WHY I’LL NEVER TEACH MY CHILDREN ABOUT STRANGER DANGER

We hear it all the time: “It’s just not the same world out there anymore.” The world is supposedly a much scarier and more threatening place than the days of old when we would ride our bikes to the store with no parents in sight and blow our allowance money on candy and silly knick knacks with hardly a care. “We know better now,” we’re told. Keep a close eye on your kids at all times. Be aware of the dangers of others adults when you’re at the park or using a public restroom. Be wary of anyone who’s too friendly. Teach your kids about “stranger danger.” The world is so much more perilous these days and you simply cant be too careful when it comes to our precious children.

As a mom of two small boys you might be surprised to hear I disagree 100%. And whats more – I have never, and WILL never, teach my kids about “stranger danger.” Never. In fact, I hope to raise my kids to be ready and willing to interact with strangers in safe and appropriate ways, and I regularly encourage them to do so. I’m not a “free range parent” as they are currently known, but I admittedly make some parenting choices that would make many people these days more than a little uncomfortable.

Now before anyone starts calling CPS (or filling my inbox with hate mail) try to give me a minute to explain.

WHY I’LL NEVER TEACH MY CHILDREN ABOUT STRANGER DANGER

First off, I just want to take a minute to point out that the idea the world is less safe that the one we grew up in is a common misconception. You might be surprised to learn that all of the crime statistics actually show our children are SAFER today than we ourselves were back in our days. Don’t believe me? The folks over at Free Range Kids have compiled an incredible amount of independent research and statistics on this helpful page to show just how much safer our world really is. So why does it seem so much more dangerous? It all comes down to perception really. Crimes are more widely covered by the media these days in a way you simply didn’t see in our childhood. A child goes missing in a small town in Idaho and it can be national news coverage in the same day, and instantly flooding every social media feed for weeks. Statistics agree though: stranger abductions are remarkably rare, and the alarming majority of all crimes committed against kids are by family members or close friends. In short, the likelihood of a child being grabbed while walking to school or playing at the park is almost negligible.

On top of all this media coverage we also need to take into account how much internet hoaxes have exponentially compounded the problem. Have you seen the story making its way around Facebook for the past few months about supposed attempted sex trafficking of a child in a Target store with their mom? A little internet sleuthing quickly reveals the story is 100% false, and that both the store manager and the local police have absolutely zero record of any incidences even remotely related to the one described on Facebook (despite the story clearly describing the authorities being the one to tell the mom about the sex trafficking ring.) And this is far from an isolated incident: urban myths have taken on a new level of reach in the social media world, and parents everywhere are bombarded with messages of supposed dangers around every corner. It’s pretty understandable why parents everywhere are …

How to Fix a Leaking Shower Faucet Set

A dripping shower is mostly caused by worn rubber washers, gaskets, or seals and corrosion/clogging of the inner parts in the valve. You may be tempted to crank hard or tighten the handle to stop leaking. Well, it will work temporarily, but unfortunately, it only makes things worse because over-tightening the handle will damage the valve. Nonetheless, you will end up spending more money replacing the shower faucet instead of fixing the worn-out part.

If you have a leaking shower is advisable to fix it immediately because it increases your water and electricity bill especially for those who are using compression faucets. In addition, continuous leaking into the wall can damage the wall structure which also adds to the expense of repairing the faulty bathtub faucet set. To avoid unnecessary expenses in the long run, you can DIY to fix a leaking bathtub faucet set by following the step-by-step guide below.

Leaking Shower Faucet Set

 

Required Materials and Tools

  • Pocketknife• Handle puller/Needle nose pliers
  • Adjustable wrench/A deep well socket wrench
  • Cartridge
  • Plumber seal/grease
  • 4-in-1 screwdriver

How to Fix a Single-Handle Shower Faucet

In case you have a single-handle shower faucet set that has been dripping for a while it is high time or advisable to fix it. You need to replace the old cartridge with an identical new one. While shopping for a new one don’t confuse it with the compression cartridge or take the old cartridge to your local hardware store to find the right model or match.

Step 1: Turn off your water valve

First, before you begin to repair the leaking bathtub faucet, turn off your water valve for an easy time while working and eliminate the hazard. The shut-off valve is mostly in the bathroom or near the shower. Or you may shut it off from the basement or in the room next to your bathroom if it is not near the bathtub.

