MONEY Travel

Why This Fall Is The Best Time in Years to Book a Flight

John Lamb—Getty Images

Airfares could hit a 4-year low.

If you’ve been putting off purchasing holiday travel tickets, you could be in luck. Hopper, an airfare prediction app, forecasts that domestic airfare prices will drop beginning in August—and stay at an average of $248 until November.

Pre-holiday, your best months to purchase are August and October, when the prices are forecast at $245. And if you’re planning to travel over spring break, buy your tickets in December, when prices are expected to be at an average of $241—a full 12.5% drop from July. Though fall prices are usually, on average, lower than those in the summertime, this year’s expected autumn rates would be the lowest the market has seen in four years. According to Hopper, the app has consistently predicted airfare trends within a single percentage point since beginning to release price indices in April.

Patrick Surry, chief data scientist at Hopper, says the decreases are driven by lower fuel prices, which account for a third of expenses for a typical airline; the entrance of low cost carriers like Frontier, Southwest, and JetBlue into different markets; and the unbundling of services, which might mean you’re paying more in add-ons than you were for the all-inclusive flight three years ago.

If you’re planning on traveling with the whole family in tow, Surry recommends purchasing tickets more than a month in advance for the best prices and availability. And make sure you do your homework: It might seem great to fly from Boston to Orlando for $249, but you could be missing out on the best deal if you have to pay for two additional checked suitcases filled with all the gifts from the grandparents.

Though Hopper only calculates price indices for domestic fights, Surry says August is a good time to travel internationally, as well. With the exchange rate in favor of the U.S. dollar, you can finally take that European vacation you’ve been dreaming of—at a dream price.

Read next: This Is the Cheapest Time of Day to Book a Flight

This article originally appeared in Real Simple.

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TIME advice

How to Get Rid of Fruit Flies

healthiest foods, health food, diet, nutrition, stock, oranges, citrus
Danny Kim for TIME Do you see an orange—or do you see vitamin C?

Eliminate the sources of attraction

The little flies that frequently appear near unrefrigerated produce in your kitchen are probably fruit flies, which are sometimes called vinegar flies. They are extremely hard to get rid of, but if you use a multiphase plan of attack, you should be able to do it.

Fruit flies can lay up to 500 eggs at a time near the surface of fermenting (ripening) foods or other organic materials. The entire life cycle from egg to adult takes only about eight to ten days so they proliferate with great rapidity. They can also lay their eggs in sink drains, garbage disposals, empty bottles and cans, garbage bags, and even damp mops and sponges.

MORE You Asked: Do Fruit Flies Come From Inside Fruit?

The first step in control is to eliminate the sources of attraction and breeding. Don’t leave ripened fruit or vegetables like onions, tomatoes, or potatoes exposed; keep them in the refrigerator until the problem is resolved. Frequently clean recycling bins that hold empty bottles and cans, and make sure the contents are thoroughly cleaned before discarding. Be sure the bottoms and the sides of garbage cans are free of any small bits of food or spilled juices. Be sure the bottoms and the sides of garbage cans are free of any small bits of food or spilled juices. (See more ways to prevent fruit flies.)

Even when all sources of attraction are removed, those speedy adult flies can scatter and lay eggs in a drain or another hard-to-reach location, so the cycle starts all over again. A pyrethrum-based aerosol insecticide may be used to kill adult flies if you can hit them, but that won’t take care of any eggs or larvae lurking in your kitchen.

Traps are important control tools that continue to eliminate new adults as they emerge. Commercial traps can be purchased at hardware stores. Disposable Fruit Fly Traps ($15.50 for a set of two), which are baited with a nontoxic lure, can catch about 2,000 flies each, and last for one month, are available from Lee Valley Tools.

A homemade trap can be made by forming a cone-shaped funnel with an 8-by-10-inch piece of paper, sealing it with tape, and sticking it into a clean jar or wine bottle. Bait the jar with a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar or a slice of ripe banana. Place one or more of these traps on counters or in pantries where the pests are seen most often. The flies go in easily but can’t fly out. After you trap all visible flies, kill them with spray or release them outside. Rebait and replace jar traps, if necessary.

This article originally appeared on Real Simple.

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TIME health

7 Habits of People Who Age Well

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Strong social ties can increase your chance of living longer

Exercise, diet—even attitude—can be as important as genetics when it comes to growing old gracefully. “Old age,” as Bette Davis once said, “is no place for sissies.” But that doesn’t mean you need to chicken out. Sure, growing older affects nearly every part of your body—including your hair, skin, heart, muscles, and more—but aging well may be as simple as adopting these (mostly) easy everyday habits.

