Sunday, December 29, 2013

Time to Prepare Your Skin for Harsh Winter Weather + Tips

I live in the north east and our winter season here in Pennsylvania can be absolutely brutal. Every year my skin gets really dry, chapped and at times cracks from the harsh winter weather. In addition to the typical dry skin problems that I suffer cancer runs really high in my family. My mother, two aunts and even my grandmother all had various forms of skin cancer. It is really important to protect your skin and to check for signs of skin cancer. Here are some tips from Dr. Richard Bezozo, M.D.
Now is the Time to Prepare Your Skin for Harsh Winter Weather

By Richard Bezozo, M.D., president of MoleSafe

Now that winter is upon us and the snowflakes have begun to fall, we often think back to the summer months filled with countless hours of sunshine. While looking back on those hot summer days, if you can remember receiving one or more bad sunburns, you may be at risk for melanoma. Studies show that one blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than double your chances of developing skin cancer later in life and repeated exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation is a major factor for most skin cancers, like melanoma, due to the damage it causes to your cells. This winter be proactive about your skin’s health by monitoring for changes in your skin and enroll in an early detection melanoma screening and surveillance program.

Performing self-checks on your skin and scheduling regular exams can help find and treat melanoma and other skin cancers effectively. Here are some tips on how to monitor your skin this winter:

Continue your sunscreen regimen through the winter. Although the winter sun is not warm, it is still very dangerous and can be harmful to our skin. UV rays are intense on both clear and cloudy winter days, making it essential to apply sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30, specifically to your face, hands, neck and scalp, at least 30 minutes before going outdoors. Due to the sun’s reflections off the snow and conditions that occur at high altitudes, be sure to apply a sunscreen that blocks UVA and UVB radiation when you go skiing and snowboarding, to reduce your risk of sunburns and other long-term effects, including premature aging of the skin and even skin cancer.

Check your own skin. You are the only person who sees your body every day, so be proactive in your skin health and start examining your body from head to toe and everywhere in between. Make sure you perform your self-check in a well-lit room in front of a full-length mirror. Also, keep a hand mirror handy to help look at areas that are hard to see, especially your back and scalp. Performing a skin self-exam each month is a small time investment in what could end up being a life-saving procedure.

Learn your skin patterns. The first time you perform a self-check, spend time carefully examining the entire surface. Be sure to learn the pattern of moles, blemishes, freckles and other lesions on your skin, so you will better be able to notice any changes during your next exam. Take note of any new growths and bring them to your physician’s attention at your next screening.

Know your moles. Normal moles are typically an evenly colored brown, tan or black spot on the skin. Most people have moles, and most are harmless. However, a warning sign of melanoma is a mole that is changing in size, shape or color.

Learn your ABCDEs. ABCDEs in melanoma detection represent asymmetry, border, color, diameter and evolving. Any changes in these characteristics can indicate an affected area and calls the need for immediate attention.

Enroll in an early detection screening and surveillance program. By enrolling in an early detection screening program, you can have peace of mind that your skin will stay healthy. Early detection of melanoma cannot be overstated, because when melanoma is found and treated in the initial stages, your chance of long-term survival is very high. Early detection screening programs are an ongoing way to ensure that you taking the most cautious measures to protect the skin you’re in.

Your skin is your body’s largest organ, so make skin health a priority during all months of the year, including these cold, snowy, winter months. If you have any questions or would like to learn more about enrolling in an early detection screening and surveillance program, please visit

Richard Bezozo, M.D., is the president of MoleSafe, the world’s most advanced melanoma screening program.

Friday, December 27, 2013

Crown Royal Black Manhattan Cocktail Recipe

New Year's Eve is just around the corner and many of us will be hosting New Year's Eve parties or attending one. As a party hostess myself, I am always looking for new cocktail recipes to whip up and serve to my party guests. This particular recipe was sent over to us to share with all of you. It looks delicious and perfect for any holiday celebration!

Crown Royal Black Manhattan Cocktail Recipe

1 oz. Crown Royal Black
0.25 oz. Cragganmore Distiller Edition
0.25 oz. sweet vermouth
1.25 oz. simple syrup
0.25 dashes of bitters
1 piece maraschino cherry

Stir all together in a mixing glass with ice. Strain into a martini glass. Garnish with a cherry.

