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When kids fight against your cell phone rules

July 31, 2009 --

By Jean Tracy, NW Author, Parent Newsletter

Parents, do kids with cell phones drive you crazy? How do other parents discipline when cell phone rules are broken? Finally, what would you do if these children were yours?

1. Morgan, age 13, texts her friends when you’re talking with her, during dinner, and when you’re having family time. She also sends texts after midnight. Her phone bills are outrageous. You’re afraid to cut off her phone usage because she’ll stomp and scream to get her way. What will you do?

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I Shopped my own Yard Sale!


From 4 reluctant Entertainers
Real entertaining for real people

I didn’t spend much, but I shopped my own sale.

My friend Jenny and I got a date on the calendar – a Friday, for a 1/2 day sale.

Our goal was to not stress over it, but to keep it simple and fun!

1. Create a space where you can store your boxes of items for sale.  In our case, it was the garage.
2. Find a friend who wants to share the sale, pick a date, and move forward.
3. Don’t worry about pricing your items, it takes WAY too much time.
4. Make sure you have enough tables, start setting up either the night before, or 2 hours earlier.
5. Have a table for $1 items, 50 cent items, or after setting up, use stickers to mark items.
6. Make sure you advertise for FREE on Craig’s List.

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A “Binding” Love: How to Make A Memory Quilt

July 30, 2009 --

By Kay Helbling


You have said goodbye to a loved one and walk back into your home to find you are surrounded by memories. T-shirts that tell stories of a time you laughed together. A jacket worn at a game you cheered on. A tie worn at your last anniversary dinner.  Each can become a piece of cloth to add to your memory quilt.


You come across writings tucked away in a Bible or other favorite book, an award earned years ago, a card sent with a note of love. All can be copied and transferred onto a cloth block given a place of honor next to photos also be taken from paper to cloth.


If you read my article last week, you knew I’d share a few tips for the most novice quilter to preserve these pieces of memory. Everything will simply be working in squares. The more experienced quilter can take it to many levels, but even the beginning quilter can cut squares from a t-shirt and sew them together. 


Front of the quilt, creating 10-inch quilt blocks.

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Online dating promises get scrutinized


A great article by Carl Bialik in the Wall Street Journal, takes many online dating services to taskf or exaggerated claims.  Here is the article,

“Online-dating sites have changed romance for millions of Americans. But claims that such dating leads to hordes of newly wedded couples may be fairy tales. EHarmony claims in television or online ads in the U.K., U.S. and Australia that 2% of Americans who got married last year met through its site. But the stat is based on an online survey. Similarly, a media kit claimed that 12 marriages a day trace their roots to the site, but the company now says it’s inaccurate. And Markus Frind, chief executive and founder of Plenty of Fish, doesn’t advertise about marriages, but says his site brings about 100,000 marriages a year, a figure based in part on “some study I found online.” Continue reading.

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H1N1 Virus Poll: Parents to vaccinate kids, not selves

July 29, 2009 --

Fox News and Associated Press report. “Most parents like the idea of vaccinating children against swine flu at school, but they’re not so eager to roll up their own sleeves…Nearly two-thirds said they were likely to give permission for their children to be inoculated at school — if the government’s evolving plan to try that pans out — and 40 percent said very likely. However, even as the government races to get enough swine flu vaccine for Americans in time for fall’s expected rebound of the virus, only a third of people say they’re very likely to get vaccinated themselves once shots arrive.”  Continue reading story here.

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Snoozing May Help Women Shed Baby Weight

July 28, 2009 --

FRIDAY, July 24 HealthDay News — New moms who can’t zip up their pre-pregnancy jeans might not be catching enough zzzs. Getting a good night’s sleep, in fact, may be just as important as diet and exercise for shedding baby weight. One study of new mothers found that those who slept five or fewer hours a day six months after giving birth were three times as likely to hold onto those extra pounds as were women who got seven or more hours of sleep.

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Slim is in for men too

July 27, 2009 --

By Traci Scott,

Skinny jeans for men—basically denim tights—seemed like a momentary fad when they first appeared in stores a few years ago. Today, however, sales of men’s skinny jeans have sky-rocketed, and now even mass brands Gap and Levi’s are getting in on the action:
•    True Religion says 15% of the top-selling men’s jeans in its own retail stores were “slim leg” jeans in the first quarter of 2009, up from 11% in the year-ago first quarter.
•    Rock & Republic says sales of its men’s skinny denim over the past several months rose 26% over last year’s figures.
•    A Levi spokeswoman says: “Over the past several months, our men’s skinny jeans styles have been among our most requested and top-selling jeans.”

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Photo: Best reason to get her diamond

Study: Babies Understand Some Dog Language

July 25, 2009 --

HealthDay News — What’s in a bark? A new study suggests that 6-month-old babies know the answer.  Researchers found that most infants who were tested could figure out that an aggressive bark goes with an angry-looking dog. They also seemed to know that friendly-looking pooches voice their feelings in a different way. The babies managed to do this even though they weren’t very familiar with dogs.

It’s not clear whether the babies actually know that a dog baring its teeth is a sign of trouble, but they’re showing a level of sophistication regarding how dogs reveal their emotions, said study author Ross Flom, an associate professor of psychology and neuroscience at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah.

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Parenting Tips: Money, Chores, and Sloppy Work

July 24, 2009 --

By Jean Tracy, NW Author, Parent Newsletter

When you hand over money for your child’s allowance, is it for chores well done? Or are you too generous? Find out inside.

If you’re like most parents, you’re busy. You give your child chores. He does them. You give him his allowance. It’s so simple.

Once in awhile you check his work. If this is what you see, you might hold on to your money. Better yet raise your standards.

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