Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Anne Parris
Anne Parris's posts

Post has attachment

Post has attachment

Post has attachment
Isn’t it interesting how the time you spend in the sun, your smoking habits, and even your diet come back to haunt your skin years later? Sadly, the delicate skin around the eyes is usually the first place to betray age. This is especially true since aging itself reduces the speed at which cells repair. So, carefully choose anti-aging ingredients when shopping for the best under eye creams to combat wrinkles, dark spots, and eye puffiness.

Here are some of our favorite eye creams selected for their active ingredients. Make sure to select a product based on ingredients in it proven to actually work. Don’t just pay for fancy packaging and expensive advertising. The best under eye cream isn’t necessarily the most expensive one.

Don’t buy snake oil! (Unless snake oil works on wrinkles. Because in that case, I would totally buy it.)

Please note that links may be affiliate links. If you click and buy, we get a small percentage of what you would pay anyway.
The best anti-aging eye creams for wrinkles, aging, and dark circles. Beauty and skin care for women over 50. Save

This award-winning eye cream offers to improve the skin around your eyes and keep it glowing. Dr. Brandt’s Xtend Your Youth eye cream is made to keep the eye area hydrated and moist, and is gentle enough not to cause irritation. This treatment claims to revitalize your eyes and give you a more youthful appearance.

This eye cream is light, refreshing, and potentially the perfect product to relieve the tiredness around your eyes. Just a small quantity around the outer contours of your eyes and under eyes is enough to reduce wrinkles and fine lines.

Key ingredients are a blend of three antioxidents: green tea, white tea, and grape seed antioxidant. It also contains red rose wine for additional antioxidant protection, and vitamin C to diminish the look of lines and wrinkles.

This combo eye cream reduces both lines around the eyes and dark spots and also illuminates the eye contour. Reviews for Vichy Idealia Eyes call it a fantastic product for treating poor circulation and for refreshing the area around the eyes.

It contains caffeine to reduce puffiness, vitamin C to enrich skin with antioxidants, and is packaged with a silicone applicator for easy application. Citric acid, shea butter, and silica are the active ingredients in this cream which make it suitable for both brightening shadows and also serving as a make-up base.

Like many eye creams, this smooths the skin under the eyes, removes the puffy and baggy areas, and claims to give you an entirely youthful and relaxed look. It contains caffeine, lavender essential oil, dimethicone, and glycerin.

The best time to use Garnier’s SkinActive Miracle Anti-Fatigue Eye Gel Cream is at night. Carefully apply it under your eyes, ensuring that you blend it finely. It relieves the look of fatigue while you sleep.

Clinically tested for erasing dark circles around the eyes, Remescar’s Eye Bags and Dark Circles cream claims instant results.

The presence of a bi-peptide complex and clay minerals helps to tighten the skin and reduce puffiness around the eyes. Also, it fights the tired look that comes with being stressed, i.e., life.

When you wash your face and apply it under your eyes once a day, take the time to gently pat it in properly so that it can blend into your skin. It also contains sodium silicate and shea butter glycerides, which are key ingredients in the cream.

The ingredients in this eye gel fight the hell out of free radicals. Appropriate for any skin type, it protects the area around the eyes and eliminates sagging which is common in many women over 50.

Since it contains serum, AOX+ Eye Gel absorbs easily into the skin. Apply the product in the morning, avoiding getting too close to your eyes. Active ingredients include caffeine, vitamin C, ferulic acid, and sodium hydroxide. These ingredients all contribute to maintaining younger and fresher-looking skin.

SkinCeuticals AOX Eye GelSave

With any of these under eye creams you can fight many of the surface signs of fatigue and aging. Remember, age is just a number! By using the best under eye creams you can feel beautiful at any age.

Looking for more beauty products for women over 40 and 50? Read one woman’s review of Bobbi Brown cosmetics.

Post has attachment
Find your perfect summer beach read here and then stop by her blog to see what else she recommends.

Looking for the Perfect Beach Read?

When you plan your summer vacation you need to know what books are the best summer beach reads.

Because at the pool you'll want to immediately jump into a book when you get there (after generously applying sun screen, of course).

These new releases will get you through your typical summer reading slump.

There are affiliate links provided throughout this article to help you grab a copy quickly and support Midlife Boulevard in the process. Thank you.

5 Required Summer Reads

Anything Is Possible, Elizabeth Strout

Elizabeth Strout's latest is filled with familial connections and struggling relationships.

