Life Lessons We Can Learn From French Women

French women are renowned throughout the world for their beauty, style, sex appeal, elegance and grace. It kinda seems like French women know something we don’t, right? Instead of jealously looking over our shoulders at them, maybe we can learn from French women.

DRESS LIKE SOMEONE’S WATCHING

You won’t catch a French woman running out for milk in her pajama bottoms and a sweatshirt. Wherever she goes, the quintessential French woman dresses as though she will be seen and noticed. She knows that dressing well not only makes her look good on the outside; it makes her feel good on the inside. That’s a lesson we can all stand to learn from French women.

DETAILS MATTER

From her head to her toes, the French woman makes sure all the details are covered. Eyebrows are tweezed, nails are polished, jewelry is in place and hair is coiffed. The little details make all the difference between French women and the rest of us, but there’s no reason we can’t follow suit.

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How to Get the Ball Rolling on Eating Healthier

You may want to start eating healthier, but getting the ball rolling can be an uphill endeavor. These little ideas will help get you motivated to start eating healthier.

MAKE A LIST

When you get hungry, the last thing you feel like doing is running down a mental list of available healthy foods to eat. That’s why you probably end up grabbing whatever is closest to you and chowing down, vowing to start eating healthy tomorrow.

Instead, sit down and make a list of foods that you determine to be healthiest for you and your goals. Don’t just write a shopping list. Make a list of actual meals that you can prepare and eat. Include what day you’re going to have them, and what time. The more prepared you are when hunger strikes, the more likely you will be to have something ready without having to think too hard about it.

BUY A COOKBOOK

Flipping through a cookbook with enticing photographs of healthy food will get you inspired to start eating healthy. Buy a cookbook or two that has nothing but healthy food recipes. Make sure it has a photo for every recipe, so you can visualize yourself dining on the healthy options. Put bookmarks on pages that really make you want to get up and start cooking. These are the dishes that will offer you the best motivation to start your new healthy eating plan.

BUY SOME NEW CLOTHES

Wearing the same clothes everyday when you already feel unattractive can keep you in a negative rut that’s hard to get out of. Put on your best outfit and go shopping for some new clothes. Buy a few that fit you now, and something special that you can work toward fitting into after you’ve achieved your weight goal. The change will help you to see yourself as someone new and fresh who is capable of switching eating habits for the better.

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4 Ways to Keep Back to School Spending in Check

When parents and kids are both excited to shop for back to school, it can turn into a textbook case of out of control spending. Who can resist those rows of fresh new pencils, fat empty notebooks just waiting to be filled with ideas bordering on genius, and the array of dazzling organizers that promise that this, this year is going to so much better than last year!

Back to school equals new beginnings, fresh starts and do-overs. Back to school means back to serious business, where new friends await, old mistakes are forgotten and the future is wide open. It’s a time when the coolest teen magazines Instagram is filled with filtered photos of perfect little coeds, jumping and laughing together with friends, all the while sporting the latest backpacks, hair bands and fall skirts and shoes.

The thing about back to school spending, is someone’s got to keep a level head. Because if you don’t, there won’t be any money left in the budget for new sports equipment, that cheerleading outfit, the school trips or the endless pizza parties, not to mention that adorable new winter coat that hasn’t even been advertised yet. The fact is, school spending goes on for the entire year, so it’s better to keep tabs on the back to school spending so you’ll have more than a small fraction to spend the rest of the year.

MAKE A BUDGET

Boring? Yes, but it’s also good practice for the scholar in the home. Talk about what activities the student might want to join this year, figure in an allowance for shopping trips with friends, and remember to factor in the over-priced, “Oh, my God, I’ll never ask you for another thing as long as I live if you just let me get these boots!” boots. If you make a budget and stick with it, it really will be a good school year, at least financially.

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How Geeky Became the New Sexy (and the women we can thank for it)

Gone are the days of the stereotypical male geek with masking taped eyeglasses and ill-fitting plaid shirts. These days, geeky is the new sexy, and we have some very gorgeous and smart women to thank for it.

ELIZABETH HOLMES

When Elizabeth Holmes was a young girl, she exhibited signs of brilliance early on. Whereas many kids fall behind when their families move around a lot, Elizabeth seemed to thrive on experiencing different cultures in places like China, Texas, and Washington D.C. She followed in her ancestor’s footsteps and studied medicine and engineering at Stamford University, where she discovered her fear of needles.

Elizabeth Holmes went on to invent a new test that uses a few drops of blood from a finger prick instead of a needle injection to diagnose certain diseases. Ms. Holmes has altered the way we look at geeks, and we’re thankful for it.

AMAL CLOONEY

When you think of a barrister, you probably picture an old man in a white wig shedding dust in a dark courtroom in London. What you can picture now, thanks to Amal Clooney, is a strong, beautiful woman who rules the London legal scene with just a hint of leg showing. Amal Clooney is a lawyer, activist and author who just happens to be married to the most handsome leading man in Hollywood, George Clooney. Amal is just as likely to be found listening to a litany of human rights violations as she is sipping champagne at a movie premiere in La-La Land. If this is what it means to be a geek now, sign me up.

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Things You Forgot to Recycle

You’re freaking awesome. You are a dedicated friend of the Earth, self-appointed conservationist and a total advocate for natural living. You recycle (obviously!), and it was your idea to start the neighborhood swap shop.

But it’s possible that you forgot to recycle some things. Well, not forgot, exactly. More like, didn’t think you could, or didn’t think of it at all. That’s okay, nobody’s perfect. Here’s a list of things you might not have thought to recycle, as well as some ideas for repurposing before you recycle!

STYROFOAM PEANUTS

These little peanuts are both a nuisance for the Earth and a blessing for people who like to online shop. People give away free bags full of Styrofoam peanuts on Craigslist because no one’s quite sure what to do with them.

To Recycle: Enter the Plastic Loose Fill Council (yes, this is a real thing). Go online and enter your state and zip code, and you’ll get a list of shipping services stores near you that will gladly accept your Styrofoam peanuts and make sure they are reused or recycled appropriately.

To Repurpose: Does your youngster have any home economics projects coming up? Her schoolteacher may appreciate a donation of Styrofoam peanuts for the kids to stuff handmade beanbag chairs, teddy bears or other soft craft projects.

BROKEN CRAYONS

If you’re a parent, chances are there’s a shoebox somewhere in your house filled with broken crayons that “certain people” refuse to use. When every gift occasion includes a fresh new box of Crayolas, how can you expect Timothy to use the broken crayons first?

To Recycle: Local charities might be interested in taking your broken crayons off your hands. Look for after-school programs, half-way houses and women’s shelters, each of which is bound to have access to needy children who would love to use those crayons, broken or not. If you are still at a loss, mail them in to Crazy Crayons, an organization that will recycle the crayons for you.

To Repurpose: Melt the crayon wax down and make homemade votive-style candles, like these DIY color block crayon candles.

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