1. Maintain a positive attitude.

You are what you think you are when it comes to aging. Seniors who think of age as a means to wisdom and overall satisfaction are more than 40 percent more likely to recover from a disability than those who see aging as synonymous with helplessness or uselessness, according to The Journal of the American Medical Association.

2. Watch what you eat…

Nutrition plays a major role in how your body ages. “The latest research shows that a low-glycemic diet high in fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein is healthiest,” says Dr. Jeffrey Benabio, Physician Director of Healthcare Transformation at Kaiser Permanente Primary Care. One great example is the Mediterranean diet, rich in plant-based foods, whole grains, nuts, and red wine (in moderation!). It also involves eating fish twice each week and cutting back on salt. Research shows that this type of diet may help you age better by warding off heart attacks, strokes, and premature death, according to Harvard Medical School. An added bonus: Benabio says that foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, such as walnuts, salmon, and flaxseed, help your skin manufacture the essential oils it needs to protect itself and can help skin look younger. In contrast, sugary, carbohydrate-heavy, and fatty foods—think, chips, soda, and white bread—can speed up the aging process, says Benabio. “So, when shopping or dining out, opt for whole grains and natural sweeteners,” he says.

3. …And how much you eat.

Overeating may lead to a shorter life span, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes, according to the NIH. To age well and live longer, it’s best to stick to a balanced diet that consists of about 2.5 cups of vegetables, 1.5 to two cups of fruit, six ounces of grains, three cups of dairy, and five ounces of protein each day.

4. Exercise regularly.

Staying active is a vital part of aging well. The average woman can lose 23 percent of her muscle mass between ages of 30 and 70, says Fabio Comana, a faculty instructor at the National Academy of Sports Medicine. You lose muscle more rapidly as you age, but exercise—resistance workouts in particular—can increase mass and strength, even well into your 90s, says Comana. Staying fit may also reduce age-related memory loss, according to a study published in the journal Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience. Plus, Alzheimer’s disease accounts for approximately 60 to 70 percent of all dementia cases, says Comana, adding that increasing physical activity can decrease this statistic by 25 percent. That’s because exercise strengthens the hippocampus, the region of the brain associated with learning.

5. Stay social.

Friends and relatives can help you live longer. Those of us with strong social ties were shown to have a 50 percent higher chance of living longer than those with poor or insufficient relationships, according to a study published in the journal PLoS Medicine.

6. Protect your skin from the sun.

Too much time in the sun can cause wrinkles, not to mention cancer. But wearing sunscreen can help prevent your skin’s aging. And while the sun’s UV rays do trigger vitamin D production, which is essential for bone health, that’s hardly a good reason to expose yourself. “Here are the facts,” Benabio says. “After a few minutes of sun, your skin stops making vitamin D…and starts making skin cancer.” Most people get plenty of Vitamin D, but if you think you’re not, try eating more salmon or even eggs (don’t skip the yolk).

7. Get plenty of sleep.

You probably know that you should snooze for seven to nine hours each night, according to the National Sleep Foundation. But did you know that not sleeping enough may mean a higher risk of obesity, heart disease, and diabetes. Plus, naps can improve memory and even help make up for missing nightly Zzs. And it turns out that “beauty sleep” isn’t a myth. During sleep, your body releases a growth hormone that helps restore collagen and elastin, the essential building blocks of young, healthy skin, says Benabio. Recent studies have also shown a connection between insomnia and accelerated aging of the brain, Benabio says. In other words, chronic lack of sleep adversely affects your brain’s function and speeds up the aging process. “Too many of us treat sleep as a luxury instead of a need,” says Benabio. “If I could encourage people do make one healthy change this year, it would be to sleep more.”

This article originally appeared on Real Simple

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TIME beauty

How to Sweat-Proof Your Entire Beauty Routine

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Include a few quick fixes for emergency situations

1. Pack a smart purse.

If it’s a particularly hot and humid day, you’ll want to keep a few tools in your purse. “Blotting papers are always a good little staple to have,” says Kerry Cole, style director for Becca Cosmetics. For an extra investment, Cole loves the Ever-Matte Poreless Primer ($44,—it behaves like liquid blotting paper, and lasts all day. You may want to bring your deodorant with you, too—we love the Dove Antiperspirant Spray ($6, drugstores), because you can spray it on in the office bathroom and it dries instantly. That means no white residue on your clothes or skin.

