There is joy to be found in a styled life.

It is important to craft an environment that soothes the senses, particularly when the rest of us isn’t feeling so great. Here we’ve included ways to turn your home into a true sanctuary, as well as how to maintain the calm when away from home.

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This is my first post for ONE.org, an organization I’m honored to work with not only because of their humanitarian efforts, but also for the use of “hard-headed” in their tagline. The photo above is courtesy of my dear friend C.C. Chapman, who toured Ghana with ONE last year.

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I’ve had two women on my mind lately. They are counterpoints; polar ends of a spectrum whose very existence is difficult to reconcile.

Each woman is fighting a battle — to the death — on her own end of the spectrum. And though one of them faces a matter of critical urgency, the other presents a glimpse of the future which we cannot ignore.

Let us call woman #1 “Adowa”. She lives in a developing country where starvation is a very real possibility, and where every day that ends with some form of nourishment for Adowa and her family is a victory; a triumph over death.

Let’s call woman #2 “Heather”. She lives in a modern society where food is plentiful, and career and family demand a lot of her. She’s wearing down her body, which is tantamount to a time bomb that is primed and ready to set off a chronic illness when stress and unhealthy eating become too much for her system to bear. Heather’s lifestyle will kill her one day, and that day will likely come way too soon.

Now, it would be easy to stop right here and profess that we cannot equivocate one situation with the other. I agree. There are choices available to Heather that are not conscious — or even imaginable — possibilities for Adowa.

My reason for taking a closer look at these two women, however, goes beyond moral equivocation. It is a look at the future, and poses the question of just how long it will take for Adowa and her sisters to internalize problems just like Heather’s, and how we can take responsibility now to prevent that from happening.

This might seem like an academic argument.

There is no denying that starvation is a fierce and deadly enemy; its effects are quite immediate and visible, and saving lives must be the priority.

But we must also stop for a moment and look at the catastrophic numbers that surround chronic illness. While developed lands and modern societies offer plenty of food innovations that will shuffle us down our mortal coil, 50% of us will shuffle in misery from chronic pain, diabetes, obesity, or any number of their co-morbid conditions.

1 out of 2 people. It’s you or me.

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How Barbara Barry Achieves Serenity

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I’ve been a fan of Barbara Barry for ages. No matter what she is designing, her style is classic and timeless.  As a furniture designer for Baker, I envision chichi martini parties and witty banter. As a luggage designer for Hartmann, I envision grand tours of the capitals of Europe. As a fabric designer for Kravet, […]

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5 Holiday Travel Tips – Gluten-Free & Chronic Pain

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Even for the average person, holiday travel is a burden. For those of us with special concerns, it can be downright scary. After more than a year of intensive travel, Jennifer now has a strategy that she’s happy to share with you.

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See Jennifer in “Eat, Cook, Love”

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Jennifer is featured in the new documentary Eat, Cook, Love, created by the CBC-Radio Canada to address the lost pleasures of food, and the government’s increasing interference in what we eat.

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How to de-stress your life

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You’ve made it through the first few months of school and have a routine, but the apple cart is upended again with shorter days, holiday planning, family visits and year-end financial planning and doctor visits.

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