A book of short stories pulls together character after character. It draws you in in such a way you'll find yourself unable to put this book down. But what I think is great about it is that you can.

I love when books give you a moment to breathe - and Strout does that here with a shift from story to story. Anything Is Possible is a must read this summer. Read this one before everyone else does to avoid spoilers.

Into The Water, Paula Hawkins

Fans of The Girl On The Train can't wait to get their hands on Hawkins' new release. And it does not disappoint.

Told from the perspective of a number of characters, it's the story of a woman found at the bottom of the town river. You'll guess at the turn of every page. Want a new psychological thriller to dive into? This is it.

One Perfect Lie, Lisa Scottoline

Lisa Scottoline has recently become one of my favorite authors. It's not that she's a new writer, it's that I'm new to her work. Her back-catalog is full of titles I can't wait to dig in to.

One Perfect Lie has the perfect setting, the perfect community, and, quite possibly, the perfect lie. This suburban town has no idea what's happening within it. And neither do we. But I can't wait to find out!

The Forever Summer, Jamie Brenner

I love a great beach read, and The Forever Summer is just that. Just look at the cover! I can't be the only one who wants that hat, right?

A story of generations, family dynamics, connections, secrets and more - set against the New England coast? This book is going to absolutely be the perfect beach read. Described as a 'delicious page-turner' I'm more than ready to grab my copy.

In This Moment, Karma Brown

Karma Brown quickly became one of my favorite authors with her first book, Come Away With Me.

She knows just how to write characters filled with emotion, how to tell a tale that will take your breath away as you turn each page. Brown is a fascinating storyteller with characters you feel you know and identify with.

I feel that In This Moment will be one of everyone's favorite summer reads.

So, there you have it - a handful of books you'll simply have to pick up as Mother Nature turns up the heat! Looking for more? Check out my post on 14 Beach Reads You'll Dive Right Into This Summer.

Post has attachment
Ten ways to dress longer and leaner. Look ten pounds lighter if you shop after you read this. 

Post has attachment
Is There Life After Parenting?

Read more life after parenting from Christine Field on her site, RealMomLife.

Like many moms, I gave my ALL to mothering. All my energy and creativity. Mothering grew and shaped me in ways I could not have imagined.

But time, toddlers, and teens have marched on. The days of up-to-my-elbows mothering have drawn to a close.

I did not easily transition into a season of new interests and pursuits. It has been filled with stops and starts, wrong turns and rerouting.

The transition turned out to be a process of looking ahead and dreaming dreams, looking back and recapturing passion, and looking around to explore new frontiers.

Looking Ahead to Life After Children

Clarity began to emerge when I took time to examine what interests and passions have lain dormant while I invested in the sacred calling of motherhood. As I mulled these matters, I found myself giddy with anticipation!

Why? This is the time when I can focus on myself, without guilt or hesitation, without needy little people pulling at my shirt or asking to borrow the car keys. It is the time to unpack and reignite my passions and fuel my mojo.

What about you? Has it been a while since you felt enthusiasm? Indeed, are you trying to identify what lights you up?

When you were younger you were probably curious about a hundred things, some of which matured into passions. Maybe you loved a film so much that you had to watch it every single day. Maybe you loved an author so much that you read everything they wrote. Or maybe you were fascinated with dinosaurs and were sure you were going to become an archeologist?

So how do you reconnect to those old passions you once had? How do you reignite yourself?

Living the un-ignited life is like being ready to cook a gourmet meal while the pilot light on the stove is off. You know what you need to do.

Looking Back to Rediscover Passions

One of the best ways to find out what you are passionate about today is to think about what you used to be passionate about.

In other words, what didja usta do?

When you were younger you probably wanted to be an astronaut or a princess, or both, and it’s only as we get older that we are told to find something more “adult” to be interested in.

For me, it was writing and music. I had urges to express myself that could not be silenced. Then I realized that the life of an artist was more struggle than I was willing to endure. So I went to law school. Go figure.

But just because we’ve been forced to bury those old interests, that doesn’t mean they aren’t there still bubbling (perhaps boiling!) under the surface.

And just because you might not realistically become an astronaut, that doesn’t mean you can’t still chase a passion for space, or for travel, or for new horizons in studying the cosmos– whatever it was that originally drove you to feel so strongly.

Spend some time thinking about what you’ve lost touch with. What was it that once captured your interest and imagination? What didja usta do? How did that make you feel?

