Thursday, October 17, 2013

The Do’s and Don’ts of Dark Lipstick

by Augusta Andrews
The time has come to put up your summer colors and trade them for bold, dark colors for fall.  Women in general think they can’t wear bold colors, but with these 5 easy steps they will be wearing these beautiful dark colors for Fall that will make them look Chic!

1)     Do: Prep your lips properly by exfoliating and moisturizing before application.  This makes the color go on smoother and last longer.
2)    Don’t:  Apply dark lipstick on dry, chapped lips.  The color will crack and flake off – not a good look.
3)    Do: Line your lips with a pencil similar in color to your lipstick first.  This allows you to establish the boundaries of your lip and the pencil helps hold the color in place.
4)    Don’t:  Apply it straight from the tube.  Instead, use a lip brush to give you control over the application and intensity.
5)    Do:  Clean up mistakes and perfect the edges of your lip with concealer for a polished finished look.

Last but not least, don’t forget about your eyes.  Keep it soft with clean liner and lots of mascara.  Do a little color on your cheeks in a shade that you love!

Wednesday, October 02, 2013

Rebecca Ward's Thoughts on Movies, Book & TV Shows

My interest in television and movies and even books has changed over the last five or six years. I tend to want to be entertained but I don’t want to have my emotional system activated beyond a certain level. I’ve never really liked to go to movies that I knew would have me so deeply affected I might not be able to pull out of whatever doldrums I’d  fallen into for a few days.

I still remember with clarity the night Ruthie and Susan and I saw "Love Is a Many Splendored Thing" and sniffled around in front of McCormick’s Department Store waiting for one of our mother’s to fetch us. We were so sad for poor Jennifer Jones and there just wasn’t any better looking guy then than William Holden. How would she survive without him? Such angst! Raised on post WWII movies we almost always knew the good handsome soldier would die so I seldom went to very many of those.

So really I guess I’ve always steered clear of movies I knew were sad like "Sophie’s Choice" and "Saving Private Ryan". My husband always repeats in my ear 'It’s a movie, just a movie.' But if a movie isn’t stimulating your limbic system in some way, why go? I’d just rather see great scenery, a sweet love story, an interesting mystery, etc. I don’t want to see incisions into the body cavity, vomitus, bathroom scenes, any form of torture involving body parts and people screaming. I want to escape for sure but not into blood and gore.

New TV shows I’m careful with. I don’t want to have to get to know a whole bunch of new people so I tend to watch what I’m already watching which is not a lot. I never watched "Breaking Bad" or "Downton Abbey" until it was too late to get involved. The train was too far out of the station for me to hop on. I’ve gotten involved with a PBS series I like and did enjoy "The Newsroom" and "House" which departed last year. In a way I was relieved. I had gotten invested in what happened to those characters but was getting tired of all their issues.

So I’m really careful about whom I choose to let into my home and into my brain. This TV season I think Robin Williams will make the cut for "The New Guys" this season.

While I read some serious books from time to time, I tend to like mysteries, courtroom dramas and police procedurals. I have a handful of authors of that genre that I read regularly. I spend so much of my time in my office dealing with real life, real people and real emotion that fictional stuff works just fine for me.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Rebecca Ward Says "Use It or Lose It"

Remember those commercials where some elderly person is lying prostrate on the floor howling “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up”? I always wondered why they couldn’t get up unless something had been broken but most of them looked okay other than that they were flat on the floor like a turtle on its back.

Well, I have fallen and so far I’ve been able to get up but the older I get the more I hear about folks who cannot.  Researching this because it’s so easy with a magic machine that burbs out answers almost as fast as I can type them in, I’ve discovered some interesting information: as we age, we lose some ability to balance ourselves and if you don’t exercise them, muscles will just quit being themselves. They will gladly, easily turn into flab because it’s nature’s way, gravity and all.

The answers I found to help reverse these inevitable issues was to get myself to a gym about as fast as I could and find someone who would guide me in this endeavor to re-create muscle that had disappeared from gross negligence and build some that may have never been born. My “People” don’t really seem to be people of muscle. We may have been hunters and gathers in centuries gone by but I doubt we had to run very far or gather too much heavy-stuff. We actually were probably berry-hunters and pickers if the truth were told.

I found a wonderful trainer who I’m nearly certain looked at me and had to stifle himself to keep from laughing out loud and who must have nearly choked when I got on some of those muscle-building machines and could do no “reps” which is the word they use for an agonizing sequence of repetitive movements. The goal it seems is to be able to do  many of these “reps” at one time on many different painful areas of dilapidated tissue that was formerly, perhaps, muscle or maybe not but the aim is to turn this useless tissue into muscle by using them over and over with “reps”.  There were no sweeter words to be heard than when TM (Trainer Man) would say “Three more.” Usually he said that after I’d done one.

