Sweetzee is a place where you can meet, discuss life, exchange style tips & regimes & seek encouragement. Our focus is The Whole Woman. Mind, body, and spirit.
We spend a great deal of time showing our love to others. How much love
do show to yourself? Do you carve out some “me time” each week to
meditate, read, exercise, and do the things to make your inner beauty
shine? Here are some starters:
You’re precious. You are an inherently valuable and lovable person. You have good qualities and less-good qualities, just like everyone else, but you are always special and always worthy of love and happiness. You should be cherished.
Todays challenge is brought to you by Dr. John H. Sklare
Today I’d like to present you with an interesting challenge about forgiveness.
We’re all confronted with the dilemma of whether to forgive someone at some point in our lives. Because we’re human, we don’t always do or say the right things and, as a result, we occasionally find ourselves either asking for forgiveness for something that we’ve done or considering forgiving someone else for something that they’ve done.
While I generally agree that forgiveness can clear your eyes, free your spirit and cleanse your soul, my personal belief about forgiveness goes against the grain in certain cases. Some people believe that you need to forgive people for things they’ve done, no matter what that deed may be, or you’ll never be able to feel free and move forward.
I, on the other hand, think that acceptance is just as effective as forgiveness in some instances because, I believe some things are simply unforgivable.
I was reminded of this recently while listening to a woman recount her memories of early childhood sexual abuse. She’s a happy and well-adjusted woman today, but she couldn’t bring herself to forgive the perpetrator for this repetitive, heinous crime. She was, however, able to accept this awful part of her past, put it behind her and move forward with her life.
Some behaviors and circumstances that lead to divorce offer other examples of the kinds of transgressions where acceptance can replace forgiveness.
Acceptance can create the same kind of peace of mind and deliver the same emotional benefits as forgiveness does.
With that said, the kind of forgiveness that I want to address today doesn’t revolve around any transgression that involves anything as serious as my previous two examples. Instead, I want to talk about those things that are absolutely forgivable.
So here’s my challenge today: Think about someone close to you whom you haven’t forgiven, but only out of pure stubbornness or to simply maintain the emotional upper hand.
It may involve a family member, close friend or even your significant other. It may be something that just happened recently or an incident from the distant past that continues to fester.
End this lingering emotional distance with this person by telling them that you forgive them. Of course, it’s best if you really mean it, but if you know in your heart that they’re sorry, didn’t intend to hurt you and truly want to get back into your good graces… forgive them. Unlike the two exceptions I mentioned earlier, most of the things that those dear to us do to upset or hurt us are forgivable.
So, if my message sounds uncomfortably familiar and strikes an emotional chord with you today, take my advice and send a little forgiveness in the direction of someone who you know deserves it, could truly use it and would be grateful for it.
Become the peacemaker; it will eliminate this mental irritant from your life, give relief to someone near to you and benefit you in ways you can’t even imagine at the moment!
There are a slew of suspected causes of acne – bacteria, clogged pores, excess oil build-up, hygiene and hormones – and a gazillion products marketed to cure it. That said, you don’t necessarily need to shell out hard-earned cash to fight the zits. First, take a trip to your own pantry and medicine cabinet—these simple at-home ingredients can treat your blemishes effectively (and economically).
The sap of aloe vera leaves, a cactus-like succulent plant, contains gibberellins and polysaccharides, which have antibacterial properties to kill the bacteria that instigates acne, anti-inflammatory properties to soothe aggravated skin, and astringent properties to heal harmed skin. Aloe also helps heal scars, balances moisture in skin and stimulates new skin growth.
How To Use It: Cleanse and dry your face. If using gel or juice, use a cotton ball to apply over your entire face. If using a fresh leaf, peel away the green skin (especially the prickly edges!) and apply directly to skin. Let it dry completely before rinsing with tepid water. Use daily or several times per week.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar balances pH levels of skin and hosts natural antibacterial and antiseptic properties to nip acne-causing bacteria in the bud. It also contains malic acid and lactic acid that gently exfoliate and soften skin.
How To Use It: Mix 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar with 3 teaspoons water. Cleanse and dry your face. Moisten a cotton ball and swipe over entire face, avoiding eye area. Leave on for 10 minutes and rinse with tepid water. Use up to 3 times a day.
Baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate, balances pH levels of skin thanks to its amphoteric properties (meaning it can act both as an acid or alkaline depending on what it interacts with). It works to remedy imbalanced pH levels that contribute to and aggravate acne. Baking soda’s mild antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties also calm skin and cool out exacerbation of inflamed acne. Plus, the grain of baking soda powder is round, so it works as a gentle exfoliate that won’t harm skin.
How To Use It: Mix 1 teaspoon of baking soda with 1 teaspoon of water or lemon juice to form a paste. Cleanse your face and use baking soda to gently exfoliate damp skin with your fingertips. Rinse with tepid water to remove completely. Use 2 to 3 times per week.
Hydrogen peroxide, H2O2, is an antiseptic that kills bacteria that can lead to acne and also oxygenates pores to potentially prevent future breakouts.
How To Use It: Use a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution (yep, the same stuff you use to clean and disinfect cuts). Cleanse and dry your face. Moisten a cotton ball with it and apply to problem areas. No need to rinse. Use daily when breakouts occur.
Lemon juice contains L-asorbic acid, which works as a natural astringent to reduce excess oil and as a mild exfoliant to slough off dead skin cells and prevent clogged pores. Plus, lemon contains natural antibacterial compounds that disinfect bacteria that can lead to acne.
How To Use It: Use freshly squeezed lemon juice (not bottled) for maximum efficacy. Moisten a cotton ball with the juice and use it to swipe over affected areas. For sensitive skin, dilute with water. Leave on for 30 minutes and as long as overnight before rinsing with tepid water. Use every 1 to 3 days.
Tea Tree Oil
Distilled from the leaves an Australian shrub, tea tree oil contains powerful antibacterial, antimicrobial and antifungal compound called terpenoids that kill bacteria that can lead to breakouts. Studies show that they daily use of tea tree is as effective as benzoyl peroxide (found in most over the counter acne creams and gels) to reduce inflammation of mild to moderate acne. While tea tree’s effects work more slowly than benzoyl peroxide, it’s a lot less drying and irritating to skin.
How To Use It: It’s potent stuff and should be diluted before applying to skin. Mix 1/2 teaspoon tea tree oil with 2 tablespoons of water or aloe vera juice or gel. Moisten a cotton ball with the solution and use to spot-treat problem areas. Use daily or 2 times a day.
Witch hazel, a solution distilled from the leaves and bark of a North American shrub, contains tannins, which have astringent effects on skin to effectively soothe inflammation and reduce excess oil. Plus, its anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and antimicrobial properties help curb bacterial colonization.
How To Use It: Use alcohol-free witch hazel without artificial fragrances or ingredients. Cleanse and dry skin. Moisten a cotton ball with it and apply to problem areas. No need to rinse. Use up to 3 times per day.
1. Take a deep breath.
Don’t move. Feel the breath go in your mouth, through your throat, into the chest, into the belly. Out the belly, the chest, the throat, the mouth. Breath it into your fingers and your toes. Close your eyes. Listen. Breathe.
2. Meditate for 5 minutes.
If this is hard, try repeating a mantra as you sit, cross-legged, in a comfortable seat. Perhaps sit on a blanket. Back and neck are long. On the inhale, think, LET, on the exhale, GO. Inhale, LET, exhale, GO. Set a timer, or just stop when you’re ready.
3. Accept yourself today. (Or at least try.)
Don’t wait for when you are thinner, are in better shape, get a promotion, accomplish some goal. Accept yourself today, because it’s wasting time if you can only think about the future or the past. Be present, and be okay with you as you are. (This is not to say don’t have goals – just don’t beat yourself up if you’re not where you want to be.)
4. Drink a cup of tea. Savor it.
Be present as you sip your hot drink from the mug. Feel the warmth in your hands. Feel the tea in your belly. Watch when and where your mind starts to wander.
5. Try a sun salutation.
The simplest sun salutation variation I know is this:
Inhale, sweep your arms up overhead, press the palms, look up.
Exhale, swan dive forward, fold over your legs.
Inhale, look forward, flat back.
Inhale, reverse the swan dive, sweep arms up, press the palms, look up.
Exhale, bring hands to prayer at your heart.
Many things — genetics, environment, the food you eat, illness, sleep, even the seasons — influence your emotional state. But at the heart of it is how you regard yourself. If you have a healthy level of self-esteem, you not only cope with life’s challenges better than people with low self-esteem, but you’re probably more content, confident, and successful. You’re probably also healthier. Studies show that positive self-esteem actually helps inoculate people against depression and anxiety, conditions that may pose increased risk of everything from colds to osteoporosis to heart disease.
