Blog Posts by Nadine Kalinauskas

  • Expert tips for low-stress holiday entertaining

    There are many things you can do to reduce holiday entertaining stress. (Thinkstock)There are many things you can do to reduce holiday entertaining stress. (Thinkstock)
    Hosting a holiday party this winter and dreading the stress that inevitably comes with it?

    Shine On recently asked Sebastien Centner, entertaining expert and director of Eatertainment Special Events, how to keep stress levels at a minimum when entertaining this holiday season. 

    Shine On: How early should we start planning a holiday party?

    Centner: The earlier the better! But of course then life gets in the way, doesn’t it? My suggestion is pick the date and send out a invite or save the date as soon as possible. While the planning and organization can always be done closer to your holiday party date, with how busy the holiday season can get you want your party on people’s calendar before everyone else’s! 

    When do invitations go out? Do they need to be snail-mailed or are email invites acceptable?

    I personally tend towards printed invitations for my events both because you rarely receive printed invites anymore but also because the invitation sets the tone for the event — stylish,

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  • How to take your oatmeal to the next level

    Warm oatmeal is the perfect breakfast for cool-weather mornings. (Thinkstock)Warm oatmeal is the perfect breakfast for cool-weather mornings. (Thinkstock)With temperatures dropping, we’re opting for cozier breakfasts this November. 

    Shine On recently spoke to registered nutritionist Joey Shulman, who told us all we need to know about oatmeal — and why we should feel good about our new heartier breakfast choice. 

    It’s good for us. 

    “Oatmeal is an excellent breakfast for the cooler months as it gives us that warmth and comfort we are often looking for!” Shulman says. “Oatmeal is filled with fibre and iron. It is a gluten-free grain that helps to stabilize our blood sugar levels and a serving provides us with about five grams of protein. Steel cut oats have a lower glycemic index so they will not cause as much of a spike in our blood sugar levels.”

    Soak before you cook. 

    For the time-crunched, overnight oats is an easy go-to breakfast. We asked Shulman if there was a nutritional difference between soaking and cooking our oats. Apparently we should do both!

    “Soaking your eats before consumption increases their digestibility. I always

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  • Everything you need to know about Daylight Saving Time coming to an end

    This weekend marks the end of Daylight Saving Time (DST), so be sure to turn your clocks back an hour before you go to bed on Saturday night.

    Actual time the “fall back” comes into effect: 2 a.m. on Sunday, November 2.

    “Springing forward” often gets a bad reputation for throwing us off kilter — and increasing risks of heart attacks and car accidents — every spring, but does “falling back” have any effects on our health?

    Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend. Don't forget to change your clocks and smoke alarm batteries. (Thinkstock)Daylight Saving Time ends this weekend. Don't forget to change your clocks and smoke alarm batteries. (Thinkstock)

    Better sleep. 

    Finally, we’re back to normal. 

    Last year, German researchers claimed that sleep cycles never get on track during DST, with night owls suffering the most. 

    "The circadian clock does not change to the social change," researcher Till Roenneberg said, according to HealthDay News. “During the winter, there is a beautiful tracking of dawn in human sleep behaviour, which is completely and immediately interrupted when Daylight Saving Time is introduced in March.”

    The extra hour of sleep can also tell you if you’re sleep-deprived. If you wake up before your

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  • Florida man orders world's most expensive Starbucks drink

    This July, 23-year-old medical student Sameera Raziuddin thought she broke the record for most expensive Starbucks drink by ordering a 60-shot frappuccino worth $57.75.

    She even brought her own jug to hold the 192-ounce beverage. 

    But earlier that month, Jarrod Johnson in West Virginia ordered a record-breaking 77-shot $71.35 Starbucks drink. He had baristas fill a cooler with the massive drink

    Yesterday, a Florida man broke the record once more. 

    William Lewis ordered a 101-shot “Mega” latte worth $83.75 and because he’s a holder of the My Starbucks Rewards loyalty program’s Limited Edition Metal Card, the drink was actually free

     

    William Lewis' 101-shot “Mega” latte. (Image via Facebook)William Lewis' 101-shot “Mega” latte. (Image via Facebook)

    Into the 160-ounce novelty cup Lewis ordered online, a barista poured a grande latte, followed by 99 more shots of espresso and 17 pumps of vanilla syrup. 

    "It’s an internet challenge," Lewis, a political and business consultant and talk show host tells TODAY. “I wanted to beat out the record.”

    Lewis shared the giant cup of coffee, which contained

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  • The latest beauty craze: pumpkins?!

    Pumpkins: they aren’t just for eating — or carving — anymore. 

    In fact, pumpkin, which boasts a long list of beauty benefits, has recently been popping up in skincare products and spa treatments.

    Pumpkins are rich in alpha-hydroxy acids, make great exfoliators, and are packed with carotene, vitamins A and C, anti-inflammatory properties and even have natural UV protectors. 

    “The pumpkin facial is nourishing and skin brightening—it removes dead skin cells and it’s very suitable for sensitive skin types because it’s gentle,”  Maria Angelica Hurtado, a spa manager at Equinox in New York City, tells Forbes. 

    “Pumpkin masks and moisturizers nourish your skin and promote the absorption of nutrients like vitamins A and C,” she adds.

    ThinkstockThinkstock
    Skincare expert Kate Somerville agrees. 

    "Pumpkin, a fruit enzyme, is considered a natural ‘chemical’ from fruit and is a protein-digesting enzyme, which means that when applied topically it ‘eat dead skin cells," Somerville tells StyleList.