But that was then, almost a month ago, and now I’m doing 10 reps two times on most of those machines that look less and less threatening each time I go.  TM has me on the go from the minute I get there until I leave. I stand, I sit, I lift, twist, turn and  I squat, lift and drop small heavy balls . I pick up big ropes, hold them high, (well, higher than when they were on the floor) and slap them to the floor over and over. I am finding muscles that have laid dormant for many years and some that have been rudely awakened for my lifetime.  They are not amused.  

But when I leave now, I no longer feel like I’m going to throw-up or need to crawl to my car. Only pride and fear of public opinion kept me erect and moving those first few sessions. I had crackers and 7up in the car to help me through the aftermath of exertion the first week. Most of that first weekend I felt like I’d been in a car wreck and hobbled around on an insulted body that was indignant that at this stage of life I’d decided to demand something it had never been asked to do before. It kept saying to me “Please don’t do this. Have you lost your mind? I don’t do this sort of stuff. Repent.”

But I’m committed so I’m going to just have to get over my belief that rest is the best thing one can do as one ages: rest, relax, and read. Now my mantra is “Use it or lose it” and I’m doing curls with 6 lb weights most every morning…..exercise curls, not hair curls. To be honest I’m not seeing my bat-wing arms showing any definition yet but I’m only a month into this.

I’ll tell you more soon. I am recommending that each of you start walking, carry heavy grocery bags to your car that you have parked as far away from the store entrance, and practice getting up from a chair without using your arms. When TM asked me to rise from a sitting position while looking at the ceiling without using my arms, I said “I can’t”. But I almost can after only a month!! 

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Rebecca Ward's Thoughts on Back To School

Thanks to Rebecca Ward for sharing her thoughts on Back to School.

Though it's been many years since school bells ringing meant much change in the routines of my life, I still have some nostalgic feelings at this time of year. There is something about the shift in the shadows of the trees and the subtle difference in the hum of early morning that signals the lazy, restful days of summer are ending and the busy days of autumn are beginning.

My newspaper has been heavy with Back to School advertising, another signal that summer is winding down and autumn is beginning its appearance.  While at winter's end I think I can never wish for dark days again, the long, hot days of July and August make me yearn again for the cool shorter days slowly coming in September to arrive in earnest by mid October. Football talk has begun and tonight the Dallas Cowboys play Miami in a pre-season game that starts weekend football until the first of February. Football practice is beginning across from my office, another signal that school is about to commence and with it, structured time and activities. No more sleeping in, staying up late, catching lightening bugs, swimming by moonlight, and wearing flip-flops and easy cotton clothes. "Summertime, when the living is easy...." I've always loved that song.

Summers generally are easy, don't you think?  Our humidity and heat encourages easy cool
dressing, not so much to coordinate and put on. People seem healthier in the summer months and look healthier too with no indoor pallor and some slight color from the frequent sun. Flu doesn't thrive in the heat and not being cooped up together in warm houses seems to discourage viruses from spreading too. Yep, summertime is just easier...if your air conditioning functions well.

As I said before, my routines won't change much. Morning traffic will get a little hectic with school buses running and parents getting kids delivered but that's about it. However, when school starts, it does mean the seasons are about to shift and pumpkins and candy canes will
start appearing meaning after Labor Day we've got the Holidays!

 Ah, THAT'S how school bells get to me.....School starts and then it's Christmas....with brief stops at Halloween and Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Rebecca's Thoughts On Vacations

Is taking a trip and taking a vacation the same thing? I don’t think so. Going on a trip means you’re leaving but you may be leaving on a business trip or to tend to family matters so not every trip is for the pursuit of pleasure. A vacation to me means you are “vacating” the premises for rest, relaxation, fun, all pleasurable activities. And when you return home, you are rested and relaxed and while you might be thrilled to be home with your own bed and kitchen availability, you are not tired. You are RESTED from the vacating of everyday worries and concerns!

Since this is my party and I can cry if I want to, I’m going to tell you I’ve had some fabulous vacations over the years. But one of the best was a trip to Nova Scotia just a couple of years ago with two of our best friends and A-Plus travel companions. Now there was a glitch or two in the beginning (The upgrade we paid for was for naught. We got bigger seats but they were out of wine and the meal as I recall was cheese crackers and an apple.) We were not amused.

Landed on-time in Halifax on time, the rental car was ready, the hotel on the harbor comfortable and we took off leisurely the next morning to drive 3 hours to a remote resort we had researched. Drive was fun, scenery nice, weather very comfortable as we left 90 degree weather for 50-70 degree weather. But as we continued the scenery became a bit more rustic, a lot more rural, and we began checking the map. We were on target and just about to give up, Oz appeared. We turned down a road and everything was green and lush and there were flowers everywhere and an ornamental fence surrounded most of it. We had arrived. (Mr. Oz was there, his huge jet parked on the small airport right in front of our condos. He visited with us at dinner one evening. Music swell!)

We were on the Northumberland Sound right on the Atlantic and the view was spectacular. Our accommodations were all and more that had been promoted and the hotel, golf course, spa, and dining was great. It was lovely and we all rested and ate and slept in and toured near-by quaint villages and towns. The guys golfed on such scenic fairways and greens they didn’t seem to mind a bogey or two. It was hard to leave.

