June 14, 2011 at 10:13 am , by Amanda Wolfe
This sweet video (which, we’ll admit, made us tear up a little), is a tribute to our Special Olympics athletes and the moms who help them get where they are. With team USA heading to Athens for the 2011 games next weekend, Proctor & Gamble is donating $250,000 to the Special Olympics, and giving all of us a chance to contribute too! For every like, share, or comment on Facebook.com/thankyoumom, P&G will donate a dollar (up to an additional $250,000) to the Special Olympics in celebration of the moms and families who support our athletes.
June 1, 2011 at 8:00 am , by Amanda Wolfe
Tell us how you stay gorgeous and beat the summer heat and we’ll send you an exclusive LHJ fan-only coupon code* for 25 percent off natural Tarte products! Just go to our Facebook and answer this question: What’s your go-to Summer beauty product to beat the heat? Or tweet your answer @LHJmagazine on Twitter. We’ll reply back (either via Facebook message or Twitter DM) with your exclusive code!
We’ll share the best summer stay-fresh tips here so stay tuned for other readers’ genius ideas! (In the meantime if you’re looking for some expert advice, check out this story from LHJ beauty director Erica Metzger.)
* Only valid at www.tarte.com. Must enter promo code at checkout. Cannot be combined with any other offer or promo code. Not valid on purchase of eGift cards. Not valid on purchase of select limited-edition items. Only valid on in-stock items, no rain checks. Not valid on previous purchases. Tarte has the right to cancel any orders due to unauthorized use. Promo expires on July 31, 2011 at 11:59pm EDT.
May 24, 2011 at 9:48 am , by Amanda Wolfe
Whether the dust that has created a protective barrier between you and your ability to see your TV screen or the computer keyboard contains at least one crumb from every meal you’ve multi-tasked over the last several months… our gadgets can get pretty nasty. Here’s the scoop on how to clean them (without ruining them!).
What you’ll need: Water and isopropyl alcohol (mixed 60/40,) a bottle of compressed air, microfiber or electrostatic cloths (like Swiffer or Pledge dry cloths) and cotton swabs.
Remember: You should always turn off and unplug all devices before cleaning them. Also, rather than vigorously scrubbing your gear like you would your dishes, channel the image of handling a baby when cleaning your gadgets. They may seem tough with the ease in which they solve all of our problems, but they are fragile (expensive!) machines to be handled with care.
Screens (computer, TV, and smart phone) seem to be magnets for dust and grime. Even the cleanest among us will notice a layer of dust coating the surface of the TV or computer. And don’t forget about the smudgy finger prints. First, wipe them down with a microfiber cloth (which traps dust between fibers) or a electrostatic cloth (which has synthetic fibers that create magnetic charge to pull dust to them). By doing this, you actually remove dust rather than spreading it around or unsettling it just to have it land back on your screen within minutes. Then, use a cloth dampened with the water/alcohol mixture to remove the fingerprints. (Paper towels and napkins are too abrasive for standard screens and can leave minute scratches on the surface).
Keyboards (computers and smart phones) are a more delicate area to clean because any fluid you use can drain into the actual machine, causing damage. That’s why it’s important to spray liquid cleaner (like the alcohol/water mix or other gadget-specific cleaning products) onto a cloth and NOT onto the device itself. Wipe the top of the keys off with a cloth and then use a cotton swab dipped in alcohol to trace the sides of the keys. Finally, use the compressed air to blast any dust and grime out from the inside of the keyboard.
Earphones often end up attracting earwax or other unidentified yuck from the bottom of the bag or purse they have been riding in. If they have soft removable covers, take them off and soak them for 10/15 minutes in a glass of water mixed with a couple drops of soap. Then, using an alcohol-dipped cotton swab, wipe over the earphones themselves. Let them dry for 20 minutes afterward to ensure that all of the water has evaporated.
March 17, 2011 at 3:32 pm , by Amanda Wolfe
We need your help! General Mills and Merck have committed to donating $900,000 (!) to Join My Village, a program that helps fight poverty in Malawi, run by our friends at CARE. The initiative helps lift whole African communities out of poverty (and hunger) by giving girls the tools they need to spark change, whether that’s fertilizer to grow corn or teachers and school supplies. On the site your clicks help unlock tokens—and $1 donations—to the cause.
So what can you do? If you go to JoinMyVillage.com right now and sign up with the code “JMV4LH,” it will release $5 (for the first 2,000 LHJ readers) to help these women and girls in need, and then of course you can stick around and keep learning and unlocking dollars. These girls’ stories are so powerful that I’d watch and read even if there wasn’t a donation attached—but how awesome is it that there is?
