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6 Reasons to Visit Mexico’s Marvellous Yucatán State By Rosalind Stefanac   A recent trip to Yucatán State proved that there's so much more to Mexico than sandy beaches and ocean views. In fact, venturing inland on the southeastern Yucatán peninsula revealed so many historic gems, along with scenic retreats that offered a blissful escape from crowds and the hustle of everyday life. In planning your next adventure down south with your tween, teen or solo, here are six reasons to put Yucatán on your radar:     Cenotes are so cool These nature-made, deep-water wells (or sinkholes), surrounded by rock formations, date back thousands of years. They're filled with fresh water fed by rain and underground currents. Most of Mexico’s more than 6,000 cenotes can be found in the Yucatán peninsula. At the Zazil Tunich in Valladolid, you descend 20 metres down into a cavern to reach the cenote where you can swim in the refreshing waters (average temperature 75-degrees Fahrenheit). Here you can opt for a guided tour that includes a traditional Mayan purification ceremony. It’s magical!   It’s Taco Tuesday every day!   All that swimming in cenotes is sure to spark your appetite. Luckily Yucatán is home to some of the best tacos on the planet — at least in my opinion. Be sure to try the cochinita pibil (shredded pork shoulder or loin), a popular taco filling in the region. They usually serve it with lettuce, pickled red onion, tomatoes, avocado and habanero chilli. At the Kinich in Isamal, you can even watch the staff hand-roll fresh tortillas before your very eyes. It doesn’t get fresher than this.   You can be one with nature (literally)   At the high-end Oriundo Luxury Nature Villas, which opened this June in Valladolid, every detail in the guest rooms has been designed to harmonize with the surrounding jungle. Not only are the materials all natural but you’ll find trees growing throughout the indoor space, and plenty of windows overlooking the lush green foliage. If you’re on a tighter budget, the area has plenty of haciendas with accommodations surrounded by lovely outdoor spaces ideal for nature exploring.   The architecture is awesome   In Merida, Yucatán’s pedestrian-friendly capital city, you'll find colonial history evident in most of the colourful and lovingly restored mansions, many of which are open to tourists. I took a guided tour of the stunning El Minaret, which was built in 1908, and is also known as the watchtower of Merida’s centre. Aim to be there

5 Tips to Raise a Resilient Teen By June Rousso, Ph.D.   Teens today are faced with so much rapid change along with everyday academic and social demands. All of these demands can be very stressful at times. Our bodies naturally react to stress with a fight, flight or freeze reaction. However, we also can use our thoughts and emotions to develop resilience and better manage stress. This is where resilience comes in. But how to build it? Here are some tips for parents guided by the words of teens themselves from ChildResilient.org, a student-run non-profit organization born out of the pandemic.   Tip #1: Encourage a strong sense of self in your teen. If you have a sense of who you are, you can easily direct yourself towards and away from situations — even toxic ones. As parents, give more choices when you can, and encourage your child not to be influenced by social conformity. While it is natural to want to be liked by others, it's also important to live by your own will. Let them learn to think independently, regardless of the good and bad opinions of others. Help foster resilience as well as build your teen's self-confidence by encouraging this kind of independent thinking.   Tip #2: Don’t dwell on the past, especially the bad life experiences. While you never want to dismiss your child’s feelings, dwelling on the past prevents building up the strength to move forward in life. Children, especially teens, can be so sensitive to how they might have been judged in the past. Past opinions don’t matter and they need to learn to do things for themselves. Strengthen your teen's sense of self by teaching them not to be swayed by public opinion. With ongoing emotional reactions to stress — such as depression and anxiety — it is important to remind your child that these feelings are not all of who they are, which helps to keep your teen resilient.   Tip #3: Explain that making social comparisons is natural, but overdoing it hinders being a resilient teen. When we compare ourselves to others, we usually come out on the short end of the stick or take on an arrogant attitude of feeling better. Communicating that there will always be people with more of something in some way is one message, but teens can also learn that these same people can serve as role models and be inspirational. At the same time, despite the social comparisons,

