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home : life : family living May 22, 2015

3 ways to make your backyard irresistible to kids this summer
(BPT) - When summer arrives do you see even less of your kids than you did during the school year? Too many American children, tweens and teens spend those extra hours of free time indoors playing with technology, rather than engaging in healthful activity outside. Even when you know where your kid... More >>

3 reasons couples argue in the morning
Curious what couples fight about in the morning? Thirty-five percent of guys commonly argue with their significant other over shaving messes and 32 percent say shaving is the most frustrating part of their morning routine, according to research from Gillette. Follow this infographic to learn more a... More >>

Ready for spring potty training season? Follow this 4-step game plan for success
(BPT) - The words “spring training” often evoke images of athletes prepping for the new season of baseball. However, for some parents the phrase has a different, more stressful meaning – prepping their toddlers for potty training before they enter pre-school in the fall. Helping t... More >>

Top 5 household dangers that every parent should know about in 2015
(BPT) - Each year, injuries send 9 million American children to emergency rooms, according to Safe Kids Worldwide. Accidental injury is the leading cause of childhood death in the U.S., and while it’s impossible to shield children from all of life’s risks, parents can improve home safet... More >>

Healthy starts: The surprisingly simple way to make your own baby and toddler food
(BPT) - Want to give your family a jump-start on good nutrition? By introducing your children to a nourishing, whole-food diet at a very young age, you can teach them to prefer the taste of real foods over more processed ones. This lays the foundation for healthy eating habits later in life.Help yo... More >>

Avoid feeling flushed this Valentine's Day - easy tips and tricks [Infographic]
(BPT) - Take the plunge and dive into Valentine’s Day like a pro with these easy tips and tricks to help you avoid embarrassing situations, stress and anxiety.... More >>

5 ways to outsmart your picky eater
(BPT) - Few things cause more parental frustration than trying to get a picky eater to enjoy a well-rounded diet. Whether your child has been picky all his life, or, out of nowhere is now turning up his nose at healthy foods he previously adored, it’s easy to feel like your failing as a careg... More >>

South Texas, the hidden gem of the Lone Star State
(BPT) - For unexpected adventures, vibrant culture and a sub-tropical climate year-round, look no further than the Rio Grande Valley region of the Lone Star State. South Texas’ warm temperature give travelers the opportunity to enjoy outdoor activities throughout the year and makes it the ide... More >>

Enjoy summer fun in the pool - without the harsh effects of chlorine
(BPT) - This summer your kids will be spending every day in the backyard, having a grand old time splashing around in the pool. You'll probably spend some quality hours in your pool as well, cooling off when the weather gets hot and enjoying the beautiful summer days.The only concern you have is ab... More >>

10 tips for kids' good dental health
(BPT) - Getting children to brush their teeth can be challenging. No parent wants to struggle with a child every morning and night to ensure he or she develops good dental habits and a healthy smile. As a father of two young children, NASCAR Cup Series champion Jeff Gordon understands the challenge... More >>

What's your path to retirement happiness?
(BPT) - Retirees have a message for people still working but wondering what life might be like once they retire: “Come on in, the water’s warm.” But they also say that it pays to plan, the earlier the better, because retirement might come sooner than you expect.A recent study, spo... More >>

What you need to know to weather the weather
(BPT) - Few things universally touch and impact everyone like the weather does. Regardless of where you live or what you do, the weather influences your day-to-day activities. In fact, approximately 90 percent of all U.S. adults consume weather information on a weekly basis, with most people checki... More >>

How you can give back to those who gave everything
(BPT) - When a dog named Smuckers started digging in her Colorado backyard, her owners had no idea what she would find. The object was shiny and metal, and it could have been a coin, a bottle cap or a washer. Upon closer inspection, it turned out to be none of these things. It was something much mo... More >>

Taking aim at the leading health risk for American Indians
(BPT) - While heart disease among most Americans has decreased over the past 50 years, American Indians are almost twice as likely to develop the condition as other Americans, a study supported by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) has found. Heart disease is now the leading caus... More >>

