Category Archives: Living

4 Characteristics of Successful Female Professionals You Should Aim to Imitate

Chances are, you know at least one woman who excels in her chosen career path and makes you unmistakably envious. Although envy is an understandable emotion, it’s not necessarily a helpful one. Fortunately, there are several other beneficial characteristics that could help you assert how you’re a powerful female in your own right.

Ability to Overcome Adversity

Oprah Winfrey is arguably one of the most successful African American women alive, largely due to her TV show, book club, and television network. However, she did not have that success handed to her and actually overcame a great deal of adversity in her life that included abuse from the age of nine, an unintentional pregnancy, and the loss of several family members from things like AIDS and drug-related complications.

Although you may not have as much to deal with as Oprah did at one point in her life, you undoubtedly still have challenges to face. If you face them with courage instead of fear, you might be surprised at what you can accomplish.

Perseverance

After author Elizabeth Gilbert wrote a best-selling memoir that got turned into a movie, she came under immense pressure to give a repeat performance. Her second attempt at a book did not do well and Gilbert struggled to find enough creativity to write something worthwhile. Eventually, she succeeded by remembering the person she was before her triumphs and recalling how she picked herself up and tried again during that period of her life.

If there’s one thing that’s almost guaranteed in life, it’s that you will fail — either genuinely or seemingly. Once you do, that’s not the end of the world. Although you’ll probably have to change your perspective to encourage yourself to keep going, the things you learn from this perceived shortcoming could be more advantageous than you initially realize.

A Goal-Oriented Mindset

Picabo Street is an American skier who won gold at the 1998 Olympic Games. However, she was not always such a competent athlete. At age 15, she joined the U.S. junior ski team but did not have the discipline to hold her own against the other team members. Officials were so bothered by her lack of readiness that they suspended her. After taking a year off to train with her father as her coach, the skier came back and showed a newfound determination while proving she was a strong competitor.

Staying fixated on a goal as this famous skier did could be the thing that gets you out of bed each day when you’d rather give up. Goals also help define your actions and decisions.

Verifiable Knowledge

Suzzanne Uhland is a Californian business law attorney who has over 20 years of experience in the industry. However, she can offer more than a resume to demonstrate her knowledge. Uhland maintains a topical blog about legal matters including bankruptcy and risk and updates it regularly. This platform not only lets her describe her expertise via the bio at the top of the page but also allows her to demonstrate it by writing posts that are likely to be of interest to her current and potential clients.

She has achieved impressive success throughout her career and the blog is one way for her to make her knowledge obvious to people who might be able to benefit from it. You can do the same through your own blog by establishing yourself as a female blogger who has a lot to say about your preferred subjects. Don’t be afraid to tackle matters that are little known or controversial if the situation is appropriate.

Hopefully after reading these real-life examples and learning how you can apply the traits to your own life, you’re sufficiently inspired. Becoming an even more admirable woman is a goal within your grasp.

9 Tips for an Amicable Divorce

Contrary to what you’ve seen in movies, it’s entirely possible to have an amicable divorce. You might have to bite your tongue every now and then, but it is possible. If you’re determined to take the high road, here are nine tips for keeping your cool when your marriage comes to an end.

1. Don’t Call Names

Your parents taught you this before they let you loose on the playground, and it still holds true today. What will you accomplish by flinging insults at your soon-to-be ex? Is a momentary feeling of satisfaction worth the stress of a drawn-out, bitter divorce? Think twice before you twist the knife.

2. Learn How to Compromise

Compromise doesn’t mean I get everything that I want while the other person just deals with it. It is important to enter a divorce negotiation knowing that it is just that — a negotiation. Whether it is who gets to keep the house or the exact child visitation schedule you wanted, you will have to sacrifice some things. A true compromise occurs when both parties win and lose something.

3. Hire a Lawyer

Even if you are anticipating a friendly split, it pays to have a lawyer on your side when it comes time to sign the documents. They can give authority on things like custody and property agreements, and they can also point out any potential problems in the language of your contracts. You don’t want to be dragged in front of a judge five years from now because of a loophole.