Most people’s sense of worth is rooted in their childhood — in the early approval or disapproval of parents, teachers, and friends. But as we get older, most of us judge ourselves by our sense of how effectively we’re managing in the world, especially in the areas of love and work.
Our ability to love and be loved can give our lives a sense of purpose and deep fulfillment. We can also find satisfaction and pride in work-related accomplishments, and the people we meet and work with can reinforce our sense of self and our role in life.
Once midlife comes along, however, our self-esteem can take a turn in response to changes in our lives. Marital relationships may change, children may leave home, and we may begin to scale back on work as we approach retirement. Of course, the view in the mirror may not be what it used to be, either.
Bolstering Your Self-Worth
If you find your self-esteem eroding a bit, there are plenty of ways to build it back up again.
Reframe your identity. Redefine what you base your sense of self-worth on. Instead of “sales manager,” “stock market analyst,” or “mom,” start thinking of yourself as “community organizer,” “literacy volunteer,” “great cook,” “gifted gardener,” and more.
Talk back to your inner critic. Become conscious of how hard you’re being on yourself, and counter a negative attitude with some positive self-talk.
Let yourself off the hook. As the saying goes, it’s better to try something and fail than to be successful at not trying anything. Focus on goals that are linked to activities you’re really interested in so you’ll enjoy a sense of purpose and derive pleasure from the pursuit whether or not you achieve your goal in full.
Take time for yourself. Read the paper, keep a journal, go for a swim. This is especially important for women, who are often so busy nurturing others that they neglect their own needs and interests.
Forget about the word “fashion” and think “style” – it may be mentally less intimidating or more “wearable”!
Even if you stay at home, make an effort to dress everyday as if you are going out. This changes your whole approach to even the most mundane household chores. You will find you have a more positive attitude and are less inclined to be reduced to a couch potato, in your slovenly sweat pants and baggy T-shirt.
Clear out your closet. Get rid of those items which are outdated, do not suit you or simply do not make you feel good. Make room for that new wardrobe of clothes that you are going to build, slowly, piece by piece.
Take stock of how many classic items you currently have in your closet. Start building new outfits which will prove versatile and timeless – go anywhere and do anything. You should aim to have a wardrobe base of well cut, classic pieces and a few cheap fun, fashionable outfits that are right on trend, which can be replaced every season.
Treat your wardrobe as an investment. "Create a closet that is full of must-have pieces rather than make-do ones."
Ensure that your wardrobe is built around some style staples which will take you from season to season and can be dressed up or down. A good coat, a little black dress, a wrap dress, well cut denims, a classic pair of black pants, cashmere cardigan and a stylish crisp white shirt. Update these looks every season with some fab accessories.
Buying a really great bag and a pair of look-at-me shoes, which will transform any outfit. Transform your “walk” into a “wiggle”.
Get to know your body shape. Are you a pear, apple, brick, hour glass or inverted triangle? Read up on the free fashion advice available on Suite 101 and learn how to dress for your body shape.
Learn how to play down your flaws and make the most of your assets.Learn how to disguise big hips, stomachs or a larger bust and learn what not to wear if you are short or flat-chested.
Shop smarter. Ask yourself a few key questions regarding what suits you before you shop and plan what to buy in advance.
More and more evidence emerges every single day about the power of antioxidants. Antioxidants reduce environmental damage from sources such as the sun and pollution, inhibit free-radical damage and improve our general health – and the health and appearance of our skin.
Researchers now know that free-radical damage plays a significant role in aging and disease (in fact many scientists consider aging as a disease). Antioxidants are one of the best ways to slow the impact of free-radical damage.
When it comes to our skin, free-radical damage causes collagen to break down. Overtime, this results in the appearance of wrinkles. A good skincare product should contain antioxidants to prevent (at least partly) free radical damage to our skin. Research shows that antioxidants can increase collagen production, improve skin elasticity, reduce sun damage and create healthier, younger looking skin.
There are lots of different antioxidants out there, including vitamin C, green tea, grape extract, and many others with names I can’t even pronounce! It’s good to opt for a skincare product that contains a mix of several antioxidants, and it’s important that those antioxidants are stable and that the packaging does not allow air and light to damage the product.