The vacation ceased when we were late into Detroit, missed our connection in Memphis though we were there in time to see our plane shut its doors. A woman who looks like every nasty guard you’ve ever seen in a prison movie had her arms crossed saying “Not going to happen.” There was not another plane until morning.

No rental car was available to hold all our luggage so our enterprising husbands hired an Ethiopian mini-van cab driver and he loaded us up and we were home about two hours late. It was a grand finale, don’t you think? The perfect ending.

Rebecca Ward

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

5 Must-Have Beauty Products for Summer

  1. Exfoliator This is an extremely essential product for face and body.  It helps to remove dead skin cells and leave your skin smooth, even toned, and most importantly moisturized!
  2. Tinted moisturizer This all in one product not only moisturizes, but it also has sunscreen and acts as a light coverage foundation.
  3. Bronzer This beauty essential can be used in many ways: as an eyeshadow, a subtle way to create contour on the face, and even as a blush.
  4. Lip Balm with Sunscreen Whatever product you choose for your lips, make sure it contains sunscreen!
  5. Waterproof Mascara Everyone needs a tube of this for summer.  Just remember to have some good eye makeup remover!

Rebecca's Thought's on Summer

This week Summer got here after a lazy Winter that seemed to have great difficulty turning loose. It hadn’t been much of one anyway and hanging on too long didn’t improve the stats.

Seasonal changes seem so gradual to me that it takes something significant for me to accept that one has passed and another has begun. Memorial Day is a signal to me that temperatures are going to change just like Labor Day tells me that school will start soon and routines will replace the slower pace of summer. Traffic will become more congested in the mornings and the holidays will be here too soon.

But Father’s Day is a huge reminder to me that summer is here and I recall my childhood with poignant nostalgia. Childhood summers were divine at my house. We had a huge screened-in porch complete with wicker swing and ceiling fan, rattan rugs, and a ping-pong table. Corny as it sounds, we shelled peas and Mother cooked fresh veggies and cornbread and a pie almost every day . In the summer, there was straw-
berry shortcake often and blackberry cobblers and cucumbers and onions in vinegar in the fridge. Our house wasn’t air-conditioned until I was older, the house was built in 1909 with high ceilings and hardwood floors. A great house to grow in during a time when children were reared and not feared and rules were respected.
Of course, it was a simpler time as the world was huge and what happened in one part of the world didn’t immediately affect us. Technology was present in the form of telephones, running water, heaters, fans, gas stoves and such. We got a TV when I was 9 years old!! It mainly ran that old Indian-head test pattern and we would watch that!

Well, it seemed simpler to me because I didn’t worry about much. My parents were clearly in charge and I didn’t have to fret much over anything as I knew they would take care of things. It was great being a kid and I’m thankful every day for the grandparents I had and the great childhood they provided.

We need to let our kids be kids while teaching them skills they’ll need for the tasks we know lie ahead. We can keep most of that secret from them so they won’t start worrying about ACT’s and college and taxes and earning a living when they don’t really know what those things are. Prep them, teach them self-reliance, and slowly let them become adults. They will be that a lot longer than they will get to be children.

Hope you all have a great summer!

Rebecca Ward                                 

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Father’s Day Project: Adirondack Chair from Home Depot

Thanks to the folks from Home Depot for sharing a great Father's Day gift idea. Below are the step-by-step instructions.

Spend quality time building a gift with dad

Adirondack chairs are a stylish addition to your patio or backyard, and a gift dad is sure to enjoy. Celebrate Father’s Day with quality time for dads and kids by making an easy project that can be completed in an afternoon for less than $75.
One project idea is personalizing The Home Depot’s Adirondack chair kit. Not only will dads and kids have fun making it together, it’ll be enjoyed for years to come.
Chairs have four main parts – a backrest, seat, arms and legs – and the kit comes with each part pre-assembled and two additional bracket pieces used to connect the dots (six total). You will need several types of screwdrivers, so an all-in-one kit is perfect for the job.  If you would like to limit the elbow grease needed for assembly, power tools will provide the torque you need for every step of the process.
Assembling the chair is an easy, four-step progression.

· Step 1: Connect the front chair legs with the crossbeams provided and screw into place.

· Step 2: Secure the seat to the two legs.

· Step 3: Secure the brackets to the seat. Add the backrest and secure in place.

· Step 4: Screw in the arms.

Now that your seat is assembled, it’s time for you and dad to add a personal touch. The chair is unfinished, so personalize it with a colorful paint or stain and weatherproof it. Before you do, make sure to cover your project area with polyethylene sheeting to make clean-up easier by catching any paint or stain drips. Prep the chair by sanding with 150-grit sandpaper to smooth any rough areas, and then wipe the chair down with a soft cloth to remove dust.