The secret to family togetherness: eye contact
(BPT) - When Oxford Dictionaries chose “selfie” as the word of the year in 2013, they weren’t just describing the moment. They were documenting the present and forecasting the future. And increasingly, it’s a future many American families are hoping to change.Devices everywh... More >>

Give your game day fans delicious and healthy snacks to help them cheer their team on to victory
(BPT) - When hosting a big game day party, you plan the food, TV location, seating arrangements and decorations for your big game-watching party. In the same fashion, Ted Harper, the team sports dietitian of the New England Patriots, meticulously plans the diets of his team members to maximize each... More >>

7 sweet summer activities to bring your family closer together
(BPT) - The summer season is full of memory-making potential for families across the country. The long sunny days and cool clear nights provide endless possibilities for sharing a few laughs and enjoying the activities of the season. Get ready to have some fun together with these seven sweet summer... More >>

What couples starting a family should know about prenatal testing
(BPT) - So you've decided to take the leap into parenthood. To give yourself the best chance for a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby, there are some important options to consider before you head down the road to conception and once you learn you are pregnant. Parents-to-be are often faced with n... More >>

4 tire tips for teen drivers
(BPT) - Getting a driver’s license is a pivotal moment for many teens, and with the privilege of driving comes greater freedom and independence. For parents, this can be both a moment of great pride and overwhelming anxiety.In 2012, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) r... More >>

What parents and athletes need to know about carbohydrates in the form of sugar
(BPT) - An athlete’s overall nutrition needs vary depending on several factors, including the type of sport and duration of time in motion. Specifically during activity, an athlete needs fuel to perform, and carbohydrates, including sugars, have been found to be functional for athletes who ar... More >>

Nothing to sneeze at: How to keep your family healthy this flu season
(BPT) - February is still part of peak flu season. For adults, coming down with the flu can translate to missed work and complications. Children risk missing school and, for younger children, complications related to the flu can be even more severe than in adults – sometimes fatal.Research sh... More >>

From sea to shining sea: the most patriotic things to see and do on your summer vacation
(BPT) - Summer isn’t just the season of no school and summer vacations. It’s also the most patriotic season in America, encompassing three iconic American holidays – Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day. This summer, why not put a patriotic shine on your family’s sum... More >>

Help your child avoid spring allergies instead of spring activities
  (BPT) - Across the country, the snow has melted, the flowers are blooming and it’s springtime again! While many are looking forward to the return of warmer weather, some are also dreading the arrival of the spring allergy season. For those with allergic rhinitis, or nasal allergie... More >>

Working to improve the heart health of African American women
(BPT) - Every two minutes, a woman dies from heart disease. Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women in the United States. However, author Alice Walker once said “The most common way people give up their power is by thinking they don’t have any.” For combating heart disease, wom... More >>

Feeling short of breath? It could be something serious
(BPT) - Unlike many Americans, Pete Mulliner knew of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) long before he was actually diagnosed with it. His grandfather died from pulmonary fibrosis the year Mulliner was married. “Granddad was the go-to guy in my world,” Mulliner says. “He taught m... More >>

5-point travel checklist for you and your pets
(BPT) - Did you know 30 million people travel with their pets each year? Whether by plane, train or automobile, if you’re planning an upcoming trip with your furry family member, it’s important to plan ahead to ensure you both stay safe and healthy while making memories that will last a... More >>

More than just annoying: The link between snoring and heart disease
(BPT) - Snoring isn’t pleasant for anyone – not the partner who has to sleep beside the snorer, nor the snorer whose breathing may pause repeatedly throughout the night. But did you know that loud, excessive snoring is often a sign of obstructive sleep apnea, a condition that – if... More >>

What's in your pool water?
(BPT) - You hit the diving board, get some air and tuck up for the biggest cannonball of the season. It feels good to be back in the pool again. Or so you think. Because the truth is, if you knew what was in the pool water you were jumping into, maybe you wouldn’t be jumping in the first plac... More >>