2. Embrace dry shampoo.

Dry shampoo is both a preventive measure and a quick fix, says Real Simple beauty director Heather Muir. “Before you work out or before a hot, sticky day, mist a little bit in your crown to help absorb any sweat before it sits in your hair too long and gets greasy.” As a bonus: Spraying a little dry shampoo on your throughout your hair—from middle to end—will give you a tousled, beachy texture.

3. Find the right deodorant.

There’s a difference between deodorant and antiperspirant—deodorant covers up the smell, while antiperspirant actually “reduces the amount of sweat that reaches the surface of the skin,” says Dr. Josh Zeichner, director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mt. Sinai Hospital. The main, sweat-blocking ingredient is aluminum tetrachlorohydrex—stronger antiperspirants will have a higher concentration of this ingredient.

4. Apply deodorant at night.

We know—this one seems counterintuitive. But according to Zeichner, the ideal time to apply deodorant is in the evening, when the amount of sweat you’re producing is low. Since antiperspirant forms a plug in the sweat glands, “the best time to form a plug is when there is not much sweat in the glands so that it can make its way in there as deep as possible,” says Zeichner.

5. Switch up your skincare.

“If you are oily switch out your skincare routine just like we switch out our shampoo to cater to those warm summer months,” says Cole. Opt for an oil free moisturizer, and add a toner to your routine—it can help minimize and tighten pores, and its ingredients help eliminate oil.

6. Don’t discredit a full-coverage foundation.

“People shy away from fuller coverage foundation in the summer because our skin is looking a little bit better, but a full coverage foundation adheres better to your skin,” says Cole. If you feel like it’s too thick, Cole suggests mixing it with a bit of moisturizer to dilute it and make it more lightweight, while maintaining the same long-lasting wear.

7. Layer your makeup.

There’s nothing more uncomfortable than mascara and sweat forming a stinging combination that runs into your eyes. To help your formula adhere to lashes and stay on all day, Cole has a trick: apply one coat, then dab talcum powder onto your lashes, and apply a second coat. “That binder adheres to the mascara and prevents it from melting down,” says Cole.

8. Address other problematic areas.

Whatever you do, don’t rub your antiperspirant all over your body—even if you sweat in more places than under your arms. “There’s a physiologic reason that we sweat,” says Zeichner. “It maintains our core body temperature.” Try a cleansing wipe that you can swipe on your feet, back, or other sweaty areas to address sweat and odor (without completely blocking sweat).

This article originally appeared on Real Simple

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TIME Family

5 Tips for a Peaceful Family Vacation

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Get ready to enjoy your hot dog in peace

No trip is smooth sailing all the time. There are jellyfish stings. Bad weather. Bad moods. But with a few adjustments—some logistical, some attitudinal—you can at least set course in the right direction. Five experts weigh in on how to keep the storm clouds at bay.

For the most interesting and useful family news of the week, don’t forget to sign up for TIME’s parenting newsletter, by clicking here.

1. Make sacrifices.

My daughter, 29, and I travel a lot together. I finally figured how to make the most of it with less conflict: Do what you hate for love and shut up about it. My daughter is very adventurous, and I never leave my office. A few years ago, we went to Hawaii, and Francesca wanted to ride horses down into a volcano. I wanted to sit on the beach with an umbrella drink. But I forced myself to get on the horse and shut up. It was really, really steep, and I just closed my eyes. Afterwards, I got a lot of hugs and my daughter said, “I know you were really scared, and I love you forever for doing that.” What’s the goal of your life? For me, it’s to make the people I love happy and have a good time with them. —Lisa Scottoline

2. Eat in.

Restaurants can be stressful on vacation. You have to agree where to go and get a reservation or wait for a table. Plus, if you have little kids, they’re tired at the end of the day, so the meal isn’t pleasant anyway. It makes a big difference to rent a house or an apartment or at least get a hotel room with a kitchenette. Last summer, we got a beach house close enough to the ocean that we could even come back for lunch. (And my then three-year-old could have his usual, a cheese sandwich.) Many families have picky eaters—of all ages. A kitchen allows everyone to eat what he wants. And you save money. —Liz Borod Wright

