Top 8 Tips for Improving Your Memory

8 Tips for Improving Your MemoryImproving your memory is easier than it sounds. Most of think of our memory as something static and unchanging. But it’s not — you can improve your memory just as you can improve your math or foreign language skills, simply by practicing a few tried and true memory building exercises.

There are two kinds of memory — short-term and long-term. Short-term memory is the kind of memory our brain uses to store small pieces of information needed right away, like someone’s name when you meet for the first time. Research has demonstrated that short-term memory’s capacity is about seven pieces of information. After that, something has to go.

Long-term memory is for things you don’t need to remember this instant. When you study for a test or exam, that’s long-term memory at work. A memorably moment in your life, events with family or friends, and other similar kinds of situations also get stored in long-term memory.

So how do you go about improving your memory? Read on to find out.

Your Memory is in Your Brain

Although it may seem obvious, memory is formed within your brain. So anything that generally improves your brain health may also have a positive impact on your memory. Physical exercise and engaging in novel brain-stimulating activities — such as the crossword puzzle or Sudoku — are two proven methods for helping keep your brain healthy.

Remember, a healthy body is a healthy brain. Eating right and keeping stress at bay helps not only your mind focus on new information, but also is good for your body too. Getting a good night’s sleep every night is important as well. Vitamin supplements and herbal extracts aren’t the same thing as getting vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids naturally, through the food you eat.

Improve Your Memory

So you want to improve your memory? You need to focus on what you’re doing and the information you’re looking to encode more strongly in your brain. These tips will help you do just that:

  1. Focus on it. So many people get caught up in multi-tasking, that we often fail to do the one thing that will almost always improve your memory — paying attention to the task at hand. This is important, because your brain needs time to encode the information properly. If it never makes it into your memory, you won’t be able to recall it later. If you need to memorize something, quit multitasking.
  2. Smell, touch, taste, hear and see it. The more senses you involve when you need to encode memory, usually the more strong a memory it becomes. That’s why the smell of mom’s home-baked cookies can still be recalled as fresh as though she were downstairs making them just now. Need to remember someone’s name you met for the first time? It may help to look them in the eye when you repeat their name, and offer a handshake. By doing so, you’ve engaged 4 out of your 5 senses.
  3. Repeat it. One reason people who want to memorize something repeat it over and over again is because repetition (what psychologists sometimes refer to as “over learning”) seems to work for most people. It helps not to cram, though. Instead, repeat the information spaced out over a longer period of time.
  4. Chunk it. Americans remember their long 10-digit telephone numbers despite being able to hold only 7 pieces of information in their brain at one time. They do because we’ve taught ourselves to chunk the information. Instead of seeing 10 separate pieces of information, we see 3 pieces of information — a 3 digit area code, a 3 digit prefix, and a 4 digit number. Because we’ve been taught since birth to “chunk” the telephone number in this way, most people don’t have a problem remembering a telephone number. This technique works for virtually any piece of information. Divide the large amount of information into smaller chunks, and then focus on memorizing those chunks as individual pieces.
  5. Organize it. Our brains like organization of information. That’s why books have chapters, and outlines are recommended as a studying method in school. By carefully organizing what it is you have to memorize, you’re helping your brain better encode the information in the first place.
  6. Use mnemonic devices. There are a lot of these, but they all share one thing in common — they help us remember more complicated pieces of information through imagery, acronyms, rhyme or song. For instance, in medical school, students will often turn memorization of the bones in the body or symptoms of specific illnesses into sentences, where the first letter of each word corresponds with a specific bone or symptom.
  7. Learn it the way that works for you. People often get caught up in thinking there’s a “one size fits all” learning style for memorizing new material. That’s simply not the case — different people prefer different methods for taking in new information. Use the style that works for you, even if it’s not the way most people study or try and learn new information. For instance, some people like to write things down when they’re learning something new. Others may benefit more from recording what they’re hearing, and going back to take more detailed notes later on at their own leisure.
  8. Connect the dots. When we learn, we often forget to try and make associations until later on. However, research has shown that memory can be stronger when you try and make the associations when you first take in the information. For instance, think about how two things are related, and the memory for both will be enhanced. Connect new information to existing information or experiences in your mind.

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As we age, our memory sometimes seems to get worse. But it doesn’t have to. By following these eight tips, you can keep your memory sharp at any age, and improve it any time.

