Congratulations to Susan, who is the winner of our March 20 contest. Susan has won a whole whack of books, including:
The New Mediterranean Diet Cookbook: A delicious alternative for lifelong health, by Nancy Harmon Jenkings
The Diet Detective’s Count Down: 7500 of your favorite food counts with their exercise equivalents for walking, running, biking, swimming, yoga and dance, by Charles Stuart Platkin
Fat Proof Your Family: God’s way to forming healthy habits for life, by J. Ron Eaker, MD
Happiness: How to find it and keep it, by Joan Duncan Oliver
The Source: Beat fatigue, power up your health and feel 10 years younger, by Woodson Merrell, M.D
Jaime Brenkus’ Get Lean in 15 — 15 ways in 15 days to shape up and slim down . . . fast!
The Instinct Diet: Use your five food instincts to lose weight and keep it off, by Susan B. Roberts, Ph.D.
For our March 20 contest, I asked you to share your sports clutz story with us.
Susan told us:
"The idea of taking gym in high school terrified me (and we needed one credit in Phys Ed to graduate). Every year it conflicted with another course and I would put it off until finally, in Grade 12, I had no other choice but to take Phys. Ed. And it was awful! We had to learn “social dance” (which is not great if you are self-conscious, have two left feet and are forced to dance with guys you don’t know!)and aerobics (she forced us to do Susan Powder videos), which also are not a great idea if you aren’t coordinated. My redemption came from my realization that everyone in my class was having a horrible time! After one session of aerobics (during which I fell over), I started talking about how much I hated the class…and found out that EVERYONE hated it as much as me! After that, with a shared comradery, the class actually became fun! I still have a Far Side “Aerobics in Hell” card one of the girls gave me! The experience made me realize that I would never be a Solid Gold dancer but that sharing common experiences with people can help you form real bonds (even if it is in Gym class)!"
Have you signed up for Bikini Boot Camp yet?Sign uptoday for FREE and join us as we shape up for summer, starting May 4.
Add pattern to your floor without breaking the bank.
A rug can help define a space, ground a room and add much-needed colour and pattern, but they can be super expensive! So, we went on a search for fabulous but frugal rugs. With many budget-friendly options, these websites prove you don't have to empty your wallet to add some patterned goodness to your floors.
1. Crate and Barrel
Crate and Barrel
Crate and Barrel has a sophisticated selection of rugs in a variety of patterns and colours. Afraid to order a rug online? Order a 12 inch by 12 inch swatch to try before you buy.
West Elm’s offerings (in mostly muted tones) include a stunning selection of custom rugs. Want to see how the rug will look in a styled space? Click on the #mywestelm photos below the main rug images to see photos shared by West Elm shoppers.
This online-only shop has a huge selection of over 10, 000 rugs in endless shapes, sizes and patterns. With free shipping over $75 and an excellent return policy, you don’t have to fret over making the wrong choice!
If you are in the market for a rug for a child’s bedroom, playroom or family room, Land of Nod has your floor covered. Their selection of colourful, geometric and neutral floor coverings means there is something for everyone. You can order a small swatch to test a rug’s colours and pattern at home.
This stylish notebook might just be hottest organizing accessory of the year.
Everyone is supposed to have 24 hours in a day but for some us, it feels like there must be a rip in the space-time continuum. How else can you explain being constantly busy but having nothing to show for it? If this sounds familiar, learn how you can make the most of your time with our five fave productivity tips.
1. Write it down
Billed as "the analog solution for a digital age," the Bullet Journal is a diary, to-do list and catch-all for all your random thoughts. Developed by Brooklyn-based designer Ryder Carroll, this trendy organizing method involves writing down quick, memory jogging statements rather than complex entries. Use it to organize your tasks by day and month pages, keep tabs of books you want to read and things you want to buy or create new lists whenever inspiration strikes. An indexing system allows you to quickly find what you're looking for.
2. Plan your time
Sort of like HIIT for your to-do list, the Pomodoro Technique involves working on your tasks for a short, timed cycle of 25 minutes. With no distractions allowed, it’s great way for those with short attention spans to focus. Take a 5-minute break before starting your next 25 minutes of work and, after four of these cycles, you're rewarded with a longer, half-hour break. Sound a bit too structured? Maybe that's why it works—it was voted the most popular productivity technique by the readers of lifehacker.com.
3. Try a tech-savvy solution
The If This Then That app might be the closest you'll ever come to a personal assistant. Got any apps on your phone? Automate their functions by using If This Then That statements, or as IFTTT calls them, “recipes.” For example: get an early morning text when the forecast calls for rain, use it to get coffee going without getting out of bed (using a programmable outlet) or tell the family you're on your way home (with an email triggered by your location app once you've left work).
4. Go KonMari on your clutter
While organizing trendsetter Marie Kondo’s method of minimal living has been criticized for being a bit too twee, an organized, uncluttered home can be key to increased efficiency. "In most cases, things that function well are inherently neat and clean," says Clare Kumar, a professional organizer based in Toronto. It's not hard to see why. Simply owning less makes it easier for you to find what you need and streamlines your decision making (no need to choose between your 6 pairs of jeans, for example), saving you time that can be better spent elsewhere.
5. Let it go
There'll be days you can't get to everything. Your work presentation sits unfinished, the house is a mess and dinner was takeout (again!). Instead of stressing out, try to cut yourself some slack. "Our bodies burn out when stuck in fast-forward," says Carl Honoré, an expert on the topic of slow living. Sometimes the best way to be productive is to take some time out to recharge. So curl up with a good book, take a long bath, or enjoy a glass of wine...guilt free! After all, there's always tomorrow.
Whip up a dozen moist muffins on a leisurely Sunday morning. Or better yet, set out the muffin recipe ingredients the night before and let the first person up bake a batch for everyone. Most of these muffin recipes can be made in advance and frozen.