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Host Your Own Miracle Fruit Party

What's a miracle fruit? The West African berry known scientifically as "Synsepalum dulcificum" causes sour foods to taste sweet, or salty foods to taste tartly sweet. Miracle Fruit doesn't change a food's chemical makeup, just the perception of taste (Wikipedia). This odd little berry makes for a great hosting opportunity with little clean up and at an affordable cost.

5 tips to make your Miracle Fruit Party Miraculous!
1) Use Evite.com to send specialized invitations and include links to the New York Times Miracle Fruit story (NY Times) or to the store you're purchasing from (www.miraclefruitworld.com, www.miraclefruittab.com).

2) Ask that each guest bring an item to taste! With Evite.com all attendees can browse the offerings -- this way not everyone brings lemons, Tabasco sauce and olives!

3) Schedule your party during the after-lunch or after-dinner time of a weekend day, this way people don't fill their tum up with acidic or spicy foods! You can even include a note cautioning party goers to eat before they come as only "limited refreshments" will be available.

4) Order online and early! Fresh Miracle Fruit's availability depends on the season and once arrived has a short shelf life so plan your "flavor tripping" party accordingly.

5) Consider freeze-dried Miracle Fruit or even Miracle Fruit tablets, they're just as good as the berry and last longer in the freezer!

4 Find 'Em Online Beauty Products For Under $15

Target.com Has Clairol's Perfect 10 Hair Color
With an easy to use comb applicator, Clairol's Perfect 10 Hair Color delivers 100% gray coverage for those pesky "resistant" hairs and who can resist a 10 min application time?!

A helpful tip: As the directions indicate, comb-as-you-squeeze the attached applicator bottle but for "trouble spots" squeeze gently just before applying to hair for highest saturation.

Never Miss a Sale at Sephora.com
This beauty superstore also has offline locations (find a store near you) with great deals. Don't forget to sign up for the Sephora.com mailing list so great deals and free shipping coupon codes come straight to you! Instead of shopping the beauty aisle with the kids and a full shopping cart, take a mom moment and go online. Your purchase and 3 free samples will arrive shortly! Try the Sephora brand for especially good bath and body deals.

Go Vegan with your Lipcolor, Mascara, or Foundation.
Ecco Bella, a pioneer in the creation of "luxurious natural beauty products and skin care" sells wonderful organic night creams, foundations, and all natural mascaras. A favorite of vegan celebs like Alicia Silverstone and Natalie Portman, Ecco Bella is must-have for sensitive skinners, vegan or not.

FLOWER POWER with Ecco Bella Flower Color Lipsticks which mix flower wax and bright, beautiful natural pigments for long lasting lip color.

Keep the Possibilities Endless!
Endless.com
, the latest offering from Amazon.com offers an amazing selection of shoes but the FREE Overnight Shipping (w/ Free Return Shipping!) will keep this site in your top "bookmarks".

Shop by Size or Brand for quick access to the hottest looks, whether you're looking for "Sex and The City"-style Gladiator Sandals or a new pair of the most comfortable Keds.

Three Tech Tips That Can Keep Your Teen Safe Online

RULES!
Work with your teen to schedule internet time, just like video game or phone call time; internet time can also be used as a reward for great behavior or good grades.
TRACK!
With so much adult content on the internet, prevent accidents by installing a "net nanny". Free (and easy to install) software, like K9 Web Protection makes keeping your kids safe but not "locked down" a breeze. When a site pops up that K9's not sure about, the screen will freeze until a parent enters a safety code. K9 will keep a list of all the sites approved or not, that way science class inquiries on breast cancer make it through along with chicken recipes -- you never know when your teen might surprise you with dinner!

ADD!
Become friends with your child...online! Join Facebook.com and add your teen as a friend; do the same with MyYearbook.com, Myspace.com or other social networks your teen has chosen to join. Recently, Myspace hit the news with their efforts to keep the under-18 crowd protected, and more parents are coming online too. Instead of tracking actions and new friends (30 year old guys in Minnesota add everyone!) use the status updates on Facebook to keep up with your lil wonder's latest trends. This way you'll know she liked "Slumdog Millionaire" before she even gets home.