When selecting a stain for the chair, you want to choose a one that resists UV damage and is waterproof, protecting against a wide range of climatic conditions. If you prefer the look of paint, you can match the chair to your house or introduce a new pop of color.

Help dad relax even further by adding a cup holder. You can use a router to create a perfect cup-sized hole in the arm of the chair.

The last step is to accessorize with cushions and pillows. With the project work done, sit back and enjoy!

As you prepare for your Father’s Day project, make sure you check out all the tool offers and Father’s Day savings available this year.

If you want to surprise your dad or husband with a second chair after all his hard work on Father’s Day, The Home Depot is hosting a Do-It-Herself Workshop inspired by Pinterest on Thursday, June 20 to demonstrate building a chair from scratch.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Free Fun Friday: May 31

Happy Friday everyone!

We've decided to start a new post each week with a list of free events for families in our viewing area. If you have a FREE event you'd like to us to include please send information to or share it with us on our KATV Good Morning Arkansas Facebook page.

Sunday, June 2 Wildwood Park for the Arts is hosting Building WILD! Community in West Little Rock from Noon-4 p.m. Wildwood invites members of the West Little Rock community to come out for a picnic and fishing gathering to get to know your neighbors and the Park. They do suggest you bring fishing poles, blankets, and a picnic (or you can bring cash to purchase food and drinks on site). There will be lawn games for the families to enjoy and tours of the gardens and indoor theatre at Wildwood Park. Wildwood Park for the Arts is located at 20919 Denny Road in Little Rock. You can find more information at or by calling 501-821-7275.

Sunday, June 2 & Monday June 3 The Hot Rod Power Tour will make 2 stops in Arkansas. On Sunday, the Tour will be in Texarkana, Ark. Then, at the Arkansas State Fairgrounds from Noon-7 p.m. This is event is free for spectators, but there is a fee to register a car. For more details visit

Wednesday, June 5 The Little Rock Marathon & Go! Running have partnered to host a Free National Running Day Run/Walk. The event is at 6 a.m. at Murray Park in Little Rock. This is a great chance for those thinking about starting running to meet other runners & get started. Although the event is free, registration is required. To register visit

Wednesday, June 5 a new event called Jazz in the Park kicks off in downtown Little Rock this Wednesday. Each Wednesday night in June and July from 5:30-7:30 p.m. a different jazz group will hold a FREE concert in the History Pavilion of Riverfront Park in Little Rock. Rodney Block & The Real Music Lovers are the performing for opening night.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Ways to Eat Healthy While Traveling with the Family

Thanks to Rhonda Monfee, a certified diabetes educator and registered dietitian with Conway Regional Health System for sharing these great tips for keeping the family healthy, even when traveling.

Eating out while traveling can be a great experience and be healthy at the same time! If we can eat healthy 80 percent of the time, we can have a 20 percent splurge and still achieve our healthy, weight control goals.

While traveling with the family on vacation, here are some easy ways to navigate to healthier eating:

Have a plan, go to a grocery store and pack a cooler 

  1. Ask all family members to help pack snacks so no one is skipping meals on the way and getting too hungry
  2. During the trip, instead of stopping at fast food, stop at a grocery store and get milk, yogurt,  100% juice boxes , fruit, bagged veggies, nuts, hummus, peanut butter…  this helps cut out junk  
  3. Eat frequently, and in smaller amounts, emphasizing protein with each meal to improve fullness feeling (will have samples- “protein” bars)  Skipping meals leads to overeating at the next opportunity.
  4. When stopping at the gas station, try to avoid high sugary, high fat, deep fried foods and limit high powered energy drinks, which all add up to flaring tempers and even more stops to go to the restroom. Look for:
    1. Single-serving, whole-grain breakfast cereals and cartons of milk with fresh fruit.
    2. Fresh made sandwiches to order, choose turkey or ham sandwiches.
Try to choose full service restaurants that offer more healthy choices for the whole family.
  • Since the body is designed to eat about every 4 hours while we are awake, small meals throughout the day are recommended.
  • Meals should be approx 300-500 calories each (Break, Lunch, Supper)
  • Snacks should be approx 100-150 calories each (mid-morning, mid-afternoon)
  • New guideline for restaurant chains with 20 or more locations: They are required to report calorie contents of food for customers who are ordering inside or drive-through. This is important for consumer education! 
When fast food is the option, try our top picks:  (Try to limit fast food to one time per day)

  • McDonalds – Breakfast – Egg McMuffin or  Oatmeal with nuts, fruit or Yogurt Parfait
  • Taco Bell – Lunch – Fresco Crunch Chicken Tacos, Beans/Rice
  • Wendy’s Apple Pecan Chicken Salad, salad on side with baked potato OR grilled chicken sandwich/chili
  • Subway 6” turkey with cheese, apple slices, water
  • Arby’s Roast Beef Classic or Turkey Sandwich or Roast Chicken Farmhouse Salad
  • CHICK-FIL-A Chargrilled Chicken Sandwich with Salad

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

4 Steps to Achieving the Perfect Sunless Tan

Thanks to Augusta Andrews of B. Barnett for sharing some tips for getting a summer glow...without the sun.