3. Know your limits.

You have to go at the speed of the slowest common denominator. If that’s your toddler or your great-aunt, that’s how fast you’re going to go. You should head into the vacation knowing that. Be realistic. Say, “This is what we’re going to be able to accomplish.” And then give yourself ample time to do each activity and enjoy it. If you overshoot, you’re only going to end up frustrated. —Wendy Perrin

4. Escape each other.

On family vacations, people who don’t normally spend 24 hours a day together are suddenly doing just that. Plan breaks every three or four hours. Find time to read a book, or—even better—walk on the beach alone. Doing something physical will help reset your focus. And attention, parents of teenagers: They can make the entire family miserable if forced to stay close at all times. Give them some freedom. I remember that age. When we feel like we have to be together, we want to rebel. Once it’s not required, we want to stick around. —Jeannie Bertoli

5. Plan for late afternoon crankiness.

There’s always the point in the day when you’ve been to the beach but it’s not time for dinner yet. The kids want phones or iPads, you say no, and everyone’s upset. Have activities for that in-between time, even if it’s just a card game. On a recent trip, I created a scavenger hunt every day at 5 p.m. The kids had to follow clues, and the winner got a prize. Another evening I buried a box filled with candy in the sand. They had to search the whole beach for it, which was great, because it exhausted them and it took forever. Meanwhile, the adults watched with a cocktail. —Ali Wentworth

The Experts

  • Lisa Scottoline coauthored, with her daughter, Francesca Serritella, the essay collection Does This Beach Make Me Look Fat? She lives near Philadelphia.
  • Jeannie Bertoli, PH.D., is a relationship and divorce trainer. She lives in Los Angeles.
  • Liz Borod Wright is a blogger at She lives in New York City.
  • Ali Wentworth is an actress and a comedian and the author of Happily Ali After: And More Fairly True Tales. She lives in New York.
  • Wendy Perrin is TripAdvisor’s travel advocate. She lives in suburban New Jersey.

This article originally appeared on Real Simple

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TIME Family

8 Iconic Children’s Book Authors Reveal Their Favorite Picture Books

Page-turners that children are sure to love

  • Hug Machine by Scott Campbell

    Atheneum Books for Young Readers

    “At a time in picture book publishing when so many illustrators seem to be mimicking television, or digital animation, and lacking individuality, it is refreshing to see art that is so personal and fresh. Mr. Campbell’s enormous talent is bursting off each page. I really want to HUG him.”

    Recommended by Tomie dePaola, author of Strega Nona and 26 Fairmont Avenue. The Magical World of Strega Nona: A Treasury ($35, comes out in October.

    To buy: $17,

  • My Bus by Byron Barton

    Greenwillow Books

    “With few, carefully chosen words and simple, brightly colored illustrations, My Bus is a gem of a picture book. It has everything a preschooler could want—dogs, cats, a boat, a train, a plane, and of course, a bus. The ending is a joyous, perfect surprise, but perfection is no surprise from Bryon Barton.”

    Recommended by Kevin Henkes, author of Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse and Kitten’s First Full Moon. His next book Waiting ($18, comes out in September.

    To buy: $17,

  • A Splash of Red: The Life and Art of Horace Pippin by Jen Bryant

    Knopf Books for Young Readers

    “Not enough children’s books address the subject of creativity as this book celebrates the power of our imagination. Melissa Sweet’s energetic and clever illustrations invite a child to explore the rich details of each page. Sadly, as the arts disappear from our nation’s schools, books like this are a valuable way to show children that creativity is all about connecting things.”

    Recommended by Marc Brown, author of the Arthur book series. He is the illustrator of The Little Shop of Monsters ($17,, which comes out in August.

    To buy: $18,

  • When You Are Happy by Eileen Spinelli

    Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

    “This may seem like nepotism, but my wife’s picture book is my favorite. It gets my vote as ‘World’s Most Beautiful Book’ as it scores top marks in three categories: text, illustration, and message. Rarely has so much humanity been packed into so few pages.”

    Recommended by Jerry Spinelli, author of Maniac Magee, Wringer, and most recently, the picture book Mama Seeton’s Whistle ($17,

    To buy: $19,

  • The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau by Jon Agee

    Square Fish

    “My children responded enthusiastically to this fanciful story about the extraordinary canvases of an exceptionally gifted painter. They may, in part, have been reacting to my own enthusiasm for this clever, well-told tale. It is accompanied by illustrations that are both charming and comical, and are perfectly suited to the story’s Parisian setting.”