See also

10 Tips for Living a Better Life

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Top 10 Tips for Living a Better Life

One of the most important strategies of my Happiness Project has been keeping my Resolutions Chart. It provides accountability, it prompts me to review all my resolutions once a day, it gives me the gold stars I crave — when I manage to follow my resolutions.I love reading other people’s resolutions and their personal commandments, and I was very interested to read the daily decalogue of Pope John XXIII (a “decalogue” is a set of rules having authoritative weight). Pope John XXIII was pope from 1958-1963 and was known as “The Good Pope.”One aspect of the list that’s worth noting is the emphasis on taking each day as it comes. This mindset is hugely helpful to me. Instead of allowing myself to become overwhelmed and discouraged by imagining how hard it would be to keep my resolutions for the rest of my life, I just take it day by day (or Bird by Bird for you Anne Lamott fans). Alcoholics Anonymous follows this same approach – emphasizing “one day at a time” to keep a difficult change manageable.

So here are ten tips from Pope John XXIII about how to live a better life, day to day:

1. Only for today, I will seek to live the livelong day positively without wishing to solve the problems of my life all at once.

2. Only for today, I will take the greatest care of my appearance: I will dress modestly; I will not raise my voice; I will be courteous in my behavior; I will not criticize anyone; I will not claim to improve or to discipline anyone except myself.

3. Only for today, I will be happy in the certainty that I was created to be happy, not only in the other world but also in this one.

4. Only for today, I will adapt to circumstances, without requiring all circumstances to be adapted to my own wishes.

5. Only for today, I will devote 10 minutes of my time to some good reading, remembering that just as food is necessary to the life of the body, so good reading is necessary to the life of the soul.

6. Only for today, I will do one good deed and not tell anyone about it.

7. Only for today, I will do at least one thing I do not like doing; and if my feelings are hurt, I will make sure that no one notices.

8. Only for today, I will make a plan for myself: I may not follow it to the letter, but I will make it. And I will be on guard against two evils: hastiness and indecision.

9. Only for today, I will firmly believe, despite appearances, that the good Providence of God cares for me as no one else who exists in this world.

10. Only for today, I will have no fears. In particular, I will not be afraid to enjoy what is beautiful and to believe in goodness. Indeed, for 12 hours I can certainly do what might cause me consternation were I to believe I had to do it all my life.

I’ve read this decalogue several times over the years, and every time I read it, a different admonition catches my attention. Today I found myself mulling over #2: “I will not claim to improve or to discipline anyone except myself.” That’s a good resolution for a happiness project. It often seems as though I’d be happy if only other people would behave properly! But the truth is, the only person I can really “improve or discipline” is myself.

Which of the ten rang most true for you?

* Speaking of daily decalogues, I was thrilled to see that Abbey, of the blog Beauty and Thorns, has started her own happiness project, and I was particularly intrigued to read her excellent Ten Commandments and her twelve goals for the year.

* It’s Word-of-Mouth Day, when I gently encourage (or, you might think, pester) you to spread the word about the Happiness Project. You might:

— Forward the link to someone you think would be interested

— Link to a post on Twitter (follow me on twitter

See also

Top 10 Blogs to Simplify Your Life

Top 10 Blogs For Learning Something New

Top 10 Battery Usage Tips, Hacks and Tricks

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6 Simple Ways to Make a Change in Your World

We want to have an impact. We want our lives to touch other people. We want our work to endure. We want the world to be a better place because of our presence in it.

But in the day-to-day rush of life, it’s easy to think that “changing the world” is an unachievable huge, even arrogant, goal.

In a world of seven billion people, we can feel very small.

Today, let’s shift the focus slightly. Instead of changing the world, let’s look at changing your world.

Here are six simple things to try. Don’t dismiss them as “too small” – they could have more impact than you’ll even know.

1. Say “Thank You” More Often

At work and at home, make it a habit to say “thank you” regularly. A genuine thanks can mean a lot to an employee who’s gone the extra mile, and it can strengthen relationships with your family.

Your “thank you” can be very simple:

Thanks for sorting out the train tickets – I really appreciated it.

Thanks for making dinner – that was delicious!

Thanks for doing the dishes.

You could also take it further: a thank-you note, or even a small gift, can make a huge impact.

2. Offer Encouragement

The people around you – friends, neighbors, colleagues, and family members – all have their own goals and dreams in life. Take every opportunity you can to encourage them.

