Quick Hits

A new report reveals that America’s pets are getting fatter. Of the 2.5 million dogs and 500,000 cats who visited a Banfield Pet Hospital last year, one in three were either overweight or obese.  Owners of overweight pooches spent 17% more on healthcare costs over the past five years, while those with fat cats spent 36% more than those with healthy weight cats.

Source: USA Today

Great news if you enjoy an iced coffee drink on a hot summer day: Starbucks has announced they’re having a buy one, get one free deal on grande iced espresso drinks from now through July 2nd. The BOGO deal is available from 2 to 5pm, so your afternoons just got a little sweeter.

And in case you have a hard time deciding what to order to get in on the freebie offer, here are a few suggestions from Starbucks baristas themselves:

  • Iced Caffè Americano - These are just espresso shots topped with a little water, served over ice. So baristas suggest adding a little raw sugar or coconut milk to liven it up.
  • Iced Caramel Macchiato - This classic beverage boasts an impressive amount of caramel and it’s usually sweetened with vanilla syrup, but baristas suggest swapping that for raspberry syrup for a summery twist.
  • Iced Soy Latte - For those who don’t do dairy, this is a great option. And if you don’t want soy milk, Starbucks offers coconut milk and almond milk as well.
  • Iced White Chocolate Mocha - This Starbucks favorite is super sweet, so add an extra shot of espresso if you like more coffee flavor.
  • Starbucks Doubleshot on ice - This is a hand-shaken espresso with a little milk and it’s lightly sweetened, and they recommend customizing it with the syrup of your choice.

Source: Starbucks

So you’re in the middle of fighting with your spouse about family and your blood is boiling when they say, “Your mother drives me crazy.” These words could send you over the edge, but before you let this argument erupt into a major fight, there’s a phrase that could help resolve things.

All you have to do is repeat their criticism back to them by saying, “I hear you when you say…” So in this case it would be “I hear you when you say my mother drives you crazy.” And then you can offer your rebuttal.

You’re basically taking the words right out of their mouth, and here’s why it works. A lot of fights get going when one person feels like the other person isn’t hearing them out when they have a criticism or complaint. So if you repeat their words back to them and actually say that you hear them, they know you’re really listening.

It might not work in all situations, but we’re all for an easy fix to help keep discussions and disagreements civilized. Now we just have to remember this in the heat of the moment.

Source: PureWow

In what has to be our favorite recent study, researchers from Canada have found that being forgetful may be a sign your brain is working properly. Their research shows that only remembering certain details could be a sign your brain is dividing up the really important information from the stuff that doesn’t matter as much.

The study finds that the growth of new neurons in the hippocampus - the part of the brain that’s linked to memory - seems to “promote forgetting.” But it’s only to make more room for the important stuff and to let go of the rest.

“We always idealize the person who can smash a trivia game, but the point of memory is not being able to remember who won the Stanley Cup in 1972,” explains lead study author Professor Blake Richards of the University of Toronto. “The point of memory is to make you an intelligent person who can make decisions given the circumstances, and an important aspect in helping you do that is being able to forget some information.”

So remember this the next time you can’t remember your Netflix password or your sister’s birthday. It could just be your brain “waiting for more useful information.” And that’s what we’re going to believe, because science says so.

Source: Scary Mommy

We love a good DIY cleaning tip as much as the next person, but sometimes advice gets passed down that doesn’t actually work. So for all the hacks like using ketchup to clean rust stains, that really help, there are plenty of others that don’t. According to Consumer Reports,” these are the DIY cleaning myths we should all stop believing.

Myth: Use coffee grounds to freshen up your garbage disposal.

Truth: Sure, coffee grounds can help remove that grit and gunk from your disposal blades, but if you’re trying to get rid of a funky smell in your garbage disposal, baking soda does a better job.

Myth: A bit of hairspray to get the ballpoint-pen ink out.

Truth: Your grandma may have taught you this trick, and back in her day it probably worked. Hairspray used to have more alcohol in it but today’s hairspray has stiffeners that’ll just make that stain worse. You’re better off using rubbing alcohol on an ink stain instead.

Myth: Better to hand wash.

Truth: Dishwashers beat handwashing because they heat water to 140 degrees and can really sanitize. And according to the EPA’s Energy Star website, using an Energy Star dishwasher instead of hand washing dishes can save 230 hours of your time every year! That’s almost 10 days!

Myth: Bleach is the word.

Truth: It’s great for sanitizing, but it doesn’t clean. Bleach kills bacteria and lightens stains, but soap is better for cleaning.

Myth: Just a spoonful of vinegar cleans everything.

Truth: Vinegar is an acid, so it can cut through dirt and bacteria, but diluting it with water doesn’t help. You have to use it full strength for it to work and it could damage natural stone or wood surfaces.

Source: Hello Giggles

Jay and Dawn

Jay and Dawn

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