1.  Exfoliation is the #1 most important process when applying tanner.  There are so many exfoliating options from gels to lotions to a Clarisonic body brush!

2.  Choose your type of tanner by what works best for your skin.  You can choose a gradual tan formula or instant if you prefer.  There are tanning gels, foams, lotions, and even tanning towels.  Choose whichever is most convenient for your skin type.

3.  Moisturize your skin AFTER your tanner is applied.  Wait 10 minutes to apply your favorite moisturizer.  It will help to smooth out any spots or streaks and help you achieve a longer lasting tan.

4.  Don't forget your face!  You can use a bronzer for added color or even choose a darker tinted makeup for summer!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Thanks to Augusta Andrews of B. Barnett for sharing these great make up tips!

When it comes to finding solutions to help imperfections in the skin, your first thought may be to turn to skincare solutions. Skincare isn’t your only option though. With the right combination of moisturizer and makeup, you can have clearer, better looking skin in just 5 steps.
  1. If redness is your issue, there are a wide variety of makeup lines that will solve this issue. The best counteraction to redness is to use a moisturizer with a green tint in it. The tint evens out redness in the skin and helps it get to a healthier, more natural looking tone. Not only does it provide important hydration, it also calms the skin. Moisturizer is so important because it is what provides the canvas for your makeup to go over.
  2. Mineral powder foundation is my favorite choice for problematic skin. It has trace minerals in it, which promote healing over time. It also has sunscreen if needed, can be your all in one cover up.
  3. Choose a concealer that is at least a ½ shade lighter than your own skin tone. It is important for problematic skin to choose an oil free concealer. Put your concealer on over your mineral powder and blend well.
  4. When using mineral powder and concealer, using a finishing powder over the products will give you a smooth finish and help your makeup to last throughout the day.
  5. The last step is to choose a mineral powder blush. It has the added mineral benefits to help heal your skin and will go on more smoothly and more softly over your other makeup. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Rebecca Ward's Thoughts on Being Nice in Public

Thanks to Rebecca Ward for sharing this blog!

Years ago my sweetest daughter-in-law and I slipped away and went to a movie. It was called “Pay It Forward” and as you might suspect, the theme was how to keep kindness to others moving from person to person. Very heartwarming movie. Yet in the midst of all the goodwill being spread around on the big screen,someone’s cell phone burst into song and immediately boos and hisses rang through the theatre . Not kind, not patient or accepting were these reprimanding folk sharing the auditorium.  I almost shouted out “Hey, pay it forward” but decided silence was the better choice. The poor woman with the operatic phone sunk in her seat after frantically shutting it off.
I often think about why strangers aren’t kinder to each other. I watch angry drivers and hurried shoppers in apoplectic states when another driver stops on yellow or the shopper ahead pulls out coupons. It’s  as if the children had been sold or the house disappeared into a sink hole, big events that warrant a strong emotional response. But being delayed 3 minutes? Or 7 or whatever. No kindness, no patience.  It seems that others are not our fellow planet dwellers but impediments to our needs being met in a speedy manner.
So I was so surprised today to have several strangers do nice things for me. One nice young woman held the door open for me and wished me a good day! Another let me into traffic when two lanes turned into one..and she did it with a wave and a smile! The sales folks I encountered were friendly and helpful and seemed glad I was there instead of ticked because I interrupted their texting. Oh, and a very nice man let me ahead of him in the grocery store line because I had fewer items and he wasn’t in a hurry! Swell!
It has all been lovely and I’ve felt positive and energized by all the consideration and kindness shown to me….by strangers!! I am going to “pay it forward”. I am not going  to wait until the last minute to head to an appointment so I am stressed to get there on time and other people not being in a hurry frustrates me and I start engaging  unflattering “traffic   talk” which isn’t very nice. I will not go to the grocery store if my time isn’t flexible. I’m going  to be nicer and more considerate to others.
I’ve made up my mind.  I’m really going to do this. Wouldn’t it be grand if being nice to each other was contagious?
Rebecca Ward

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Save Time on Spring Cleaning

Thanks to the folks at Home Depot for sharing these great pointers for saving time when spring cleaning!

Make your home shine with the right products and minimal effort 

Americans spend nearly 70 hours cleaning their homes’ interior each year, according to a recent report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Innovative new products and cleaning tips will reduce time spent cleaning and allow you to focus on enjoying the season with family and friends.

Set the Stage for a Deep Clean
Decluttering is an important first step to spring cleaning. Storage containers are an affordable solution for organizing and putting away items that you want to keep but don’t use frequently. Consider installing a shelving unit in your closet to create added space for items you do not use on a daily basis.

During warmer months outdoor spaces can be just as functional as indoor rooms, so don’t forget these areas when you start cleaning. Selecting trash bags that are able to handle heavy loads of garbage without breaking or spilling can save money and time.

