Blog Posts by Nadine Kalinauskas

  • Seven seemingly innocent garden plants that can harm your health

    Got a green thumb? While you may find working in your garden a relaxing escape every spring and summer, if you have kids or pets, you should be aware of the potential dangers lurking in your colourful flower beds.

    Here are some flowers to keep curious young kids — and pets — away from:

    Hydrangea

    (Photo by Joanne Rathe/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)(Photo by Joanne Rathe/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)

    This warning from This Old House says it all: “Swallowing hydrangea is like popping a cyanide pill.”

    These beautiful flower clusters contain a poison called hydragin, which will cause a series of uncomfortable symptoms — dizziness, shortness of breath, a rapid pulse — alongside a drop in blood pressure that can cause convulsions or death.

    Other less-deadly symptoms include itchy skin, vomiting, weakness and sweating.

    (There is an antidote for hydrangea poisoning, so seek medical help immediately.)

    Signs to watch for if you suspect your cat or dog has been munching on hydrangeas: lethargy, vomiting and diarrhea.

    Oleander

    DeAgostini/Getty ImagesDeAgostini/Getty Images

    If you have little ones or pets, consider avoiding planting these pretty

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  • 10 homemade versions of your favourite chocolate treats

    We never need an excuse to eat chocolate, but making homemade versions of our favourite store-bought treats might just boost our intake - and popularity points with our friends - this weekend.

    “Reese’s” Peanut Butter Cups

    One Good Thing by JlileeOne Good Thing by Jlilee

    This homemade version of our favourite peanut butter-chocolate treat from One Good Thing By Jillee uses ingredients you probably already have in your pantry: peanut butter, chocolate chips, powdered sugar and butter.

    The hardest part will be waiting for them to set in the refrigerator.

    These “Peanut Butta Cups” from Chow get that familiar texture from graham cracker crumbs. While the ingredient list is short, you will have to brush up on some candy-making skills, like chocolate-tempering.

    Peppermint Patties

    Oh! NutsOh! Nuts

    This recipe from Oh! Nuts promises to result in just-as-good-as-store-bought candies — but without the corn syrup or artificial flavours.

    Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks (that is, if you have better self-control than I do.)

    Homemade Ferrero Rocher

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  • This or that? How to make healthy choices at a summer barbecue

    Put down the hotdog! (Thinkstock)Put down the hotdog! (Thinkstock)
    Not sure what your healthiest options are when faced with an impressive spread at a summer barbeque?

    We asked nutrition and wellness expert Rose Reisman to chime in on our best (and worst) options at backyard shindigs this summer.

    Which is best: Hotdog, burger or veggie burger?

    Burger-lovers, rejoice.

    “A homemade hamburger made with lean beef and a few ingredients is a nutritious meal occasionally,” Reisman tells Yahoo Canada. “Four ounces of lean beef has only 220 calories, 8 grams of fat and 4 grams of saturated fat, compared to a higher fat beef that has over 300 calories, 10 grams of fat and 8 grams of saturated fat. A considerable difference. If buying pre-made frozen burgers, be sure to read the ingredient list and nutritional numbers. Watch primarily for high fat and sodium content.”

    Even better than a beef burger is a homemade veggie one, using either tofu or bean, she says. (Processed veggie burgers can contain excess salt and preservatives.)

    Stay clear of hotdogs, Reisman

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  • Photos of Lilly Pulitzer offices reveal fat-shaming cartoons

    Photo via The CutPhoto via The Cut
    If a notable website is going to publish a slideshow of your offices, it might not hurt to do a quick “Will this offend anyone?” sweep of the place before the photographer starts snapping away.

    Unfortunately for the folks at iconic American brand Lilly Pulitzer, no one thought to remove a series of fat-shaming cartoons from an employee's desk — and The Cut readers noticed.


    “Just another day of…fat, white, and hideous,” one cartoon reads, adding the horrific note: “You should probably just kill yourself….”

    “Put it down, carb face,” reads another, captioning a cartoon of a woman in a too-small bikini.

    The photo was posted in the office-tour slideshow without comment.

    One Twitter user pointed out that the next photo in The Cut slideshow was off an impressive display of food, including untouched trays of cupcakes

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  • Wear Your Label: Mental health awareness inspires uplifting Canadian clothing line

    Wear Your Label clothing (WYL/Maya Sherwood Photography)Wear Your Label clothing (WYL/Maya Sherwood Photography)
    Two friends in New Brunswick turned a dinner conversation about mental illness into a clothing brand that’s making headlines across the country.

    Wear Your Label “is a conscious clothing line with the goal to create conversations around mental health and ultimately end the stigma (in style),” the website reads.

    Wear Your Label

    Kyle MacNevin and Kayley Reed tell Yahoo Canada how it all began:

    “So about a year ago, we were having dinner and we were just sharing about our personal mental health stories. I live with generalized anxiety disorder and ADHD,” MacNevin says.

    “And I’m recovering from an eating disorder,” Reed adds.

    The two friends bonded over their vulnerable conversation and a mutual love for fashion. It wasn’t long before MacNevin proposed they merge their interests and launch Wear Your Label, a brand that would help start conversations and also give back to mental-health organizations.

    Wear Your Label's Sad But Rad shirt (WYL)Wear Your Label's Sad But Rad shirt (WYL)

    They were accepted into a business accelerator program called the Summer Institute through

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  • 10 inspirational models you should know

    This week, Madeline Stuart’s story went viral. The 18-year-old Australian aspiring model has Down syndrome — and is challenging the way we define beauty.