This simple DIY home improvement saves money and helps the environment
(BPT) - In the typical American home, heating and cooling account for 50 to 70 percent of total energy use, according to the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). Yet, much of that energy is wasted, leading to higher energy bills for homeowners.The DOE notes that the leading causes of energy waste in mo... More >>

Spring vacation on a budget? Here's how you do it
(BPT) - Spring break is coming and after all the frost, wind and chill of the winter, you’ve earned some time to relax. So why not treat yourself to a little vacation? If you don’t have a lot of extra money to spend and you’re worried about your finances holding you back, there ar... More >>

Expert tips for preventing and treating tick bites
(BPT) - If you think ticks are a concern only in the deep woods, it’s time to think again. Partially due to migrating deer populations, ticks are now abundant in suburban and city backyards – and they're spreading disease. In fact, an estimated 300,000 Americans are infected with Lyme d... More >>

The new SAT: What students and parents need to know to prepare
(BPT) - The SAT – widely considered to be one of the most important exams a student will take in his or her academic life – is changing drastically. When students sit down for the test in March 2016, they’ll encounter a completely redesigned format that places significant emphasis... More >>

Flavors across America
(BPT) - America is home to a diversity of flavors - each region of the country is known for unique dishes and flavors that people from all over the world flock to, to get a taste. America’s passion for flavor is not only shown through the variety of flavors found across the country, but also ... More >>

Changing the meaning of 'like a girl' together [Infographic]
(BPT) - In celebration of International Women’s Day, Always, the leader in global feminine care, released a new video entitled “Always #LikeAGirl – Stronger Together.” This is to continue its mission to build girls’ confidence at puberty and take a stand to make the ph... More >>

Bed bugs and summer travel: how to protect yourself
(BPT) - When summer arrives, all you can think about is that vacation getaway, getting the kids off to camp and traveling to visit friends and family. You’re looking forward to spending some relaxing time away from your hectic everyday environment. Unfortunately, bed bugs feel the same way. T... More >>

7 smart and easy ways to slip learning into kids' outdoor fun
(BPT) - Ah, summer. The perfect time for picnics, parks … and learning? Summer has a reputation for being heavy on play and light on learning, but the season is loaded with learning opportunities – courtesy of all those outdoor excursions. Children learn through play, which makes it ea... More >>

5 projects to recreate your basement
(BPT) - Have you ever wished you had more space in your home? Maybe you’d use the space to pursue a hobby, host out-of-town guests or just spread out and get some quiet time to yourself. The space you desire could already be in your home in your basement. If your cellar is nothing but a serie... More >>

Hooked on books: Why reading to your baby is a must
(BPT) - Four-month old Lily Campos sits on her father’s lap, one chubby hand in her mouth, the other patting the farm animals in the book in front of her. As the pages turn, she reaches for the pictures, squealing and gurgling with excitement as her father reads.The Campos family’s bigg... More >>

Avoid an accident with poison prevention at home
(BPT) - Nearly 1 million children under the age of 5 are exposed to potentially poisonous medications and household chemicals every year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And more than 60,000 young children end up in the emergency room each year from wrongly ingesting me... More >>

5 simple steps to scoring delicious, stress-free game day fare
(BPT) - On game days, sports fans love to gather around the TV with family and friends, while treating themselves to fun foods and snacks. But hosting a gathering can keep you cooking in the kitchen when you’d rather be in on the action. Here’s an easy guide for creating delicious foods... More >>

5 truly meaningful ways to show your patriotism this Memorial Day and beyond
(BPT) - “Expressions of patriotic enthusiasm are as bright and thrilling as fireworks, but they dissipate as quickly,” Washington Post blogger Alyssa Rosenberg wrote in a July 2014 examination of patriotism among American youth. Yet most Americans consider themselves patriotic, even if ... More >>

