TIPS TO EASE DIGITAL EYE STRAIN
Computer vision syndrome can impact us on any workday.
From Rivera to Owens, Chelsea’s changing it up.
WHEN SHOULD YOU BUY A CAR
Could timing be a factor in getting a better deal?
TAKING BETTER VACATION PHOTOS
Pointers to help those images rise above mere point-and-shoot quality.
RECIPE OF THE MONTH
Cheesy Chicken Stuffed Tomatoes
Many of us stare at computer, tablet, or phone screens for seven or more hours a day. We thereby risk developing computer vision syndrome (CVS), the digital eye strain related to blue light exposure. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health says that CVS affects about 90% of regular, daily users of digital devices.
Some simple steps may help to lower the risk of CVS, even when we cannot reduce the hours we spend online or at the keyboard. The first is abiding by the American Academy of Optometry’s 20-20 rule: for every 20 minutes you spend looking at a screen, spend 20 seconds looking at something far away. Drugstore reading glasses can provide a little relief for the farsighted who must frequently squint at screens, and getting contacts with a yellow tint or eyeglasses with lenses that block blue light can provide some relief as well. Diet can also play a role. Orange peppers & corn provide the body with sizable amounts of zeaxanthin, shown to decrease eye irritation. Spinach, broccoli, kale, and other leafy green vegetables contain lots of zeaxanthin as well as lutein, another nutrient good for the eyes. Even taking daily supplements of lutein & zeaxanthin may help to ward off CVS.1
Our very own Director of First Impressions is tying the knot this year and while we wish her the best, it may take us a little bit to get used to Chelsea Owens instead of the Chelsea Rivera we’ve all come to know and love. Wishing her and her soon-to-be-husband all the happiness in the world.
If you are on the verge of shopping for a new or late-model used vehicle, some recent research from TrueCar may interest you – and even lead you to some savings. TrueCar, which monitors both U.S. auto dealer sales and dealer incentives and discounts, says that Monday and Thursday are the ideal days of the week to buy. Fewer buyers head to dealerships on those two days than any other, and the average sales discount off MSRP is slightly higher (8.1% compared to 7.5% on Sundays).
Fall and winter may be the right season to arrange a car or truck purchase. October is when dealerships tend to offer their biggest discounts on full-size pickups. November sees the deepest discounts on compact and mid-sized cars. Markdowns on luxury and mid-sized SUVs tend to be largest in December. Also, New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are often the very best days of the year to buy. TrueCar found an average discount of 8.5% off MSRP on January 1. 2
Social media feeds are filled with travel photos, yet few of them really stand out or look like a postcard. Why is that? Is it because of the limitations of some smartphone cameras?
Not really. Whether you use a smartphone or a traditional camera, some keys to better travel photos are fairly simple. One, take them very early in the day or very late in the day, when sidelight is prevalent and daylight is softer. High noon light makes people squint and casts shadows. Two, walk – the more and the further, the better. Walking will take you to different vantage points of an area or landmark, giving you perspectives unseen by the average tourist. Three, get high or low. Shoot some images at an angle from the road or ground or from a balcony or deck looking out over an area. Four, tell a story. Take images of “welcome to” signs of cities or towns, the distinctive homes or parks or landmarks, the locals. Lastly, pretty up those images with some of the wonderful photo editing apps now widely available; pro photographers use them too. 3
4 Large, Firm Tomatoes
1 Cup Milk
2 Cups Diced, Cooked Chicken
2 Tbsp. Flour
2 Tbsp. Butter
1/2 Cup Shredded Medium Cheddar Cheese
1/2 Cup Finely Diced Celery
1/4 Cup Chopped Green Onion
Sea Salt (To Taste)
Black Pepper (To Taste)
Parsley (For Garnish)
Slice the top off of each tomato, scoop out the pulp, and set aside. Grab a pinch of sea salt and sprinkle inside each tomato ‘shell,’ allow to drain upside down.
Melt butter in a pan over medium heat. Stir/blend in flour, and continue to blend and cook – stirring until bubbly. Turn off heat, stir milk into mixture, and then place back onto low heat. Cook, stirring, until mixture is thickened and smooth.
Stir celery, onions, cooked chicken, and 1/4 cup of the cheddar cheese into flour/milk/butter mixture. Season with sea salt and black pepper as desired.
Fill each tomato shell with the mixture, arrange filled shells on pie plate or shallow baking dish, and then sprinkle with remaining portion of shredded cheese.
Bake stuffed tomatoes at 350 degrees for approximately 20 minutes (or until top is baked and golden). Garnish with parsley, if desired.
Enjoy with sour cream or on their own!
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