3 Ways to Suit Up for Prom 2022 By Arianne Mae Granada Roll up your sleeves and put your dancing shoes on because prom is finally back! It is time to suit up for Prom 2022! (WARNING: Marvel reference ahead!) Still can’t have a sensation of the prom fever? Think of it this way: two years ago, Thanos snapped his fingers and took away the biggest events of your teen’s life — prom night, graduation day and spring break. And in a snap (pun intended!), they’ve all been brought back to life. That is their version of the blip. After 2 years of cancelled plans and dampened expectations, the long-awaited prom season is upon us once again. Prom can be a great opportunity to communicate and help you to connect with your teen. The highly anticipated celebration is set to be welcomed back with doubled excitement and 110 percent energy. Considered a huge milestone in every teen’s life, prom is definitely the special occasion they would invest their time and money on. Whether your teen is a first-time goer, a soon-to-be graduate throwing a “make-up prom,” or a hopeless romantic staging a promposal, it’s important that they put together the perfect ensemble to make it worth remembering. Along with failed dalgona coffee attempts and DIY haircuts, we’re leaving boring prom OOTDs behind in 2020. It’s time to suit up and welcome this year’s prom season with creativity and self-discovery. Whether you prefer an unconventional look over the usual prom dresses, or you want to put on a modern take on a traditional tuxedo, there are endless ways to style a basic suit and tie, and we are here to narrow down your options.  For switching up a classic The Slim-Fit Stretch Peak Lapel Tuxedo is a modern take on a fashion classic that will make anyone stand out at the prom venue. This tailored suit is available in a variety of sizes and is gender-neutral… because there are no rules when it comes to fashion!  For a chill night For a more casual look, this Slim-Fit Stretch Suit is available in five different colours including grey, pink and light blue, delivering versatility and an instant confidence boost.  For an instant upgrade TipTop.ca also offers a range of accessories from bowties to pocket squares in a variety of different colours so you can jazz up your look with a pop of colour. One thing the pandemic has taught teens and young adults alike —

Actor Dan Payne's Judgement-Free Philosophy on Parenting and Mental Health By Tanishq Desai From John Tucker Must Die to Watchmen - Dan Payne has over 100 credits in the form of television features or indie films to his name. Apart from being a full-time husband, father and actor who actively advocates for mental health, the Mulligans heartthrob talks about his upcoming feature film, Corrective Measures, alongside Bruce Willis and Michael Rooker. Tell us about your new movie, Corrective Measures. “Well, it’s a big step up for me! I got to work with a couple of guys that I consider to be legends and icons — Bruce Willis and Michael Rooker — so I did a little happy dance the moment I found out that it was happening. And I also get to play a character that I’m not used to. He’s an ex-military vigilante, which is kind of far away from the loving-nature-doting-husband type of roles that I’ve played! This project is on a way bigger scale too. It’s Fox Tubi’s first original content release and I’m honoured that I get to be a part of it.”   You play Walter Arthur Locke (aka Payback). Tell us about your character and what drew you to him? “So Corrective Measures is a graphic novel turned into a movie and Sean Patrick O'Reilly who directed, wrote and executive produced this did a magical job of making it a fun story and a great ride to be on. My character, Payback, is an ex-military guy, and some things happened to him that put him on a pretty strong vigilante path of revenge. But he ends up in one of the state-of-the-art hidden octane penitentiaries where all the main bad guys of the world get stuck. Now we’ll have to watch the movie to know if he ends up there on purpose but he’s got a pretty strong vendetta against criminals. When a radio magnetic pulse goes out over the world, it gives some people superpowers, kills the rest and some get mutated because of it. But this gives us a little good vs. evil because the good people put their powers to good use and the bad tend to go to evil, which eventually leads them all into this prison so you understand how it can get when there’s a bunch of superheroes and badasses put together. It can get messy.”   Coming back to you working with some icons in this