Understanding Multiple Myeloma
(BPT) - Being diagnosed with cancer can be overwhelming. This may be true for people living with multiple myeloma, a rare and progressive blood cancer for which there is no cure. Learning more about multiple myeloma through research may help patients feel more empowered and informed.“When I w... More >>

Medicine safety as important for teens as toddlers
(BPT) - Protecting children from harm is a priority for every parent. They are encouraged to child-proof the entire house to keep curious toddlers safe. Eventually, as kids mature, parents tend to give them new freedoms and responsibilities. New data shows that parents need to be particularly watch... More >>

America's secret 2015 foodie destinations
(BPT) - With their incredible restaurants seemingly appearing overnight, cities such as Brooklyn and Portland have long since been discovered as foodie destinations. If you want coal-fired pizza ovens, craft beer or artisan doughnuts, you only have to stroll down the street a few blocks. But while ... More >>

Keep a man cave top of mind when choosing a new home
(BPT) - It used to be that the man's room – or man cave – was relegated to the basement or the garage. Now homes are being designed with the man cave already in mind to give men a place to call their own.Man caves have changed over the years, becoming a part of the home itself instead o... More >>

Sriracha is this year's 'go-to' flavor
(BPT) - Favored flavors can come and go like fashion trends, but every now and then a taste comes along that’s so versatile and memorable, it earns a lasting place in culinary tradition. With its zest and spice, sriracha is poised to secure its status as a top flavor for 2015 and beyond.The s... More >>

7 fun ideas to prevent summer learning loss
(BPT) - Students of all ages look forward to the carefree days of summer, yet parents and teachers nationwide worry about the summer slide – the learning loss that happens to all children when they are out of school. Fortunately, preventing learning loss isn’t difficult if you plan some... More >>

Make every day feel a little fancy [Infographic]
(BPT) - Did you know that 41 percent of moms say it’s important to take time to pursue their own interests, but the average mother ends up with a mere 17 minutes to herself a day? Every day is a little more special when you add a dash of fancy. Moms can do things like splurge on a new pair of... More >>

8 questions to ask when hiring a family portrait photographer
(BPT) - What are the most important moments of your life? For most, it’s rarely a big promotion or a sports championship season. Instead, it’s quality family time that is most often cherished.Nothing captures these moments better than family photos. If you’re looking for a photogr... More >>

Why DIY? Projects can pay you back big time
(BPT) - Hiring professionals to get jobs done around the house may be convenient, but it can set your budget back quite a bit. Instead, consider doing it yourself – not only to save big bucks but also to showcase your creativity. Do-it-yourself (DIY) home improvement is a major trend that wil... More >>

5 exotic summer vacations that are a steal due to the strong dollar
(BPT) - Exotic locations like Bali, Rome and Sydney might be at the top of your bucket list, but this year experts say they should also be at the top of your summer vacation list. Today’s unusually strong dollar is allowing you to get a lot more for your money when you travel abroad. Travel e... More >>

Tips for buying your first ATV
(BPT) - First-time buyers account for more than a quarter of all-terrain vehicle sales each year. As with any major purchase, a little education can go a long way toward helping you get the best possible deal for your money.  Polaris Industries, a leading manufacturer of ATVs, offers the foll... More >>

Give your landscaping a no-maintenance makeover
(BPT) - Low- and no-maintenance features top the list when making over outdoor living spaces because less time maintaining means more time enjoying.Low-maintenance landscaping outranks native plantings, water features and food/vegetable gardens according to the American Society of Landscape Archite... More >>

The important role vaccines may play in helping to keep children and adults healthy
(BPT) - Every one of the nearly 12,000 babies born in the United States each day are vulnerable to infectious diseases. The good news is that vaccines can help protect children from certain diseases.As National Infant Immunization Week (NIIW) approaches, it is timely to remember the role that vacci... More >>