4. Don’t Get Jealous

Your relationship is ending. There is no point in being angry, resentful, or jealous if your ex has found someone new. Instead of starting pointless fights that might forever cast you in a negative light to your ex or their partner, try welcoming them with a smile. You don’t have to be best buds — or even friends at all — but you can be polite. This is especially important if you and your ex have children together.

5. Let Go of Past Hurts

Does it really matter if her hours were too long? Will anything change if he admits that he didn’t do enough housework? These petty squabbles won’t result in anything but old, pent-up feelings disrupting the present day. Leave them in the past where they belong.

6. Figure Out How to Divide Your Assets

This is often one of the biggest sources of drama in a divorce, but there’s an easy trick for ensuring that you get your money’s worth: Convince your spouse that it’s actually better for you to have the item. For example, instead of demanding the dog, you might pose the question, “Do you really think that you’ll have the time to feed and walk him every day? Your schedule is pretty busy.”

7. Don’t Vent to the Wrong People

Venting to your friends is a natural part of the divorce process, but make sure that you aren’t putting the listener in an odd or uncomfortable spot. For example, no matter how close that you are to your sister-in-law, it’s inappropriate for you to slam her brother to her face. Think about her feelings as well as your own.

8. Keep the Children Out of It

The biggest rule of a smooth divorce is to keep your children completely shielded from it. This means no “casual” questions about who your ex is seeing or how much their house is worth. They may seem like innocent queries to you, but to a child with divided love and loyalty, they can be genuinely distressing.

9. Find a Support Group

A divorce support group can help you deal with the turbulent thoughts and feelings that accompany a separation. They’ll also give you the confidence to deal with whatever comes your way in the future. Many divorced people find it scary to be single again, but a support group can help you turn it into a freeing, liberating thought instead of an anxious one.

These are just nine secrets to an amicable divorce. You might need to take a few precautions and make a few attitude adjustments, but if you’re serious about making the process as easy as possible for you and your kids, you’ll listen to these ideas. Good luck!

Reasons Why You Should Be Using Waterproof Mattress Protectors

Waterproof mattress protectors are something that you may not have even considered if you don’t have a small child in the house. However, they can be beneficial for any mattress regardless of who is sleeping on it. The protection goes way beyond just keeping your mattress dry. In fact, there are many benefits that should prompt you to seriously consider using these protectors on all your mattresses.

Main Benefits

The main benefits you will receive from using waterproof mattress protectors so have to do with keeping your bed clean and dry. If you think about all the abuse your poor mattress suffers, it is easy to see how beneficial a protector can be.

Obviously, it is great to protect against bed wetting, Whether it is a small child who is just learning to potty train or who has occasional bed wetting accidents, a pregnant woman who is worried about any leakage onto the bed or an elderly person struggling with incontinence, a mattress protector can be a great aid. It is non-intrusive and won’t make it obvious that there is protection on the bed.

It also protects against other liquids. If you have kids who love to eat and drink in their rooms, using a protector can help keep your mattresses safe from drink and food spills. Also if you have pets, it can protect against the various things they may drag onto or do on a bed.

Say you are one of those people who sweats a lot in your sleep. Imagine night after night climbing into a stale bed that has dried sweat in it. That is kind of gross. Instead, keep things protected and keep your mattress like new.

Health Benefits

Those main benefits of keeping your mattress dry are not the only benefits, though. There are also health benefits, which for many people are going to be even more enticing than the basic benefits.

To begin with, when you cover your mattress with a protector, you are able to keep all sorts of allergens out of them. This is great when you have someone in your family who has allergy issues. Not only will it prevent allergens from getting embedded in your mattresses but other things like dander and bugs won’t be able to get in there either, making the mattress healthier for anyone who is around it.

When you go to buy a waterproof mattress pad, there are some things you need to consider. To begin with, you want to look at how it is made. Make sure it is made using hypoallergenic materials and high-quality materials.