Step 2: Remove your shower handle

After turning off the water valve, pry off the handle cap using the small pocket knife to expose the internal handle screw. With the 4-in-1 screwdriver, choose the screwdriver that perfectly fits into the screw head and then carefully turn the screw counter-clockwise to loosen it. Pull out it and set it aside. If it has more than one screw, ensure you remove all of them. Or heat the handle with a hairdryer set to high heat to remove the handle in case it does not come off after unscrewing it.

Step 3: Remove the faceplate

The metal behind the handle is the faceplate. Unscrew the screws that secure the faceplate, pull it off and set it aside.

Step 4: Pull the Shower Valve

The shower valve is the part that connects to the shower handle with a metal sleeve that covers the end of the valve. The sleeve is known as the escutcheon. If the escutcheon is screwed, unscrew it. When you are done twist it counterclockwise to stem loose and pull it out carefully.

Step 5: Remove the Locking Clip

Some valves may lack or have a locking clip. Locking clips is a metal rod located on the top of the valve. If yours has a locking clip, use a pair of needle-nose pliers to pull it out and set it aside.

Step 6: Drive the Deep Well Socket Wrench to slide over the Cartridge inside

A cartridge is a long cylinder with a metal rod sticking out of the top if you do not know how it looks like. Then, use the adjustable wrench and slide it over the cartridge inside the valve. Ensure it grips the …

MORE THAN A BUZZWORD

BUZZWORD

If you’re fairly present on social media like I am, you may have noticed some really positive words are trending lately. Words like authentic, and intentional, and vulnerable – they’ve all been reaching their veritable status buzzwords and are now being hashtagged at a fever pitch. It seems fairly evident that people are growing increasingly weary of the constant facade and are tired of being bombarded with picture perfect highlight reels of seemingly perfect lives on social media. So we carve these words into the covers of our journals or buy beautiful hand lettered prints on Etsy, determined to apply their virtues as we embrace the new year.

And for many, thats where it stops.

Because reality is that these are incredibly demanding words. They fly in the face of all that we value as a modern society and demand that we live in a radically countercultural way to everyone and everything around us. And for most of us, thats just simply not what we signed up for.

authenticity

I mean sure, we like the IDEA of “intentional,” and we want people to SEE us “authentic,” but are we really ready to sign up for turning our entire existence upside down to dedicate ourselves to words that so wholly refute most everything we have built our lives on?

And so countless women across Instagram throw their hair into a strategically messy ponytail, put on their makeup but skip those last steps of eyeliner and gloss, and take 3-4 outtakes before finding the perfect selfie to hashtag #therealme

Moms all over Facebook straighten up their living rooms, leaving a few toys scattered just so, and post a half-truth update about needing to be #authentic about the way their house isn’t actually perfect.

Ugly, gross, embarrassing truth time? I’ve DONE this. For my own personal confession, I present to you Exhibit A in the case against me for my own pseudo-authenticity. Last year I posted this photo to Instagram:

BUZZWORD

I captioned it, “Authenticity Moment” and went on to talk about how important it was to show our real lives on social media and not be afraid to show our messes. And sure, there are a few dishes in the sink here, and the paper towel roll needs refilling, but seriously? You want to see a REAL authenticity moment? THIS is what my sink actually looks like sometimes:

Y’all. I CANT EVEN. Feel free to call me out for that one, because I *know* I deserve it.

We are selling ourselves short if we really think this is the best we can do. Authenticity is so much more than a buzzword. Being Intentional? Its hard work: taking every thought captive, and making every choice with a real thought to our values and goals. And being vulnerable? Its probably the most intense of them all – baring our flaws in all their glory so that HIS glory can shine through. Its easier said than done, but it certainly doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to do them either.

Pseudo-authenticity isn’t helping anyone. Can we all just agree to stop cleaning up our houses for company and then saying “oh sorry for the mess” when they walk in? Can we actively try to look at our social media and consciously reflect our lives in their most authentic state? Can we stop simply lettering these words across our coffee mugs and surrender ourselves to them in a real and radical way? Or maybe for some of us its a simple as promising not to keep offhandedly hash tagging these life altering words until we’re wholly ready to see …

HOW TO STITCH FIX LIKE A PRO

If you haven’t yet heard of Stitch Fix let me be the first to tell you that this subscription box service is completely changing the face of shopping for women everywhere. Imagine items handpicked especially for you by a personal stylist, sent directly to your home for you to try on in your own time and with your own wardrobe, and whatever you don’t like you simply drop into a prepaid shipping bag and send right back. Now imagine the service itself is essentially free, because although they charge a $20 “styling fee” the fee is always applied to whatever you purchase from your box, so it ultimately costs you nothing. That my friends is EXACTLY what Stitch Fix provides.