    “If the average person could see the beauty Maddy has inside, how loving and caring she is and if that is what people measured beauty on, then most of the models in the world would have Down syndrome,” said Madeline’s mother, Roseanne.

    Here are 10 inspirational models, including Stuart, to know:

    Madeline Stuart

    Madeline Stuart (Facebook)Madeline Stuart (Facebook)

    The aspiring model from Brisbane already has more than 250,000 likes on Facebook and has already landed a campaign for the clothing label Living Dead.

    “When people like Maddy get out and show who they are, and that their ability is more important than any disability they may have, it brings awareness to fact that people should not be limited by what others think of them,” Kristie Hagen of the National Down Syndrome Society told Yahoo Parenting.

    Winnie Harlow

    Chantelle Winnie/InstagramChantelle Winnie/Instagram

    Born Chantelle Brown-Young, this Canadian model (and "America's Next

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  • Adorable engaged couple gets a sneak peek at what it means to grow old together

    Usually when you vow to grow old with someone, you’re not offered a peek into their future — or a look at his/her future face.

    But that’s just the opportunity Cut, in collaboration with Field Day, offered one 20-something engaged couple.

    Tavis and KristieTavis and Kristie
    Makeup artists transformed Tavis and Kristie into their future selves in their 50s, 70s and 90s.

    The results were surprisingly moving. (Grab a tissue or two before watching the above video.)

    With each transformation, the couple tearfully reflected on the years and experiences they would have had together to get to that point.

    And with each transformation, Tavis appeared to be even more smitten with his aging future wife.

    The pair in their '50s'The pair in their '50s'
    “I hope you look like this [in your 50s]. You look fantastic,” he told her after the first makeover.

    The couple in their '70s'The couple in their '70s'
    “You look fantastic. You don’t look a day over 75,” he told her when she was in her 90s makeup, adding, “I think I look pretty darn good.”

    The couple in their '90s'The couple in their '90s'

    “Especially…being as we’re about to get married and embarking on all of that, it’s like, I

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  • Blind beauty vlogger Lucy Edwards inspires with her makeup tutorials

    Two years ago, Lucy Edwards, the beauty vlogger behind the YouTube channel Yesterday’s Wishes, went blind.

    The 19-year-old from Birmingham, England, is now sharing her makeup tips and tricks online, inspiring women to up their beauty game with her fail-proof techniques for applying cosmetics without a mirror — and, hopefully, changing the way sighted and non-sighted communities interact. 

    “My inspiration for posting my makeup routine online is my desire for change,” Edwards tells Yahoo Canada. “I wanted there to be a place on the Internet for other blind and disabled people like myself to come together as community. Posting videos allows me to interact with the sighted world, and as I’ve been sighted before I really want to maintain this part of myself. Posting online makes me feel happy and doing this helps me cope with my blindness.”

    YoutubeYoutube
    Edwards tells BuzzFeed Life that her sister, Alice, worked with her to create a makeup routine she could master on her own. It took her almost a year

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  • Australian tattoo artist’s double mastectomy tattoos go viral

    Courtesy Miriam 'Mim' d'Abbs/FacebookCourtesy Miriam 'Mim' d'Abbs/Facebook
    On Wednesday, Australian tattoo artist Mim d’Abbs posted a “very different” example of her work: tattoos that covered a woman’s scars following a double mastectomy.

    “My apologies to those that find this confrontational, but my client and I both thought it should be posted. This is a tattoo over reconstructive surgery, post a double mastectomy. Seeing my client smile, made this possibly the most important tattoo I've done to date,” d’Abbs wrote on Facebook.

    “I thank her for wanting to show people what can be done with art and skin, and for allowing me to do it.”

    The photos of the beautiful coverup tattoos went viral.

    “I’m absolutely gobsmacked, thoroughly gobsmacked, at the social media reaction,” d’Abbs, who has been a tattooist for 21 years, tells BuzzFeed News.

    "I've had a lot of requests to tattoo over scars on stomachs [but] that was the first time I've had a request to do a post-operative double mastectomy," she tells ABC Darwin.

    The entire process took only three and a half hours

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  • Summer’s coming: How to make ice cream without an ice cream maker

    ThinkstockThinkstock
    No ice cream maker? No problem.

    After a few warm days earlier in the month, I officially declared it ice-cream season, regardless of dipping temperatures in the week or so that followed.

    And because I’m a fan of Michael Pollan’s simple food rule, “Eat anything you want, just cook it yourself,” I thought I’d apply it to ice cream.

    I don’t have an ice cream maker. Nor do I have the space to store one in my tiny kitchen. Undeterred, I found plenty of encouragement — and maker-less methods — online.

    To boost my ice-cream confidence, I first tried what sounded like the world’s easiest recipe: one-ingredient ice cream.

    All photos courtesy Nadine KalinauskasAll photos courtesy Nadine Kalinauskas
    I froze chunks of banana in the freezer, then blended them into creamy submission before popping them back in the freezer to harden again. No, there’s no “cream” in this method — does that make it sorbet? — but it’s tasty and refreshing. And healthy. And threatens to kill your food processor. Frozen bananas are hard!

    The one-ingredient ice cream, after blending.The one-ingredient ice cream, after blending.
    Recipe alteration: I blended half the batch with some 

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