    Recommended by Chris Van Allsburg, author of The Polar Express, Jumanji, and most recently, The Misadventures of Sweetie Pie ($19,

    To buy: $8,

  • My Pen by Christopher Myers


    “On the cover of this stunning book, a hand is drawing a boy on a newspaper boat. What young child doesn’t dream this dream—to be the captain of your every fate—to draw yourself into your own universe? My Pen sweeps readers into the beautiful world of pen and ink drawings and minimal text, letting the pictures tell the story. Love it!”

    Recommended by Jacqueline Woodson, author Miracle’s Boys and most recently, the memoir Brown Girl Dreaming ($17,

    To buy: $17,

  • Fraidy Zoo by Thyra Heder

    Harry N. Abrams

    “It’s a very clever twist on alphabetical animal picture books with fun and creative illustrations, and a really funny surprise ending. I admire how Heder shows the whole family playfully animating animals they made themselves out of found, everyday objects. It’s inspiring to read a book that encourages children to get up and make things and to actively use their imaginations.”

    Recommended by Laura Numeroff, author of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie and the upcoming book series, Work for Biscuits.

    To buy: $17,

  • The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt

    Philomel Books

    “My granddaughter can’t get enough of this book. What I love about the idea of crayons having personalities is this is how all kids see and use the various colors of crayons. Totally original and hilarious!”

    Recommended by Rosemary Wells, author of the Max and Ruby series, Noisy Nora and most recently, Use Your Words, Sophie! ($17,

    To buy: $18,

    This article originally appeared on Real Simple.

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TIME career

What You Need to Know About Negotiating Your First Salary

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Here's how to have the often-awkward conversation

Conversations about money in the workplace, and salary negotiations in particular, are always difficult—but if it’s your first time having those discussions, it can be especially intimidating. That’s why we launched “Adulthood Made Easy,” a podcast through Panoply, that helps young women navigate the real world, from their first salary negotiation, to their first apartment hunt.

In the pilot, Greg Giangrande, Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer at Time Inc. (Real Simple‘s parent company), offers advice about what you can (and can’t) ask for during your first year on the job. The best part? Host Sam Zabell works right here at Real Simple, and she has to have this entire money conversation in front of both of her bosses. Listen below, and if you want to hear more, make sure to subscribe in iTunes or on your favorite podcast app.


This article originally appeared on Real Simple.

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TIME advice

15 Books for Recent Graduates

  • The Real Simple Guide to Real Life by the Editors of Real Simple

    Oxmoor House

    From salary negotiations to apartment decorating, the first year out of college is filled with a lot of new experiences. With this book, your grad can tackle any hurdle that comes up in the home or the office, with timeless-yet-practical advice from the editors of Real Simple. After reading a few pages, you might want this on your shelf, too.

    To buy: $19,

  • What Do I Do If…? by Eric Grzymkowski

    Adams Media

    From an attack by killer bees to a clogged toilet to a forgotten anniversary, this tiny book offers solutions for any disaster your grad might encounter when finally out on his or her own. Each sticky situation is marked by how likely it is to happen, how easy it is to prevent, and whether or not you need to respond quickly.

    To buy: $11,

  • The Road to Character by David Brooks

    Random House

    New York Times columnist David Brooks uses this book to distinguish “resume virtues”—skills that might look good to an employer—from “eulogy virtues”—morals and values that help us grow and form relationships. He encourages everyone to focus on the latter, and uses anecdotes, interviews, and psychology to give readers the tools to develop a more “moral character.”

    To buy: $17.50,

  • Way More Than Luck

    Chronicle Books

    This book has 14 transcribed commencement speeches that encourage recent grads to be creative, be brave, and make their marks on the world. Speakers include Nora Ephron, Ira Glass, Tom Wolfe, and David Foster Wallace, and the book also illustrates the most inspirational quotes from each address.

    To buy: $15,

  • Do Over by Jon Acuff


    First-time employees need the right tools and resources to make the most of their desk jobs. Do Over goes over four inevitable transitions: a career ceiling (when you feel stuck), a career bump (maybe you lose your job), a career jump (a possible promotion), and a career opportunity (usually unexpected and scary). This practical advice will help grads take advantage of all four transitions, and succeed in any field.

    To buy: $16,

  • The Opposite of Loneliness by Marina Keegan


    The eponymous posthumous essay that spurred this collection circulated quickly amongst college graduates in 2012 because it hit a nerve—everyone was looking for a way to stay connected to their friends when they went off alone in the world after leaving school. Keegan’s work—both essay and fiction—is a must-read for all young writers.