Prep Your Home’s Exterior
Slough off the dirt and grime left over from winter and start the season fresh by giving spaces outside the home a deep clean.

Stains on concrete are not only unsightly, they can also weaken the surface of your driveway. Luckily, many outdoor stains can be removed by applying a multi-surface cleaner specifically designed to remove stains from your patio, driveway and sidewalks.
Pressure washing is ideal for outdoor jobs, such as spraying down siding on your home’s exterior walls or cleaning dirt from a deck, because it uses less water than a garden hose and still gets the job done quickly. New innovations in pressure washers make them portable and able to run on gas or electricity, facilitating ease of movement when cleaning large surfaces.
Throughout the year outdoor furniture collects dirt and grime, masking the beauty of the backyard space that serves as the perfect environment for BBQs, pool parties and festive gatherings. Give dingy patio chair cushions new life by cleaning them with a soft bristle brush or sponge and a cleaning solution made of one gallon water mixed with ¾ cup of a powerful cleaner. Add a tablespoon of laundry detergent to reinvigorate the colors in the fabric. Leave the cleaning solution on for five to 10 minutes before rinsing off.

Cleaning Hard-to-Reach Spaces
For those hard-to-reach spaces, try a powerful all-purpose cleaner – perfect for making every inch of your refrigerator sparkle. Look for a brand with a non-toxic formula to clean deep without having to worry about contamination.  Additionally, you can custom-dilute for almost any type of surface cleaning, such as floors and walls, pots and pans or large appliances.
Cleaning the dryer vent doesn’t need to be limited to the lint filter screen. The small particles that get through will eventually build up inside the dryer and block the vent ducting that runs to the outside of your house. Use a vacuum with a hose attachment to clean out all remaining lint.
After vacuuming away built-up dirt from the dryer, you can re-use your Simple Green Cleaner to clean the entire appliance.
Fighting Indoor Allergies
Spring should be enjoyed, not marked by allergies. Basic upkeep around the house with easy-to-use products can help you make the most of the season.

For everyday clean-up, try using a multi-surface cleaning solution with a cloth or paper towel. Just a dab of a safe and powerful formula is all you need to clean and sanitize kitchens, bathrooms and other frequently used areas of the home.
And for perennial allergy sufferers, an indoor HVAC System can help. The HVAC has a filtration system built into it that, if maintained regularly, can help protect against pesky allergens. Below are two simple ways to maintain your HVAC system and help improve the air quality in your home all season long:
·         Change your air filter regularly: Changing the air filter will prevent build-up of allergy-causing particles that can enter the home. Make sure to check your specific manufacturer’s recommendations for the best possible results.

·         Assess your air quality needs: Are there pets in the home or multiple allergy sufferers? Take a good look at your surroundings so that you can choose the air filter that is perfect for your home.

Starting the spring season off with a deep clean inside and out can help reduce time spent on this task throughout the year. Following a deep clean, maintenance cleaning can be completed more quickly, giving you more time to enjoy the spring with friends and family gardening, grilling or simply relaxing outdoors. 

Monday, March 25, 2013

6 Steps to Prep Your Skin for Spring

Thanks to Augusta Andrews of B. Barnett for sharing these great tips!

1.  Don't forget your feet!  It's time for some serious exfoliation.  When getting ready for sandal season, use a product that will instantly revitalize tired feet and reduce rough patches.  Sakura Silk is a great product with it's K-link complex which has natural soothing botanicals and plant extracts such as cherry leaf.

2.  You must exfoliate your lips!  Be careful not to use anything too abrasive as it can crack your lips.  Use a product like lip silk by Laura Mercier which is not only a natural exfoliator but a moisturizing product too.

3.  Slather on the face masks!  A moisturizing mask for your face is the one thing that will give you the extra boost of moisture you need.  Strivectin Dermal Infusion Mask will help to diminish the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.  This mask contains Nia-114 which is a compound that helps restore skin in days.

4.  Don't forget serums!  One of the most important skin care items anyone over 40 can use is a serum.  It can go deeper into the skin than moisturizer.  Murad Intensive Wrinkle Reducer with durian cell reform encourages cell turnover.

5.  Nourish nails!  During the winter season, nails and cuticles become dry.  Frequent hand washing compounds the problem for many.  Many great skin care lines carry nourishing oils that work great for both lips and cuticles/nails.

6.  Tonic water is great for your face as a refresher.  It can soothe your skin and, with some products, rehydrate skin and set your makeup.  Laura Mercier has Perfecting Water Moisture Mist from the dead sea that restores the skin.  La Prairie has Advanced Marine Biology Tonic which regenerates, brightens, and oxygenates the face.  These are both excellent options for maintaining glowing skin!

Friday, February 22, 2013

5 Steps to Eliminate Under-Eye Circles & Puffiness

1.  Be sure when using skincare for eyes, use a serum or eye gel.  These products are specifically designed for helping with darkness and puffiness.  Eye creams are great for lines and wrinkles.