You also need to consider whether you want a fitted or zippered protector. Fitted protectors act just like sheets. One thing to keep in mind is that they not only go onto the bed like a regular sheet but they also can come off like a regular sheet. If you have a mattress that seems to lose its sheets easily, then the fitted option may not be for you. A zippered protector covers the whole mattress. This is would be best for someone concerned about allergens because it gives full protection.

You also need to make sure that you are buying the right size. Make sure you measure your bed and just don’t go off the standard sizing. You want to measure the width, length, and depth of the mattress to ensure a proper fit. Generally, length and width are standard sizes. Depth, though, varies, which makes it very important to ensure you are getting this measurement correct.

Using the Protector

Once you get your mattress protector, you will want to put it on your mattress carefully so you don’t rip it and so it is put on correctly to ensure it works. You should get help doing this to make the process easier. Pull up the mattress and pull the protector on carefully. Do not stretch it or pull on it. Carefully move it into place. Then, put the mattress back on the bed and put your sheets on as normal.

Many people use waterproof mattress protectors. They offer a range of benefits that make them useful in almost any home. They simply help to lengthen the life of mattresses while also helping to keep them clean and sanitary.

Insurance Areas That are Worth Splurging On

When you have a family, it is very easy to get focused on balancing your budget and cutting expenses wherever you can. At the same time, though, when you have a family, you have an obligation to make sure that you are taking care of your family properly through any means possible. One of the best ways to care for your family is with insurance.

There are many different types of insurance that you may have. In general, insurance of any kind is an expense that is well worth it. However, when it comes to specific types of insurance, there are some that are worth splurging a bit more on than others. Here’s a look at a few insurance options and where to save and where to splurge.

Health Insurance

Health insurance is important to keeping your family healthy. You may be limited in your insurance options. The chances are that you or your partner, spouse or child’s other parent have insurance coverage through an employer, which is used because it is the most affordable option available. When it comes to health insurance, you should consider your family’s health before deciding to splurge.

While it may be nice to have a policy that has low deductibles and out of pocket expenses, this type of policy usually costs more each month. If you are mainly using preventative care services and only go to the doctor for other issues a few times a year, it is rarely going to be worth it to splurge on a low deductible/out-of-pocket expenses policy. The bottom line is that if nobody in your family has a serious, chronic health condition, then you should save as much as possible on your health insurance costs.

Car Insurance

Car insurance is actually one type of insurance where you can really customize it to meet your needs and your budget. There are many ways to get discounts, and you have a lot of control over pricing. The key is to work very closely with your insurance agent to construct a plan that meets your budget and needs. You may want to save by avoiding extras, like rental reimbursement, and splurge by lowering your deductible, so you can actually afford it should you ever get into an accident.

Life Insurance

This is one type of insurance many people don’t have. It isn’t something that will really benefit you directly because it only pays out once you have died. However, it will help your family, and everyone should have it. Life insurance can help with burial costs, paying off debts and even replacing lost incomes. You don’t have to splurge on it, but do get enough that it will be beneficial to your family after your death.

When it comes to insurance, it may seem like you are throwing your money away. There are many types of insurance that you may never even use, like car insurance, and others that you aren’t required to have, like life insurance. However, insurance is there to provide a piece of mind. While you don’t really need to splurge on any type of insurance, you should make some room in your budget for it. In addition, you should make choices carefully and ensure you get the best coverage for your money.

Pairing Wine with Your Favorite Girl Scout Cookies, a Handy Guide

It’s Girl Scout cookie season. Whether you’re the type of person who flags down their local Girl Scout to place an order, or more the type who tries to avoid eye contact with the young entrepreneurs manning the cookie booth at the local store, chances are those cookies are going to find their way into your house — and mouth. The struggle is universal. But wait! Before you settle in with your annual offerings and a glass of milk, why not elevate your snack time into some serious me time with a glass of wine.

Thin Mints, Samoas, or Do-Si-Dos, check out the handy guide below to see which wine to pair with your favorite Girl Scout cookies. Go ahead, treat yourself. You deserve it.

