Health & Beauty

The Next Step
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The Next Step

In difficult circumstances, the next step is all that’s required of me. My responsibility is to be faithful and obedient to the Lord.

Am I Beautiful?
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Am I Beautiful?

When my daughter asks me if she’s beautiful, I tell her yes, she is. But that beauty isn’t dependent on her clothes or hair or what others think.

modestysmall2
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Why Modesty Matters

Before jeans with holes in them were sold in stores, there was thrift store scouring. My friend and I would leave school for the day and head downtown to sift through the racks for the perfect pair of vintage Levi’s. The pair that had been washed so many times they had faded, whose denim was…

saynutssmall
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Just Say Nuts

It all started with a cashew. My family was having dinner with friends at a Chinese restaurant. Our son Ethan was fifteen months old. In a flash, he grabbed a broken cashew piece off the table and put it in his mouth. We had been avoiding giving him nuts since he was so young, but…

oldproblrmsmall
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An Old Problem

It’s been six months since our child was born and my husband and I have been intimate exactly 2.5 times since her birth. Can I just tell you how my heart breaks as I write that sentence? It screams of my brokenness. It tells me that I am not healed as I once believed. Memories…

askarlenesmall
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Ask Arlene: Holiday Weight Management

Arlene, Like most people, I gain weight over the holiday season. What can I do to prepare and manage my weight through the Christmas season? Stacy Dear Stacy, My family likes to joke about the treacherous eating season between Halloween candy and Christmas day. Without some intervention, we are all bound to gain a few…

thenextstepsmall
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The Next Step

It has felt like boot camp every time I’ve gone. The women to my right and left are trim, toned, and can lift the heavy weights. My mid-section is a bit pudgy being six weeks out of having my third child and I have to choose the light weights as a beginner. As we dive…

pregnantbody
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Making Peace with My Pregnant Body

I have always thought pregnant women were beautiful. Pregnancy and birth are such an incredible miracle, and the pregnant female body is a marvelous symbol of that miracle. The glow, the fullness of life — I couldn’t wait to experience all of it! And then I got pregnant. For some reason, the bodily changes that…

askarlenesmall
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Ask Arlene: Combating Chronic Illness

Hi Arlene! I love your thoughts here on a healthier you. Do you have any specific tips on how to strive for a younger you for those who struggle with chronic illnesses and/or diseases? Thanks! Julie Dear Julie, Two things that came to mind: Have hope. Fight for your health. If you don’t have any…

askarlenesmall
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Ask Arlene: Lessons in Beauty

Hi Arlene! What kind of advice would you offer a mother who wants to teach her daughter the importance of being beautiful on the inside and the outside? I know this starts young and I don’t want her to believe that only the “Barbie” type girls are beautiful — but I do want her to…

askarlenesmall
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Ask Arlene: Motivation for Health

Hi Arlene, I loved reading this article. I want to want a healthier lifestyle and I feel I owe it to my kids to be a better role model in health. I feel like I’ve just plain lost my motivation. I’m a stay at home mom to four school-aged children, so time isn’t the issue,…

running-down-a-dream
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Running Down a Dream

The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. — Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher A few years ago, as I embarked on my 30th birthday, I sat down with a pen and paper to take inventory of my life. With each stroke of the pen, I thought about the trials I’d faced and…

Ugly Leah
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Ugly Leah

I still remember the first time I heard about the show, Ugly Betty. I recall physically cringing at the title. “What kind of name is that?” I wondered in disgust. “In an effort to grab people’s attention, has the media resorted to openly ridiculing unattractive women?” Since the show’s launch in 2006, America Ferrera’s leading…

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Words to Lose Weight By

Are you aware of the words you say to yourself? You may not say the words out loud, but your mind is communicating both positive and negative thoughts morning, noon, and night. Research shows that a person thinks anywhere from about 12,000 to 60,000 thoughts per day. Are thousands of your thoughts fueling your success…

Losing It
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Losing It!

I’m blurry eyed and sleep deprived. There’s barely time to eat, shower, or get dressed. I wonder if my body will ever be the same again. I just had a baby. Actually, make that two. Twins. My life will never be the same. And neither will my body. I look in the mirror with a…

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Beauty Rooted in Love

Sitting in a corner of the office, I once again felt deliberately excluded as people whispered around me. Old paranoia triggered feelings of shame and hurt, causing me to withdraw. The once cherished, supportive work environment suddenly became a place where I didn’t belong. It all started with an almost-argument with my kind co-worker. Her…

mirror-image
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Mirror Image

About a year ago I took up a self-portrait project in the mirror in an attempt to get a photo for my blog. I didn’t want a posed picture with a tight-lipped portrait smile. I wanted to capture some reality to offer my readers a glimpse of who I am. My self-portrait session began dismally….

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Untakeable Beauty

I nuzzled my face into his chest, peered up at him, and said, "I just want to be the most beautiful woman in the world to you." Silence. Immediately, I replayed memories. Like the day I found explicit links on the computer. And the night he confessed to viewing pornography at work while I waited…

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