stitchfixtitlegraphic

As a mom with two little boys Stitch Fix has been one of the best things that ever happened to me, because it meant finally doing away with my least favorite aspect of shopping – dragging two little boys into a crowded dressing room with me while I cram myself in and out of ill fitting pants under unflattering florescent lighting while listening to them fight over my iPhone. Now I excitedly open my Stitch Fix packages in my own timing (aka: when no kids are around,) I can sip on a “mommy beverage” of choice, and effortlessly try pieces on in my own bedroom. I can even try putting them into outfits with items from my existing wardrobe to see how easily I could integrate the new pieces. No more digging through racks trying to narrow it down to styles I like, no more wonky mirrors or yucky lighting, and no more rushing to beat a toddler meltdown. Shopping became luxurious again, and its been heavenly.

STITCH FIX LIKE A PRO

Let’s take a peek into my most recent fix to see what the service is really like.

For starters, every package comes beautifully branded and designed, which definitely adds to the overall experience of being spoiled.

Inside the box are your 5 hand chosen items, the return bag, a personalized note from your stylist, an invoice listing out each items price breakdown, and an example card for each of the pieces showing 2 ways it could potentially by styled

STITCH FIX LIKE A PRO

Open up the tissue to reveal the items your stylist has chosen!

I made a challenge to myself that I would try on every single piece my stylist sends, even if Im not a fan at first look. And let me say: that challenge has paid off. Sometimes my stylist seems to know whats going to fit my shape even better than I do. Plus it can be fun to try something new and step out of a fashion rut – you might surprise yourself!

Here are the items I received this fix. All 5 were definitely “keepers” for me.

So now that we have seen the ins and outs of Stitch Fix, lets get down to the juicy stuff – how to get the MOST out of this service. I’ve boiled it down to my top 5 tips.

1) YOUR MOST IMPORTANT TOOL IS YOUR PINTEREST BOARD – HANDS DOWN.

When filling out your style profile during your Stitch Fix sign up, they give you the option to link to a single Pinterest board. This board is hands down the most important key to getting the most out of your fix. Make sure that this board is dedicated only to styles you would want your stylist to consider when putting together your fix. It can even be helpful to create a separate board you use solely for tracking styles you are most interested …

10 tips for creating a unique bathroom experience

unique bathroom experience

The most critical decisions are undertaken on the shower, with the sleekness of the duscharmatur regendusche watching you as the water flows. While many people tend to decorate the bathroom last, a luxurious and fresh bathroom will offer you renewed energy and a seamless getaway. Today, it is more about enhancing the visual appeal and how you feel when you get into the bathroom.

Fortunately, some smart design choices can help overhaul and bring life to your boring bathroom. If you are searching for ideas and tips that help your bathroom look unique, stand out, and unconventional, you are at the right place. This article has tips on how to create a unique bathroom experience. Tag along!

bathroom experience

1. Upgrade Your Shower Faucet

When you have no time to loll in the bathtub, the right shower head will leave you feeling pampered in a few minutes. A Shower faucet controls the water flow. But more importantly, they are the face of your bathroom. While several faucets are available in the market with high workability and comfort, you should consider the material and sleek elements.

The most stylish and durable material is the stainless-steel faucets, and they are visually appealing. Copper and brass faucets are also classy and functional where corrosion is an issue. You can find a shower faucet that is programable to automatically change water temperature and pressure when showering.

2. Incorporate Natural Décor

There is a reason why the most luxurious spas are established in mountains, beaches, and other natural wonderlands. Having plants in the bathroom is one of the easiest tricks to make your bathroom experience unique. You can place the potted houseplants on the countertop, floor, and other bathroom surfaces or try and hang a potted plant from the ceiling. Ensure to select plants that thrive well in a humid bathroom environment and the kind of light the bathroom receives. If the live plants are not ideal for your skills or space, set a vase filled with fresh flowers on a countertop or shelf, or decorate with faux plants.

3. Create A Calm Experience with Colors

A suitable color scheme can enhance tranquility. Choose muted, soft colors to create a serene environment. When choosing your bathroom color scheme, you should avoid high-contrast color pairings such as orange and blue or white and black that often seem to energize and bold instead of calming. Instead, go with soft shades such as light blue, creamy white, dusty lilac, and sand beige. You can finish the scene with complementary hardware.

