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How to Sing Harmony

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Alleluia by Thomas Cooper GotchChoral music is a little slice of what makes us human. One the one hand, our voices are capable of more subtlety and nuance than any other instrument; singing is a very personal, creative, and individual art. On the other, choral music requires a true gift of self, choosing to work together to produce something more beautiful than I can create on my own.

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Six Ways to Find the Time to Exercise

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Flying Fish by James Herbert DraperWhen I started my Month of Self-Care back in January, I realized that there was only so much that new clothes and make-up could do to make me look and feel better. If I wanted to be at my best, I needed to get in shape. But how in the world would I find the time?

Now I run three days a week. I take a swimming class with my husband on one of my off days and go on a long walk with my son another.

It turns out that moms can find time for exercise. It helps to have your partner’s support, but with a little creativity, anything is possible. Here are some ideas that have worked for me. Read the rest of this entry

Why You Should Care about Your On-Line Privacy and 4 Easy Changes to Get You Started

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The Eavesdropper by Eugen von BlaasIn the United States, the Bill of Rights guarantees our right to freedom of speech and protects us from unreasonable searches. These freedoms are a source of national pride, a part of our American heritage. So, for me at least, the recent revelation that the National Security Agency monitors our activity on-line makes this Independence Day celebration a little bittersweet.

This Fourth of July, I’m standing up for my rights by taking charge of my on-line presence—and you can, too. Read the rest of this entry

I Love What I Do: Professional Pianist

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Woman at the Piano with Cockatoo by Gustave Léonard de Jonghe“I Love What I Do!” We interview women who find creative work that makes them feel fulfilled without sacrificing their personal or family lives. They’ll share what their jobs are really like and how other women can find something they love to do.

Judy Kerlin Mason, assistant director and accompanist for the nationally-renowned Spivey Hall Children’s Choir, describes finding balance in her life as a wife, mother, and professional pianist. Her career has been a way to share her love of music, not only with her family, but with hundreds of children in the Atlanta area–including me!

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Jane Austen’s Principles of Good Conversation

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Jane Austen as painted by her sister, Cassandra

Jane Austen as painted by her sister, Cassandra

In the novels of Jane Austen, being able to carry on a pleasant conversation is a mark of a virtuous character. (Although not a sufficient one—the villainous Misters Willoughby and Wickham are enchanting conversationalists.) But most of the best conversations in her novels—and in our own, twenty-first century lives—assume the same six principles, all of which stem from intelligence and thoughtfulness. By following these principles we not only make conversations more enjoyable, we can also become better, wiser people. Read the rest of this entry

Two Wedding Gift “Rules” That Are Meant to Be Broken

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The Wedding Morning by John Henry Frederick BaconWedding gifts are important. They allow us to show our support to the happy couple and to help them start their new lives together. Maybe that’s why wedding gift-giving can get emotionally charged and high-stress. But it turns out that those rules are less complicated than you may think. Read the rest of this entry

10 Reasons to Crop Your Hair for the Summer

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Toilet by Christian KrohgI am 28 years old and I have spent a lifetime dreaming about short hair. Last week, I finally went for it. And I couldn’t be happier with the result.

Honestly, I wanted to do something dramatic to mark a turning point in my life. I’m a wife and a mother—and now I’m also a survivor of post-partum depression. I cut my hair to celebrate. But here are ten reasons every woman should consider a summery short-‘do. Read the rest of this entry