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Janey thought she liked her mother’s boyfriend Dan the first minute she say him. how could she have been so wrong? How could she have guessed that the generous, loving man who first began dating her mother would turn into a wicked stepfather the minute he and her mother were married?

Janey thought that they would instantly become the closest of families, but her hopes were shattered with the first argument: Dan insisted she finish her homework or he wouldn’t take her skating. She could have saved herself a lot of disappointment if her expectations had been more realistic.

It’s not hard to understand why parents and children pin unrealistic hopes on a new marriage. They may be coming off years of unhappiness from a divorce or death and they long for a happy change. Almost 80 percent of people who divorce will take another chance and remarry, usually within three years. There are more than 6 million children living in stepfamilies, and that’s not counting children who have a stepparent they don’t live–for instance, if they live their mother but their (more…)

If you have ever dreamed of starting your own blog site, then, go for it now. People who are gifted with the talent to write can create their own site at no cost at all. Here are some tips on how to start your own blog site for free. Exploit the bulk of information that you can find through the internet. There are millions of web pages that contain relevant information and how to start a blog site is one of them. Expert bloggers offer advice for free on their own blogs. If you know how to search for data from the internet, you can easily find a step-by-step guide that will help you create your own blog site.

If there are instructions that you cannot understand, you can join forums that discuss this topic. You can ask questions and there will be experts to (more…)

Protect your skin and prevent winter dryness with this easy skin care regimen…

Protecting your skin during winter can be tough!

Protecting your skin during winter can be tough!

Icy sidewalks, high-energy bills and failing car batteries are all to be expected during the winter season. But, here’s another cold fact: Your skin can suffer during the colder months, too, and, if left neglected, can begin to look like, and feel like, that proverbial dried-out fruit cake still in the box. Fortunately, a few simple precautions and initiating an easy skin care regimen can make all the difference in fending off winter’s worst skin woes.

Loss of moisture is the most evident problem for skin in winter. For the most part, this is due to a drop-off of humidity in your environment, depriving your skin of the ability to retain moisture. Outdoors, cold temperatures and drying winds do their part to lower humidity; indoors, arid central heating is the main culprit. Couple these issues with the fact that your skin produces less oil as you age, and it’s easy to understand how your skin can quickly become prone to dehydration. According to Lisa Stanford of the Green Beauty Guide, not only can this process lead to itchy, flaking skin, (more…)

smoothestskinIN A SEASON WHEN EVERYTHING seems fresh and new, it’s natural to want the same thing for one’s skin. And it’s not out of reach. Doctors and day spas all have lovely new tricks up their sleeves. Whisking away a top layer of skin to reveal the fresher, finer-textured skin beneath isn’t the risky business it was back in the days of wire brushes and deep chemical peels; skin-refining processes are gentler, more finely calibrated, less prone to human error. At the same time, cosmetics counters now offer treatments with ingredients that once were available only by prescription. If you’re just looking for a way to put the roses back in those gray little cheeks after a long, hard winter, one of the minor miracle workers listed on the facing page may be all you need. On the other hand, a person-even quite a young person-might react to the hard light of spring with one of those epiphanies straight out of Bridget Jones’s Diary: “Feel need to do something to stop aging process, but what? Cannot afford face lift.”

The simplest “something” is probably a regimen of prescription-strength tretinoin in a preparation like Arita or Renova. Tretinoin is a derivative of vitamin A and what it does (nobody knows quite how) is speed up the skin’s natural exfoliating process, at the same time shaping up the skin’s DNA so that the new cells are more like their younger antecedents than like the sun-damaged cells they replace. Skin is literally thickened (except for the top layer of dry, dead cells, which is blessedly thinned); new, younger-acting collagen is produced; and the ultimate result is firmer, finer-textured, more translucent-looking skin with what Nia K. Terezakis, M.D., a clinical professor of dermatology at Tulane University Medical School in New Orleans, calls “a noticeable glow.” “Besides,” she adds, “it’s the only thing that will actually reduce the size of pores.” The drawbacks are possible redness and irritation at first; an increase in sun-sensitivity; and-for the young woman in a hurry-the fact that it can take fr om six months to a year for one’s complexion to come into full bloom.

For more immediate gratification, one might want to consider a tiny peel. In fact, doctors often recommend a course of tretinoin in conjunction with peels. Used before a peel, tretinoin stimulates the skin to heal itself faster; as a follow-up, it helps skin keep on improving itself from within.

