College Bound?

Summer/Fall

  1. Get organized. Maybe purchase a calendar specifically for the next 14-16 months.There are vital dates that you don’t want to miss. I suggest notating the date that ACT or SAT will be offered, when the FAFSA opens and prospective college application open dates

  2. Review your ACT/SAT scores. Your student may benefit from re-taking the exam to get their score up. If that is the case, look for free tutoring first before paying. Many schools “Super Score” which means they will take the highest score from each testing category to give the student the best chance at the highest average score. We love this

  3. Who is going to write your student’s letter of recommendation? The letters should come from people who know your child well and can offer a good character assessment. The letter should offer a variety of vantage point. The admission folks don’t want to see 3 teachers letters of recommendation. Consider a supervisor, counselor, church member, coach,

  4. Save money. I probably should have listed that first. As you can imagine, before your student even steps foot on a college campus, you will have expenses. ACT/SET has a few. Most schools have an application fee that must be paid at the time of application submission. If your student applies early, you will likely hear back within a month or so. Be ready to send in a non-refundable deposit. The deposit is sometimes used to secure housing or simply a spot at the table. Either way, if you are sure about the school, have your deposit ready. The deposit can range from $200 to $500, depending on the school.

  5. Submit application.

  6. Apply for scholarships.

  7. Complete FAFSA

  8. Continue to work hard. Admission decisions are largely based on the junior year due to the timing applications open,however, you will be able to submit a more recent transcript and any new testing scores.

 

Spring

  1. If you have not, visit the prospective college campus.

  2. Weigh your options. Compare offers & financial aid.

  3. Contact the school’s financial aid office. Get to know the people who work there. Stay abreast of deadlines and ask about any aid that you should apply for

  4. Accept an offer. Graduate and Celebrate!!!

 

Now the real fun begins…..

Skin Deep

Ever wonder how toxins enter our bodies? Probably not. Maybe it's just the way my mind works. Well, no because there was a study published a few years ago that tested more than 10,000 Americans. The test was done by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in an attempt to determine their “chemical body burden.” The results of the CDC study were stunning: even those who lived in remote areas were found to have hundreds of synthetic chemicals in their bloodstream.YIKES! More disturbingly, this chemical exposure begins even before we take our first breath— an astounding 287 chemical toxins have been detected within the umbilical cord blood of newborns.  I don't know about you, but as a Mom, that pisses me off.

So how do these harmful synthetic chemicals get into our (and our children’s) bloodstream, and where do they come from? If this isn't news to you, you might not be surprised to hear that some of the toxic chemicals detected in the bodies of those tested are common ingredients in mainstream personal care products. Harmful chemicals found in skin care and cosmetics can enter our bodies through the skin. Your skin absorbs 60% of what you put on it,” and anything you put on your skin is absorbed into your bloodstream within 26 seconds. 

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One of the many functions of the skin is, indeed, to be a barrier: it keeps our internal organs and fluids in, and harmful external elements (UV radiation, bacteria) out. The skin can be divided into three distinct parts: the epidermis, the dermis, and the hypodermis. The epidermis is comprised of five layers of dermal cells, the uppermost layer (the stratum corneum) being our first line of defense against the outside world. The stratum corneum is a sheath of flattened, dead skin cells surrounded by water-repelling lipids— this explains why our bodies don’t swell up like a sponge every time we take a bath. Though these outer layers of skin do a good job at keeping elements like water from seeping in, absorption of certain chemicals through the skin is very real. Many medicines are delivered through the skin, most often in the form of patches or gels. This method is quite potent and effective at delivering chemicals into our body (I.E. fentanyl patch which can kill you)

Still think your skin is a full proof barrier?

3 Common Misconceptions About Hybrid Vehicles

3 Common Misconceptions About Hybrid Vehicles

3 Common Misconceptions About Hybrid Vehicles. Merriam-Webster defines “hybrid” as “something (such as a power plant, vehicle, or electronic circuit) that has two different types of components performing essentially the same function.” In the case of a hybrid car, those components are an internal-combustion engine and at least one electric motor, both of which drive the wheels. 

Y'all Must be Sisters

Our organs slowly start losing cells and we just can’t “party like we used to.” Our cell membranes lose their ability to retain oxygen. We have so many cells in our bodies that we rarely recognize the degeneration but it is happening.

Top 3 Lies About the Atkins Diet

Low carb diets like Atkins have always had controversy associated with it. The original publication was done in 1972 and regurgitated in 1992 as “Dr. Atkins New Diet Revolution”, which created a new surge of interest

Anyone Else Sleepy?

So it's not a secret that I love sleep. No, for real. We have a whole relationship. I was that child that didn't have to be coaxed and bribed to go to bed. My mom will tell you. I was always ready for bedtime and sometimes would beat her to sleep before she could come tuck me in. That being said, I find great comfort in my monogamous relationship with sleep because we now know that ample sleep reduces your cancer risk.

Back from Alzheimer’s

Back from Alzheimer’s

This is a real problem. I think every single one of us can think of someone effected by alzheimers disease.

I came across an article of a mother and son who came up with a plan to fight the Mom's disease. And Guess what! She is back to her normal self.