Girl Scout Cookies Wine Pairing

Tips for Finding the Right Heating Contractor for Your Home This Winter

Professionals recommend that you have your heater maintained once a year to ensure it is in top working order. This not only guarantees it will reliably turn on and keep your house warm, it also helps you save money on your gas and electric bills. An inefficient HVAC unit can cost you much more than you think, so schedule an annual checkup with a reliable contractor. Here are some tips on how to find the right one.

Talk With People You Know

Check with people you know to see if they have had heating maintenance performed at their home lately. For those who have, ask them if they liked their contractor and were satisfied with the work. Get the contact information and license number of all contractors who received rave reviews from your family, friends, and coworkers.

Check Out Review Websites

Speaking of rave reviews, check out the popular review websites to grab some additional names of highly rated contractors if necessary. People are quick to write a nasty review if a contractor’s work was not adequate, so you can find out whom you should weed out, and get some additional names and contact information of those rated five stars.

Contact the State Licensing Board

All Wilmington heating contractors must be licensed. With your list of contractors and their license numbers in hand, contact your state’s contractors licensing board. You can either call them or go to their website. Run a check on each license to ensure each contractor carries the proper bond, license classification, and insurance. Make certain there are no complaints filed against him or her.

Narrow Down Your List

Call each contractor and ask him or her for references. Cross those unwilling to give you references off your list. Keep those willing to give you references on your list. Once you’ve obtained this information, call the references and decide, based upon what they tell you, which contractors you’d like to contact for an estimate. Narrow your list down to three or four selections.

Interview the Contractors

Call the contractors and don’t be afraid to ask a ton of questions. Find out how experienced he or she is. Ask whether he or she has experience working with your particular HVAC model. Does he or she provide a written bid and will the work be guaranteed? Nitpick, as you want the job done right the first time.

Find Out Availability

Your final question should be, “When can you come out and perform the maintenance work?” If the contractor is busy, this is a good sign. The more people recommend a contractor, the more he or she is called, so one with a busy schedule means the contractor is in demand. If you plan your maintenance visit a few months in advance, a delayed visit shouldn’t be a problem.

Finally, the most important tip is to sign a bulletproof contract. Do not sign a written estimate and do not sign a contract that is vague. Your contract should list in detail all work to be performed, how much it will cost, the parts required, and the warranty guidelines. If everything looks in order and the contractor comes recommended, you should be good to go.

Understanding the Wide World of Health Care Careers

As health care evolves in modern society, the roles of health care professionals also are changing. New and revamped degree programs are developing to meet the culture’s needs. A career in health care today is not just about being a doctor, a nurse, or an office manager. It can also encompass working with advanced technologies to provide better patient care or filling new niches in the area of public health. Today, multiple levels of degrees in public health and health care informatics can be earned completely online. This means that you have more degree and career options than ever before.

Why Invest in an Online Degree?

Today’s online degrees are just as respected as those earned from traditional universities, and there are many reasons why an online degree might be right for you, including:

  • No commuting costs
  • Fewer expenses for study materials
  • Flexible schedules
  • Better time management between learning, family, and work

If you live in a rural or remote area, distance learning can make it possible for you to further your education as easily as someone living in a large city. Some online classes are even free and are designed to help you finish basic required courses at no cost. Distance learning opens up a myriad of opportunities for a large number of potential students, no matter where they live.

Online Degrees in the Medical Field

Technology plays a large role in the curricula of today’s degree programs, as well as in the means by which students earn degrees at all levels. As population demographics change, students taking fresh online courses can be prepared to meet the needs of today’s society. From undergraduate programs, to completing a doctor of nursing practice program online, online degrees can cater to students of all levels and ages, and at every stage of their career. Two other fast-growing fields that offer many career options are public health and health care informatics.

Master in Public Health

The field of public health is the science and art of forging healthy communities through research, education, and promotion of healthy lifestyles. Public health focuses on preventative health rather than illness treatment. This field has grown a great deal, perhaps in part due to the large role that public health professionals play in emergency preparedness and response.

