Living

Home & Garden

How to slash your power bill by using solar panels

Retired engineer Bruce Duckett shares his experience with the simplicity of having solar panels installed and generating about one-third of his power needs, cutting his electrical bill by that much. He financed them with no money down, federal tax credits and a manufacturer's rebate.

Living

Choose style or function with multi-tasking phone cases

Smartphones have long-since evolved from mere utility. Most of us consider them akin to family. For better or worse, these compact multifunctional devices often perform seemingly Herculean tasks each day - weather forecasting, news gathering, schedule keeping and latte buying.

Family

Living with Children: Parental fork in the road

In the late 1960s, America came to a fork in the parenting road and took the road never traveled. My generation did what no generation in any culture at any time in history had ever done: we broke with the parenting traditions of our foremothers and forefathers. When the time came, we refused to take the well-worn parenting baton and carry it forward. And as poet Robert Frost foresaw, albeit upside-down, it has made all of the difference.

Fashion

Dresses you can wear with any shoe style

While in our opinion, sneakers, sandals or boots can be worn with any dress if you style it right, some frocks make it easier than others to get the most wear out of your buy. From minis to midis, there are countless dresses out there that go seamlessly from shoe style to shoe style - all you have to do is look! Luckily for you, you actually don't have to look far, because today we did all the work in rounding up the best ones to buy now. They'll go with so many of your favorite shoes that you'll be tempted to wear them every day.

Living

He's a 'good husband' � except for the romance and passion part

Q: Unless I initiate sex, it doesn't happen. I used to be OK with getting things going - when we first were together, I would be all over him. But now it's hurting my self-esteem, having to always be the pursuer. Lately, I have been laying back and hoping he'll come to me. But he doesn't. I know he loves me and all, but I really need to see him express it. Many nights, I leave our bedroom to cry. I wish things were better between us, but I'm not sure how to resolve this stalemate. Other than that, he's a good husband, and he's a good dad to our kids.

Family

Lori Borgman: Getting burned and bummed on fall crafts

It's PSL season. You know what that is, right? Pumpkin spice latte. It's not just a drink, it is the official kickoff for fall - the ref's whistle signaling that it's time to break out the sweaters, boots, cider, pumpkins, candy corn and endless adorable crafts.

Travel

Cheapo Travel: Here's how to save on cruises

I recently found an interesting website called CruiseFever.net, with useful information about setting sail on the seas. I asked the editor, Ben Souza, if he'd answer some questions that cheapos like you and I always want to ask. Here are his insights on how to save money booking cruises.

Family

Ex-etiquette: Distant daughter

Q: My ex and I share custody of our daughter, and lately I've noticed that my daughter never wants to talk to me when she is at her mother's house. She seems happy at my house and likes to talk to her mom when she calls, but distant and withdrawn from me when she's with her mom. I've discussed this with her mother, but since it's not happening at her house, she really doesn't care. What's good ex-etiquette?

Family

Ask Mr. Dad: Bullying: When the victim becomes the perpetrator

Dear Mr. Dad: My son just started in middle school and the dean called to tell me that my son is bullying several of his classmates. I find this hard to believe: I've never seen him treat anyone badly and no one else has ever told me otherwise. Plus, back in elementary school, he was constantly bullied because he was overweight (although he had a growth spurt and lost a lot of that weight over the summer). What should I do about this?

Living

The 7 biggest lies holding you back from happiness

Over time, our consistent thoughts become our beliefs. This is a positive thing if our beliefs serve us in some way - like believing you are a healthy person, resilient or talented in your work. But when our beliefs are based on thoughts that do not serve us now or in the future, they become dangerous.

Living

7 beauty products estheticians use (that you don't know about)

You're neatly tucked into one of those glorious heated beds in a fresh, white robe. Your facialist begins doing her thing - massaging, applying and swiftly moving from one product to the next using techniques you can't see and formulas you don't recognize. Then, like magic, you're done an hour later and look brighter and wildly revitalized. But, you still have no idea what that brush-like thing was or what product was used to give you that incredible glow. Well, we're pulling back the curtain on the mystery of it all. Breaking the fourth wall, so to speak.

Living

Answer Angel: Allergic to sunscreen? You still have options.

Dear Answer Angel Ellen: I have found I cannot wear makeup with any SPF ingredient. Apparently it has been decided that everyone needs sunscreen, but I am allergic to the ingredient in cosmetics (and spray sunscreen as well). As more and more products are adding it, what will be offered to those who cannot use it?

Travel

The 6 most popular destinations for fall 2016

Autumn trips are synonymous with leaf peeping, but ... surprise! ... .not a single one of the six most popular destinations for this fall are known for sugar maples. While fall is not the heaviest travel season of the four, plenty of savvy travelers like to take advantage of the nice weather, thinner crowds, and lower rates that can be found between Labor Day and Thanksgiving. So where are those smart travelers headed over the next few months? A survey of U.S. travel agents conducted by Travel Leaders Group, a trade organization based in the Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn., metro area, names those destinations, based on booking data for the rest of the year.

Videos

How to slash your power bill by using solar panels

Retired engineer Bruce Duckett shares his experience with the simplicity of having solar panels installed and generating about one-third of his power needs, cutting his electrical bill by that much. He financed them with no money down, federal tax credits and a manufacturer's rebate.
Karen Nelson The Sun Herald
How to slash your power bill by using solar panels 2:05

How to slash your power bill by using solar panels

Public service announcement warns teens about 'sextortion' 2:13

Public service announcement warns teens about 'sextortion'

Sacramento Bee readers share photos of their dogs enjoying great outdoors 1:47

Sacramento Bee readers share photos of their dogs enjoying great outdoors

Protesters cite animal rights, Cesar Chávez in opposing Burger Battle 0:51

Protesters cite animal rights, Cesar Chávez in opposing Burger Battle