Many people don’t get much support from their loved ones. Perhaps you’ve got a nephew whose parents don’t see the point of college, but he’s keen to study medicine. Maybe you’ve got a friend who’s trying really hard to lose weight, but her colleagues aren’t at all supportive. Your encouragement and your belief in them could mean a huge amount.

3. Learn to Listen

Are you a good listener? Most of us aren’t: we talk over other people, we interrupt, we nod along while daydreaming, we don’t hear what they’re saying because we’re too busy thinking what we want to say…

Practice listening – really listening – when someone’s having a conversation with you. That might mean putting down the paper and looking at your kids and partner when they’re talking. It might mean asking questions to encourage a friend to dig deeper into their own thoughts and feelings.

4. Help Someone Out

Look out for opportunities to lend a hand. That might be with something incredibly small – like holding a door open, or taking in a package for a neighbor. It might be something more significant – like babysitting a friend’s kids so she can have a much-needed break.

The help you provide might not seem like a big deal in itself – but the kindness behind it can really have an impact.

5. Give Away Unwanted Possessions

Is your house a bit cluttered? Do you have old computers, games, books, furniture, exercise equipment or anything else that you don’t need?

Give it away. You’ll clear up space in your home, and you’ll make a difference to someone else. Look for friends or colleagues who’d really appreciate it. You might also try local charity shops, or your local Freecycle group.

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6. Share Your Time

Time is one of the most precious resources we have. Sharing your time is one of the best ways to impact your world.

That might mean playing with your kids instead of taking work home at the weekend. It might mean volunteering. It might mean spending time with family and friends instead of simply being in the same room as them: switching off the television and doing something together.

The world might seem too big to change – but your own world isn’t. How could you start making a difference today? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comments…

Read More

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Top Great Gifts and Gadgets for Your Valentine

Oh, Valentine’s Day. When it comes to this emotionally loaded holiday, everyone has a different opinion. I’ve made peace with the chocolate, red, perfumed, floral explosion that bombards me at every shop I visit leading up to the holiday. I’ve eased up on the self-inflicted pressure to prepare a spectacular romantic gesture each year, and I’ve dropped the expectations of receiving something of similar grandeur in return. Honestly, the best part of the day is the reminder that love of any kind is awesome. I enjoy the opportunity to surprise my loved ones with a little token of my affection, and the chance to indulge in the incredible color combination of hot pink and red is pretty great, too.

It is in this spirit that I decided to round up some of my favorite gifts and gadgets for Valentine’s Day. Nothing too grand or luxurious here; just some great-looking, useful, sometimes silly products that I think your friends and loved ones would appreciate. With this great selection of gifts big and small, you can easily find a little something to send to your loved one, best friend, sister, brother–maybe even a secret crush perhaps? Give a little extra love this Valentine’s Day, and I guarantee it will make you feel the love in return. Enjoy!

There’s still time to plan, and I’d love to get inspiration from fellow romantics out there. Have any special Valentine’s Day plans or gift ideas? Let’s hear ’em!



  1. 1. 4GB Red Zip Zip drive, $25
  2. 2. Drink Clip in orange, $5
  3. 3. Mophie Air juice pack for iPhone 4 in red, $80
  4. 4. Cross My Heart wooden yo-yo, $12
  5. 5. Mountain notebook by LittleAlexander, $12
  6. 6. DANNIJO Stache iPhone 4 case, $98
  7. 7. 16GB Victorinox USB drive, $80
  8. 8. Rope bottle openers, $28
  9. 9. Jawbone Jambox speaker in red dot, $200
  10. 10. Society6 I Like You case by Gemma Corell, $35
  11. 11. Herschel Supply two-tone varsity backpack, $75
  12. 12. Leather iPad 2 case (monogram available), $98
  13. 13. Rifle Paper Co. “You’re a Fox” card, $4


  1. 1. Crosley Retro Spinnerette portable USB turntable, $170
  2. 2. PostcupTM from Bailey Doesn’t Bark, $52
  3. 3. Mini robot vacuum, $26
  4. 4. Rebecca Minkoff set of two Best Friends iPhone cases, $68
  5. 5. Native Union Pop phone set in red, $35
  6. 6. Face mug, $18
  7. 7. Gummy Bears earbud headphones, $12
  8. 8. Dancing Lion speaker, $70
  9. 9. Tunes for 2 heart-shaped headphone splitter, $18
  10. 10. Personalized “Smitten” snuggle mitten for two, $23

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10 Blogs For Learning Something New

10 Best Gifts for Techie Kid and Tween

Best Rechargeable Batteries and Battery Chargers Of 2012





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Be me – theme for 2012

I advocate that we be true to ourselves, and be who we really are inside. My personal theme for 2012 is: be me.