A master’s degree in public health is a multi-disciplinary professional degree, and in the United States, anyone with an accredited undergraduate degree may pursue it. Areas of focus include culture, communications, public health biology, and informatics. This degree is available online, and you can also learn more about the online MPH degree from USC.

Health Care Informatics

The field of health informatics is a developing specialization that blends technology, communications, and health care to improve the safety and quality of patient care by creating better communication between patients’ various caregivers. Informatics also plays a key role in health care reform. This field has seen remarkable growth in large part due to the adoption of electronic health records (EHRs). You can earn this degree online as well as use the Internet to learn more about a career in health care informatics.

The medical field is changing, and so are the careers and specializations within health care. Two modern expanding work options are in public health and health care informatics. Both fields are growing, and subspecialties within them allow for interesting careers that accommodate many interests. The Internet has a plethora of information on both, and degrees in both areas are also available online. This makes it easier for you to decide your best personal path.

4 Simple Ways to Liven Up Any Party

We are in the middle of some of the year’s most anticipated gatherings. New Year’s Eve is just days away and Game Day festivities are coming up just a month later. If you want to throw a bash that everyone will remember, here are four tips guaranteed to liven up any party, big or small.

Set a Theme

A theme sets the overall mood of your event and can be especially helpful in breaking the ice if you are throwing a party where most of the guests won’t know each other. Whether it’s a costume, gift exchange, or treasure hunt, a theme can help establish a common ground or goal that will get everyone talking and laughing out of pure necessity.

Offer a Variety of Refreshments

A delicious spread is one of the single most important factors in throwing a good party. Keep in mind that different types of parties will create different standards and expectations regarding food. For example, an elaborate meal might be appropriate for a fancy holiday or graduation party, but casual snacks are better for a Game Day extravaganza. It’s also important to note that some of your guests may have dietary restrictions or allergies. A well-planned menu featuring an assortment of snacks and dishes will go a long way in making sure your guests are happy.

Turn Up the Music

Music is a must-have at any party, no matter the occasion. It can provide quiet ambiance for a black tie event, get the crowd moving during a festive celebration, or bring back memories during an anniversary party. If you’re planning a large enough party, hiring a DJ can help engage your guests with comments, playlists, song requests, and interactive dances. Who doesn’t love those?

Play Games

Games are another great way to entertain a group of any size. While there are a lot of great party games out there, card games have been making a comeback. While people have been planning small get-togethers around the game of Poker for generations, specialized card games like Cards Against Humanity have wide appeal and are basically guaranteed to have your guests in stitches. Children’s games like Uno and Skip-Bo can also provide quality family-friendly entertainment. If you’re wondering where to find Cards Against Humanity and other similar card games, click here.

These are just a few ways to bring new life to your parties. Whether you’re throwing a wild bash or a simple holiday affair, these tips will help keep everyone engaged and entertained.

Master’s Degrees in Library Science: A Gateway to Career Opportunities

Library science professionals remain in demand. Although the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects only a 2% growth for the profession in the next decade, the relative stability of the field is still good news. Additionally, there’s some compatibility between the library and information services field and other vocations, such as archivist, curator or museum worker. These fields will average about a 7% growth in the next decade, according to the BLS. With these statistics, it’s a wise idea to consider advancing your education by earning a master’s degree in library science.

Types of Graduate Degrees in Library Science and Related Disciplines

Courses of study that offer master’s degrees at their conclusion are the most common form of graduate education programs. Depending on the school, you might earn a Master of Arts (M.A.), a Master of Science (M.Sc.), or a Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS). The American Library Association (ALA) website mention other kinds of degrees in the field, which include the Master of Library Science (MLS) and the Master of Librarianship.

However, some programs take a slightly different approach to pedagogy. You may find programs that offer a Master of Management in Library and Information Science (MMLIS). This degree typically focuses on not only library science curricula, but also leadership and business management pedagogy. One example of this is the USC MMLIS, a course of study housed in the University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business. Students learn topics such as business administration, marketing and management. The focus is of these curricula is to train professionals in leadership, outreach, advancement and similar skills.