In addition to applying topical antioxidant serums, it’s a good idea to include as many antioxidants in our diet as possible. Those will not just protect and enhance our health, but will also have a positive effect on our skin.
When using antioxidants, it’s important to keep expectations in check. If you’re 40, you will not look 22! But after a few months of using antioxidants, especially if the rest of your lifestyle is healthy (plenty of water and sleep, a healthy diet, regular exercise), you can expect to look the best that YOU can look at this point in your life.
I was reading an old issue of Oprah Winfreys O magazine from August 2012.Yeah, that old. But in it was a few pages were different singers, actress’ and models were featured. Models:Naomi Campbell and Heidi Klum. Actress’: Piper Perabo, Mariska Hargitay, Gretchen Mol, Marisa Berenson, and Michelle Rodriguez. Singer:Monica. There was a photoof each woman in their everyday clothes.
The title of the article was The Bold and The Beautiful. It also had a lengthy subtopic / statement that spoke a thousand words to my inner being. It read……”The point of clothes is to wear them your way - not as a matched set but as an inspired mix that feels right”. That statement alone jolted my mind to simply being authentic and encouraged me to always be true to self. What works for one may not work for another person. Many times, women want so deeply to just look like what everyone else looks like, to talk the way everyone else talks, basically just fit in with the crowd. But some of the most BEAUTIFUL women I know are BOLD enough to just be themselves .
Dress the way you want to dress. If no one around you would everwear something like that so what!! Be confident and comfortable in the outfitsyou put together everyday. As my favorite artist, Sabrina Nelson, once said…..”You are your first canvas you paint each day!!
|Posted by Ms.Shyla on June 1, 2012 at 10:20 AM|
Chocolate Turtle Cake
Prep: 40 min.; Cook: 32 min.; Other: 1 hr., 10 min.
Yield: Makes 12 servings
1 (18.25-oz.) package devil's food cake mix
1 (3.9-oz.) package chocolate instant pudding mix
3 large eggs
1 1/4 cups milk
1 cup canola oil
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 teaspoon chocolate extract
1 teaspoon instant coffee granules
1 (6-oz.) package semisweet chocolate morsels
1 cup chopped pecans
1 (16-oz.) container ready-to-spread cream cheese frosting
1/2 cup canned dulce de leche
2 (7-oz.) packages turtle candies
1 (16-oz.) can ready-to-spread chocolate fudge frosting
1 (12-oz.) jar dulce de leche ice cream topping
1/4 cup pecan halves, toasted
1. Preheat oven to 350°. Grease 2 (9-inch) round cake pans, and dust with cocoa. Set aside.
2. Beat cake mix and next 7 ingredients at low speed with an electric mixer 1 minute; beat at medium speed 2 minutes. Fold in chocolate morsels and chopped pecans. Pour batter into prepared pans.
3. Bake at 350° for 30 to 32 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes. Remove from pans to wire racks, and cool completely. Wrap and chill cake layers at least 1 hour.
4. Whisk together cream cheese frosting and canned dulce de leche in a small bowl until well blended. Set aside. Cut 6 turtle candies in half, and set aside for garnish. Dice remaining turtle candies.
5. Using a serrated knife, slice cake layers in half horizontally to make 4 layers. Place 1 layer, cut side up, on cake plate. Spread with 1/2 cup cream cheese frosting mixture; sprinkle with one-third diced turtle candies. Repeat procedure twice. Place final cake layer on top of cake, cut side down. Spread chocolate fudge frosting on top and sides of cake. Cover and chill in refrigerator until ready to serve. Just before serving, drizzle dulce de leche ice cream topping over top of cake. Garnish with remaining halved turtle candies and pecan halves. Store in refrigerator.
|Posted by Freda on May 31, 2012 at 12:25 PM||comments (3)|
Spring is around the corner and before we know it temperatures will increase, sun will shine bright, and with that could cause skin damage or worse. Before you coat your mouth with color, spread on an SPF 30 lip balm to protect your kissable asset from sun damage. While you are at it, don't forget the rest of your face. Apply a sunscreen/ moisturizer combo every morning to keep your skin hydrated and protected against skin cancer and premature aging. It's the most important thing you can do for your skin!!!
Inca Omega SPF 45 Face and Body Sun Block
Banana Boat Sport Performance Lotion SPF 100 Sunscreen
Coppertone Sunscreen Products