Top 10 most often forgotten spring cleaning steps
(BPT) - Spring is a great time to clear out the old, bring in the new and welcome a fresh start. From coast to coast, consumers are eager to usher in new home decor and air out spring attire; however, the areas of one’s home that are the hardest hit during the winter months - floors and carpe... More >>

5 ways to guarantee you get senior portraits that rock
(BPT) - It’s graduation time! It took you four years to get to this point, but didn’t it go by in a blink? With the big day approaching, you’ll soon leave high school behind forever. So make sure you get keepsakes you can be proud of, like great senior portraits. You won’t h... More >>

Tips to prevent prescription drug abuse at home
(BPT) - More than 6 million Americans abuse prescription drugs, according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, and much of the abuse begins at home. In fact, more than 70 percent of those who illegally use prescription pain relievers obtained them through friends or family, including raid... More >>

5 automotive mobile devices ideal for teenage drivers
(BPT) - Many parents worry when their teens start to drive. Distracted driving, inexperience and simple carelessness are all reasons for parents to be concerned. The added distraction of a cellphone and all its available functions bring even more reasons to worry.While it would be great if parents ... More >>

7 simple tips to help babies adjust to daylight saving time
(BPT) - Adults are not typically affected by daylight saving time, but the change can turn an infant’s world upside-down. Many parents worry that springing ahead just one hour will cause chaos to their little one’s sleep routine.A whopping 77 percent of parents with kids ages 4 and youn... More >>

Easy tips to drink more water throughout the day
(BPT) - You know drinking plenty of water every day is good for your health. The Institute of Medicine recommends men consume about 13 cups of fluid a day and women take in about 9 cups. Yet remembering to drink water may not always make the top of your daily to-do list. Here are some tips to natur... More >>

Fatherless youth: An increasing epidemic you can help cure
(BPT) - “I’m the backup parent, the understudy.” George Clooney’s famous line about his role as a father in the Oscar winning film “The Descendants” was good for a laugh at the time. But numerous studies and decades of statistics tell a far more serious tale abou... More >>

How many of these household medicine safety steps do you follow?
(BPT) - Every year, approximately 60,000 young children visit the ER due to one – preventable – reason: they accidentally swallow medicine.That’s why the Up and Away and Out of Sight program, an initiative of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and partners, is re... More >>

5 simple ways to disconnect and enjoy 15 minutes of 'me time'
(BPT) - Americans rarely take the time to unplug during the work day. In fact, we spend just short of half the day in front of some type of screen, according to research by the Kaiser Family Foundation.The health benefits of relaxing away from digital technology are well documented, but it still is... More >>

Think it's too soon to start planning your child's summer? Think again
(BPT) - During the summer while school’s out, kids are at greater risk for learning loss and weight gain unless they have a game plan that includes learning enrichment and physical activity. Summer camps are a great way to ensure children continue to grow socially, emotionally, cognitively an... More >>

4 simple ways to help your family eat well on a budget
(BPT) - How people approach a wholesome diet has changed dramatically over the decades. Today, many Americans see home cooking as an investment in health, but that leaves hurdles for many families who struggle with busy schedules and tight budgets. A few simple tips using frozen foods can help put ... More >>

Add 1 often-overlooked task to your childproofing plan: Secure your TVs
(BPT) - Parents can do a lot to childproof their homes: Put medicine up and away. Place baby gates on the stairs. Put cabinet locks on cabinets. But what about checking their TVs?Injuries and deaths from TV tip-overs happen far too often. Every 45 minutes in the United States, a child is rushed to ... More >>

Why experts recommend skin-to-skin contact for infants
(BPT) - If your family is expecting a child in the near future, there is a good chance you've been actively reading about all the latest in care techniques and methods for raising your child in the safest and most loving environment possible.Mothers and fathers have long known how effective cuddlin... More >>

Living with MS, finding inner strength
(BPT) - When Chrystal Graham of Alpharetta, Georgia was diagnosed with relapsing Multiple Sclerosis (MS) in 2009, she was 27-years-old and no stranger to coping with life’s challenges. Having dealt with the loss of her mother to illness, Graham knew she could manage her way through almost any... More >>

