Wednesday, February 10, 2010

ValentinesDay - advice for women

As you probably know, men either love or hate Valentines Day. Think about how much pressure they must feel to meet our expectations! At the end of the day, is it really about the cost of something? I'm a woman and I think not.




I just posted Valentines Day - how to make her happy without breaking the bank for the men. I told them a bit about my experience with what women really want.



To be fair and balanced (as I always try to be when working with couples) I want to share with you some advice about your man - and Valentines Day:



* Lower the bar - society and the media has put so much emphasis on the gift giving and money spending aspect of Valentines Day that many of our poor men are just plain stressed out by it all. Remind yourself of what the holiday is really about. Any acts of thoughtfulness deserve big points.



* Do something for him - the focus is more often on what men should be doing for women. How about surprise your guy with something thoughtful. The more creative the better. Like I told the men, it doesn't need to break the bank!



At the end of the day, Valentines Day is a day to show appreciation to the special person in your life. I think we can all benefit from a redefinition of what that means.

Happy Valentine's Day

Valentine's Day events in Atlanta




Celebrate Valentine's Day in Atlanta with the one you love. There are plenty of romantic things to do for the holiday, whether you're planning dining out at a restaurant, seeing a movie, attending a concert or other event, finding a cheap activity, or splurging on a travel getaway. We have gift ideas as well, for every price point, whether cheap, free or expensive. So grab a date and let AccessAtlanta and ajc.com be your cupid.



DINING

• Find a romantic restaurant

• Our reviewer's top five romantic restaurants

• AJC's picks for romantic restaurants

• Valentine's Day recipes

• Table Talk: What's your idea of romantic dining?



EVENTS

• Find a romantic event

• AJC's picks for Valentine's Day events

• Free Valentine's Day events

• Valentine's Day dances

• Valentine's Day concerts

• Valentine's Day theater events



GIFTS

• Gift-giving 101 for guys

• Gifts under $30



ON THE CHEAP

• Gifts under $30

• Smart Spending: Valentine's Day hotel packages

• Free Valentine's Day events



MUSIC

• A Valentine's playlist

• Baby-making music

• Celebrities' favorite love songs

• Songs for the lonely and bitter



BEST OF THE BIG A

• Best Place to Impress a date: Bone's

• VOTE: What is the best place for Valentine's dinner?



TRAVEL

• Romantic travel ideas

• Southeast: Lake Rabun Hotel
Charleston
Ft. Lauderdale
Asheville

• Other: New York City
Paris
Puerto Rico

• Still Traveling: What are the South's most romantic cities?



JUST FOR FUN

• A Valentine's album 1
2
Send us yours

• Valentine's pets
Send us yours



DISCUSS

• Still Traveling: What are the South's most romantic cities?

• Do you hate Valentine's Day?

• Table Talk: What's your idea of romantic dining?

I Love You" Around the World

Sweep your loved one off their feet by whispering those 3 magic words in one of these romantic languages!


Ngo oi ney (Cantonese)
Jeg elsker dig (Danish)

Ik hou van jou (Dutch)

I love you (English)

Minä rakastan sinua (Finnish)

Je t'aime (French)

Ich liebe Dich (German)

S'agapo (Greek)

Aloha au ia'oe (Hawaiian)

Ti amo/Ti voglio bene (Italian)

Aishiteru (Japanese)

Sarang Ham-nida (Korean)

Bahibak (Lebanese)
Myliu tave (Lithuanian)

Saya kasih awak (Malay)

Wo ai ni (Mandarin)

Kocham cie (Polish)

Eu te amo (Portuguese)



Ya tyebya lyublyu (Russian)

Lubim ta (Slovak)

Yo te amo (Spanish)

te quiero (Spanish)

Jag älskar dig (Swedish)

Khao raak thoe (Thai)

Seni seviyorum (Turkish)

Ten places to steal a kiss for Valentine's Day


Lonely Planet's Best in Travel 2009 guidebook offers a list of 10 places to steal a kiss.




Some places on the list are renowned for romance or a sexy vibe — like New York, Rio de Janeiro, and Paris.



Others earned a place on the list for a specific kiss-related reason, such as Hershey, Pa., home of Hershey's Kisses chocolate candy; Blarney Castle in Ireland, where visitors kiss the Blarney Stone to be rewarded with the gift of gab; Venice, where lovers might kiss on a gondola passing beneath the Bridge of Sighs; and Casablanca, Morocco, the setting for the famed movie in which Ingrid Bergman implored Humphrey Bogart to kiss her "as if it were the last time." Kissimmee, Fla., and Kissing, Germany, deserve a spot on the list by virtue of their smoochy names alone.



