Beat hypertension—Lower your blood pressure with simple lifestyle changes to protect yourself from this hidden health problem. According to research or other evidence, the following self-care steps may be helpful:

+Sidestep salt
+Avoid using too much table salt, limit salty fast foods, and read labels to find low-sodium foods in your grocery store
+Watch what you eat
+Choose a diet low in cholesterol and animal fat, and high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, and low-fat milk products, with some nuts and seeds
+Maintain a healthy weight
+Lose excess weight and keep it off with a long-term program of exercise and healthier eating
+Try CoQ10
+Taking 100 mg a day of this powerful antioxidant may have a significant impact on your blood pressure after one to several months
+Boost heart health with supplemental garlic
600 to 900 mg a day of a standardized garlic extract can improve heart and blood vessel health, and also has a mild blood pressure–lowering effect
+Take minerals
+Supplements of calcium (800 to 1,500 mg a day) and magnesium (350 to 500 mg a day) may be helpful


These recommendations are not comprehensive and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or pharmacist

EAR INFECTION

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Ears prone to infections can lead to symptoms such as fever, irritability, and sleeplessness. According to research or other evidence, the following steps may help keep your family’s ears clear:

+Try xylitol
+Control mouth bacteria that cause ear infections by chewing gum or eating candy sweetened with xylitol, a natural sugar found in fruit
+Steer clear of smoke
+Stop smoking and avoid all sources of passive cigarette smoke exposure to reduce ear infection recurrences
+Pass up pacifiers
+Reduce ear infection risk in babies by weaning them off pacifiers
+Uncover food allergies
+Work with a knowledgeable health professional to find out if food allergies are causing infections


These recommendations are not comprehensive and are not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or pharmacist.

ASTHMA

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Don’t let asthma knock the wind out of you. Asthma is a lung disorder characterized by sudden fits of wheezing, coughing, or shortness of breath. According to research or other evidence, the following self-care steps may be helpful:

Clean it up
+To avoid triggering asthma attacks, control household and workplace irritants such as dust, mold, smoke, chemicals, and animal dander, and dietary triggers like certain food additives
+Keep a healthy body weight
+Shed extra pounds to improve breathing and decrease the need for medications
+Check out certain antioxidants
30 mg a day of lycopene or 64 mg a day of natural beta-carotene can help prevent exercise-related asthma attacks
+Try proven herbal remedies
+Supplements containing boswellia extract (900 mg a day), ivy leaf extract (50 drops a day), or tylophora leaf (200 to 400 mg a day) may improve breathing symptoms; children should be given one-half of these amounts or less, depending on body weight
+Watch the salt
+Avoid aggravating symptoms by limiting use of table salt and salty fast foods, and by reading labels to find low sodium groceries
+See an allergist
+Find a specialist to help you build tolerance to allergens

RAMBUTAN

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Rambutan




Exotic fruit of Southeast Asia.
The rambutan, Nephelium lappaceum, is a fruit considered exotic to people outside of its native range. To people of Malaysia, Thailand, the Phillippines, Vietnam, Borneo, and other countries of this region, the rambutan is a relatively common fruit the same way an apple is common to many people in cooler climates. This may change for the rambutan over time as availability and distribution improve.
This web site aims to familiarize the public with the qualities that make the rambutan such a wonderful, delicious and nutritious fruit. The word "rambut" in the fruit name 'rambutan' is Malay for 'hairy,' and this refers to the spiky rind. Indeed, without the soft spines on the rind, the rambutan would resemble the lychee (or litchee) which is in the same botanical family. The structure internally is quite similar, with a single central inedible seed and edible white flesh wrapped around it but the skin is the part that makes the rambutan so distinctive in appearance. Other members of the same botanical family, the Sapindaceae, include the longan (Dimocarpus longan), the canepa or mamoncillo (Melicoccus bijugatus), the pulasan (Nephelium mutabile), and guaranĂ¡ (Paullinia cupana).
Pulasan GuaranĂ¡


















How to open and enjoy
The fruit should be 2" to 3" long and oval but can be almost round in some varieties. The shape can also be more elongated if the seed does not develop. The two pictures above show, on the left, a pile of fully ripe fruit and on the right a cut-away section of the rind revealing the white, edible interior of the rambutan. Look for a bright red color in most cases but there are some rambutan varieties that ripen a bright yellow or yellow with an orange blush.
Removing the rind The opening of the rambutan can be accomplished by either cutting part way into the rind or, if fresh, biting into it as the spines are quite soft and pose no threat.
Opening the fruit Once the rind is cut part way around the equator of the fruit it can be pried open. There may be some juice if the rambutan is really fresh that you should try to catch before it drips. It will be as sweet as the fruit you are about to enjoy.
Time to enjoy The rambutan can now be removed from the rind by squeezing until it pops out. There is one seed in the center which you discard as it is bitter. The rest of the fruit is yours to enjoy and it is quite refreshing. Besides vitamin C, there are many other nutritional components to savor which you can read about on the nutrition page.