Accreditation Means Opportunities in the United States and Abroad

Depending on the country and its governing body for libraries, the degree you earn in the states may be recognized. For example, the Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP), a body in the United Kingdom similar to the ALA, has formed reciprocal agreements with the ALA, the Library Association of New Zealand and the Australian Library and Information Association. Should you relocate to the UK, this may assist you in finding employment. However, you should check for specific requirements in your country of interest.

The Next Steps

First of all, you’ll need to research each school’s admission requirements and ensure you gather the information they request prior to applying. Keep in mind that you will likely need some letters of recommendation and a statement of personal intent, in addition to transcripts from your undergraduate or other coursework. Finally, you’ll need to submit relevant test scores, such as those for your Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) if you’re not a native English speaker.

The next thing to consider is how you plan to pay for your educational investment. Student loans are a common method of financing degrees. However, no matter what vehicles you select to foot the bill, you must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). U.S. News and World Report offers some additional sound advice, such as checking with your employer for tuition reimbursement programs. Lastly, paid assistantships and scholarships are other options that you don’t have to repay.

Increase Your Employability With Advanced Education

With continued employment prospects in the library science fields, and growth in related vocations, now may be the perfect time to pursue advanced education. Master’s degrees in these disciplines may come in a variety of forms, but the end goal is to get you ready for higher positions of responsibility, including management, collection development, advancement and directorships. Opportunities may open up both in the states and abroad as a result. With the right preparation and funding, you’ll graduate with more knowledge and better employment prospects.

5 Ways to Keep Unwanted Critters Away

With warmer weather comes the need to prepare your home so that it doesn’t become a pest resort. Termites, ants, mice, raccoons, and other pests tend to take advantage of the warm summer weather and go in search of new homes and food sources. Once they move in, they’ll breed and invite the rest of their family over too. The last thing you want is to share your home with critters that can transform it from the safest and most comfortable place on Earth. To keep your home from becoming the next pest hotel, take advantage of the following pest prevention tips.

1. Check the Outside of Your Home

Many pests are attracted to homes because of the food and water sources that are located conveniently nearby. Trees, wood, and in some cases gardens can be a potential problem for your home if they are located within the immediate perimeter of your home. Any plants and foliage that are right outside your windows should be inspected by a professional pest control company to ensure they remain pest free. You should also avoid storing firewood, compost, water, and other potential food sources right next to your home. 20 feet is the recommended distance for firewood storage.

2. Eliminate the Water on the Inside

Pests love water and if your toilets are running and your sinks are leaking, then your home is in prime condition for a potential infestation. Make sure all faucets are turned completely off when they are not in use and get any leaks fixed right away. If your toilets keep running, you may need to have a professional plumber come out to repair them to keep your home free from infestation.

3. Clean Up

Even the smallest amount of junk, clutter, and dirt can make your home hospitable for unwanted creatures. Try to remember to pick up after yourself and to clean up often. If you have pets and little children, this may prove to be a bit challenging. However, keeping a careful eye out for clutter and implementing a routine to minimize it can go a long way toward keeping ants, mice, and other pests out of your home.

4. Make Home Improvements

Sometimes you may need to make a few improvements to your home in order keep pests from moving in. Kitchen Cabinet Kings recommends for you to revamp the cabinets in your kitchen with assembled cabinets so you can eliminate potential hiding spots for pests that you may have been previously unaware of.

5. Get an Inspection

Inspections are one of the best methods of defense you have against pest infestations. Since pests often cause damage that can go undetected for quite some time, it’s in your best interest to screen for them often. Pests can be very destructive to your home and cost you hundred and even thousands of dollars in repairs. When you think about how much money you could end up spending trying to correct any damage that is caused, it’s easy to see that getting regular inspections are much more cost-effective.

Don’t turn a blind eye to the dangers of pest infestations. Although you may be initially concerned about having to share your home with them, you need to remember that pests can cause a great deal of damage within a short amount of time. So protect your investment by doing your part to keep pests from inviting themselves over.