Also on the list: Kiribati, a nation of island atolls just west of the international dateline in the South Pacific. If you happen to be there on New Year's Eve with your special someone, you could get one of next year's very first kisses.

History of Valentine's Day




Every February 14th we celebrate St. Valentine's Day by sending flowers, cards and gifts to loved ones. But who is St. Valentine and why do we celebrate the holiday named for him?




Legend has it that Valentine was a priest in Rome, under the reign of Emperor Claudius II . Claudius ordered young, single Roman soldiers not to become engaged or get married. He believed that wives and families served as distractions to his soldiers and would not fight as well as unmarried men. Valentine defied the decree and secretly performed marriage rituals for young couples. Valentine was eventually arrested, imprisoned and ordered to be put to death.



While in prison in Rome, legend has it that Valentine wrote a letter to his sweetheart, which he signed "From your Valentine," an expression still in use today. Valentine was beheaded on February 14th .



The actual holiday of Valentine's Day derives its origins from the ancient Roman feast of Lupercalia -- a spring fertility festival celebrated on February 15. On the eve of the festival, the names of the young Roman girls were written on slips of paper and placed into jars. Each young unmarried man drew a slip with a name on it. This girl was chosen was to be his sweetheart for the year. Many of the young couples were later married.



This festival was later outlawed because the annual pairings were considered "un-Christian." It is believed that the Christian church decided to celebrate Valentine's Day on February 14th in an attempt to disassociate with the pagan Lupercalia festival.







All you need is love...

By JENELLE CLEARY




Scanning the classifieds is done but once a year for me - Valentine's Day.


It has become a habit that involves streaming up and down columns of mushy ads trying to find out if my name is there. Then checking the variations to my name and then the nicknames that my name may equate to.

Quite tragic yes, but surely I'm not the only one with my head floating in the clouds among one too many helium love heart balloons!

Yes, that day is upon us again where Hallmark up their sales of red envelopes and we all check our e-mail and snail mail for the hope of one message of undying love.

We leave our desk at lunchtime hoping for some miraculous bunch of roses to appear instantaneously and think about making a restaurant reservation "for two" just in case. Valentine's Day has turned into one of emotional torture. And every year it seems the same!

Well, Val Day 2001 doesn't have to be one that leaves you in bed at 7.30 exhausted from checking your letterbox 2,874 times.

Find love, get love, show love and 'love' love on the 14th.

It isn't about the Mr Big/Carrie relationships and nor is it for those that have just attended schoolies' week. We can all get into the spirit of the day - and without succumbing to the marketers' dream!

The history of Valentine's Day is a fascinating one and slowly it has emerged into a day that is celebrated right around the world. So how will you pass the day if you are checking out Singledom?

If you are against the whole Valentines rigmarole then one webpage that can satisfy all your defiant thoughts and ideas regarding Valentines Day is the Say No to V-D : Anti Valentines Central. Then there is the Desperate and Dateless Ball coming up where you can have a right old laugh with your pals and help charity at the same time.
If all that would leave your batteries drained then what about a simple night out with your other single friends? Nothing spiteful. No voodoo dolls. No T-shirts emblazoned with "Valentines Sux". Just a good old night out.

If you prefer the very popular stay-at-home option, then curling up with a good book and/or watching the movies that guys or girls totally dislike! Watch the sales of Dirty Dancing and the Die Hard trilogy boom.
What about couples? Since Perfect Match ended long ago and Dexter was committed to the Television Museum, there has been no way for couples to determine their compatibility. This is where the Love Calculator comes in. Your whole destiny as a couple can be determined from just your name!

Mydearvalentine.com also has the best mix of love compatibility games and matching horoscopes to keep you entertained. They also have Valentine wallpaper for your PC and enough mushy quotations to give any would-be poet inspiration.

Romantic ideas for Valentine's Day needn't be expensive or something that leaves you so stressed out you can't enjoy yourself! Some ideas to get your started include:

• Renting out the first movie you both saw together.

• Making a CD of "your"' songs.

• Hide romantic messages in his/her wallet, pockets or lunch!

• If your partner is just as romantic with their computer as they are you, then try making a mousepad for them. Include photos, poetry and even things that you mutally enjoy!

Also you can celebrate your Valentine's Day by celebrating your love for your family. Make it an excuse to catch up and spend time with those you love. Plan a big Valentine's get-together, with a simple theme such as 'dress in red' - why should Christmas be the only time where we put in some effort? Make it informal and use it as a post-Christmas catch-up. Any excuse for a party!

