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How to get the perfect summer tan

September is starting and still many people are about to go on holidays. Luckily, while it is soon autumn in some areas of the country, summer is still here in Florida and for many others. A trip to a country where the sun is shining can easily make the holidays better and help those who want to look fantastic with a glamorous tan. Despite wishing it, some people can’t achieve the perfect skin tone either because they get burned or the skin doesn’t help the process.

It's important to get yourself ready before going to the beach and follow these 7 steps to help you reaching the tan to make your friends jealous ;)

7 Steps to the Perfect Tan 

1. Exfoliation is the first step 

For a long-lasting deep tan, exfoliation is the first step to be followed. Exfoliating your skin will remove the dead cells which can prevent a uniform tan. A few days before you start to be exposed to the sun, start doing it so your skin gets a good clean. Exfoliating gloves, brushes, body scrubs, and non-chemical products are options to take into account. Hydrating the skin after showering is equally important.

2. You are what you eat 

The food you eat plays an important role in your tanning process. Eating certain kinds of vegetables have been proven to help your skin from the inside. Betacarotene and lycopene are components of vegetables that can increase your skin’s protection to UV rays and make your tint a bit more orange. Eat plenty of tomatoes and carrots. Preparing skin from within is mandatory.

3. Fake tan to start 

If you look like a white feather at the beach and you dislike it, there is no problem in cheating a little bit. Use tanning lotions a weak ahead of starting to be truly exposed to the sun and let it act in your skin. At least you won’t be so white for the first time you go to the beach. However, make sure you are always protected against the sun since some tan lotions don’t offer any protection as the sunscreen does. Having a good looking tan doesn’t mean being reckless about the need for sunscreen.

4. Natural oils 

Use natural oils to achieve a deeper tan while protecting your skin. The sun is the number one enemy of skin aging. Consequently, it is mandatory to protect the skin against it. The best oils to use are coconut, olive oil, hazelnut, sunflower, and sesame oil. These oils help you to get a golden glow while they stimulate the skin’s elasticity and keeps it hydrated and moisturized. The proper way to use these is to apply it on the skin at least 30 minutes before being exposed to the sun. On top of the oils, don’t forget to apply the sunscreen.

5. Expose your skin progressively 

If you first expose yourself in a reckless way, you will more likely look like a lobster than with a human being with a glamorous tan. After your skin will start to peel and the snake stage comes. Leave these animals alone and focus on achieving the tan in a progressive way. Make numerous short tanning sessions and take breaks in the shadow. Let your skin cool down for a while. By doing do, you are also reducing the damages that the sun can provoke on your skin. Drink water, eat fruits and reapply sunscreen.

6. Daily tan limit 

Your body can tan for two, a maximum of three hours a day. If you expose yourself longer than this period, lobster alert! At some point, your skin stops producing melanin and your job is done for the day. Don’t make any bets with the capacities of your skin. The human body needs daily regeneration.

7. Change position often 

For a uniform tan, there is nothing better than changing position often while sitting under the sun. The sun will reach every part of your body and you will have a consistent tan on your skin.

Follow these tips during your beach holidays and be responsible for your health while getting the tan that you will be envied for. Happy sun day! :)

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3 Non-Traditional Thanksgiving Ideas You Can Use This Year

Toss this traditional Thanksgiving scene out the window

Who can resist the splendor of Thanksgiving?

It’s a magical time when we come together with family and friends (more on the latter in a second!) to commune over mountains of mouth-watering deliciousness and, well, give thanks for the year that was…

You might be thinking that sounds a little too soon. Heck, it’s still summer! Why are we already talking about Thanksgiving?! Like it or not, summer is on the way out, and the holidays are just around the corner.

And Thanksgiving, oftentimes is a stressful (if not contentious) affair among families, is best approached with kid gloves as the occasion draws near.