    To buy: $10,

  • Yes Please by Amy Poehler

    Dey Street Books

    Poehler’s funny, honest memoir is filled with nuggets of advice all grads can use, with chapters organized into three sections: “Say Whatever You Want,” “Do Whatever You Like,” and “Be Whoever You Are.” While the move from college can seem intimidating, Poehler’s words remind everyone that the most important thing to do in life is to have fun.

    To buy: $10,

  • Edmund Unravels by Andrew Kolb

    Nancy Paulsen Books

    Consider this children’s book to be 2015’s version of Oh, the Places You’ll Go! Edmund, an adorable ball of yarn, sets off to explore the world. He meets interesting people and visits exciting places, but ultimately, finds that he can’t head out into the world alone without a little support from his family.

    To buy: $13,

  • Very Good Lives by J.K. Rowling

    Little, Brown and Company

    Rowling’s famous Harvard commencement address has been transcribed into a pocket-sized book of wisdom and inspiration that all graduates will want on their shelves. Rowling encourages all graduates to be creative and embrace failure in order to find post-graduate success.

    To buy: $12,

  • Lean In for Graduates by Sheryl Sandberg


    Sandberg’s Lean In offered valuable advice for women who had spent years feeling frustrated in the workplace, but this graduation edition is targeted at young women who have yet to begin. Her guide equips them with the tools necessary to negotiate, participate, and lead in whatever job they land.

    To buy: $19,

  • The Defining Decade by Meg Jay, Ph.D.


    This book explores the 20-something years with personal stories from the author’s clients, and scientific data to explain how the body and mind works during this crucial developmental period. For any millennial who feels overwhelmed or misunderstood, Jay’s analysis of young adult issues and advice for achieving success—both professionally and personally—will reassure and motivate.

    To buy: $9,

  • Getting There by Gillian Zoe Segal

    Harry N. Abrams

    Thirty industry influencers discuss essential career advice for young people about to enter the workforce. Most importantly, they focus on obstacles they faced at work, because those often were essential to their success. Mentors include businessman and politician Michael Bloomberg, trainer Jillian Michaels, and artist Jeff Koons.

    To buy: $19,

  • Tiny Beautiful Things by Cheryl Strayed


    Strayed’s weekly “Dear Sugar” column in The Rumpus is now in book form, with one of her most compassionate, thoughtful columns—titled “Tiny Beautiful Things”—leading the collection. Through a combination of her own experiences and honest advice, this book is filled with one-liners (“Be brave enough to break your own heart”) that all graduates will adopt as mantras.

    To buy: $11,

  • A Curious Mind by Charles Fishman and Brian Grazer

    Simon & Schuster

    Academy Award-winning producer Brian Grazer has talked to a host of accomplished people—from writers to actors to CEOs—to find out how creativity drives their work. These “curiosity conversations” helped him develop concrete advice for improving your professional and personal life.

    To buy: $16,

  • Headstrong by Rachel Swaby

    Broadway Books

    Women’s contributions to science and research are often overlooked, so Swaby profiles the achievements of 52 influential and innovative women who have proven that the sciences aren’t just for men. If you know a young woman looking to break into this male-heavy field, they’ll appreciate this book of innovators.

    To buy: $19,

    This article originally appeared on

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TIME Family

13 Gift Ideas for New Dads

These gifts will keep them awake and ready

These clever, useful gifts cater to every new dad’s lack of sleep, time-management needs, and wide-open heart.

  • Cold Brew Coffee Infusion Bottle

    Epoca-Primula-PCGBK-1220-Cold-Brew-On-the-GO-20-oz.-Bottle-with-Filter-and-Black-Neoprene-Sleeve-2c6edf68-689a-44d6-a6fb-636ce12c2e4b copy

    New dads don’t get much sleep. This cold-brew travel mug puts his much-needed morning joe on autopilot—he can simply fill the mug at night (say, when he’s preparing the baby bottles), then reach for it in the morning on his way to work. The neoprene sleeve makes it travel-friendly; the dishwasher-safe design makes it dad-friendly.

    To buy: $31,

  • Dad’s Playbook


    The subtitle—Wisdom for Fathers from the Greatest Coaches of All Times—says it all. Fatherhood is the most important coaching job of his life, and the inspirational and tactical quotes from sports heroes like Steve Young will keep his head in the game, through victory and the occasional defeat (it’s amazing how quickly one caves in the face of a first tantrum).