    Celebrity facialist

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  • How to keep your jack-o'-lantern from rotting before Halloween

    Keep your jack-o'-lantern looking fresh with a few simple tips. (Thinkstock)Keep your jack-o'-lantern looking fresh with a few simple tips. (Thinkstock)

    Worried that your freshly carved pumpkin won’t last until Halloween? We’ve rounded up some of the best tips and tricks to keep those jack-o’-lanterns from rotting before the big night. 

    Bleach it. 

    The top tested-and-recommended tip online involves bleach. 

    Before carving, fully submerge the pumpkin in a bleach-water mixture — 1 tsp of bleach per gallon of water — for about eight hours. 

    Pat dry with paper towels before carving your pumpkin. 

    Once you’ve carved the pumpkin, spray the outside and inside with the bleach solution, then, to prevent mould from growing in any moist spots, soak up any excess moisture. 

    Repeat the bleach-spray method every day. 

    Lifehacker suggests using a bleach-based spray like Clorox Cleanup with Bleach if you don’t want to mix your own mild bleach mixture. 

    What if that pumpkin starts to look wilted? Rehydrate it the same way. 

    "Pumpkins put out for less than a week, especially in a cool climate, generally don’t need to be rehydrated. If your pumpkins are

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  • Candy corn-inspired desserts perfect for Halloween

    This week is a candy-corn lover’s dream. We’ve rounded up some crave-worthy candy corn-inspired recipes sure to satisfy every sweet tooth.

    Celebrate the season with candy corn-inspired recipes. (Thinkstock)Celebrate the season with candy corn-inspired recipes. (Thinkstock)

    Make your own:

    You can satisfy your cravings year round if you know how to make candy corn yourself. 

    You don’t need industrial equipment — or four to five days — to make your own candy corn, thanks to this Homemade Candy Corn recipe from Cakespy’s Jessie Oleson. 

    “This surprisingly simple recipe yields large, plump candy kernels infused with a sweet vanilla flavour. I found that using salted butter adds a nice, rich finish. Conclusion? These homespun tricolour treats are definitely worth the time and effort. Once you’ve tasted them, you may never buy candy corn by the bag again,” Oleson writes

    Bright idea: use red and green food colouring and you might be able to get away with snacking on these at a Christmas party, too!

    Alton Brown also has a recipe for Candy Corn — and offers step-by-step photos of the process.

    Desserts inspired by the look of

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  • Is it safe to eat mouldy food?

    When you spot a blue corner growing on a block of cheese, should you toss the entire thing? Or can you scrape off the offending bit of mould and keep using that cheddar?

    Can you still eat mouldy cheddar cheese? (Thinkstock)Can you still eat mouldy cheddar cheese? (Thinkstock)

    According to experts on BBC’s Trust Me, I’m a Doctor, it’s actually pretty safe to cut off the mould and keep using some foods — but not all. 

    Here’s a rundown of what you can keep, and what you should toss. 

    Keep

    Mouldy hard, dry cheese. Hard cheeses like cheddar and Parmesan are too dry to allow mould to thrive, so mould rarely spreads too deeply into the cheese. Cut off the mould — removing an extra centimetre or so below the visible mould — and you’re good to go. And make sure to rewrap the cheese in fresh packaging. 

    Mouldy blue cheese. Moulds that are part of the manufacturing process are fine. If surface mould starts growing on hard cheeses like Gorgonzola and Stilton, cut it off and the surrounding area before using.

    Mouldy firm vegetables. If the vegetable is firm, like a carrot or pepper, cut off the mould

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  • Burning off the binge: How to work off your Halloween candy

    ThinkstockThinkstock
    Halloween candy is tiny. Surely it can’t do that much damage to your diet, right?

    Well, dust off those running shoes. We’re taking a look at some of our favourite trick-or-treat indulgences and what it takes to burn them off.

    Candy Corn (140 calories)

    ThinkstockThinkstock

    Just one small bag (about 26 pieces) of Brach’s Candy Corn will cost you an extra 19 minutes on the tennis court, or 48 minutes of marching in your local Halloween parade

    Tootsie Roll (25 calories)

    ThinkstockThinkstock
    You’ll burn off more than just one Tootsie Roll while trick-or-treating with your kids. Walk for a quarter-mile — about 500 steps — and your waistline will never know you indulged. 

    Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bar (67 calories)

    Dance off your chocolate bar at the costume party in just 15 minutes. 

    Two fun-size packs of Milk Chocolate M&Ms (180 calories)

    Courtesy M&M'sCourtesy M&M's
    Because you can’t stop at one. Burn off Friday night’s candy binge at an apple orchard on Saturday morning. One hour of apple picking should do the trick. 

    Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup (110

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  • How to pull off bright lip colour

    Last night in Toronto, Beyonce’s sister, Solange Knowles made a surprise appearance at World Mastercard Fashion Week as the DJ at the Joe Fresh party

    The 28-year-old trendsetter showed up in a Joe Fresh leather jacket, wearing the coolest shade of violet lipstick — isn’t she always wearing the best candy-coloured shades?

    And now we’re obsessed with her bright lip look.

    Solange Knowles at the Joe Fresh party at Toronto Fashion Week on Monday. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young)Solange Knowles at the Joe Fresh party at Toronto Fashion Week on Monday. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young)

    Not sure how to pull it off? Here are a few tips for making the bold look your own — without looking like you’re trying too hard. 

    Pick Your Shade

    Start with what you’re attracted to: reds, oranges, pinks or purples. 

    “Finding a hot pink lip colour is like finding any other accessory — choose what you’re attracted to!” says International Lead Makeup Artist for NARS Cosmetics, James Boehmer. “Hot pink, fuchsia, magenta — the colour looks great with all skin tones and is worn just like you wear any other statement making lip — with confidence.” 

    Refinery29 calls the purple lipstick trend “surprisingly flattering”:

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