5 Creative Ways To Spend Time With Mom For Mother’s Day Although one day a year really isn’t enough to honour the person that gave birth to you and raised you, Mother’s Day is a great way to show mom how much you appreciate her. It turns out that finding the best gift for mom is easier than you think! Here are 5 ways to add some laughter, sweetness, and love to your Mother’s Day celebration.   1. Cook for Mom  There truly is nothing like a home-cooked meal by mom and it is time to return the favour. Cook your mom her favourite meal, buy her favourite wine or cocktail and even have siblings or partners act as hostesses and waiters. Give her a 5-star dining experience at home, one she will never forget.  2. Play games to celebrate If food isn’t her thing, then why not liven up the party with some games to keep the crowd engaged and make cherished memories. Ideas like karaoke, mad libs, and bingo are always fun. We all know mom deserves a break from daily chores. You can create your own game like the “Give mom a break” game that you can create for the day. Let mom be the centre of attention by offering to do all household chores. This can be a wonderful way of showing gratitude while mom puts her feet up on her special day. 3. Something sweet for mom Who doesn’t love ice cream, especially from your favourite brand? Skip the flower store and head straight to dessert with the new Tall Stack Cake from Baskin-Robbins Canada. Customize with mom’s favourite cake and ice cream flavour topped with a special message to let her know how much she means to you. 4. Watch a movie together A budget-friendly way to stay in and avoid crowds is to let Mom cuddle up on the couch in her pyjamas! Yes, we're talking about streaming a movie! We all know that the best Mother's Day gift is quality time, so make plans to catch up and then press play on the TV with some of her favourite movie treats.  5. Get pampered At some point on Mother's Day, mom may want some time alone or a chance for a little rest and relaxation. A few ideas include a 60-minute massage to help her unwind, or by bringing her to the hair salon and treating her to a cute new cut and blowout or taking her

7 Tips to Understanding Your Teen By Ishank Katyal Dealing with a teenager has always been the most complicated and challenging part of parenting—the significant change in brains and hormones, not to mention the impulsiveness and emotions that teens build after turning 13. External factors including academic pressure, peer pressure, social media, and many other problems adolescents face every day can affect them both mentally and emotionally and might restrain their relationship with their loved ones.  Here are some of the tips which might help you understand your teen better:   1. Listen to them Your teen will listen to you only when you’re a good listener. It requires a lot of energy and patience, but it is a key tool for improving your relationship with them because it builds trust and helps them gain self-confidence and self-esteem. 2. Avoid asking too many questions Kids become more uncomfortable when you keep asking them questions and it feels like an interrogation rather than a healthy conversation. Ask only those questions which are relevant to the situation, otherwise, they could get irritated and be hesitant to share their problems. 3. Give them space Just like adults, teenagers also need some privacy and space from the people around them. Try to approach them not as a parent, but as an individual and learn to respect their privacy. Avoid barging into their room whenever you please and teach them the value of privacy and personal space. 4. Make sure they’re not addicted to their electronics Do they find it difficult to put their phone down while studying or doing any important work? Try to limit their screen time (no matter how much they fight for it!) to give them a break from social media and the Internet. This helps them to learn to be in the moment and can foster some great conversations. Even a small gesture like putting their phones away and joining you for a walk can go a long way in bolstering their moods.  5. Treat your teen as an individual Yes, they may take after you or your spouse, but your teen is their own person, with their own beliefs and opinions. Letting them express what they think and feel without judgement will help boost their self-esteem while fostering a great relationship. It can also make for some excellent dinner conversation. 6. Be honest with them One of the best things you could do for your teen is to be honest. A positive parent-child