Looking Around For New Passions

Sometimes you will find that you have lost interest in the things that once were so amazing to you. If that’s the case, no worries. I lost my ambition to be a flute player with the Chicago Symphony, but I never lost my love of words.

There is nothing wrong with finding new things to be passionate about. Or, you could also try adding a new spin to an old passion. For instance, while I once fancied myself as a broody Irish fiction author, I now joyously write non-fiction articles and books.

Rediscovering old passions is about respect for the past, but it’s also about growth and development and not forcing a square peg back into an old, round hole.

(When I was a sophomore in high school, one of my teachers wrote in my autograph book that I WAS a square peg in a round hole. At the time, I thought it a bit off-putting. Now I rejoice in it!)

Moving Forward Once You Have an Empty Nest

So, where are you at?

Are you willing to take a little look back to see life after parenting?

What didja usta do?

Pay attention to how you feel when you think about those things. Do they light you up and make you feel excited? You’re on the right track.

What if you look back and conclude – meh, as the kids say. Nothing quite grabs you. That means you need to create some new experiences to try on some NEW pursuits and talents. The world is so full of wonderful things that you WILL trip across something delightful.

It’s your time. What will you do with it?

It’s time to reignite mom!

Post has attachment
Downsizing Your Home?

As a Boomer, one of these days you might face an inevitable event: downsizing. Will it be depressing? No, if from the get-go there are positive thoughts connected with the decision and it’s done at a good time–like when all the signs point to leaving the big house.

Because it’s liberating when family members clear out high school keepsakes and memorabilia and that ugly college futon that even your adult children refuse to sleep on.

Freedom from clutter and the lightness and openness of the space you eventually occupy (no matter what size it is ) can be delightful.

Anne Morrow Lindbergh wrote:

The bare beauty of the channeled whelk tells me that one answer, and perhaps a first step, is in simplification of life, in cutting out some of the distractions…I must find a balance somewhere, or an alternating rhythm…

What to Consider Before you Downsize Your Home

Consider: it’s good to be ahead of the game. What if a health issue arises that limits movement or requires hospitalization. Then this major life-project is either indefinitely postponed or put in the hands of someone else.

We begged my 90-year-old aunt to move when she was relatively healthily; predictably, she said no. After a broken hip, the cleaning and downsizing was a painful event–all she could do was agree as I asked “Should we give this away?” “Should we throw this away?” Her life! And I had to dispose of it.

Many of us have been in the home or apartment of a person who for many reasons didn’t downsize when they left that house with all the bedrooms. Things are jammed into a smaller space that doesn’t allow easy movement. The home feels uncomfortable, like you can’t breathe. With forethought and good advice Boomers today are likely NOT to do this.
Four Downsizing Facts to Consider

1. Condos are usually on one level, like apartments; accessing a condo on an upper floor requires using stairs or an elevator.
Negatives: The ability to get outside is limited; you might have a tiny porch or deck with little to no privacy.
Positives: Usually condos provide living space on one level.
2. Townhomes offer the opposite choices, often providing that garden or space to get outside, but usually composed of two stories with stairs.
3. When thinking about choosing a future space, cost will probably be a major consideration–but while crunching numbers, consider comfort too. This might be the last home you occupy and there is nothing better for one’s future than comfort.
4. Once you have found that new home, make a floor plan or template, whether it’s one room or something larger.

Have your measurements indicate placement of doors, windows, appliances, built-in shelves, linen storage, heater vents, etc. This will allow you to know exactly the space you will have for furniture placement.

Post has attachment
What’s Acupressure?
I just got an acupressure mat to test out its pain-relieving properties. When my dad had cancer, his doctor recommended he get acupuncture treatment for pain management. I knew that acupuncture was a form of ancient Chinese medicine where very thin needles are used on very specific areas of the skin. So when I was looking at a website that sells acupressure mats as an exercise recovery tool, I wanted to learn more about it.

Acupressure is different from acupuncture in that there are thankfully no needles. Typically, a practitioner uses hands or even elbows to apply pressure to different areas of the body. Pressure in specific areas yield results in other areas. For example, pressure on the space between your index finger and thumb can relief a tension headache. I’ve even applied pressure there on my own hand to help stifle a sneeze!

Reasons to Try Acupressure

Headaches seem to be the main reason people seek acupressure treatment from a trainer provider. Migraines, sinus headaches, and tension headaches can all find relief from this treatment. It can also help with premenstrual cramps, neck and shoulder pain, and muscle pain from strained muscles after exercise.