But… it’s easy to see the holiday objectively if we start thinking about Thanksgiving now. We can even have some fun with it, which is why I got to thinking about some creative, non-traditional ways to celebrate Thanksgiving. Keeping those thoughts to myself is no fun. So, in the Thanksgiving spirit of sharing, I offer three suggestions to you right now.

Host a Friendsgiving 

Friends are the family we choose (so says the old expression). And if you’re looking to balance out the family drama that comes with a traditional Thanksgiving, why not host a Friendsgiving first?

Friendsgiving (made famous from Seinfeld) is exactly like it sounds—a Thanksgiving-ish party with friends! It has all the food, all the drinks, all the games, all the football, and all the fun, absent Grandma asking when you’re getting married or Uncle Larry’s relentless dad jokes.

The concept of Friendsgiving is rather open-ended, which means you have a lot of flexibility in personalizing a pre-Thanksgiving celebration of friendship. Go crazy with the menu, buy the good champagne, and plan an afternoon of doing whatever you and your squad like doing most.

If you’re old enough to remember the Rachel haircut craze, then you may know the Friendsgiving concept also appears in the first Thanksgiving episode of Friends in 1994. The six friends with nowhere to go for the holiday, gathered at Monica’s apartment for a festive evening of food and drinks, famously toasting to “a crappy New Year!” Personally, TOW the Football is my favorite of their classic Turkey episodes.

And fun fact 2.0: The term “Friendsgiving” first circulated on social media in 2007. Friendsgiving is even on Merriam-Webster’s “Words We’re Watching” list for possible entry into their dictionary. Pretty cool, huh?

Ditch the Turkey and Stuffing and Go Chinese...or Italian...or Moroccan...or Vegan...or Whatever!

If you don’t eat turkey, mashed potatoes, and the rest of the traditional food crew on Thanksgiving, will Pilgrims be rolling over in their graves? 

Of course not! 

There’s no law that says your Thanksgiving menu must include the classics. Mix things up with the cuisine you’d rather be eating anyway. Or go out on a limb and use Thanksgiving as a chance to try dishes you’ve never had before. 

You can also leave the meal prep to someone else and have your ‘Giving gang convene at a favorite restaurant. Sure, some restaurants close for the holiday to give their staff time with family, as tradition dictates. But as Black Friday shopping continues to encroach on Thanksgiving day proper, an increasing number of eateries stay open. 

Whatever approach you choose to enjoy a non-traditional Thanksgiving meal will be memorable. Do you recall the turkey or amazing sides you enjoyed at Thanksgiving dinner three years ago? Probably not. 

Will you always remember the Thanksgiving you tried Mrouzia or went to that amazing sushi bar across town? Definitely. 

Why not celebrate Thanksgiving here instead of at home?

Just Plain Get Out of Dodge

I don’t mean you should pack your bags and trudge off to a relative’s house for Turkey Day. We’re talking vacation

That’s right. You have the complete freedom to plan a vacation over Thanksgiving. You always did, but perhaps the notion never crossed your mind. Thankfully, I’m here to put the travel bug in your ear.

Millions of people are traveling for Thanksgiving anyway. No one says you can’t be among the crowd. The idea isn’t so bad when you’re en route to a dream destination rather than Crazy Cousin Carl’s cramped duplex for the ninth year in a row. 

If you live in the northern states, heading south around Thanksgiving probably sounds incredible—and it could be your reality when you think outside the box.

So, any takers on Vegas?

These are just a few ways to carve a new Thanksgiving experience this year instead of carving the turkey. What will you be doing to buck tradition come November? Happy Holidays!

Three Non-Traditional Thanksgiving Ideas

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Betsy's Best Healthy Granola Recipe

In my quest to have my kids eat healthier, I came across Betsy’s Best Almond Butter and became an immediate fan. Even more so, when I heard Betsy’s story and that she also lives in Southwest Florida.

