Our Favorite Gadget Cases Spotted on Pinterest

April 20, 2012 at 2:42 pm , by

With the growing popularity of so many mobile devices, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of black, gray, and white gadgets. But there are just as many cute cases to set you apart from the pack and many of them are popping up on Pinterest. Check out my favorite pins this week and turn your geeky gadget into palm candy

Hardshell iPhone Case

For more ideas, check out our Case Closed board on Pinterest.

Book Club Guest Blog: The Language of Flowers and Nature vs. Nuture

April 17, 2012 at 3:14 pm , by

Todays’s post is by Neely Kennedy of Reading Group Choices, a leading online resource for book club tips and discussible selections.

In The Language of Flowers, the LHJ Book Club pick for May, author Vanessa Diffenbaugh tells the moving story of Victoria Jones, a young woman whose journey through the foster-care system has taught her to be untrusting of herself, the world, and the people in it.  Isolated and alone, only her treasured Victorian language of flowers allows her to communicate her true emotions. But until she meets a young man in a flower market, only she understands the message.

Desperate to survive following emancipation from foster care at age eighteen, Victoria is forced to answer the question … “Can we grow past our limitations?”  Below are examples from the book that show, for Victoria, flowers are not only a way to communicate, but a symbol of her ability to transcend her personal history.

Message of Hope
Excited to finally have the tools to communicate, Victoria gives her foster mother thistle, a symbol of her hatred for mankind, and  ironically it bonds them to each other.

“Thistle!” I said, handing her the jar. “For you,” I added. I reached out awkwardly and patted her once on the shoulder. It was perhaps the first time in my entire life I had initiated contact with another human being-at least the first time in my memory.

New Beginnings
Just before her eighteenth birthday, Victoria is warned she must find a job in order to remain in the group home, or else be homeless, but instead she spends her days nurturing her first garden.

“Back in my room, I spread out the shocked roots gently, covered them with the nutrient-rich soil, and watered deeply. The milk jugs drained right onto the carpet, and as the days passed, weeds began to sprout from the worn fiber.” 

Read more below for more discussion points — but they contain some spoilers!


Read more

Our Favorite Flower Trends Spotted on Pinterest

April 13, 2012 at 10:28 am , by

While Spring tends to be a mixed bag of sun, rain and allergies, it’s the beautiful flowers at this time of year that really kiss the dark days of winter good-bye. Here are some cheery ideas we found blooming on Pinterest this week…

Pink and White Cluster

Picture 1 of 5

For more pretty arrangements, petal over to our In Bloom pin board.

Cheat Sheet: Four Things You Maybe Missed This Week

April 13, 2012 at 9:10 am , by

1. Caine’s Arcade

This will help convince you that humanity isn’t so bad.

2. Titanic is Real?!

This won’t. (Image via Reddit.)

3. Duck, Duck, Fetch!

4. 8-Year-Old Kills Adele Song

Eric Stonestreet: What My Phone Says About Me

April 11, 2012 at 9:14 am , by

Eric StonestreetThe costar of ABC’s Modern Family gives us a tour of his iPhone.

Music. I’ve got everything from The Civil Wars to Prince on my playlist. I’m a mood person; what I play depends on how I feel.

Alarm. My phone helps me wake up every morning.

ESPN App. I have to stay up-to-date on my Kansas State teams.

Travel App. Australian Wildlife. I downloaded it for my 16-hour plane ride to Australia recently. I thought, “Oh, I can study the wildlife on my way there!”

Who I Follow on Twitter. Three hundred and something people, including Octavia Spencer from The Help. Love her.

FizboFavorite Photo. A crowd shot at a Kansas State University basketball game with Fizbo, the clown my character sometimes plays, in the middle. I went to KSU and somebody always takes that Fizbo head to the home games.

App for When I’m Bored. Real Drums. I’m a drummer so this lets me play drums with my fingers on the iPhone.

Most Surprising Contact. James Van Der Beek, from Dawson’s Creek. We met through mutual friends. It’s kind of funny to scroll through your contact list and see, “James So-and-So, James So-and-So,” and then, “James Van Der Beek.”

Game. I’m addicted to Amazing Breaker. Rico Rodriguez — he plays Manny on the show — likes it too. I’m 40 and I have the same apps as a 13-year-old.

Go Ask Gab: 10 Spring Fashion Picks Under $50

April 10, 2012 at 5:33 pm , by

L.L. Shopping… Ladies Love Shopping! We also like a good bargains. I’ve been spending a lot of time scouring websites to find good deals on some spring pieces for myself, so I thought I’d put my shopping to good use and share my top 10 items to buy under $50.

1. V-Neck sweater from Gap, $44.95. I know we shouldn’t really be buying sweaters right now since it’s spring, but this sweater is awesome and it’s still chilly out so I think that justifies the purchase. It also feels like it’s a lot more expensive than $45.

2. Bamboo hoops from Julie Collection, $48. Styling the ponytail story in our May issue inspired me, and hoops are always in and are perfect for any occasion.

3. Tropical print mini from Zara, $39.90. This skirt will no doubt get you in the mood for summer.

4. Striped tank from J.Crew, $29.50. Don’t fight it. You are going to buy another striped tank this season and you will love it and live in it.

5. Red cross-body Asos, $28.65. A classic bag. It’s just big enough to fit all your essentials: keys, money, phone and lip gloss.

6. Yellow flats from Old Navy, $19.94. Hallelujah for our feet—flats are in this season! Instead of grabbing a basic black pair, choose a fun bright color.

7. Floral dress from Forever 21, $22.80. I am fully aware that I am not in college any more and someone my age probably has no business shopping here. But it’s so cheap and they have really good dresses and tanks for spring! Plus shopping at Forever 21 allows me to pretend that I am in my early 20s again.

8. Pleated skirt from H&M, $49.50. This is one item I won’t be buying myself (my body just wasn’t made for pleats) but I fully support others buying it. Pleats are a big trend and so is this mint green color.

9. Tribute bracelet from Stella & Dot, $36. I love bracelets… duh! I like how simple yet blingy this is. It’s perfect to mix and match with everything from neon friendship bracelets to solid gold or silver bangles. And yes I picked this bracelet because it reminded me of The Hunger Games.

10. Lace tank from American Eagle, $39.50. I actually had to cut myself off from buying lace tops because I think I have 5 now. They are perfect with jeans, skirts, shorts, under blazers… basically everything.

OK so maybe you don’t like any of these. Or maybe you’re just going to buy them all because you think I have amazing taste. Or maybe you will find your own fabulous finds under $50—they do exist. Happy hunting!

Our Favorite Movie Makeunders

April 10, 2012 at 12:00 pm , by

Admit it. We all love seeing gorgeous stars get frumpy for a role. The most recent example: Eva Mendes, who plays a down-on-her-luck single mom in the new drama Girl in Progress. Will her hot-to-homely transformation boost her star power? It certainly didn’t hurt these A-listers.

Eva Mendes in Girl in Progress

Eva Mendes in Girl in Progress

Charlize Theron in Young Adult

Charlize Theron in Young Adult

Mariah Carey in Precious

Mariah Carey in Precious

Viola Davis in The Help

Viola Davis in The Help

Sandra Bullock in Extremely Large and Incredibly Close

Sandra Bullock in Extremely Large and Incredibly Close