But, how do I “be me”?

In fact, how do I even know who I am inside and who is “me”?

I have always had a particular image of myself – I was impatient, generous, versatile, adaptive, kind, friendly, strong… I also created an image for others to see, whether it was in the social or professional world – easy going, efficient, trustworthy, a manager, a leader, a friend…

I thrived on these qualities I attributed to myself. Yet I wonder if this is really me or rather, who I want to be?

Perhaps when something is not true to its core, it will not be sustainable in the long run. Fatalistically, towards the end of 2009, these images crumbled to millions of tiny pieces. As I lugged myself through major depression, ailing health and a few suicide attempts, I could not cope with the fact that perhaps I was not as strong as or easy going as I thought myself to be.

The reality that I could not cope with the stress working as an international executive prancing around the world was more than I could bear.

I hid away from the world. I felt I had let everyone down. The image I had so carefully constructed for others and maintained in the last 10 years disintegrated into thin air. Maybe it wasn’t a fake me, but it was definitely only part of me – the part of me that I wanted the outside world to see. So I crafted carefully the image prior to my demise, heeding to all the management training I had undergone about building a reputation, networking, and how to be a good manager.

As I sat at home everyday, mulling over what happened, I became bitter and angry. For the longest time, I did not understand why I had caved in under stress, or why I was wrought with depression. What was wrong with me?

Needless to say, I was put on anti-depressants, had to see a psychologist regularly, and ordered to take leave of absence from work. It took about 18 months before I became more opened about my fate with depression, or even admit I needed help.

I was pleasantly surprised. My friends did not judge me or think lesser of me. My company and bosses were supportive of plight, and gave me time and space to recover.

One day I picked up a pen and starting scribbling in my journal again, and noted down all these things I wanted to do, places I wanted to visit, what my ideal life was, and what kind of person I’d want to be. I started writing again and started a blog to note down my thoughts.

In the process of self-reflection and self-exploration, I slowly realized that I wasn’t as strong as I was – and that is actually not a problem! I was not invincible either, and that doesn’t make me any less of a person. I finally came to admit that I could not cope with the stress placed on me, and the pressure I placed on myself. I could deny no more that I was not happy despite the veneer of having my life together.

In short, I rediscovered who I was at the core. Personality traits such as strength were imposed on me from childhood – I actually am not so strong, I need a lot of help and support. I’m also not as versatile and adaptive as I thought I was, based on the international experience I had during school years. Moreover, I’m really not that outgoing or friendly; if given a choice, I’d rather stay at home all the time, watch DVDs, sleep, and not talk to anyone.

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The psychological jargon I learnt was “Self Awareness,” a state in which we understand who we are, why we have certain emotions, the thoughts behind emotions and the actions as a result. Sadly, many of us plod along day by day, not understanding ourselves at all.

However, the quest for self-awareness is only the first step and it is by no means an end goal. Rather, this is an ongoing process. The process of introspection is in itself a piece of homework and you can find some great insights on how to achieve self-awareness here and here and here.

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Yet, once we are aware of who we are, how do we go about being this person we are?

These are some of my humble suggestions after some 2 years of pondering, musing, and reflecting. In no particular order:

  • Have courage to be different from others
  • Know that some people may not like the “new”, or rather, “real” you
  • Surround yourselves with people who are supportive
  • Alienate those who try to make you the person they want you to be
  • Open up to the world and admit this is who you are, the good, the bad and the ugly
  • Laugh at yourself
  • Take criticisms in a stride
  • Do not apologize for who you are
  • Trust in your own judgment, you know best for yourself
  • Love who you are
  • Don’t let others tell you who you are

Today, I am no longer afraid to voice my dissenting opinions for fear of not being accepted, or seen as weird. I am unique and have my own ideas and perspectives. I do not mind that people think I’m a silly idiot for quitting a job that offers me a permanent expatriate package until I retire. I know I’m impatient and hot-tempered, and I cry because I’m emotional. That’s all fine.

The more I love myself, who I am, and accept the good bits of me and the not so good bits of me, the more I am sure of who I am, and I’m not scared to be just that person!