Home Alone

Home Alone

I wonder how many of us know that each time we go spend our hard earned money to purchase personal care and household supplies, we are bringing toxins and pollutants into our home

So Who’s Hungry?

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According to the National Cancer Institute, roughly ⅓ of all cancer deaths are due to our diets. GASP! So if I am you, I mean, I’m not, but if I were, I would add the following to my grocery list ASAP:

 

  1. Cruciferous veggies like broccoli, cauliflower, kale, brussel sprouts and cabbage hold 2 major antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin. These two friends of ours are known to prevent colon cancer, breast cancer, type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

  2. Oranges and lemons perk up the immune system to drive back cancer cells. Did you know that papayas have ascorbic acid, which works as an antioxidant. Raspberries hold a lot of vitamins and minerals which help protect against disease.

  3. Nuts hold a great deal of antioxidants which are known to suppress tumor growth.

Take notice that we do not see any wings, BBQ meatballs, mac-n-cheese on this list.lol.I wish but no. Moving on...So what about beverages? Tea is your friend. Not McDonalds sweet tea, if you value your life.  Nothing against Mickey D’s but have you ever seen them make their sweet tea? Well, I have and that was the last day I had some. Green tea is the real MVP. Green tea is made from unfermented tea leaves and as a result has the highest density of antioxidants known as polyphenols. Polyphenols are like an older much stronger big brother. They battle free radicals.

Before you get in the self-checkout line, grab this as well:

  • Garlic

  • Turmeric

  • Ginger

  • Hot Chili Peppers

  • Jalapenos

5 Super Benefits to Writing by Hand

I remember a few years ago, I had to write a report for work.Like actually hand write it (clutches pearls. I know..)  Within about 3 minutes, my hand started cramping. I was a little surprised that my hand was actually in a bit of pain but I instantly knew why. I never write. I don't write. Ever. My hand was out of practice. My muscles were sad. I had not realized that over the past few years, everything that I communicated was either by computer or phone. Pen and paper may have gone out of style as quickly as the blackberry but don't throw that #2 pencil away just yet.

I loved when my daughters started learning cursive in school; and was shocked to hear from parents at other schools that their children weren't learning how to write in script. And indeed, as the Washington Post reported last year, the Common Core standards adopted by so many states no longer require teaching cursive in public schools. (More pearls clutching!!)

But it appears the tide is turning, and the curly-cued linked letters – and block printing too – will not go down without a fight. A number of states are now requiring the teaching of cursive in schools, a revival encouraged by educators, researchers, parents and politicians. And it's a good thing. While typing and digital files have been great in stemming a tide of paper waste, when used judiciously, writing things by hand has numerous benefits that we should not be in a rush to lose sight of. Consider the following:

1. It improves learning

A study published by the Association for Psychological Science found that taking notes in longhand, not laptop, improves comprehension, concluding that "laptop note takers’ tendency to transcribe lectures verbatim rather than processing information and reframing it in their own words is detrimental to learning.

2. It encourages brain development

A report in Psychology Today describes the importance to brain development of learning cursive, during the course of which "the brain develops functional specialization that integrates both sensation, movement control, and thinking." Brain imaging shows how engaged the brain is while learning cursive:

To write legible cursive, fine motor control is needed over the fingers. You have to pay attention and think about what and how you are doing it. You have to practice. Brain imaging studies show that cursive activates areas of the brain that do not participate in keyboarding.

3. It makes for better composition

Research reveals that students who write essays with a pen write more than those that used a keyboard; they also wrote faster and in more complete sentence.

5. It keeps older brains sharp

The Wall Street Journal reports on research that finds that by engaging fine motor-skills, memory, and more, writing by hand acts as a good cognitive exercise for aging brains

And to all of this I might add, there is a certain intentionality that comes with forming letters on paper; one that is lost when tapping plastic buttons. And if nothing else, there are few things that compare to receiving a handwritten letter in the mail (that gets delivered by a human being to a physical mailbox).

Maybe I'm just old-fashioned, but some traditional skills are too important to lose ... especially when they come with so many benefits.

Rapunzel! Let Down Your Hair!

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Summer is quickly approaching once winter releases its grip on Spring. OMG, why is it 45 for the high in April in the mid-south… Foolishness!

So question for my Ladies...When we get the “all-clear” for summer to come through, how are we going to keep our hair growing throughout the summer with no damage? I know I try to stay out as much as possible during the summer months. I don’t want to let the sunshine go to waste. Lol. At least, that’s how my mind works. Sun is great but brutal on our hair.

Here are my TOP 5 ways to keep my hair happy and health during the summer!

  1. Use products that have the “M” word. Moisturizing

  2. Trim regularly. Every 6 weeks is a good idea and anywhere from a quarter to ½ inch

  3. Deep condition bi-weekly. I usually do this on a day when I plan to be in the house for a while. After applying a generous amount of conditioner and plastic cap,  if I am in somewhat of a hurry, I will sit under the dryer for about 30-45 minutes. If I have the time, I will just leave the conditioner in for hours and sometimes until the following day before rinsing out.

  4. 4. Drink lots of water.How much is “lots?” Divide your body weight. That is how much you should be drinking daily in ounces.

  5. Take an all-natural, filler-free hair vitamin supplement. Strengthening your hair from the inside out is smart and key. I have found tremendous success with this hair vitamin.