Registered dietician Betsy Opyt started making nut butters in her home for her daughter, who was a picky eater. She enjoyed experimenting with healthy recipes and started making bigger and bigger batches and giving her nut and seed butters out to friends, family and coworkers. They encouraged her to go wider so she started selling a few hundred jars each weekend at Naples’ Farmers Market on Vanderbilt and Airport Road. Pleased with the response and selling out in four hours, she soon partnered with a friend to make it wider business in 2012.

Now, Betsy’s Best has a line of five spreads available in 2100 stores in 39 states including Whole Foods and Amazon. She has developed many sweet and savory flavors from Cinnamon Almond Butter to Gourmet Cardamom Cashew Butter with Chia Seeds. Even, a more recent Coconut flavor too. Next up, she hopes to move beyond butters.

Meeting up with her, she also shared the following AH-MAZING granola bar recipe that’s easy for parents to whip up.

Healthy Granola Bar Recipe

Yield: 22 bars
  • 1/2 c peanut, almond, or cashew nut butter
  • 1/4 c honey, agave nectar, or coconut nectar
  • 1 egg, or 2 egg whites
  • 2 T canola oil or coconut oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 T chia seeds
  • 1 1/2 c old fashioned oats
  • 1 1/2 c rice krispies
  • 1/2 c chopped walnuts
  • 1/4 tsp Pink Himalayan Sea Salt
  • 1/2 c dark chocolate chips
  • 1/2 c dried fruit, cherries, raisins, cranraisins, or goldenberries
Beat nut butter, honey, eggs, oil, sugar, and vanilla. Combine oats, cereal, salt, and chia, in a bowl and then add to the liquid mixture. Stir in chocolate chips, walnuts, and dried fruits. Transfer to a 13×9 in pan and firmly press mixture with the back of spatula or wax paper in baking pan.

Heat oven to 350 degrees and bake 15-17 minutes.

Nutrition facts per bar: 175 calories, 6 g protein, 25 g carbs, 3.5 g fiber, 7 g fat, 114 mg sodium

Healthy and Easy Granola Bar Recipe from Betsy's Best Nut Butters

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All About Trolls The Experience in NYC

What do you do with kids in New York City when it's raining or a heat advisory is in effect? 

Step inside the world of DreamWorks Trolls of course. Come sing, dance and hug at the all-new interactive experience.

Presented by Feld Entertainment The Trolls Experience, is essentially a colorful, dance party where families can meet Princess Poppy and much more. The experience is designed to take an hour and is conveniently located just above Times Square on 57th Street.

Tickets start at just $24 and unlike going to the movies or seeing a show, this experience allows kids to be kids, as well as interact and play too.

All About Trolls The Experience in New York City #trollstheexperience

Go VIP with a Trolls Makeover

My favorite part was getting troll-ified. You have the option for ordering the Hair We Go VIP ticket package, where you'll get your own Trolls wig or mohawk and have "Glitter Gurus" help you primp, polish and glow for the party with full face paint.

With boys, I don't often get to do such makeover activities, so I was totally all over this. After all, no troll left behind! I'd like to think I earned some extra parent points for playing along too.

If you purchase the General Admission ticket instead, your child will receive a paper hair hat so they can still look the part and some face paint and tattoos as well.

Boogie Down at the Trolls Dance Party

One of the stops on the multi-floor experience allows guests to put on a pair of 3D glasses and dance away with their favorite cartoon characters to heart-pumping music from the movie, complete with laser lights and a disco ball. This was probably my second favorite part of the experience, my boys too.

Benny loved the dance portion

Treasure Hunt and Scrapbooking Fun 

Along the way, guests receive charms and stickers after each activity and are given a bag to put them in for their scrapbook at the end.

The after-party portion allows families to snap post-party pics to print out and send to their phone or email address. Next up, kids get to create their scrapbook of the Best Day Ever. Don't worry though if you miss one or two like we did as the staff provided the stickers we missed so we could complete our pages. My boys continued to color in their pages during dinner after, which kept the occupied as we waited on our meals.

Meet Princess Poppy

Finally, you'll meet and pose with Poppy too!

Disclaimer: I received complimentary tickets in exchange for my honest review.

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