    To buy: $13,

  • Vader’s Little Princess and Darth Vader and Son

    Chronicle Books

    The illustrations say kid’s book, but the laugh-out-loud funny references speak directly to Star Wars fans. Perfect bedtime reading for after the little one’s asleep, these books by Jeffrey Brown are most definitely the gifts you’re looking for. (And that’s no Jedi mind trick.)

    To buy: $8-10 each,

  • Pillowtop Hammock

    Island Bay—Hayneedle

    Baby gets a swing, why not Dad? Few things are more peaceful than swinging in a hammock in the yard, staring up at the sun-dappled trees, sneaking a few pages of that long-forgotten book, or catching a quick snooze. And once the little one is old enough to join him… just imagine the Instagram moments.

    To buy: $130,

  • Dresser Valet

    Reed & Barton—Wayfair

    New dads have a lot to think about—make it easier for him to remember where he left his keys, wallet, tablet and smartphone by giving him this catch-all dresser valet. We love this leather one for its classic look, sturdy back (perfect for a leaning tablet) and mousehole charger openings.

    To buy: $42,

  • Succulent Planter

    Babies require lots of care and feeding. Succulents, on the other hand, do not. Boost his life-sustaining confidence with this tabletop succulent garden. In fact, the whole household might breathe easier: Succulents are one of few plant types that take in carbon dioxide and release oxygen. Talk about a breath of fresh air.

    To buy: $32,

  • Cotton Polo Shirt

    This shirt has it all: a modern take on the classic polo, the perfect stain-concealing gray hue (hey, spit-up happens), and a socially-responsible backstory, thanks to Everlane’s direct relationship with the factories that produce it.

    To buy: $35,

  • Watermint Body Wash

    Molton Brown

    When that alarm goes off just a few short hours after the baby finally went back down, he’s going to need a refreshing wake-up call. The crisp mint, buchu extract and cardamom combo in Molton Brown’s generous-sized body wash promises a cool start to any day. (No word on whether the company plans to make a scent that lulls babies to sleep before 2 a.m.)

    To buy: $30,

  • Guitar Pick Punch


    It’s a universal musical truth that guitar players can never find a pick when they need one (no matter how many they own). And once there’s a baby in the house, the need for soothing music ASAP becomes that much more urgent. With this clever hole-punch, he can turn any sort of semi-hard plastic (think old gift cards) into a tool of tranquility.

    To buy: $25,

  • Modern Mobile


    Why should junior get all the fun? This arty, grown-up mobile adds color and interest to a home office or family room—plus it’s fun to put together and can inspire deep thought when stared at for long periods of time (like meditation without the om).

    To buy: $40,

  • Quiet Headphones


    There’s no risk of waking the baby with these headphones that don’t leak sound. The universal-fit jack is compatible with all smartphones, and the lightweight design promises hours of listening without feeling like his head is in a vice.

    To buy: $46,

  • Cordless Screwdriver


    You’ve seen the shower registry—you know exactly how many things he’ll need to assemble over the next few years. (Ah, who are we kidding? He’ll be assembling furniture and toys at least until the kid’s in college!) Set him up for success with a two-position cordless screwdriver that charges in just one hour.

    To buy: $73,

  • Digital Camera


    Some picture-perfect moments are so special they deserve better than his smartphone camera. The Canon Powershot N has 12.1 megapixels, 8x optical zoom and a 28mm wide-angle lens—all packed into a sleek design smaller than his palm. And for instant gratification and brownie points with the grandparents, he can upload photos to social media sites instantly using the built-in wi-fi.

    To buy: $149,

    This article originally appeared on Real Simple.

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TIME Family

10 Things My Father Was Right About

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Stop worrying

My father spent his youth as a crossing guard, a Boy Scout, and a designated driver. I, on the other hand, squandered mine cutting gym class and hanging out at the mall. Back then, my father would deliver themed, Mike Brady–style lectures (one recurring favorite was the Importance of Being Honest), which I grudgingly tolerated and later dismissed. But as I’ve gotten older, a funny thing has come to pass: I’ve often found myself doing exactly what he told me to do, following even his most questionable advice—like renting the movie Pink Cadillac. Herewith, his greatest hits. (Caution: Some of these lessons may trigger flashbacks to your own father’s finest moments.)