So go right now and sign up! A few minutes of your time could truly change lives.
March 14, 2011 at 9:31 am , by Amanda Wolfe
The videos, images and stories of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan are devastating, and it seems like every hour there’s more bad news: aftershocks, nuclear explosions. It’s easy to feel a sense of utter helplessness as we watch in shock, halfway around the world. But there are ways we can help:
The American Red Cross already has medical relief teams on the ground in Japan. To donate $10, text REDCROSS to 90999 or visit their site to donate any amount.
Save the Children, which has operated in Japan for the last 25 years, is also mobilizing to help children and families affected by the disaster. They’ve set up a special fund for Japan, and you can donate online or text JAPAN to 20222 to donate $10.
MeryCorps is working with its partner in Japan, Peace Winds, which is helicoptering in tents and supplies for homeless victims today. Click here to donate online.
Global Giving has a special fund set up for earthquake relief and is working with other organizations on the ground, like the International Medical Corps and Save the Children, to bring aid to victims.
If you have loved ones living in Japan, Google set up a 2011 earthquake people finder to help you connect. CNN also has a big list of additional ways to help the relief effort.
Image via GlobalGiving.
March 7, 2011 at 9:33 am , by Amanda Wolfe
Tomorrow marks the 100th anniversary of International Women’s Day. The first IWD honored suffragettes—the women who campaigned for our right to vote. Now the day is celebrated around the world with events that raise money and awareness for hundreds of issues affecting women and girls. It’s a powerful way to celebrate how far we’ve come—and keep pushing for much-needed change, especially for our sisters across the globe who have less opportunities than we do. Want to celebrate with us? Here’s how!
* Find an event near you at InternationalWomensDay.com. There are literally thousands of events going on around the world—everything from major conferences and marches to movie nights, concerts and makeovers. Air India will even be flying all-female crews tomorrow to honor the day.
* Attend the CARE National Conference in Washington, D.C. Okay it’s probably a little late but if you’re in the D.C. area, it’s an amazing 3-day event where you can hear from and be inspired by amazing women like Melinda Gates, Laura Bush, Judy Woodruff and our very own editor-in-chief Sally Lee. Follow CARE on Twitter to keep up with all the action from afar.
* Can’t find an event close by? Do something yourself to honor the day. We are loving the cupcake party toolkit from our friends at Vivanista and Sprinkles cupcakes to benefit CARE (and help eliminate global poverty). When you sign up to throw your own Party With a Purpose, they’ll give you a free toolkit with cupcake recipes, IWD trivia and more. Sweet! You can also watch broadcasts from events around the world on YouTube.
February 7, 2011 at 8:00 am , by Amanda Wolfe
It’s been a long time since my last update, so I thought I’d let you know how I’ve been doing. (Here’s my original story about caring for my mother, who died of ovarian cancer, and my follow-up blog post.) My mom is especially on my mind today because it’s been exactly a year since she passed away. I can’t believe it’s already been a whole year—the 21 months we spent battling her cancer seemed like an eternity, and now it’s already been a whole year without her?! How can that be?! But life goes on.
Since I last checked in, my sister and I sold my mom’s house in Ohio and moved our family heirlooms and must-have mementos into a storage facility. Saying goodbye to the house was incredibly hard—it almost felt like saying goodbye to my mom all over again. I had to keep reminding myself (through wracking, snuffly, red-faced sobs—lovely) that it’s just a house. Just a house. The memories are what matter. But our last days in my mom’s house were literally the three days over the Christmas holiday (our first without her). It was a double-whammy of emotional sucker punches and—all said and done—a holiday I’m not in a hurry to remember.
But selling the house also brought some closure. I can’t tell you how nice it is not to be a long-distance homeowner, with all of the crazy coordination and stress (and bills!) that entails. (For a house you’re not living in! Oy.) It’s funny though, looking back over the year: Aside from the traumatic Christmas, I’ve been doing pretty good. Do I think about my mom all the time and cry occasionally? Of course. Do I still have moments of piercing sadness where my visceral, childlike reaction is simply “I want my mom.” Heck yes. But I keep feeling this strange sense that I shouldn’t be doing as good as I am. Most days I feel pretty good, emotionally. And some twisted part of my brain thinks that’s weird. Like I’m waiting for the rug to be pulled out from under me, waiting for some dramatic mega-breakdown that never came (and—fingers crossed—hopefully never will). I keep thinking, “I can’t possibly get off this easy, can I? Am I stuffing things down only to have them surface in some spectacularly destructive way 10 years from now?” Read more