Have a Lovely (Fourth of July) Weekend!

Can you believe we're a little more than halfway through the year already!? What are you up to this weekend? A day trip? A long getaway, perhaps? 

A friend of ours invited us to her home in Upstate, NY, for a weekend filled with food, laughter, and lots of rosé 🍷

Her house is beautiful and reminiscent of a dreamy Victorian cottage. I'm so excited to unwind. It's going to be a short shorts and flip flops kind of weekend :)
(Palm tree photo: Tameramowry.com)

Happy Fourth, everyone!


OK Monday, Let's Do This! (Links)

Hi everyone,

Hope you all had a wonderful weekend! Here are some links from around the web to brighten up your Monday morning:

Barack still tucks Michelle in bed at night — why are they so perfect!?

So excited for the return of Younger this Wednesday. Have you seen the trailer for season 4? Will you be watching?

Speaking of trailers, the new movie Detroit looks incredible!

The universal phenomenon of men interrupting women

Here's how much it actually costs to be a wedding guest. Wowza!

In 10 years, your iPhone won't be a phone anymore

Big round of applause for Teen Vogue's latest guide to masturbation

If Sex and the City came out in 2017, Miranda would be the star. So true

Love this satirical children's book

Merlot Lollipops. Ha!


This DIY Natural Deodorant Really Works!

Sometimes I like to give my armpits a break from the harsh chemicals of commercial deodorants. So when I need a little TLC, I turn to this DIY homemade concoction. During the summertime, I use it in conjunction with my antiperspirant (usually Dove) to stay smelling like a spring rose longer 😂, but it also works just by itself—truly (it keeps me smelling fresh until the following day!)

Check out the ingredients below, and if you decide to give it a try, let me know if it works for you in the comment section.

DIY Homemade Deodorant for Sensitive Skin:
Pure Cornstarch Powder
Baking Soda
Melted Coconut Oil
Tea Tree Oil
Peppermint Oil 

Combine cornstarch powder, baking soda, melted coconut oil, tea tree and peppermint essential oils until the mixture reaches your desired consistency. Then, refrigerate until it solidifies. Apply to your armpits using your fingers —Voila!

Warning: Tea tree and peppermint essential oils are very potent and may burn the skin if applied undiluted. Since I tend to make this recipe in bulk, I usually use 5-10 drops of tea tree oil and 1 or 2 drops of peppermint oil. Please use your judgment.


How Much Money is in Your Emergency Fund?

Photo: A Cup of Jo

You probably have funds set aside for unexpected expenses, but is the amount of cash you have stashed away enough to maintain your lifestyle in the event of a sudden medical emergency or long unemployment period?

For years experts have been reporting that you need to have a minimum of three-to-six months worth of living expenses in your emergency fund. Suze Orman, a personal financial guru, thinks that goal falls a bit short. She suggests having at least eight to 12 months worth of your living expenses in your bank account — just enough to give you piece of mind if you ever find yourself in a financial cul-de-sac.


Times are Changing: More Women are Getting Pregnant in Their 30s Than in Their 20s

Inevitably, most women will have to deal with a litany of unsolicited pregnancy tropes. Recently, I've experienced these classic gems from friends and family alike: "You're not getting any younger," or "have you ever thought of freezing your eggs?" Hopefully, this latest development from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will ease the pressures women feel to conceive at a younger age.

According to the CDC, more women are having babies in their 30s than women in their 20s. What's more, the average age women in the U.S. have their first child have also increased. First-time mothers are waiting until the age of 28 to take the leap, a two-year uptick from 2014. In 2000 the mean age women conceived was 24, and in 1970 it was 21. Wowzers!