Acupressure mat to relieve headaches, menstrual cramps, and aid in exercise recovery. Save
Click to check out the Pro Source acupressure mat and pillow.

This last point was interesting to me. I’ve been doing more stretching and toning exercise, and the next day my legs and back are sore and achy. I tested an acupressure mat and neck pillow sent to me for the purpose of review by ProSource. No other compensation was received and all opinions are my own. Please note that links may be affiliate links.

I’ve had back problems since I delivered my first baby. That kid hung ten on my tailbone on the way out, and it’s never been the same since. If I exercise and strain my, ahem, gluteas maximus, it pulls my coccyx out of joint.

Also, when I had a blessed, blessed massage last year, the massage lady told me I had unusually tight gluteas minimus muscles. I’d take that as a compliment, but I think she meant I just hold a lot of tension around the top of my butt.

How to Choose an Acupressure Mat

I’ve been laying on my acupressure mat and pillow for ten minutes during the day, and I try for a few more minutes right before I get ready for bed.

Here are the features I like about my mat from ProSource. First of all, it’s bright blue, which just cheers me up. The mat comes in a variety of colors, from even-more-cheerful orange to I-don’t-care grey.

It’s easy to clean. The cover slips of and can be washed. That’s really a must for any fabric that might come into contact with my post-workout body. I think if I was routinely using it right after a sweaty workout, I might cover it with a sheet. That way the fabric would be protected, but I’d still get the benefit of all the pressure points.

My mat is covered in small plastic discs, and each disc has many raised points. The points aren’t sharp enough to ever break skin, but I suspect stepping on one would be even worse than stepping on LEGOs. They are about as pointy as plastic can be without being cutting-sharp.
Acupressure mat discs for pain relief.Save

The mat and pillow have 6,210 acupressure points that help relieve stress, stimulate endorphins, reduce pain, and increase energy.

The neck pillow is separate from the mat itself, so I can roll it or move it higher or lower on my neck and the bottom of my skull. It’s easy to adjust once I’m already on the mat.

What You Need to Know about an Acupressure Mat

It’s intense, man! My husband can’t even handle it. I had to work myself up the first time I used the mat. I recommend not using it the first time with any bare skin.

After I relaxed into it, the pressure was very relaxing and even pleasant. You don’t feel each little point. since your weight is distributed across all the little points, it’s not uncomfortable. It’s almost like a little massage in the way it makes my skin feel stimulated.

Post has attachment
Morton Salt's Next Door Chef, Nashville

This post was sponsored by Morton’s Salt as part of their Next Door Chef Campaign. All opinions are, of course, my own.

Morton Salt Next Door Chef
It's not every night you're invited to be a guest at dinner, and a camera crew comes along to film the event. See the girl on the left, in blue, saying "Seeeeeeea Salt"? Chef Karl is in the center; Chef Travis is on the right.
This post was sponsored by Morton’s Salt as part of their Next Door Chef Campaign. All opinions are, of course, my own.

Last fall, I had the opportunity to attend a very exciting event, right here in little old Nashville: Morton Salt's Next Door Chef event.

On Monday, March 20th, the video of that event went live! If you haven't seen it yet, you can watch it here:

Or right here:

As you may remember, at the event, a local Nashvillian who is a full-time musician, as well as a novice in the kitchen, Travis, was coached by Chef Karl Worley, the chef of the very popular Nashville restaurant, Biscuit Love.

Together, the two of them, plus Chef Worley's staff, produced a one-night-only "pop-up restaurant" called "Indie's Kitchen" (named for Travis' daughter), and served an amazing meal to a select group of guests, right in Travis' backyard!

Chefs on Camera: Morton Salt Next Door Chef Nashville
Chefs on Camera: Chef Karl Worley, Founder and Executive Chef of Biscuit Love on the left, Travis on the right
Travis' goal, he semi-joked with us, was to impress his gorgeous wife, Claire. (What woman wouldn't love a guy like that?)

But, truth to tell, he also hoped to gain some cooking skills he could share with their daughter, Indie, and their family and friends for years to come. After all, isn't eating what brings us all together? All of God's chilluns gotta eat. So why not make great food, while you're at it?

Morton Salt Next Door Chef Event Nashville
Our host, Travis, as he explains that impressing his wife was why he ~really~ wanted this gig. I'd say he surpassed his goal!
Chef Worley was there to teach Travis some very practical tips on how to make food more delicious. One area where home chefs typically struggle is in using the appropriate seasoning in food.