What to look for in a rambutan


Grafted rambutan versus seedlingThe pictures below show some of the differences between grafted rambutan varieties that have been selected from superior specimens with known desirable qualities versus those which have been produced from seedlings with unknown qualities. Seedlings can, on occasion, be as good as previously selected varieties and are then used as scion material or budwood to replicate it by grafting it onto a seedling rootstock. Grafting often accelerates the first flowers in numerous plant species and often leads to earlier fruit production than on trees growing on their own roots.
The grafted varieties tend to have larger fruit and there may be as few as 9 or 10 to the pound or as many as 16 to 18 per pound. The ungrafted seedlings tend to have smaller fruit and there may be 16 to over 20 per pound. In addition, the edible proportion inside each rambutan fruit may be reduced in the seedling due to typically smaller outside diameters combined with medium to large seeds. The other factor which may affect your enjoyment is that many seedlings have fruit with a very fibrous texture a lot like the canepa (Meliccocus bijugatus) and are quite firmly attached to the seed.
The photo below shows, on the left, the grafted rambutan fruit and on the right, a bunch of seedling fruit. The differences are striking, both in appearance and in flavor. The texture and frequently sugar content are often superior in grafted or selected cultivars. This was, after all, why they were 'selected' for mass production in the first place.

In the left photo below, the grafted variety is in the upper row, the seedling in the lower. In the photo below on the right, the upper two rows are the grafted variety and the fruits below that are from a seedling. Notice the large seed size in the cut open seedling fruit reducing the amount of the edible portion.


The reward for your efforts
As you can see above, the thin-skinned rambutan fruit is quite accessible and the edible portion makes up a large part of the whole. After making a shallow cut through the skin and only part of the way around the exterior, the edible white portion is exposed with some light pressure on the rind along the line of the cut. Resembling a boiled egg about 2" to 3" long once it is removed from the rind, the rambutan fruit easily slips out of the soft spiny skin (pericarp) and in some varieties also slips easily (freestone) away from the pit. There are many varieties where the edible portion is harder to peel away from the seed (clingstone) but the flavor of the fruit is deemed more important than this quality and many clingstone varieties have a great taste. There are also the occasional fruits where the seed has partially withered ("chicken tongue" seed) or not formed at all, leaving you with a delicious seedless fruit, but those are the exceptions.


When to pick or when to buy
Notice how the fruit forms in clusters and some of these can be quite large, numbering in the dozens. As full ripeness approaches, the entire branch can sag under the weight and be pulled down a few feet. Harvesting involves cutting off the entire cluster if the majority of the fruit are ripe; if not, then several visits to the tree are required to complete the task.
From flowering to ripe fruit, it takes 90 days or more. The green fruits start to turn yellow and then red, sometimes quite rapidly. In some years, the process from green to red can take place in 5 to 10 days. Keep in mind that the ripe rambutan is typically red but there are some varieties that finish with a bright yellow color and some that end up with an orange blush. The flavor is pretty much the same as the red ones. The best fruit have little or no black forming on the tips of the soft spines.
The close-up

These pictures make it possible to see the detail of the skin of a rambutan. The soft spines, or spinterns, are safe to handle and lose a lot of water after the fruit has been picked. For this reason, to hold them for any length of time in refrigeration requires some sort of plastic film to slow down the moisture loss. The spinterns may turn black within days after harvest but the fruit inside remains quite fresh and tasty for several days or a week longer. If the humidity is high, then the fruit can be held at room temperature in a plastic bag that is not sealed but rather loosely closed.

DISNEY CHANNEL: Kids are addicted!

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My kid is guilty! She is indeed addicted in watching Disney channel's TV shows. She watches it every day. If it's possible she would want to watch them for 24 hours!
I really don't know how to put my kid's interest into something else.
TV has been her babysitter.


According to some Child Psychiatrist, TV can be a child best friend but it can also harm her, especially if some of the shows she watches are of those with explicit or Bulgar contents. But Playhouse Disney so far has been the safest for kids right now. Their strict screening really sets-up a Child-friendly TV shows for children.
But of course, you gotta let your kid play with other children to increase her social life... That's what I do with my little angel.

My Friends Tigger and Pooh. Although this has a limited learning functions for kids, they can learn to care for others and be alert in any situation. I can recommend this for little toddlers. The graphics are pretty entertaining. And it can teach them to co operate with a group.




POCOYO. What does a little blue baby offer to kids? like Pooh, he can offer little kids lesson on how to care to others. To treat animals right and to enjoy being a toddler with wide imagination, it can explore their little minds and adopt it with their daily basics. Not only that Pocoyo teaches little toddler to be caring but also to behave and be playful.