Here are some powerful quotes on the joys of motherhood:

"To describe my mother would be to write about a hurricane in its perfect power. Or the climbing, falling colors of the rainbow. "— Maya Angelou

"Birth is the epicenter of women's power."— Ani DiFranco

"I believe the choice to become a mother is the choice to become one of the greatest spiritual teachers there is."— Oprah

"We have a secret in our culture, and it's not that birth is painful. It's that women are strong." Laura  Stavoe Harm

"Motherhood: All love begins and ends there."— Robert Browning

Motherhood isn't for everyone, and I have much respect for women who choose otherwise, like these brave souls: 

"To abjure [motherhood's] joys is to call into question your capacity for unconditional love, selfless care for others, dedication to the wellbeing of future generations and service to your country."— Catherine Mayer

"We don't need to be married or mothers to be complete. We get to determine our own "happily ever after" for ourselves"— Jennifer Aniston

"Motherhood has never been an ambition. I don't think like that."— Renee Zellweger

"Everybody with a womb doesn't have to have a child any more than everybody with vocal cords has to be an opera singer"— Gloria Steinem

" I want to have kids when there's nothing else I want more."— Sarah Silverman


Are You Wasting Your Paid Vacation Days?

Photo: mylola

Paid time off is a necessity, not a perk. Your sick, personal and vacation days are available so you can maintain your health and enhance your productivity in the workplace. Never let the fear of layoffs or other office politics make you feel guilty about using them. An employer who hands you a pink slip for taking your hard-earned vacation time doesn't deserve you.

If you have unused vacation days, remember to take some time off to recharge — it's prime vacation season after all. You don't necessarily have to leave the country, it can be something as simple as taking a yoga retreat or renting a place in another part of town for a week. The point is to relax and enjoy yourself. Did you know overworked employees get sick more often? Several studies show individuals who allowed their vacation days to expire were more likely to die of a heart attack.

Seth Bannon, a social entrepreneur and impact investor, says preventing burnout is an essential part of your job. I bet you won't feel so guilty about taking full advantage of those vacation days once you come to think of them as part of your salary.
"Professional runners take long breaks between marathons. They make no excuses for this, and no one judges them for it, because everyone knows that rest and recuperation is an essential part of being a pro athlete. The same is true for entrepreneurs (and everyone, really). Preventing burnout is a part of your job. Staying well rested is part of your job. Sleep and exercise help, but occasional extended breaks are essential too, and their benefits on creativity, productivity, and happiness are well documented. It's time we stopped making excuses for rest and relaxation. Doing so is not only bad for you, but sends the wrong message to the rest of your team. So next time you're planning a vacation, announce it with pride."
Here are a few quotes on why you shouldn't deprive yourself of rest:

"Each person deserves a day away in which no problems are confronted, no solutions searched for. Each of us needs to withdraw from the cares which will not withdraw from us." — Maya Angelou

"There is virtue in work and there is virtue in rest. Use both and overlook neither." — Alan Cohen

"Have regular hours for work and play; make each day both useful and pleasant, and prove that you understand the worth of time by employing it well." — Louisa May Alcott

"Your calm mind is the ultimate weapon against your challenges. So relax." — Bryant McGill

"Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect." — Mark Twain

"A little nonsense now and then, is cherished by the wisest men." — Roald Dahl

"You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation." — Plato

"Rest and be thankful." — Williams Wadsworth

P.S. Study: race and gender plays role in salary negotiations


The Best Face Sunscreen For Sensitive Skin


For the past few years, Cerave's Renewing Day Cream has been my go-to SPF. In addition to protecting my skin from the sun's harmful rays, It also contains retinol which fights visible signs of aging and zinc oxide — a compound that locks moisture into the skin. However, this year I wanted to try something different. I heard rave reviews about La Roche-Posay so I decided to give their cooling water-lotion sunscreen a try. I'm so glad I did.

My sensitive skin loves this formula! It's so lightweight, it's hard to believe it's even sunscreen. It's also fast-absorbing and the cooling sensation feels sublime on my skin — I bet it'll feel especially amazing on those hot summer days. I feel obliged to mention that a tube will set you back a whopping $36. But it's well worth it since you can't put a price on your money-maker.

Here's a quick tip: remember to apply sunscreen to your ears and hairline. They need some love too ;)
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