2.  Brightening sticks are great when applied first to the under-eye area, corner to corner.  This helps lighten the area so less concealer is needed.

3.  Color correctors are great when used before concealer.  They help to neutralize any green or blue tones circles may have.  Use a mauve/rose color for lighter skin and an orange/yellow color for darker skin.

4.  Conceal!  Always apply with a brush and only at the inner corner where the concern lies.  You are not dark or puffy on the outer corner!

5.  Finally, set with a thin, loose powder so the makeup can stay in place all day.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Spring Break Activities for the Family: On a Budget!

Thanks to Angie Freel of the Saline County Cooperative Extension for sharing this great spring break ideas.
·         Have a camp out in the yard.  Pitch a tent and barbecue outside.
·         Plan an afternoon at a local park. Take a picnic lunch, kites, and balls & bats for a softball game. Let the kids invite several buddies and you’ve got a memorable spring day.
·         For a Spring learning adventure, take a hike in a nature area and learn to identify birds, trees, plants, and flowers. Spring is a natural time for kids to explore science and nature.  The library offers lots of books to help! State Parks have great Spring Break programs!
·         Have a board game day. Fun to set up a board game table outside too!
·         PJ parties still rock! Get ready for popcorn, DVDs and pillow fights. No matter what age sleepovers are always a hit!
·         Do nothing.  Yes, that’s right. In today’s time of over-scheduled kids and parents, a day or two of totally unscheduled time, when your kids can sleep late, play creatively, or work on a hobby, and generally relax, may be just what the doctor ordered.
·         Museum Day – many museums offer Spring Break specials. Check their websites for details. Trucks Galore Saturday, March 16 10am - 2pm. At Mid America Science Museum’s 4th annual ‘Keep On Truckin'. Children of all ages have a chance to explore full-size fire trucks, police cars, construction equipment, and a variety of other vehicles in a family festival atmosphere. Enjoy hands-on activities in a safe environment, while supporting the Museum. $5 per person (all ages), and the first 100 kids will receive a free event t-shirt. Admission to Keep on Truckin' also entitles you to a discounted admission to the Museum (good for that Saturday only).
·         Movie Day – movie theaters usually offer movies during spring break at discounted rates during the day
·         Downtown LR Day – trolley, presidential library, Razorback, great food, Museum of Discovery, Old State House, The Department of Arkansas Heritage, Arkansas Inland Maritime Museum – USS Razorback and more! $6 adults $4 children
·         Scavenger Hunt – Easy – use photos for smaller children
·         Library – Always something going on and usually FREE
·         Help out Community – serve your community – Meals on Wheels, Maintaining flower beds, yard work for elderly, etc.
·         Spring Break Skatearama - Each day of Spring Break, the Arkansas Skatium hosts special events and themed skates for youngsters. From noon-1 p.m. on Mon. and Fri., children ages 5 and up are invited to a free skating or hockey class. Dress up in western wear on Texas Tuesday or beachy duds on Tropical
·         Thursday for free skate rentals. And on Winter Wednesday, snow will come down inside the ice arena, and kids can build a snowman.
·         Geocache – Great family treasure hunting activity that can be done right in your home town. Using a smart phone or GPS unit, you will search for hidden treasures that are hidden everywhere! See

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Valentine's Wisdom from Rebecca Ward

Thanks to Rebecca Ward for sharing this great Valentine's Day blog post.

Valentines Day is a marketing bonanza for jewelers and florists, no doubt about it. Probably restaurateurs too as dining out is usually part of the Valentine Day scenario. Do you know what your significant other wants for Valentines? What is he or she expecting you to do...or say or buy? Most have expectations on such a media hyped holiday just as planned.  And that's my focus in this blog...expectations. We've all got 'em and too many times we don't tell anyone what they are. We keep them a secret magically hoping that the one who needs to know what they are, WILL know and follow through to the letter to meet each of them.  And how often does that really happen? Not nearly enough or who would write songs and poems?

My father, one of the most thoughtful men I've ever known, resented holidays because he said they forced him into buying something so that the gift itself never meant as much as a gift that was given "just because."  I can understand his thinking but my thinking was if it's time to recognize a person because it's Christmas or a birthday or whatever the occasion is by giving them a gift of goods or services, the doing of it says there is meaning. Most always Dad would bow to custom but I remember vividly one year when Mother said "Don't worry about it.I don't expect anything." Ha! He believed her, came home empty handed, and she was tearful and quiet all evening. I was confused. He had asked what she would like for Valentine's Day, she had said "nothing" and he didn't bring her anything. He got her nothing which is what she asked for. I wondered why she didn't tell him what her expectations really had been. I ate my little note-hearts from school and pondered the mystery of adult communication. Wow. I asked Santa Claus for everything I could imagine and the Easter Bunny too. No problems there for me.