Whatever your 'status', have some fun with the day and be inventive. If this is going to be the day you become the secret admirer then good luck. Remember the melodic throws of the The Beatles singing All You Need Is Love... even if you are reading the classifieds and waiting at the mailbox!

Valentine's Day: February 14th

By Jay Williams


Valentine's Day is a traditionally romantic day on which lovers express their desire for one another by giving one another chocolates, flowers, cards - generally anything meaningful.


Lovers from all around the world celebrate Valentine's Day, Dïa del Amor y la Amistad, Valentinsdag, Dia dos Namorados, giri-choko, which all translates to a lot of chocolate and a lot of love.

The day is closely associated with love, cupid, roses and the mutual exchange of love notes in the form of "valentines."


Originally it was a religious celebration, but today it's more of a marketing exercise, not unlike Easter, when people spend big bucks on showing their affection - sometimes to the whole world!

A century ago, hand written love notes and some flowers would suffice, enough to charm the object of your desire, or your "valentine".

But handwritten notes have largely given way to mass-produced greeting cards, and in some cases newspaper messages that profess undying love to the universe and all its creatures.

Last year alone, some $907 million was spent online for Valentine's Day gifts, cementing the fact that Valentine's Day is the second-largest retail holiday of the year - second only to Christmas. One of the more popular expressions of undying love is the romantic meal, ideally prepared by your own hand. But if that is beyond you, then there are many restaurants that offer Valentine's Day spreads, but you will need to book early.

The whole idea of exchanging gifts seems a little one-sided, because it's usually from a man to a woman.

However I think this year men should take a stand, and have their women pamper and spoil them instead. How about a new bar fridge, a chainsaw, or maybe a handy machete?

To all the women out there: if you are reading this surprise your man this year by getting him that gift he always wanted or let him watch the footy or the cricket or the motor racing on the box without interruption, and massage his feet for good measure.

But just a quick word for the lads, don't forget to do something nice as well - whether a poem from the heart or a great big box of heart-shaped chocolates with strawberry filling.

So have a great day full of love and friendship, tell that special someone you care.



History:



Until 1969, the Catholic Church formally recognised eleven Valentine's Days.

The Valentine's honored on February 14 are Valentine of Rome (Valentinus presb. m. Romae) and Valentine of Terni (Valentinus ep. Interamnensis m. Romae).
Valentine of Rome was a priest in Rome who suffered martyrdom about AD 269 and was buried on the Via Flaminia.




Valentine of Terni became bishop of Interamna (modern Terni) about AD 197 and is said to have been killed during the persecution of Emperor Aurelian. He is also buried on the Via Flaminia, but in a different location than Valentine of Rome.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Toxic Chemicals in Cosmetics

Hazardous Chemicals in Cosmetics and Personal Care Productd


Some of the ingredients in cosmetics and personal care products are chemicals that may be hazardous to your health. Take a look at some of the ingredients to watch for and the health concerns raised by these chemicals.



Antibacterials (e.g., Triclosan) are found in many products, such as hand soaps, deodorants, toothpastes and body washes.




Health Hazards: Some antibacterial agents are absorbed through the skin. Triclosan has been shown to be secreted in breast milk. These chemicals may be toxic or carcinogenic. One study has found antibacterials may interfere with the functioning of testosterone in cells. Antibacterials can kill the 'good' protective bacteria as well as pathogens, actually increasing susceptibility to infection. The products may increase the rate of development of resistant strains of bacteria.
butyl acetate


Butyl acetate is found in nail strengtheners and nail polishes.



Health Hazards: Butyl acetate vapors may cause dizziness or drowsiness. Continued use of a product containing butyl acetate may cause skin to crack and become dry.butylated hydroxytoluene

Butylated hydroxytoluene is found in a variety of cosmetics and personal care products. It is an antioxidant which helps slow the rate at which a product changes color over time.



Health Hazards: Butylated hydroxytoluene may cause skin and eye irritation.coal tar

Coal tar is used to control itching and scaling, to soften skin, and as a colorant.

Diethanolamine is a contaminant associated with cocamide DEA and lauramide DEA, which are used as emulsifiers and foaming agents in products such as shampoos, shaving creams, moisturizers, and baby washes.




Health Hazards: DEA can be absorbed into the body through the skin. It can act as a carcinogen and can be converted to nitrosamine, which is also carcinogenic. DEA is a hormone disruptor and robs the body of choline needed for fetal brain development.1,4-dioxane

This is a contaminant that may be associated with sodium laureth sulfate, PEG, and most ethoxylated ingredients with names ending in -eth. These ingredients are found in many products, most notably shampoos and body washes.



