The all-nighter survival guide for midterms

Moms NoVa

8 items that get the grade for studious students

It’s midterm time, and staying up until the wee hours of the morning is and unfortunate reality for hard-studying students, but pulling an all-nighter does not have to be a miserable experience. Here are a few survival items for making the hours go faster and easier when you’re cramming for a big exam or have to finish that research paper due tomorrow.

A+ lighting

Shed some light on your schoolwork with an OxyLED LED desk lamp. The OxyLED T35 (sale priced $10.27 on Amazon) is a sleek USB-powered foldaway lamp that is dimmable by touching it, and its adjustable head allows you to fold it up to save valuable real estate on your desk.

                

The OxyLED T36  ($23.99 on Amazon) operates on a USB-charged battery and features a long bendable neck and can clip…

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Osmo build STEAM toys to get kids excited about coding

You're in LA, you're a parent. What are you to do?

Coding Jam is the latest gameplay system that teaches kids to code while they play

The other day my son commanded Google Home to play a custom playlist he had created on a Pandora. Two things occurred to me about this. First, wow. The digitally connected future vision of the The Jetsons was coming true; and then, my more mundane thought was, “That music is awful. My 10-year-old child could write better arrangements,” and thanks to Osmo, he can.

Like many other kids who love video games, my son craves leveling up and learning how to improve his skills, and Osmo has harnessed this excitement in a new technology experience, Coding Jam, that allows kids to create music through basic coding. Using colored building blocks and a system that interacts with an iPad or iPhone, kids can arrange and play musical notes in strings and sequences to write…

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GMS’s Rear Seat Reminder addresses deadly accidents of kids left in cars

GMC has announced a new vehicle feature to help prevent caregivers from accidentally leaving children in cars, which can be a fatal mistake in hot weather. GMC’s “Rear Seat Reminder” is an industry-first technology intended to help remind the driver to look in the rear seat before exiting the vehicle under certain circumstances.

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GMC’s protective feature will be standard in the new 2018 GMC Terrain.  The technology does not actually detect objects or people in the rear seat but monitors rear door usage for up to 10 minutes before or during a trip, and when the driver turns off the vehicle.  An alarm sounds five chimes and displays a warning on the driver information center screen, prompting a second look in the back seat. A GMC staff engineer and mother of two, Tricia Morrow, led the development of the technology.

It is as tragic statistic that about 

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10 end-of-summer season essentials

Gear up for the last days of summer

A hot Indian summer can last for weeks, or longer, after Labor Day, so don’t give up yet on fun in the sun. For summer’s last hurrah, do it right with these 10 essentials for entertaining and enjoying the outdoors. Gear up and get outside, while you can.

Beach head

Violet Love chic headbands ($17 and up) and bandeaus ($24) that stay in place, at the beach, riding in the convertible, or wherever you head out or bust a move. This playful line of headwear, strapless bra tops and other accessories and apparel items features fun prints and styles and soft, stretchy lightweight fabrics that are comfortable, cute, and functional.

Throw on the towel

Distinguish your base camp on the beach with colorful Lacoste beach towels (Macy’s, $42). These stylish, crocodile-emblazoned towels are lightweight yet plush and absorbent, and their large size makes them a cross between a towel and blanket, to wrap up in after splashing in the water, or for sandphobes who want spacious ground cover when basking in the sun.

Blow up your kayak

If you’ve always wanted a kayak but didn’t think you had the space to store one, Innova Kayaks has a solution that blows traditional kayaks out of the water. These inflatable kayaks are lightweight and constructed of heavy duty natural and synthetic rubber that will last for years, even decades.  They blow up in minutes with a high-capacity foot pump, and after the adventuring they fold up compactly and can be carries away in an oversized backpack and loaded into even a compact car. One-person and three-seater models available, with capacity up to 900 pounds. Available at dealers nationwide $399 to $1,299.

Hot or not

Need to Facebook while you are on the beach? Stop being a lame-o and enjoy the beach, but if you do need your phone for an emergency, take along ClimateCase ($34.99) insulating smartphone case. The lined pouch protects your phone against extreme temperatures that can cause a phone to stop working.  The case features a multi-layered thermal system comprised of 7 mm of Neoprene and gel infused materials. Pop it in the fridge for four hours before using (or in the microwave for 20-25 seconds in cold weather), to keep your phone safe; or if the worst happens, you can restore an overheated (or frozen) phone in less than 60 seconds.