1. Hold hands while you hash it out. My folks have been married for 47 years. One of my father’s rules for a happy marriage is that if a nasty argument erupts, hold hands as you fight. You’ll feel goofy doing this, but here’s the thing: It works. Recently my husband, Tom, forgot to pay a few bills that were buried under a pile of clutter. I was incandescent with rage. So we interlaced our fingers while we talked it out, and I felt my blood pressure plummet and my endorphins flow in spite of myself. It’s impossible to scream at someone who is giving your hand a gentle squeeze. It just is.

2. Pay attention to anyone who wears a tool belt… My father is practical, thrifty (or, put more accurately, cheap), and savvy about home improvements. He calls a repairman only as a last resort—and when he does, he hovers around the guy and asks tons of questions. “Carefully observe anyone with a skill that you don’t have,” my father often said, “and then you can take care of the fill-in-the-blank yourself.” He was right: After shadowing a handyman for an hour, I later fixed my own dishwasher, to the perpetual amazement of friends who call their super to change a lightbulb.

3. …Or a uniform. It has always annoyed my dad that a waiter gets a 20 percent tip for serving a crème brûlée, while a hotel maid who disposes of used dental floss often winds up with bubkes. My father routinely told our sanitation men and the crew who cleaned his office that they were doing a good job and made sure to compensate them at holidays. As a child, I used to writhe with embarrassment when he did this. Now I do the same for the sanitation workers in my neighborhood. One guy once told me, with a catch in his voice, that in 10 years, it was the first time he had ever been thanked.

4. You can never have enough baggies. Anything can be stored in a resealable plastic bag, according to my father. Shoelaces, maps, socks, meat. I used to mock his habit of bagging everything, but since then I’ve seen the light. They’re miracle workers—easy to stash, and you can spot their contents at a glance. Now, just like Dad, I have a special drawer just for these bags, which range from giant (for sweaters) to tiny (to squirrel away nuts in my purse). When I’m missing a size in my lineup, I get tense.

5. You can’t go wrong with Clint. Dad says if you are unable to decide what movie to rent, get a Clint Eastwood film. Even the bad ones, he contends, are superior to most other films. Even Every Which Way but Loose. Even The Gauntlet (look it up). Now, when I’m overwhelmed by the options, I simply look for Clint’s scowling face.

6. Don’t belittle the annual sack race. When my sisters and I hit adolescence, my father doggedly upheld our many family traditions, despite a tsunami of scorn. “They don’t mean anything to you kids now,” he’d tell us, “but one day you’ll invest in them yourselves.” Have we ever. Every Fourth of July, we have a sack race, and I just introduced a new tradition last Christmas. After dinner, I passed out lottery tickets and coins. Soon, all you could hear was an industrious scritch-scratch. And my father was beaming.

7. For Pete’s sake, stop worrying. Dad, like many guys of his generation, is a doer, not a talker. Just “fix it,” he tells himself, no matter how intractable the problem seems. His swift and decisive action used to strike me, a champion ditherer, as impulsive, but I’ve come to realize that consulting your gut leads to better decisions than exhaustive (and exhausting) deliberation. Now when I’m stymied, I say this phrase, and the answer comes.

8. Carry a hankie. Years ago, my parents and I were visiting a museum. I had a cold. My father handed me a fresh hankie and told me to keep it in my purse. And so I have. Tissues disintegrate, but not this sturdy cloth. Restroom dryer on the fritz? Handkerchief! Want to wrap a cookie to go? Handkerchief!

9. No one’s smarter than you. Long ago, if I was in a group and the conversation strayed to an unfamiliar topic, I’d keep silent. Dad urged me to say, “I don’t understand. Can you explain what you’re talking about?” Asking questions makes you sound smart, he said, and confident to boot. At a recent gathering, somebody mentioned the Mauritius Continental Shelf. Silence. Then I asked, “What’s that?” And all the former Ivy Leaguers around me exhaled and admitted they didn’t know what the hell it was, either.

10. You will want kids. My father always encouraged me to have a baby. I used to tell him that it wasn’t for everyone, but he shot back, “I know you, and you would love it.” True enough: Tom and I became parents recently, and that little girl is the joy of my life. I cannot wait to impart my own pearls of wisdom to her, such as the infinite uses for twist ties or the Importance of Being Honest (sound familiar?). And since she’s a lot like me, she’ll probably roll her eyes and grumble—and listen to every word.

This article originally appeared on Real Simple.

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