1,4 dioxane is known to cause cancer in animals and has a high probability of carcinogenicity in humans.
 
Formaldehyde:
 
Formaldehyde is used as a disinfectant and preservative in a variety of products, such as nail polish, soap, deodorant, shaving cream, eyelash adhesive and shampoo. Even when it isn't listed as an ingredient, it can result from the breakdown of other ingredients, most notably diazolidinyl urea, imidazolidinyl urea and quaternium compounds.




Health Hazards: The European Union has banned the use of formaldehyde in cosmetics and personal care products. It is associated with multiple health concerns, such as respiratory tract and eye irritation, cancer, immune system damage, genetic damage, and triggering asthma.

This Day in Science History - February 9 - US Weather Bureau

February 9th is the birthday of the United States Weather Bureau. Professor Lapham of Milwaukee was instrumental in raising awareness for a need for the government to pay attention to weather. He frequently forwarded clippings of newspaper articles outlining the deaths of sailors due to severe Great Lake storms. Congress passed the legislation and President Ulysses S. Grant established the Bureau in 1870. The official name for this agency was "The Division of Telegrams and Reports for the Benefit of Commerce". The agency granted the Secretary of War to maintain meteorological observations and data and to warn citizens of approaching storms. The task was assigned to the War Department because it was believed military discipline would allow the "greatest promptness, regularity, and accuracy" needed to maintain the service. Every day, personnel from the Signal Service Corps would report weather information to Washington DC.




The Weather Bureau would evolve over time to become the National Weather Service under the administration of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Find out what else occurred on this day in science history.

Hydrogen Peroxide Shelf Life

If you've ever poured hydrogen peroxide solution onto a cut and didn't experience the expected fizz, it's likely your bottle of hydrogen peroxide has become a bottle of plain water. The 3% hydrogen peroxide solution you can buy for use as a disinfectant typically has a shelf life of at least a year if the bottle is unopened, but only lasts 30-45 days once the seal has been broken. As soon as you expose the peroxide solution to air, it starts to react to form water. Also, if you contaminate the bottle (e.g., by dipping a swab or finger into the bottle), you can expect the effectiveness of the remaining liquid to be compromised.


So, if you have a bottle of hydrogen peroxide that has been sitting in your medicine cabinet for a few years, it would be a good idea to replace it. If you've opened the bottle at any point, its activity is long-gone. If you feel like testing the solution. Solvay Chemicals describes a test you can perform to assess the remaining activity.

Monday, February 8, 2010

“Happy Valentine’s Day” Templates

Want to use a design that’s subtler than a big red heart?




Try the understated “Happy Valentine’s Day” templates for an easy-on-the eyes look and calls-to-action that pop.

Valentine's Day Web Form and Email Templates

Valentine's Day is around the corner, and like many holidays it's an occasion for businesses to make more sales via email marketing.




We know you're always looking for ways to build your list and deliver relevant, valuable messages, so we thought we'd play Cupid and help you and your customers get together



Just in time for the upcoming holiday, we've rolled out new HTML email templates and matching web form ones, themed for February 14th.

Make Your Own Shampoo

There are a lot of reasons why you might want to make your own shampoo from scratch. The big two probably are wanting to avoid the chemicals in commercial shampoos and just simply wanting to make shampoo yourself. Back in ye olden days, shampoo was soap, except with additional moisturizers so that it didn't strip the natural oils from your scalp and hair. Although a shampoo can be solid, it is easier to use if there is enough water to make a gel or liquid. Shampoos tend to be acidic because if the pH gets too high (alkaline) the sulfur bridges in the hair keratin can break, damaging your hair. This recipe for making your own gentle shampoo is chemically a liquid soap, except vegetable-based (many soaps use animal fat) and with alcohol and glycerine added during the process. Make it in a well-ventilated room or outdoors and be sure to read all of the safety precautions on the ingredients.


Shampoo Ingredients



2 lb 10 oz olive oil

1 lb 7 oz of solid-type vegetable shortening

1 lb coconut oil

10-1/4 oz lye (sodium hydroxide)

2 pints water

1-1/2 oz glycerine (glycerol)

1/2 oz alcohol (I'd use vodka or other food-quality ethanol and call it close enough. Do not use methanol.)

1-1/2 oz castor oil

essential oils (optional), such as peppermint, rosemary, lavender, for fragrance and therapeutic properties

Let's Make Shampoo!

In a large pan, mix together the olive oil, shortening, and coconut oil.