4. Declutter The Bathroom

Bathroom countertops covered in cosmetics, toiletries, and styling tools can prevent serenity. Jam-packed countertops and cluttered bathroom cabinets are not conducive to your relaxation. To establish a serene experience, you should clean and keep the surroundings uncluttered, meaning your bathroom should provide ample drawers and cabinets. Begin by eliminating any expired or unused products. Keep the items you don’t regularly use inside drawers, cabinets, or baskets when restocking. For the few essential products, you use daily, neatly tuck them away on counter space and open storage.

5. Incorporate More Storage

Incorporating more storage in your bathroom will make it easy to keep an uncluttered and clean look. In addition to drawers and bathroom cabinets, you can include baskets, shelves, and mount hooks to boost organization and storage.

6. Introduce Calming Scents

Indulging the sense of smell is a top spa secret that you can easily engage in your personal space. You can do this by placing a diffuser on the countertop or setting the scented candles around your tub. You can choose vanilla, jasmine, lavender, and …

List of the Best Gifts for Men

Everyone loves a gift but giving a gift the receiver loves is a fascinating feeling. Men, in particular, have specific gifts they wish to have. Whether it is on their birthdays, Christmas, valentines, or anniversaries, men equally feel nice to receive gifts. The list of the best gifts that will spoil all deserving gents outside there is too long and can comprise jewelry, gaming consoles, smart home integration devices, sneakers, grooming kits, and all the gifts that can make the gents happy.

Dads, boyfriends, or new dads need to be appreciated by way of gifts. Men have the reputation of being hard to find gifts for, but that isn’t the case. Provided you know his hobbies, sports, or other activities, the task can be simple. Or perhaps you can spoil him with a wristwatch or the best men’s black bomber jacket that will heighten his smile. Scroll through this article to have a peep of what to gift your man.

List of the Best Gifts for Men

Fashion Bomber Jackets

For stylish me, bomber jackets are ideal presents for them. They come in various hues, including the best mens black bomber jacket, which is versatile and universally appealing thanks to its elegant design. It features utility elements such as zippered closure, two front pockets, and sleeve pockets. It is the best choice for transitional weather. When paired with relaxed jeans or khaki and a simple t-shirt, fashion bomber jackets look amazing.

Men’s Watches

At least every man loves a wristwatch. However, each man has their taste depending on the company. While some would rock in Rolex, CK, some prefer Philip Persio, Seiko, and Quartz. What matters is therefore knowing your man’s taste and sense of fashion. Equally, the styling of the watch’s band is key when selecting a gift for your man to avoid skin sensitivity.

Pair of Sneakers

If you aren’t sure of what to take home for your man as a present, then try a pair of sneakers. Fashion-conscious men with a taste for the street will love a pair of sneakers to complement their outfits. Most sneakers have striking, unique, grippy, and futuristic soles to increase luxury and comfort, and that’s why most men would wish to be surprised with this item.

A great T-shirt

Every man loves to rock in a great t-shirt. Give his wardrobe an elegant selection of t-shirts to heighten his confidence. While some love the v-shaped or round-neck t-shirts, make sure you are on point when surprising him.

Essential Slippers

You wouldn’t imagine that as simple as they may seem, gifting your man with luxurious slippers will make him a happy man ever. Weekends are significant days in our lives, and sometimes due to the norm of wearing closed shoes, men would want to hang out in shorts and slippers with their friends. Try this, and you will see him not willing to remove them off his feet.

Great Jeans

If you didn’t know, jeans are one of the hotly contested outwear for men’s fashion. Ask any man, and he’ll gladly tell you that nothing beats the confidence of wearing jeans with an elegant t-shirt and sneakers when off work. Jeans have a way of bringing relaxation and cool looks for men. So if you are stuck on what present to buy for a man on your list, then you don’t have to give it a second thought but grab a great pair of jeans, and you will continue seeing the smile on your man’s face.

List of the Best Gifts for Men

Conclusion

Gift buying is either the best or the worst experience, especially when buying gifts for men. However, if you …

How to pick some of the best Christmas gifts for women

It can be challenging to pick out a present for women. There are so many options ranging from clothes and shoes to makeup and perfume. Luckily, some great gifts are sure to please any woman on your list. One option is the Apple Watch. This watch has received acclaim by being one of the most fashionable products in its category. It has a multitude of bands to suit any taste. Many women love their Apple Watch and use it every day. You also can pick some unique Apple Watch bands for women from here. Now let’s get down to How to pick some of the best Christmas gifts for women.

Christmas gifts for women

What to consider when picking some of the best Christmas gifts for women

 

There are many different Christmas gifts for women to give to your girlfriend, wife, or mother. These gifts may vary from skincare products to clothing items and everything in between. The key is to find something that she will love and use without breaking the bank! Here are some things to consider when choosing a gift.