Little Einsteins. This is a perfect TV show for your little explorers! In this TV show they have many options to learn. About music, comprehension, dancing, singing, fairy tales and a lot more. It can teach little cuties to be co operative and let them decide on things as well.

DIET for BABY

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When your baby can sit with support, hold his head steady, and can take food off with his mouth from the spoon and swallow it easily, this is the right time to move to the next diet stage. This usually occurs when baby is 4 to 6 months old.
The first food your baby can eat is baby cereals. After baby cereals, you can give your baby rice, then oatmeal. Later on, when he knows how to drink from a babies small cup, you can give him a freshly squeeze fruit juice for his vitamin C supplement.
Once your baby reached 6 to 8 months old, he can now hold and grab onto things. He can sit without support and he can begin to chew foods. The best foods that you can give him on his stage are pureed, mashed, and strained foods. You can try to boil a potato or a carrot and then mashed it. You can also give soft fruits for him to eat.
Later on, you can give him strained meat; cooked and mashed dry beans, and boned and cooked fish.
At the age of 8 to 10 months old, your baby can take a full bite of foods. He can pick up small pieces and he can feed himself. You can move to the next food level, which are cooked and mashed egg yolks, and Cottage cheese and yogurt. You can also give him crackers, small pieces of cooked vegetables and peeled soft fruits.
When your baby reaches age 10 to 12 months old, he can now chew and swallow mash food. You can give him soft foods that the rest of the family can eat like crackers, cereals, cooked meat, peas and lentils, and cooked egg yolks.
It is best to offer your baby 3 small amounts of foods everyday. Older babies can eat larger amount of solid foods in a day. It is best to allow your baby to choose how much he will eat. Never force nor encourage your baby to eat more than he wishes to eat

BABYSITTER CHECKLIST

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Baby sitter's care


WHAT THE SITTER NEEDS TO KNOW


  • Time you'll be home

  • Children bedtimes

  • What TV shows and snacks are allowed

  • Whether to answer the door

  • How to answer the phone ( it amy be wise not to say that you're out)

  • Special instructions for infants or sick children

  • Were things are; diapers, toys, food, books, fire extinguishers, flashlights, phone, first-aid supplies, fire exits, children's room

  • How to lock and unlock windows and doors
Telephone Numbers

  • Where you can be reached

  • neighbor

  • doctor

  • police

  • fire

  • ambulance

  • poison control

Provisions for the sitter

  • Softdrinks, snacks

  • Magazines, pillow

BALLOONS

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1. Party invitations. Inflate brightly colored balloons, then write out your invitations- very carefully- with a constrasting felt-tip pen. Deflate the balloons, put tehm in envelopes, seal and ,mail to your guests; in order to read your message, they'll have to reinflate them.
2. Mold. Use balloon as a mold for paper-mache pinata or mask.

IS YOUR JOB RIGHT FOR YOU?

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· Are your coworkers warm, friendly, and courteous?
· Is your job so enjoyable that you do extra work?
· Does your work challenge your imagination?
· If you inherited a large sum of money, would you keep your job?
· Are your efforts appreciated?
· Are you fairly paid?
· Does your day go by quickly?
· Is your job conveniently located?
· Are you allowed to take time off when personal emergencies arise?
· Are people promoted from within your organization?
· Is your work area pleasant?
· Are special talents and skills utilized?
· Is your boss helpful, capable, and encouraging?
· Does the benefits package match your needs?
· Could you transfer to another department if it made sense to do so?
· Is your company concerned about the health and well-being of its employees?
· Is your routine varied enough to forestall boredom?
· Are your work hours right for you and your family?
· Does your work make a difference to the company?

If you answered yes to 15 or more of these questions, chances are you are well suited to the career you have chosen. If you didn’t, you might consider changing careers, returning to school, or retiring early. A good place to start a career planning course, which may put you on a new path of personal growth and satisfaction.

BREAST-FEEDING MYTHS

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Advice to nursing mothers has been rich and varied- and often contradictory- over the years. Here are some examples from various times and places;If you eat peanuts, your milk will dry up (unless you are in Africa, where they say that peanuts increase flow)

Some people insist that eating chocolate will stop your milk; others, that will produce more.
In many places, it has long been believed that drinking beer or milk will increase your milk supply; in Minnesota, oatmeal helps. Eating cow, nature’s premier milk producer, is advised in some quarters: drink alfalfa tea or eat alfalfa sprouts. (But farmers don’t allow cows to graze near apple orchards- eating apples causes their milk to dry up) There are more examples; if you nurse in a car, the baby will get gas; ditto if you eat cabbage. An onion in your stomach will give your baby colic. If you rock while nursing, you’ll shake up the milk. If a mother becomes nervous, angry, frightened, or sexually stimulated, her milk will turn sour. In case, she will pass her own nature on to her baby in her milk.