Confidence to be oneself exudes radiance from within. No one else has the right to tell you how you should or should not be.

Once you can look yourself in the mirror, and smile at the reflection, that’s when you know you are being who you are at the core.

These are some enlightened perspectives I came about through my own introspection. I’d love to hear your ideas too on how to be true to ourselves everyday in the comments below.

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Best Tech Tools to Save Your Time and Money

In today’s day and age, we’re not just looking for technology to entertain us, we’re looking to it for much more. By saving us time and money, technology can enhance our lives by giving us more time to do the things we love. So whether you’re planning a trip and need a quick way to keep organized or you’re out shopping and you want to make sure you’re always getting the best deal, check out these top ten tech tools that were built to help.



If you’re looking for a website to help you manage your money, check out For free, Mint will keep track of your finances including your spending, budget, and investments. They’ll also help you set goals to save you money. If you’re comfortable with storing your encrypted account information in’s secured servers, use Mint to alert you of upcoming bills that will soon be due, automatically balance your account, and create pie charts of your spending by category. The site is nicely designed, making managing your money a pleasant experience.



If you travel a lot for vacation or business, use TripIt to keep you organized even before you step on a plane. TripIt’s main functionality is to create customized travel itineraries from confirmation emails by airlines, hotels or travel agents. As a nice bonus, they’ll even include maps, directions and weather. Recently, TripIt Pro was released which tracks any pro member’s flight itinerary so that you are notified of a price drop via email or text message. This will save you money by showing you if you’re eligible for an airline credit or voucher. Armed with this information, you can then contact the airline to obtain your credit. With TripIt Pro, you’ll also get alerts via your phone about flight delays, cancellations and gate changes.

3. Wanderfly


If you need help coming up with ideas for your vacation, check out Wanderfly. By simply selecting a few options – which city you’re departing from, your time frame and budget, Wanderfly will automatically find the best deals, supplying you with a curated list of over 1,500 destinations. As a personalized recommendation engine, it helps you discover new and exciting experiences, based on not only on your budget but your interests. By partnering with over 22 different content providers such as Expedia, Yelp, Foursquare, and Lonely Planet, Wanderfly hopes to be the first place you’ll go to when you’re planning your next vacation.

4. Google Shopper


While you probably already know about Google Goggles, you may not have heard about Google Shopper. A free Android app, Google Shopper helps you check prices on almost anything you see. Take pictures of books, CDs and DVD, perform a bar-code scan or type in or say the name of a product to quickly bring up a list of prices. They’ll even help you find local stores who carry the product which you can easily then call or get directions to. Next time you’re not quite sure whether you’re getting the best deal, try out this app.

5. Groupon


By negotiating great deals for you, Groupon helps you save money and encourages you to explore your city. Activated when a minimum number of people buy, these deals can range from spa treatments to meals at restaurants. You only have a a certain amount of time before the offer expires, which makes you want to grab these deals before they’re gone. Called a social-coupon site, Groupon has exploded since it first started back in November 2008, with Forbes calling it the fastest growing company ever. Sign up for their email newsletter to get daily deals sent straight to your inbox. (You can also check out and for a similar experience.)

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6. Dragon Dictation


Dragon Dictation is an easy-to-use voice recognition app that’s perfect for anyone on the go. Speak into it and you can instantly see your text or email messages. All you have to do is press the record button and start talking. After that, you load an onscreen keyboard to correct any errors. If you’re on Facebook and Twitter, dictate your status updates and then send them all with a push of a button. This app is also great for sending notes and reminders to yourself.

7. Evernote


Evernote is the must-have app for anyone who has a million things running through their head at any given time. It was the Winner of the Best Mobile App Award from TechCrunch, Mashable and the Webbys because, as they state, it helps you to “remember anything and everything that happens in your life.” With Evernote you can take text, photo or audio notes. More than anything, it helps you keep track of new ideas or reminders. By synching up to your computer, Evernote makes it easy for you to access your notes on either your phone or computer.

Do you use any of these tools? If so, which of them do you find most useful?

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6 Fashion Inspiration Sites

Picking out an outfit is easy but making it look effortless and chic not only requires good taste but a bit of courage. With the rise of technology and the Internet, we can now see stylish looks from all around the world from people who dared to be different. Today we’ve rounded up six sites that will navigate you through the latest trends and show you outfits that will inspire you to find your most stylish self. So whether you prefer classic styles or more trendy ones, you’ll feel confident in whatever you’re wearing.