 

#1. What does she like?

 

Doing some research can help you find out what she likes to do in her free time or when she wants to relax. This could be shopping online, using specific apps, or having particular hobbies. If you don’t know, it is okay to ask questions to try and figure this out.

 

#2. What needs does she have?

 

Depending on her style or personality, she may need certain items. This could be a new pair of jeans, a new purse, or even some new makeup products. If you are unsure about what to get for Christmas gifts for women, look at what she already has. Please take notice of what she wears or uses more often.

 

#3. What will she use?

 

One of the best Christmas gifts for women is something that they will use! This may be a hard rule to follow, but it helps determine what you should get them. If your girlfriend loves going shopping on her iPad, a gift card will make an excellent gift. If she is more of an exercise enthusiast, a gift card to her favorite gym or yoga studio might be the perfect gift for Christmas gifts for women.

 

#4. What does your budget allow?

 

It doesn’t matter what you spend on her gift as long as it comes from the heart. It would help if you tried not to spend an arm and a leg because that could end up being more money than it is worth. If you have a large budget for Christmas gifts, try to think about how she would enjoy the present. Maybe you can invest in her long-term happiness by getting her a spa treatment or booking a weekend getaway with her friends.

 

#5. Think about her personality and hobbies

 

Sometimes the best gifts for Christmas that you can give a woman are things she will use to support her hobbies or daily activities. If she likes blogging, a gift card to a popular website or hosting service is something you could purchase. She may even have a profile on there already! If she likes cooking, a book of recipes from her favorite chef is another good idea.

 

#6. Why do you love her!

 

One of the best Christmas gifts you can give her shows your appreciation for what she means to you. This could be through handmade jewelry or just some thoughtful words on a card. A romantic dinner …

PEOPLE OF THE INTERNET, YOU’VE BEEN HAD

People of Internet,

You’ve been had.

In the past couple years we’ve borne witness to an interesting set of trends. Various hashtags started gaining popularity that claimed to be celebrating the #authenticlife, but they were unusually ripe with photos of farm to table feasts on custom built farmhouse tables, cleverly staged journals with pristine latte art, and gorgeous minimalist home decor without a trace of evidence that real live people actually inhabited these homes. We saw an Instagram “celebrity” go viral for posting an extremely public breakup video to the very app that gave her a platform, only to start rapidly growing a following on her very well marketed (and highly monetized) site promoting her newfound position as a leading voice for being “real” online. Conferences and retreats have popped up left and right with speakers who market themselves brilliantly as experts and success stories of their supposed fields and vocations, but if you peek behind the curtain you discover the only job they actually hold is that very self marketing, speaking, and teaching. It’s a bit like when we find Dorothy pulling back the curtain to reveal that the Wizard of Oz is in fact a tiny little man pulling levers and dials, and its all been a cleverly designed trick all along.

People of Internet

There is no Wizard folks.

The internet doesn’t actually care about authenticity. Social media isn’t actually growing more appreciative of the vulnerable and exposed. Many of the biggest names who claim to have a way to sell you a path to success don’t actually have success in anything other than selling success.

Yeah… kind of Debbie Downer today, right?

But hear me out fellow citizens of this crazy online world. I am NOT advocating for cynicism or apathy. I’m in no way hoping to simply burst the bubble only to sit back and watch the damage. This isn’t just a case of “misery loves company.” Rather, I’m hoping we can all find a little Dorothy in ourselves right now and be brave enough to pull back that curtain, call out a clever con for exactly what it is, and put the illusion to bed in order to make way for something better to rise in its place.

The good news is this: the underlying reason for this trend’s success is that so many people ARE in fact craving a more authentic experience online. The bad news however is that its going to be much scarier to achieve than we hoped or expected. We like when we are seen as brave and vulnerable, but we’re not nearly as in love with the reality of living that out. It’s messy. It’s embarrassing. It’s anything but glamorous. It’s counter cultural in every way. And yet the only way we can hope to see a more authentic form of community online is to be willing to come to the table first, knowing full well we might be out there alone and exposed. It’s risky, but all the best things certainly are.

Can you imagine if we all stood up and saw the false hashtag #authenticity for what it really is and demanded something better? What if we stopped celebrating pseudo-vulnerability and held ourselves to a higher standard of bravery? What if we didn’t just share the carefully curated highlight reel that fit the persona we worked so diligently to cultivate, but opened our personal closets and admitted we aren’t any more on top of things than anyone else? What if instead of self promotion and viral marketing, we just put our work out there and let it speak for itself? …