In a well-ventilated area, preferably wearing gloves and eye protection in case of accidents, mix the lye and water. Use a glass or enameled container. This is an exothermic reaction, so heat will be produced.



Warm the oils to 95°F-98°F and allow the lye solution to cool to the same temperature. One of the easiest ways to accomplish this is to set both containers into a large sink or pan full of water that is at the correct temperature.



When both mixtures are at the proper temperature, stir the lye solution into the oils. The mixture will turn opaque and may darken.



When the mixture has a creamy texture, stir in the glycerine, alcohol, castor oil, and any fragrance oils or colorants.



You have a couple of options here. You can pour the shampoo into soap molds and allow it to harden. To use this shampoo, either lather it with your hands and work it into your hair or else shave flakes into hot water to liquefy it.



The other option is to make liquid shampoo, which involves adding more water to your shampoo mixture and bottling it.

You may have noticed that many shampoos are pearlescent. You can make your homemade shampoo glittery by adding glycol distearate, which is a natural wax derived from stearic acid. The tiny wax particles reflect light, causing the effect

This Day in Science History - February 8 - Dmitri Mendeleev

February 8th is Dmitri Mendeleev's birthday. Most people associate Mendeleev the first accepted periodic table of the elements. His table ordered the elements by increasing atomic weight where columns of elements had similar chemical properties and is the immediate forerunner of the modern periodic table.






Mendeleev was also the man responsible for making Russia "metric". As Director of Russia's Bureau of Weights and Measures, he was instrumental in bringing the metric system to Russia.

In his personal life, he was famous for his "grooming". Mendeleev was widely known for his long hair and wild beard. He would only cut his hair or trim his beard once a year. He had one minor scandal where he was labeled a bigamist for a legal technicality for not waiting the required seven years after a divorce before marrying his second wife.



Find more about Mendeleev and what else occurred on this day in science history.

Nitrogen Facts

You breathe oxygen, yet air is mostly nitrogen. You need nitrogen to live and encounter it in the foods you eat and in many common chemicals. Here are some quick facts about this element. You can find detailed information about nitrogen on the nitrogen facts page.






  1. Nitrogen is odorless, tasteless, and colorles
  2. Nitrogen gas (N2) makes up 78.1% of the volume of the Earth's air.
  3. Nitrogen is a nonmetal.
  4. Nitrogen gas is relatively inert, but soil bacteria can 'fix' nitrogen into a form that plants and animals can use to make amino acids and proteins.
  5. The French chemist Antoine Laurent Lavoisier named nitrogen azote, meaning without life.
  6. Nitrogen was sometimes referred to as 'burnt' or 'dephlogisticated' air, since air that no longer contains oxygen is almost all nitrogen. The other gases in air are present in much lower concentrations.
  7. Nitrogen compounds are found in foods, fertilizers, poisons, and explosives. Your body is 3% nitrogen by weight.
  8. Nitrogen is responsible for the orange-red, blue-green, blue-violet, and deep violet colors of the aurora.
  9. One way to prepare nitrogen gas is by liquefaction and fractional distillation from the atmosphere.
  10. Nitrogen has a valence of 3 or 5.

Photo: Nitrogen in a gas discharge tube glows blue-violet. This color is commonly seen when air is ionized by lightning. (Jurii, Creative Commons)

Science Dating Ideas

Here's a look at some types of dates that might be perfect if your sweetie is a scientist or is interested in science. Dinner and movie is still a good plan, especially with the right movie, but I here are some additional dating ideas.


Science Date Ideas

Sharing an ice cream
cone is always romantic.
For science-types, try making
the ice cream using liquid nitrogen!
Nicolas George

Is There Really a Chemistry of Love?

Question: Is There Really a Chemistry of Love?


Answer: I don't think there are any magic love potions that you can use to make someone fall in love, but chemistry does play an important role in how a relationship progresses. First, there's attraction. Nonverbal communication plays a big part in initial attraction and some of this communication may involve pheromones, a form of chemical communication. Did you know that raw lust is characterized by high levels of testosterone? The sweaty palms and pounding heart of infatuation are caused by higher than normal levels of norepinepherine. Meanwhile, the 'high' of being in love is due to a rush of phenylethylamine and dopamine. All is not lost once the honeymoon is over. Lasting love confers chemical benefits in the form of stabilized production of serotonin and oxytocin. Can infidelity be blamed on chemistry? Perhaps in part. Researchers have found that suppression of vasopressin can cause males (voles, anyway) to abandon their love nest and seek new mates. Hey, you gotta have chemistry!