1. The Sartorialist

Arguably the most popular street style fashion blog, The Sartorialist was started back in 2005 by Scott Schuman, a former director of men’s fashion at Bergdorf Goodman in New York. Schuman is credited with pioneering fashion photography in blog form with his ability to show how real-life people with great taste look around the world. He’s since gone on to publish a book by the same name of his blog and was featured in Intels’s Visual Life series as he explained how technology played a pivotal role in bringing his passion for fashion and photography to life. Schuman takes photos of stylish people in several different locations, including Paris and Milan. Come here to see gorgeously shot fashion photography found right on the street.

Tip: To get to know Scott Schuman, watch Intel’s Visual Life – The Sartorialist. It will give you more insight into his creative process.

2. Refinery29

Refinery29 is the ideal site for those who love being on the cusp of breaking fashion news. It’s a fashion, beauty and shopping site that offers deals, trends and sneak peeks of the latest collections. With a corporate office in New York, this laptop batteries store rises above the rest because it focuses on finding up-to-the minute insider reports from emerging and established fashion designers. Not only that, Refinery29 is also known for providing great tips on everything from what to wear to the holiday dinner party to how to incorporate styling looks from a J.Crew catalog.

Tip: If you currently live in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco or Washington D.C., make sure to check out their city specific editions to find local deals and news related to your area. You can also sign up for their free daily newsletter to get your fashion info sent directly to your inbox.

3. Who What Wear

From celebrity fashion and runway trends to shopping suggestions from fashion experts, Who What Wear (WWW) has you covered. Started in 2006 in Los Angeles by two former ELLE magazine editors, this site has a great mix of both street style and runway. If you’re interested in checking out the latest trends, they have the “trend report” where they’ll tell how you to easily wear certain styles, including shirtdresses or plaid pieces, without looking like a fashion faux pas. This site also picks out “the girl of the month” and then showcases a selection of products that reflects her impeccable taste.

Tip: If you prefer a simple blog layout over the look of a fashion magazine, check out Who What Wear’s blog. Curated by WWW editors, the blog shows of celebrity and runway style in a less formal way. It’s also a quick way to get your fashion fix.

4. NotCouture

Launched in July 2007 by Jean Awe (who’s also the one behind the popular art and culture site, NotCouture shows you the artistic side of fashion. The beautiful layout lends itself nicely to really making the pictures pop, presenting you with visual eye-candy you could look at for hours on end. This site is perfect for not only the fashionista but the design enthusiast who’s always on the hunt for stylish accessories. If you’re searching for the perfect gift or just want to splurge on something wonderfully refined for yourself, check out NotCouture. You won’t be sorry.

Jean Awe has built a virtual empire with her array of beautiful, niche sites. Check the top of the page to see links to not only Notcot and NotCouture but Tasteologie, Liquirous and NotVentures.

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Skewing slightly younger, is a very large online community that shows member-uploaded “street style” photography. Founded in 2008 by Yuri Lee in San Francisco, this site was created so that fashion enthusiasts could come together to get feedback on their own personal style. (Lee credits Scott Schuman’s The Sartorialist for inspiring her to start this site.) Lookbookers “hype” a look and the more hypes they receive, the more popular the style is. Photographers, models, designers and bloggers also come here to promote their work. calls itself the “the world’s first, truly editorless fashion magazine” because it’s open to anyone and everyone. With over 150,000 users, this popular site is a great place to visit if you’re looking to jazz up your own wardrobe and need some fresh mix and match ideas.

Tip: Get to know this community by participating in their forum. There you’ll find topics that range from fashion and shopping to photography, art and DIY.

6. Fashion Gone Rogue

What better way to get immersed in high fashion than by seeing the latest fashion spreads? Fashion Gone Rogue is your go-to site if you’re both a fan of fashion and photography. Founded in December 2008, this site covers the latest fashion editorials, covers and ad campaigns from all around the world, all shot by today’s most prestigious fashion photographers. For those who love finding fashion inspiration through the pages of Vogue, this site will satisfy you and then some. Just a warning, their editorials will make you swoon for luxurious high end labels like Valentino and Chanel.

Tip: Can’t wait to see what everyone’s wearing in the coming seasons? Check out their Collections section where you’ll find lookbooks galore.

Which websites do you visit to get your fashion inspiration?