Probably the mildest peel available is done with glycolic acid (one of the sugar-derived alpha-hydroxy acids that have been getting so much attention; they help skin shed its tired layers and produce more collagen). In over-the-counter creams and cleansers, glycolic acid, like its AHA sisters, works to freshen and brighten skin. In stronger concentrations-and preferably in the hands of a good dermatologist- glycolic acid peels make what Michael J. Bernhardt, M.D., a dermatologist in private practice in Jacksonville Florida, calls “an excellent facial rejuvenating agent.” Glycolic acid peels are done in baby steps-typically a series of five or six visits (which costs $450 to $900). The first peel lasts only about thirty seconds, after which the acid is washed off with great sloshings of water. Subsequent sessions may last longer, and the immediate aftermath–depending on how deep you and your doctor want to go–varies from a slight pinkening of the skin to what looks and feels a bit like a bad sunburn.

If one wanted to be a touch more aggressive, one might consider microdermabrasion, a gentle, noninvasive mechanical peel that’s as far removed from the wire brushes and sandpaper of the 1950s as the microchip is from UNIVAC. While you lie back in comfort, a dermatologist or well-trained aesthetician goes over your face with a small, wandlike machine that pelts out superfine aluminum oxide crystals and simultaneously vacuums up the skin’s top layers of cells. The sensation? “Like being licked by a cat,” purred one client. The result? Nothing but a rosy glow–at first. But after six to eight sessions ($600 to $800 at a spa; about twice that at a doctor’s office), you should notice a silkier texture and smoother coloring. “It’s particularly good for fine lines, acne scarring and people of color with uneven pigmentation,” says Bruce E. Katz, M.D., director of both the Cosmetic Surgery and Laser Clinic at the New York-Presbyterian Hospital and Juva, a medi-spa in New York City. It’s also one of the best procedures for thin-skinned areas like the neck, chest and hands. “But it’s not forever,” says Katz. The effects fade after about three months, and some doctors suggest monthly booster sessions. Perhaps it’s best to think of both kinds of mini peel as part of an ongoing journey.

For deeper lines and extensive sun damage, the treatment of choice is lasers. Think of a laser as an incredibly fine light saber. Zzp! Zzp! In tiny, millisecond bursts of energy, it slices away microscopically thin layers of skin, vaporizing rather than cutting, and cauterizing as it goes, so there’s no bleeding. It’s guided by a computerized scanning device, which minimizes what doctors politely call “technique-dependent variability” and the rest of us might call the “oops!” factor. Lasers fall into three categories. The [CO.sub.2] carves the deepest swath and achieves the most dramatic results with deep lines (up to seventy percent improvement) and deep acne scars. There’s also a significant firming effect, thanks to the jolt it gives collagen. The erbium: Yag laser, which doesn’t dig as deep, is used to erase more superficial lines and minor flaws. While the recuperation time for erbium is about half that for [CO.sub.2] (one week as opposed to two), both require sedation and topical anesthetics, pose a sma ll risk of skin discoloration down the line, and cost about $2,000 to $5,000. Still, the peaches-and-cream effect is good for five to ten years.

The nonablative laser works differently. It skips past the epidermis and goes to the next layer down, where it bounces around creating the kind of havoc that causes a huge surge in collagen production. Because it works from within, it’s terrific at plumping up specific areas, like lines around the eyes and mouth (though the new smoothness won’t show up for about six months). There’s no tearing up the surface, no anesthesia, no recuperation. It’s often used with a surface treatment like microdermabrasion or erbium lasering, typically takes three to five sessions (costing $2,500 to $3,500).

One caution that applies to everything here is that the sun (which causes most damage to begin with) can undo all your good work very quickly unless you wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen religiously. “Every day of your life,” specifies Dr. Terezakis. It’s smart to stay on the alert for improved formulas, too. One new ingredient to watch for: phytolyase, an enzyme discovered in sea plankton that both prevents and corrects sun damage. A study at Heinrich Heinz University in Dusseldorf found that a sunscreen rich in synthetic phytolyase gives skin’s immune system, which UV rays weaken and confuse, exactly the nudge it needs to correct sun damage. Look for phytolyase in future sunscreens. But you don’t need to wait–or even to look further than your nearest cosmetics counter–for treatments that can make a real difference.