Skeeter-free

Mosquitos don’t stick to any calendar when it comes to biting season, so keep them away from you and your patio party with Thermacel Patio Shield.  ($39.99, at retailers nationwide). This sleek little portable-speaker-sized mosquito repeller burns an insect repellent mat that creates a 15’ x 15’ protection zone, perfect for a small outdoor area. It uses butane cartridges (four included, to last 48 hours) and two AA batteries to operate.

Coolest cooler

You’ve got your hands full, with beach chairs, blankets, boogie boards and kids. Free up a hand by strapping your cooler on your back, with the IceMule ($49.95 to $69.95), a portable insulated backpack that will keep your food and drinks icey cold for up to 24 hours. These padded sacks feature a heavy-duty inner and outer skin, a range of sizes and a ventilated backpack strap system.

If you dare wear skort skirts

In between summer and fall, it’s the perfect time to wear something in between shorts and a skirt. The Royal Robbins Jammer Skort ($60) is a sporty and comfortable skirt with stretchy built-in shorts underneath that allow you to be active and lady like at the same time.

Shoe be do

Step out in fashion forward and comfort-driven Off the Beaten Track sandals. You can stride in style the best thing next to bare feet, on the boardwalk, at the theme park, shopping, strolling, or anywhere you want to wander in these casual go-anywhere, do-anything earth-inspired leathers, with attention to detail that will make you want to put your feet up, to show them off.  The line also features shoes and boots for all seasons, $79 to $179.

Hydrate, or dry

If summer’s sun had taken a toll on your skin, hydrate and refresh it with Vichy’s Mineral 89 ($29.50), a skincare formula comprised of 89% Vichy Thermal Water, derived from mineral-rich volcanic territory in Vichy, France, plus the addition of hyaluronic acid which ramps up the performance of the mineralizing water to boost skin’s resistance to daily aggressors, for year-round healthy-looking skin.

Snack on

When you are tossing some treats into your tote for an outing, its hard to find nutritious and yummy snacks that won’t melt into mush on a hot day. All-natural KUTOA snack bars ($23.99 fo r12-pack)are not only delicious, they are perfect for packing along to the beach or pool, soccer game, or other outing, and you can feel good about eating these oatmeal bars because they are non-GMO verified, vegan, gluten, and contain no dairy, soy, wheat, preservatives or added sugar, plus for every bar that’s purchased, KUTOA helps feed a children in need around the world. Flavors include Chocolate Banana, Peanut Butter and Jelly, Blueberry Almond, Chocolate Espresso Bean, and Cherry Cashew.

Cycling safety for a relaxing ride

Road rules to ride by

Whether for recreation or a mode of transportation, bicycling is an excellent way to get exercise and get where you want to go. Cycle safely by following riding rules for the trail, the street or anywhere your two-wheeler takes you.

Be a helmet head

A helmet is a no-brainer, and it’s the cheapest form of head-injury insurance you can get, yet many riders forgo a helmet thinking unless they are performing extreme BMX tricks that they don’t need it. No matter if you are on a short ride around the block or a rocky single-track, cover your head.

Check it out

Check your equipment before every ride. Make sure tires are inflated properly, and test out your brakes, handlebar, and shifting to make sure it’s in good working order before you ride. Make sure your bicycle is in good mechanical condition with a regular checkup…

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When you notice a little off the top

Moms NoVa

Solutions for when you are at a loss about hair loss

hairloss

There is such a thing as “Female pattern baldness,” but not too many women want to talk about, or even acknowledge their thinning hair and balding.  Because so many sufferers keep this problem under their caps, the beauty industry has been slow to find solutions. Women usually will only wear wigs and hair pieces or turn to prescription remedies as a last resort and in the case of extreme hair loss, but for those who have a mild to moderate hair shedding, which can be due to age, medications, hormone levels, genetics, and other health or lifestyle issues, fill-in powders may be a suitable option.

Products Fill-in Powder from Cover Your Gray is a matte powder that can be dusted on with a brush to conceal thinning around the temples and cover graying or balding spots. Cover Your Gray’s…

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Wear the pants that put you in control

SlimSation everyday pants, to wear wherever you are

There are a lot of crop pants out there, but SlimSation pants by Multiples are not your garden-variety pants. This slimming pant, as the name implies, is designed to slim your figure, and make you look your sensational best.

The pants feature a flexible tummy control panel that smooths and holds in the tummy, thighs and rear. SlimSation states you can drop one size instantly and look and feel 10 pounds lighter wearing their Spanx-on-the-outside pants (obligatory disclaimer: Slimsation is not associated with the actual Spanx brand). The Bottom line (pun intended) is, with a $69 price tag (prices vary depending on style), you might expect something more from these pants, and in my estimation, they deliver. 