Disclosure: You must be 21 years of age or older to consume alcoholic beverages. Please drink responsibly this holiday season. Recipe and photo is courtesy of Crown Royal Black.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Beat the Holiday Bulge with Tips from Fitness Coach Shelly Goldman

During the holiday season I always seem to pack on about 8 to 10 extra pounds and then after the first of the year I scramble trying to work all that extra weight. For some reason, I just indulge a little too much during the holiday season and have no will power when delicious food, cakes, candy and pies are slapped down in front of my face.

Well, if you are like is the time to think about that holiday food and that extra weight that many of us gain. Celebrity Fitness Coach Shelly Goldman is here to share some tips with all of us on how to Beat the Holiday Bulge this season! The tips she is giving us are timely and things we can all do!

Celebrity Fitness Coach Shelly Goldman Weighs in on Winter’s Worst Season for Snacking

How does a celebrity fitness coach instruct her clients on how to keep the calories off during the holidays? Just like this:

If you are going to a holiday party do not go on an empty stomach. Eat a small healthy and filling snack or meal before you go. Choose from lean protein, whole grains, fruit, vegetables, or non-fat dairy or dairy substitute. This will allow you to focus on socializing with the guests rather than zeroing in on the food.

When given the option at a buffet always choose the salad size or smaller plate. A full smaller plate is more satisfying than a half empty larger plate. Since we tend to finish everything on our plate start with taking just a few tablespoons of each dish to taste and enjoy.

Indulging in alcohol as you socialize and celebrate the holidays is customary, so plan your strategy in advance. Wine has fewer calories than any of those creamy or frozen mixed drinks. Alternate a glass of wine with a glass of water topped with a slice of lemon or lime, or seltzer. Be sure to drink plenty of water daily to stay well hydrated.

Do not simply graze your way through the holidays. Be mindful, eat three meals a day and try not to change your schedule during this tempting season. If you start with a filling breakfast and don’t skip lunch you are less likely to overindulge by dinnertime. Count a holiday party or dinner out as one of your three daily meals.

When bringing an appetizer or dessert to a party, prepare a healthy, filling, low calorie dish that you will also enjoy. Crudités with hummus, fresh fruit with fat-free yogurt or cubes of low-fat cheese, oatmeal raisin bites, sugar-free Jell-O. Choose from your favorite lower fat recipes.

Don’t forget time for exercise and keep moving to burn those extra holiday calories: Park farther away in the parking lot; take the stairs instead of the elevator; don’t load your arms with all the grocery bags for just one trip into the kitchen; and suggest a walk with your family after a large meal. Change it up, try a different form of exercise to keep your enthusiasm. If you swim try Spin or a Group Exercise class. Instead of aerobics try a weight bearing class such as a Bodypump or Bodysculpt.

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Homemade Bread Pudding Recipe

When I was a little girl I would sit in the kitchen and watch my grandmother bake for hours on end! Seriously, some of my best and favorite memories of my grandmother was when she would allow me to come into the kitchen to help her bake. She was a great cook!

Back in the early 70's times were tough and women would through together whatever they had on hand to feed their families. One of the recipes my grandmother made often was her homemade bread pudding recipe.

Homemade Bread Pudding Recipe

3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 quart milk
1 tsp. vanilla extract
4 slices of stale white bread
1/2 cup raisins
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Warm up the milk in a saucepan over low heat but do NOT boil it. Remove from heat. In a large mixing bowl beat the large eggs and then add the granulated sugar. Stir in the warm milk and vanilla extract. Tear the bread into pieces and stir them into the mixture. Fold in the raisins. Sprinkle in the nutmeg and the ground cinnamon until all ingredients are well combined. Pour the entire mixture into a casserole baking dish.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Bake in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until done. Remove from oven. You can serve it warm or refrigerate it and serve it chilled.

Sunday, December 15, 2013

Bohemia Apple Lime Cider Recipe

The weather outside has been terrible here in the east coast and many of us have just been staying indoors. Not only that, the holidays are just around the corner and we have all been busy wrapping packages and getting things ready for the big day.

If you are looking to sit back & relax during the holiday season or plan on doing any type of holiday is a great recipe for you to whip up and enjoy. It comes from our friends over at BOHEMIA and they wanted us to share the recipe with all of you.