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Top 10 Best Gifts for Techie Kid and Tween

Holiday time is a great opportunity to give a gift that “keeps on giving”.  While toys may be fun for a short time, these tech items both fill a need and entertain. Why not have both?

1. Read with eReaders:

Give the gift of unlimited eBooks with an eReader.  Some kids prefer to read traditional books, but others will enjoy the variety and convenience of access to e-books through an e-reader.  A fun gift for younger kids is the Vtech V.Reader.  Tweens and older can benefit from using a traditional e-Reader such as the Amazon Kindle, Barnes and Noble Nook or Sony Reader.

2. Compute With A Netbook or Laptop:

Why give kids a toy computer when they can have real computing power that will grow with their interests?  Netbook  with kid friendly interfaces and features include the Toshiba Satellite L635, Disney Netpal, Classmate PC, and Dell Inspiron Mini 10v Nickelodeon Edition. The PeeWee Pivot Tablet Laptop is a Classmate PC with a rotating touch screen that converts to a touch tablet.  ToysRUs even carries netbooks and laptops.  The Intel AppUp site has educational apps that can be downloaded to their kids’ netbooks.

tweens.pngWhile many tweens like the small size of a netbook, their more demanding homework is better satisfied by a laptop. Many of the computer manufactures have light laptops that will be thin enough to carry in a backpack if needed.  Acer, Asus, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Sony and Toshiba laptop battery all offer budget friendly 13-15 inch compact laptops for under $1,000. Apple also offers 13″ or 15″ inch MACBook  models, but the price points are above $1,000.

3. Video Games:
Video games are traditionally one of the hottest holiday gifts for kids. Common Sense Media offers resources for those looking for websites, movies and video games reviews for different  age ranges and categories. The Common Sense Media Kids Games Pick Ideas is a good place to start when looking for holiday gifts.

4.  Go Mobile with Gaming:

gomobiletween.pngPortable Gaming is also a popular gift for the holidays.  Some of the options for younger kids are learning systems such as the MobiGo.  Older kids enjoy the Nintendo DSi, Sony PSP, iPad and the iPod Touch.

5. Listen to Music:

ipod-shuffle-1gb.jpgFor kids who like to listen to music, MP3 players make great holiday gifts.  Lower priced (under $100) options for younger kids start with the Apple iPod Shuffle or the SanDisk Sansa Clip. Themed MP3 players, such as the Lego player, make fun gifts for young (and old) legomaniacs. Older Tweens longing for the full MP3 experience enjoy the Apple iPod, iPod Touch,  Zune HD, SanDisk Sansa Fuse or Sony X Series Walkman.  MP3 accessories such as cases and earphones also make great holiday gifts.

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6. Listen to Books:
Kids who enjoy audio books can be given a gift certificate to  Kids can listen to their audio books on their MP3 players, computers or with MP3 car attachments in the car.

7. Create Music:

Gifts that enable kids to make their own music is also a great holiday item. Some electronic musical gift ideas are electric guitars  or a new amp, toy microphones and electric keyboard. There are also many computer software options and accessories that turn a computer into a musical instrument or editing studio.  But there are also new unique toys that allow kids to make music. One which captivated my kids when I showed it to them online was the Beamz Player Model C4 which makes music when hands interact with beams of light.

8. Capture Family Memories With Digital Cameras:

lego camera.jpgHolidays are great time to start kids on the path of creating their own digital photo memories by giving them a digital camera.  For younger kids, there are themed digital cameras. My kid’s favorite is the Lego Digital Camera.  Older kids and tweens are ready for their own point and shoot camera.  The Sony Cybershot, Nikon Coolpix, Kodak EasyShare and Canon Powershot  models are easy enough for little ones to feel like big photographers.  Some media players, such as the iPod Touch, have  built in cameras that kids especially enjoy using.

9.  Play With A Robot:

K'Nex Collect and Build Micro-Bots.jpgRobot kits, my husband’s favorite, provide the opportunity to both build the robot and experiment with the result. Lego offers the Mindstorms collections and Elenco has a wide selection of non-soldering robotic kids appropriate for older kids. The K’Nex Collect and Build Micro-Bots Series is a great option for 7-12 year olds. Kids who want to play with a robot without the construction exercise will enjoy talking Buzz Light Year, Penbo the Penguin and  Alphie The Learning Toy Robot.

10. Back to Basics:

With all the fun tech toy options available, it is also good to include Back to the Basics gifts as well.

What kind of technology do your kids want as holiday gifts?

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