They have a slightly higher waistline, which helps reduce tummy bulge and the dreaded muffin top of low rise waistbands. They hug the body like Lycra leggings, but…

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Pop-Up Magazine Returns to Los Angeles as Part of All-New National Tour

What happens here, only happens here

Heralded as “A sensation” by the New York Times, “Something special,” by PBS Newshour, and “A hit” by Forbes.

“Do not miss,” says the Los Angeles Times.

 The critically-acclaimed live magazine’s Spring Issue travels to San Francisco, Chicago, Washington, D.C., and New York

Following a string of sold-out shows across the country earlier this year, Pop-Up Magazine, the critically-acclaimed evening of live journalism, returns to Los Angeles with an all-new show, at The Theatre at Ace Hotel June 13, at 8:00 PM. With performances by award-winning writers, documentary filmmakers, radio producers and artists, Pop-Up Magazine features true, multimedia stories created especially for the stage and a live audience. “Imagine your favorite magazine came to life,” lauds The Boston Globe.

Contributors for the Pop-Up Magazine Spring Issue performance in Los Angeles include: Yassir Lester (actor, Girls, Making History), Carlos Javier Ortiz (visual artist), Gillian Laub…

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Amazing DIY home makeovers in minutes

Bring out your inner interior decorator and give a room a new look, in a day, or minutes

Giving a living space a new look does not always require a major renovation, or a contractor.  Here are a few DIY ideas for refreshing and reviving a room with a fresh new style, no home improvement experience required.

Cut a rug

Do-it-yourself and rug are not usually terms that go together, but FLOR is changing that. This innovative flooring company allows anyone to design their own unique rug, one square at a time, using self-adhesive carpeted tiles that can be laid in custom sizes and shapes, using a huge variety of gorgeous patterns, styles and colors with many textures and piles.

The beauty of the system is that the options are limitless. FLOR tiles can be arranged to fit odd spaces, such as hallways or a room with a nook or…

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BOWLMOR AMF offers bowling all summer long for one price

Up to three games a day and show rentals included in season passes

bowling boy

It was the hottest April on record, and forecasters say we are in for a sweltering summer. When school lets out in a few weeks, kids will need engaging summer activities to keep them out of the heat (and out of trouble). Bowlmor AMF is thinking ahead, with affordable summer passes that let kids and families bowl up to three games every day if they want.  In air-conditioned comfort, with all the excitement of music, neon lights, walls of videos, arcade games, and tasty food, kids can spend hours entertaining themselves in a fun environment – an excellent alternative to spending summer in front of the television saying, “I’m bored!”

Bowlmor AMF, which includes the brands Bowlero, Brunswick Zone, AMF and Bowlmor Lanes, is offering a Summer Games Passport that allows guests to bowl up to three games every day, show rental included, all summer long, at any of the more than 300 participating locations across the nation. If you opt for bowling at just one location, a slightly less expensive standard Summer Games pass will do.

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At Bowlmor AMF lanes, bowling is half the fun of a visit to the bowling alley. During a recent visit with my son and a friend, the music, food, and of course arcade games were an equal entertainment draw. I was pleased to find some healthy options on the menu, such as wraps and salads, alongside the delicious and decadent fare of burgers, seasoned fries, and nachos, and treats like fried pickle “frickles,” a gigantic salty pretzel to share, and a real party pleaser, the Monster Cookie Melt, a huge warm cookie in a skillet adorned with whipped cream, chocolate sauce and vanilla ice cream.

bowling - food

bowling - cookieEntertainment aside, note to parents, bowling may even help prevent “learning loss” over the summer break, as kids can use their math skills to add up their scores and compete against themselves and their friends, though common-core-challenged parents will be glad to know that today’s modern bowling alleys have electronic scorekeeping that requires little more than entering each player’s name on the leaderboard.

score board

Speaking of sharpening addition and multiplication skills, for those who are math-minded, the savings of using a Summer Games pass would amount to about $2,800 for someone who bowled every day – or 300 games– over summer!

bowling boysbowling toss

Summer games passes can be purchased for kids (under 15) and adults at a participating bowling alleys or at https://bowlsummergames.com/. Pricing varies by region, but start as low at $29.95 for kids.  At my local Bolero, the cost was $34.99 for kids and $39.95 for adults for the standard passes and $39.99 and $44.95 for the Passport level passes.  The Passport was the best value for our family, as we will be traveling over summer, and we look forward to visiting other bowling alleys over our vacation.

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Passes are available for purchase now through Labor Day, and can be used from May 22 until September 4.

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