1 Nothing To Fear

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There are always going to be times in our lives in which it seems like everything is coming down on us like an avalanche. I know that I’ve been through that kind of feeling, and it certainly is something that gets to the core of your very being. One of the things that all of us have in common and business owners is the fact that we are very adaptable to somewhat adverse conditions. None of us really expect anything out of life, and have frequently worked our way to the top of whatever industry we are working in. Nobody is ever asking for a handout, and when the times get tough, the business in this County rules on as if nothing has ever happened. You just have to walk down the main street of any town in this County and understand just what kind of substance the business community has. Let me say, it is truly a vibrant place.

whatBut unfortunately, sometimes things get a little bit overwhelming. I myself, as recently I had a medical condition in which I started to suffer rather extreme anxiety attacks. This was brand-new to me, and I had never really experienced anything like it before. I think when you experience something like a panic attack, at first you assume that it’s a heart attack and that you are probably in for some real difficulties. Fortunately, panic attacks are not anywhere near as bad as heart attack, and are actually very common nowadays. I did not know this, but it didn’t take me long to find out.

One of the most important thing that I learned when I was trying to find out how to stop panic attacks was that there are a few specific use that you can use in order to calm yourself down. I won’t get too deeply into that, but suffice to say that it was a real revelation for me. It made me realize that a lot of the things in our life that seem out of control are actually in our control. I think really what we need to do often is just to stand back, take a deep breath, and think about the big picture. Things are never really as difficult as we think they are, even though during the hard times it may seem as if everything is coming at you at once. All I can say is that the human spirit itself is one of the strongest diamonds out there, and trying to break it is very difficult.

This idea I think will be very important to business owners in the county over the next 10 years. Although I believe the worst has already happened economically, there are always going to be the boom and bust cycles in business. Being able to stand back and take a look at the big picture is one of those things that you need if you want to ensure that you’re going to succeed going forward. There aren’t any real tips that I can give here; all I have to do that if you feel as if things are getting really intense in your life and you have some kind of idea that if you do something dangerous or crazy, everything will be all right, calm down. Just sit back and relax. Everything passes. Life will go on, and you need to make sure that it goes on with you in that mindset possible.

by Ted Wall

I know this may not be the popular opinion nowadays, but I believe that America remains open for business. I think that this is definitely the case in Clark County, where things are getting a lot better than they were just a few years ago. I know that the recession was particularly tough on a lot of people at local businesses were hit incredibly hard as they struggled to continue to keep succeeding in what was an awful environment in general.

hopeI believe also that we can start to put those nightmares behind us. I know that the real estate market was a cause of all this madness, and certainly a lot of people continue to suffer from foreclosures and other difficult financing issues today. I believe that we have learned our lesson, however, and that there are always going to be new opportunities for people who are sharp in America.

This website will continue to represent the businesses of our community and hopefully provide you with the kind of insight to the local community and business practices that perhaps many other resources may not offer. I for one have been involved in this County for a long time and I have to say that I have seen a lot of boom and bust cycles and that this one is very different than many of the other ones.

The matter how low revenues, or ghostly the businesses in this County seemed, there always ended up being a vision for a prosperous future. Even though the time seemed dark, I think we can all rest assured in the fact that the people of this County love their business community, and despite the inclusion of business killers like Walmart and other big box retailers, we really can all get along and compete in this environment. I am sure that there are going to be those who are bitter about the economic situation, and many of them will probably blame the president, but the fact is that the last president was far more to blame for all of these problems than anyone else. Not only that, but you have to consider that that entire administration was basically gambling with America’s future. Sure, it will stop now, but let’s remember that the previous eight years set up a house of cards that we are still recovering from today.

It is my hope that we are building a foundation on a much stronger bedrock. You just don’t have real estate going up 200% or more in some places and then expect that everything will get back to normal within the next couple weeks. It just does not happen. That’s what they call the bubble, and that’s why we continue to battle with some pretty difficult problems in Washington.

Well hey. I don’t want to get to doom and gloom on you.  We really could be worse. And by that I mean that we could be Arizona, Nevada, Florida, or quite frankly a lot of other places in the country. Instead, we have a beautiful community featuring smart people who really care about each other. That isn’t a really common thing in this country, unfortunately, so we should be proud of the things we have achieved.