Because Morton Salt knows this, they want to raise awareness among home cooks of the different types of seasoning "tools" that Morton Salt has to offer. These different types of salt are not just for professional chefs, but are easily accessible for home cooks, as well.

I use all three types in my cooking. And if you only use regular table salt for ALL your cooking needs, well, you're doing it wrong!

Morton Sea Salt Coarse; Kosher; and Sea Salt Fine
The three types of salt: Morton Sea Salt - Coarse; Morton Kosher Salt; and Morton Sea Salt - Fine.
Morton Kosher Salt has the largest sized crystal, of the three salts. It adds a gourmet touch to the dish, and is the preferred salt of so many chefs because it is easy to control for perfectly seasoned food.
Morton Coarse Sea Salt adds an artistic “pop”, that you and your dinner guests can see and taste. The larger-than-table salt crystals provide contrasting texture.
Morton Fine Sea Salt still adds a “pop”, yet is fine enough for blending in all cooking. The fine salt crystals dissolve quickly making them perfect for marinades, soups, sauces and dressings.
The meal was remarkable on several levels: for a novice chef to cater a meal for a crowd is a huge undertaking.

To have a professional chef, and his staff, and a camera crew entering your home, invading your kitchen, and decorating your back yard patio could have caused a lesser person's knees to tremble, but Travis was amazing! He and Chef Worley and the entire team produced a lovely springtime meal, with a Southern flair.

All the recipes from that meal are available to you on Morton Salt's Next Door Chef website, and I highly recommend you check them out.

Each dish was inspiring in its own way, and you could really taste how salt transformed each menu item.

Lemon Spring Tea: Morton's Salt NextDoorChef Nashville
This was probably my favorite menu item of the evening, due to the preserved lemons used as garnish for the drink.
As we entered "Indie's Kitchen", we were served a lovely Lemon Spring Tea (available with or without vodka!) from the bar. It was garnished with a beautifully mellowed slice of preserved lemon.Preserving lemons by storing them in a salt brine produces something extraordinary in the way of flavor.

I was so excited by this recipe for preserving lemons that they shared with us (I often see preserved lemons called for as an ingredient in Moroccan and Middle Eastern dishes) that I'm re-creating these, today, in my own home.

Expect to see a recipe or two in the near future on my blog, utilizing the lemons I preserved following their recipe.

Lemon Spring Tea: Morton's Salt NextDoorChef Nashville
A shot of the bar, as we entered Indie's Kitchen.
Pimento Cheese, a Southern staple, was served on a twice baked cracker. You would not believe the difference a brushing of butter, a sprinkling of coarse sea salt, and a few minutes in the oven can make to a lowly saltine cracker!

The Salt Roasted Beet Salad with Goat cheese was a reminder of how delicious a fresh roasted beet can be. The salt on which the beets were roasted conducted heat evenly and brought the flavor of the beets to life.

Kosher Salt: Morton Salt's Chef Next Door
It's amazing what a difference the right salt makes!
Chicken Country Captain is a chicken curry dish with a longstanding southern tradition: I've made this dish myself, and it is outstanding! The Country Captain was served on dish of Cheese Grits that were perfectly seasoned.

The meal was finished with a Biscuit Strawberry Shortcake, and Chef Worley used a salt-and-sugar brine on the strawberries to help coax out the juices. Desserts ~do~ need salt, to bring life to the sweetness. What would a biscuit be, after all, without salt? But if you want to go lighter on the salt with that particular recipe...well, I won't fault you.

Morton's Salt NextDoorChef Nashville
Chef Karl and Chef Travis weren't the only ones to make our evening memorable! The entire staff did a great job.
Are You a Next Door Chef?

The event in Nashville was Morton Salt's second Next Door Chef event, the first having been shot in Chicago, which happens to also be the home city of Morton Salt.

The Nashville event was tied to springtime cooking, so the recipes they are releasing with the video are perfect for this time of year. Their next Next Door Chef event will be in New Orleans, this summer, so stay tuned to their website for some amazing summer cooking and grilling inspiration.

You can go to mortonsalt/nextdoorchef to see more pictures from our meal, and learn how you could actually host your own Next Door Chef party, using the same recipes we had at our event. If you'd like to host your own "Next Door Chef" party, or have a recipe idea for using Morton Kosher or Sea Salt, post your photos using the hashtag: #NextDoorChef
Wait while more posts are being loaded