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Stay Committed to Your Resolutions: The Best Places to Find Help

Holiday Survival

Dec 31 2009
By AOL Staff

Committing to New Year's resolutions is easy. It's staying committed that's hard. Sometimes all that's needed, however, is a little help -- whether that's a daily reminder of why you're doing it, or something to renew your excitement in the cause. To that end, we've collected the best books, websites and other tools that will keep you motivated in the coming months -- some of them from unexpected places. Check out our suggestions for almost every resolution below.

Gorgonzola and White Bean Crostini With Honey

Food & Recipes/Entertaining

Dec 31 2009
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

If the holidays have you scrambling for party-worthy grub, consider crostini (Italian for bread with stuff piled on it).

The beauty of crostini is that the components often can be prepared ahead of time. The bread, for example, can be sliced, drizzled with olive oil and toasted up to a day in advance. Just let the slices cool completely and store them in an airtight container until needed.

With the bread out of the way, all you need to do is sort out what to put on it. You can go the easy route and smear some soft goat cheese over each slice, then sprinkle them with fresh thyme leaves and drizzle them with honey.

Or you could top each with a folded slice of prosciutto and a sliver of Parmesan cheese. Pop them in a 300 Fahrenheit (150 Celsius) oven for 5 minutes, or until just warmed through (but don't let the cheese melt).
Sweet and savory work well, too. Try a smear of cream cheese topped with pepper jelly and thinly sliced scallion. Or substitute a bit of smoked salmon for the jelly for a bagel and lox treatment.

Matte Makeup Gets Its Turn as a Trend

Fun & Entertainment

Dec 31 2009
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

Though 2010 New Year's style is all about sequin sparkle, when it comes makeup, it's no longer time to shine.

Top makeup artists say that matte makeup is an evolving beauty trend that should be good news for people of all skin types and tones. Matte doesn't necessarily mean flat - instead think of it as sheer or satiny - and it definitely tones down any dewiness or sparkle.

"I think it's going to be a matte world pretty soon," says Avon's global color creative director Jillian Dempsey.

For this look, which can have a retro vibe, play up the eyes, she suggests. "I think this is the look that works best: matte skin with a little bit of a lined eye, some eye-shadow contrast and maybe some minimal black-brown, soft-lash look."

If you like a darker, vampier look, add a red or purple lip. A more moderate look is a smoky eye and nude matte lip. But, Dempsey warns, the matte skin will ramp up the effect of a heavily made up eye or lip exponentially.There's also a risk of a matte foundation looking cakey or a lip looking chalky, so moisturizer or lip balm always comes first.

Is It Okay for Kids to Sip Bubbly on New Year's Eve?

Entertaining

Dec 30 2009
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

Should parents let their teenagers have champagne at home on New Year's Eve?

One argument says no, it sends the wrong message that underage drinking is okay. The other side argues that a ceremonial glass of champagne at home with family encourages moderation and makes a forbidden activity less tantalizing.

Either way, statistics show that no matter what parents do at home and despite the legal drinking ages, most teens have tried alcohol by age 18.

Seventy-five per cent of high school students have tried alcohol at least once, according to the most recent Youth Risk Behavior Survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Nearly 45 per cent had at least one drink in the 30 days before the survey and 26 per cent had five or more in a sitting during the same period.

Brownies: A Perfect, Healthier New Year's Treat

Food & Recipes/Entertaining

Dec 30 2009
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

So maybe you can have your New Year's resolutions and your cake, too. This brownie recipe from Alicia Silverstone's 'The Kind Diet' -- a beautifully photographed ode to healthier eating -- is whole grain and vegan, but tastes decadent.

If you buy raw walnuts, toast them by spreading them on a baking sheet. Place them in a 350 F oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the nuts are lightly browned and fragrant. Stir the nuts once or twice as they toast.

Ring in the New Year in 2010's Best Style Trends

Photos & Galleries/Holiday Survival

Dec 28 2009
By AOL Staff

Boxing Day sales are in full swing, and undoubtedly there are more than a few shoppers out there on the hunt for a brand-new outfit to ring in the New Year. But often a flashy outfit for the night's festivities is only good for, well, flashy celebrations. Is it worth it to spend the cash for just one night?

People often say that the way you start the year sets the tone for the rest of the year, and it's easy to apply this concept to your personal style and create a look that will last well past midnight and into 2010. Next year's trends and colours are already on the racks - keep them in mind with the help of our gallery and the search for an outfit will be much simplified. You'll stand out against all the revellers whose style will be so 2009 when midnight strikes.

Wacky New Year Specs Live on in 2010, Despite 1

Fun & Entertainment

Dec 27 2009
By ASSOCIATED PRESS

new year's eve glassesThe decade's end was supposed to finish off those wacky, year-shaped glasses favored by the reveling seas on New Years Eve in Times Square and around the world. Gone would be the convenient loops of the 1990s and the double-zero good times of the '00s.

Where was the 1 going to go? Doubters said it couldn't be done.

Well, turns out the 2010-shaped specs ain't half bad. Accommodating the 1 while making sure people can see out of the things has resulted in some semblance of symmetry, as goofy glasses go.

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