Fun summer activities for the whole family
(BPT) - Summer and fun – while these words aren't technically synonyms, they probably should be. School is out for the children, you have summer vacation time from work stocked up, and the nice weather across the country is beckoning.Are you in search of some fun ideas for your summer activit... More >>

Nothing to sneeze at: 5 tips for seasonal allergy relief
(BPT) - Spring is upon us, and if you have seasonal allergies, you may be less excited about that than most. After all, what fun is finally freeing your face from that scarf if you’re just going to bury it in a tissue? It’s no fun at all, but allergies don’t have to make you miser... More >>

Reading outside of school is very important for kids
(BPT) - Reading is a fundamental skill people use throughout their lives, and in this digital age reading is more important than ever. When children and tweens read, they improve their reading skills and they also improve their comprehension, knowledge base, concentration and vocabulary. Many child... More >>

Breathe deeply and safely: 5 ways to protect yourself from CO poisoning
(BPT) - Most homeowners recognize the importance of protecting their homes from fire. They do this by checking the batteries in their smoke alarms, completely extinguishing fires in their fireplaces and keeping flammable materials away from candles or space heaters. However, while fire safety is fr... More >>

7 ways to inspire a love of STEM in tweens and teens
(BPT) - Middle school is an important time for tweens and teens: they are exploring new areas of study, discovering where their interests lie and developing passions into hobbies and later, careers.Studies show that this is also a time when students’ interest in science, technology, engineeri... More >>

Tips for strengthening the mother-daughter bond
(BPT) - Mom. It's a very important title; one that establishes you as a role model for your young daughter. Being a mom is a tough job, always challenging you to find ways to create and strengthen that special bond. The good news is it doesn't have to be complicated. Just find activities you both l... More >>

Get your family moving with this easy breakfast recipe
(BPT) - Most Americans recognize that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, yet millions often skip their morning meal. In fact, research shows that millions of Americans pass on eating breakfast each morning.Is your family among that group? If so, don’t write off breakfast as some... More >>

5 simple steps to make your new place feel like home
(BPT) - Millions of Millennials move every year, and due to the flexibility of renting, a remarkable number of people choose to rent rather than own. Just because renting requires a short-term commitment, however, doesn’t mean you can’t personalize your temporary home. A few expert tips... More >>

Creative college savings: Unique scholarships to help offset rising costs
(BPT) - Does the cost of higher education scare you? If so, you’re not alone. College tuition prices have skyrocketed. Over the past 30 years average tuition and fees at public four-year institutions rose by 225 percent, according to The College Board. Factor in room and board, books and livi... More >>

Find the right loan to realize your financial goals
(BPT) - When it comes to borrowing money, many loans offer benefits beyond simple financing. With that in mind, it’s important to understand how one type of loan may be right for making home improvements, while another may be a better match for financing a wedding. The key is to research the ... More >>

Kids put modern twist on age old question: 'What do you want to be when you grow up?'
(BPT) - As kids get older, they'll get asked many times what they want to be when they grow up. Common answers for the littlest kids tend to be a princess, a superhero or the job their mom or dad does. And it used to be that older children would respond with high-profile jobs like doctor, lawyer or... More >>

Stepping up the fight against identity theft and data hacking
(BPT) - Fueled by the recent epidemic of data breaches, identity theft has become a major concern for millions of Americans. Major companies like Target, Home Depot, eBay, Anthem Blue Cross/Blue Shield and dozens of others have experienced data breaches affecting millions of consumers over the past... More >>

Summer like a celebrity: 4 easy ways to go boating
(BPT) - Perusing social media or flipping through a magazine, it’s common to see famous faces like George Clooney or Taylor Swift cruising around on fancy boats, but guess what? You don’t have to be rich and famous to enjoy boating. Get your feet wet this summer just like the stars with... More >>

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