Many years later I learned that most of us have some difficulty asking for what we want, trouble sharing what our expectations are so we just keep quiet and hope that the power of voodoo supernatural magic will transmit our deepest and most detailed expectations to the ones from whom we expect and all will turn out just great! When you're all grown up and have to take responsibility for yourself, it feels a little risky to ask for something from someone who really matters to you. Maybe he/she will say "No." or not have the time or care enough to try to make a wish of yours come true. So that would not feel good but better to find out sooner than later.

If you want a box of candy in a heart-shaped box covered in red satin with a big old bow on top, tell your sweetheart. And if you only want creams in milk chocolate, let him know. If your heart is set on red roses or yellow or even calla lilies, let the poor guy know. And if you don't say a word to him, then don't say a word to him if he doesn't get it right!!

And guys, if you're hankering for something special from your lady, let her know or see above!

Monday, February 04, 2013

Post Workout Makeup & Skincare

Thanks to Tess Wilmans-Higgins for sharing these post workout makeup and skincare tips. For more like this this, visit Tess' blog: .

I love that awesome rosy glow I get after a session at the gym. However, I don't love the smeared mascara and sweaty pores that can be left behind. Here are my favorite ways to get ready in a jiff after a workout.
  1. Makeup Remover Wipes Use these after you shower off to remove any dirt and leftover makeup.
  2. Tinted Moisturizer or BB Cream Don't cover up that rosy flush with tons of heavy foundation. Sheer formulas are more youthful anyway. Tinted moisturizers will provide moisture, SPF protection and a light coverage. BB creams pack a whollop and act as primer, moisture and coverage all in one. Some don't have SPF, tho, so be on the lookout for one that does.
  3. Concealer Gotta have a great concealer to brighten up under the eyes. I like Makeup Forever HD concealer.
  4. Multitasking Products Use a cream tint for lips and cheeks. I like Stila cream blush. Julie Hewett makes a beautiful cream product called Shimmy that is awesome for eyeshadow and to highlight the face. Products that do double-duty save you time when you've got to hustle back to work.
  5. Lovely Lashes My clients LOVE their eyelash extensions and many say they don't need eye makeup after a workout because their extensions look so good! If you don't have lash extensions, a great mascara is a must. Find your fave and place a business or credit card behind the lashes and wiggle the wand upward from the base of the lash line. That will catch any mascara from getting onto the eyelid and will give the base of the lashes a thick, black look and eliminate the need for eyeliner.

I hope you try out these tips after your next trip to the gym!

Love, Sweat, and Lipgloss

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Zero Dark Thirty Sneak Preview

Thursday, January 10, 2013
at 7:30 p.m.
For your pass:

Passes are limited and are available on a first-come, first-served basis. You must have or will need to create a log in to get your pass. If you encounter technical problems, please contact Gofobo's customer support line at 866-372-0272 or
at the Rave Theatre
in Little Rock

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Rebecca Ward's thoughts on New Year's Resolutions

I've been thinking about New Year's resolutions for awhile because it's that time of year and because I'm talking about them on GMA this week. All the major networks have had segments on them and I've really not seen or heard anything about the subject that surprised me. The main gist seems to be that of those who make them, a very small percentage are successful in keeping them. I read somewhere on the net that 88% fail to keep those heartfelt commitments made with such fervor on December 31, when many are still feeling stuffed and bloated from too many holiday goodies, fatigued from many extra responsibilities and activities, and perhaps, from sipping too many adult libations. We feel guilty!!

Really making a resolution from a place of guilt is not a solid place from which to start! Why? Well, because guilt can promote unrealistic goals that are too daunting to reach. If you say "I'm never drinking alcohol again" that is likely doomed to fail (especially if you  are proclaiming this while you have a headache-hangover) because it's got the "never" word in it and is not well-thought out. It's almost a desperate pronouncement, a plea to the gods in atonement for your sin of over-enjoying alcoholic beverages. A resolution much more likely to stick would sound more like this "I'm going to limit myself to only two drinks when reveling so I won't have to feel this lousy again." Better and more do-able!

I read somewhere that resolutions actually have some religious history, an atonement kind of activity meant to please the gods and to make us better people. Even the ancient Babylonians practiced some form of making resolutions at the beginning of the new year. I wonder how they fared?

One article I read said that men succeed at about a 10% higher rate than women. They make more measurable goals apparently than women do. A man might say "I am going to lose 10lbs" while a woman might say "I'm fat and I'm never eating chocolate again and I"m going to lose a ton of weight"
Another study said it helps to elicit help from you friends in keeping your resolutions. Tell your best friend that you want to lose 10 lbs so she won't offer you dessert when you go out to lunch. I have known some successful former-smokers who told  everyone that they had quit smoking so they wouldn't slip-up without facing public derision.

Whatever you decide to do during these first few days of January, think about what you want to change about yourself or your life, what improvements you'd like to experience in yourself and your life, and then commit to something very reasonable toward those goals. Set yourself up to win in this age old practice of starting the new year off on a positive note.Good luck and Spring will come again. Me? I've always thought April was the optimum month for beginning an improvement program. Sunlight is such a motivator!

-Rebecca Ward