* Makes 2 drinks

· 1 tablespoon each: coarse salt, sugar
· 1 cup fresh, unfiltered apple cider
· 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
· 1 bottle (12 ounces) Bohemia
· Fresh lime wedges


1. Mix salt and sugar on a small plate. Use a lime wedge to moisten the rim of two beer glass. Dip the rims into the salt mixture.
2. Mix cider and lime juice in small pitcher. Divide among 2 beer glasses. Top with Bohemia. Serve with a lime wedge.

Disclosure: Recipe and photo is courtesy of Bohemia. You must be 21 years of age or older to consume alcohol. Please drink responsibly.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Coastal Holiday Tree Decorations and Beach Ornaments

The holidays are quickly approaching and this year we will have 2 Christmas trees here in our home. One is a 7 foot tall super large artificial tree that will hold all of our family ornaments that we have collected over the past 28 years. That beast of a tree will be in our family room throughout the holiday season. We will start decorating that one in a few days and it takes us 3-4 days to complete.

New this year is our 5 foot artificial Christmas tree and this one is going into our dining room. I have always wanted a coastal theme'd holiday tree and this year I am getting one! For the past 5 years I have been purchasing coastal & beach ornaments and I finally have enough of them to decorate an entire tree! Yay!

We started decorated the coastal theme'd tree a few days ago and I still have some ornaments to add to it, my coastal garland and the tree topper but for now I thought I would share a few photos of our coastal holiday tree "in progress". In a few days I will share more photos once it is finally done and the rest of my coastal ornaments that I ordered arrive.

Now that our little grand daughter is 4 1/2 years old...the Christmas holiday has become a big deal around here again and it's really fun for our entire family to have a little one to enjoy the holidays with. Have any of you started decorating your Christmas trees yet? When do you usually decorate them and for how long do you leave them up?

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Fight the Holiday Stress with These Helpful Tips

Dr. Nicolle Ionascu, author of “The Power of Journaling: A Guided Pathway to Insight,” offers tips to overcome Holiday anxiety

Holiday stress is inevitable; from buying gifts, hosting family to preparing a feast for your loved ones during the holidays is enough to rob the season of cheer. Clinical Neuropsychologist, Dr. Nicolle Ionascu, reminds us of a simple art that, when used diligently, can renew the restless mind. Her book, “The Power of Journaling: A Guided Pathway to Insight.” The book introduces the natural and holistic art of daily writing that can undoubtedly break the stress barrier and allow enjoyment for you this Holiday season.

Dr. Nicolle provides an outline of tips to help individuals have a great and stress free Holiday season.

Organize Your Thoughts

Buying gifts is perhaps the number one stress enhancer during holidays. An extremely helpful way to go about buying gifts is a detailed list; who, what, and where certain gifts could be bought. Even if you are aware of your own anxious tendencies, addressing them can be incredibly frustrating. Sadly, people attempt desperate and unhealthy measures - anything - to crush their anxiety. Writing down reactions and feelings helps organize thoughts and decrease mental chaos, which adds to stress.

Write Them Down

Relatives during the holidays can add to more stress, especially when trying to accommodate everyone. Whether its stress from out-of-town guests, parents, in-laws to children - striving to accomplish a fun time for everyone, can at times take away from your own enjoyment. Letting go of pent up feelings in a controlled way, such as writing, helps to alleviate stress.

Step back. Enjoy yourself & those around you

Journaling keeps people from releasing anger and stress on those around them. Writing is a great coping mechanism with life’s difficulties in a different and more freeing way. It helps individuals set a time for themselves to release whatever stress they may have, and in doing so alleviates pent up emotions. Holiday’s are special because of tradition, and spending time with loved ones, and journaling can be a great escape to keep grounded and remember to have a great time.

About Dr. Nicolle Ionascu: Dr. Nicolle Ionascu graduated from the University of California at Berkeley in the late 1990’s with a degree in English Literature. She then went on to earn her Master’s Degree and Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the Wright Institute in Berkeley, specializing in Neuropsychology. Dr. Nicolle works as a clinical neuropsychologist in the department of neurology at Children’s Hospital and Research Center in Oakland, CA. She is a contributing author for and, having published over sixty articles for these sites in the past year. For more information on Dr. Nicolle Napier-Ionascu or her new book The Power of Journaling: A Guided Pathway to Insight please visit Dr. Nicolle’s website at