6 Spring Budget-Friendly Activities Your Teen will Love By Jessica Pinzón Spring is a great time to get outside and explore! We featured several spring events to enjoy in a recent article. But, finding new activities and events can be challenging if you're on a budget. The good news? There are plenty of things to do in and around Toronto that won't break the bank that you and your teen will enjoy. We featured 6 FREE activities you can enjoy around your neighbourhood. 1) Cherry Blossom Trees Perfect for their Instagram feeds and TikTok videos, your teen will love seeking out the sakura trees, more commonly known as cherry blossom trees. This year, you can see them in different traditional parks in Toronto and the GTA.When: Late April and May Where: High Park, Broadacres Park, Centennial Park, John P. Robarts Library at the University of Toronto, Toronto Island Park and Trinity Bellwoods Park. More information: https://www.toronto.ca/explore-enjoy/festivals-events/cherry-blossoms/ 2) Street by The Beltway The Beltway's new exhibition brings exciting activities to the streets of Toronto with free art installations, performances, conversations and events. When: From May 26th Where: Under Toronto's Gardiner Expressway and the surrounding area.  More information: https://the-bentway.prezly.com/this-summer-the-bentway-takes-on-the-street  3) Pedestrian Sundays at Kensington Market Pedestrian Sundays return to the market streets of Kensington Market with outdoor events, open patios and fun for the whole family. When: From May 29th Where: Kensington Market More information: https://kensingtonmarket.to/festivals/  4) Free Don Valley Guided Walks It’s one of the best times to enjoy nature, share with family and participate in the cultural activities in Don River Valley Park. When: During the whole spring Where: Don River Valley Park More information: https://www.evergreen.ca/evergreen-brick-works/active-living/don-valley-guided-walks/ 5) 36 questions that lead to loving Toronto A new interactive exhibition at the Myseum of Toronto invites us to fall in love again with our city through an interactive and fun journey of 36 questions. When: Wednesdays to Saturdays from 12 - 6 pm Where: Myseum of Toronto 401 Richmond Street West, Studio LL01 More information: http://www.myseumoftoronto.com/programming/36-questions-that-lead-to-loving-toronto/ 6) Other outdoor activities If you and your teenager love outdoor adventures, here are 3 exciting activities to enjoy outdoors: Visit Scarborough Bluffs, discover waterfalls such as Devil's Punchbowl and Webster's Falls at Hamilton or go canoeing in the National Urban Park. When: During the whole spring Where: Toronto and GTA More information about spring outdoorsy budget-friendly activities: https://www.toronto.ca/explore-enjoy/parks-gardens-beaches/scarborough-bluffs/  https://tourismhamilton.com/hamilton-waterfalls-guide  https://www.pc.gc.ca/en/pn-np/on/rouge/visit

5 Easter Brunch Must-Haves Hosting an Easter Brunch is a great alternative to hosting Easter Dinner. If the weather is nice, you can set it up outside and it’s just a more laid-back, casual way of getting together to celebrate. If you’re looking to make your Easter Brunch a sweet event, we have some great ideas. Let’s hop to it!   Evive Nutrition Frozen Fruit Smoothies We love the idea of presenting your guests with a make-your-own smoothie bar. This is especially great if it’s warm enough to set your brunch up outside, so the kids can play and your guests can mingle. We love these Evive Nutrition Frozen Fruit Smoothies because they’re made from organic fruit and vegetables that are flash frozen, so they seal in all the flavours and nutrients. You simply take the wheel, run it under some water to loosen it up, put it in a mason jar or shaker and cover it with whichever liquid you want – almond milk, water or juice. Let it sit and then shake it up! No blender necessary!   Cuisipro Line Cookware What’s an Easter Brunch without some tasty treats? If you want to your teen to spend some time with you — get them baking! To create some tasty treats, look no further than the Cuisipro line. We love this line of cookware – it was originally developed for restaurants so you get restaurant-quality cookware without the high price tag! It’s such an innovative line that offers smart solutions in the kitchen that makes baking and cooking so enjoyable that your teen will actually want to do it with you!   Bimbo Canada It’s a great idea to have an array of breads on the table to satisfy any taste and preference. Our go-to is always bread products from Bimbo Canada, the manufacturer of Dempsters, Stonemill and Villaggio bread. We love the cinnamon raisin bagels from Dempsters and, of course the Villaggio bread makes for amazing French Toast. But another reason why we feel good about putting Bimbo Canada products on our table – they are the first national bread manufacturer in North America to transition to cardboard bread bag clips on all their bread products! The cardboard clips are made from 100% recycled cardboard and are recyclable and compostable in municipal systems in 84 days. It seems like such a small change, but it will reduce our use of single-use plastic by approximately 200 metric tonnes annually,

5 Reasons Why Your Teen Should Get a Summer Job By Ishank Katyal   Getting a summer job is a rite of passage for a lot of teens. It's the stage of life that can bridge the gap between childhood and adulthood. Working is important for your teen, as it gives them real-world experiences that they won't find in the classroom. Beyond some financial independence, there are other benefits for teens when it comes to working. Here are 5 reasons why your teen should get a summer job. 1. Work Ethic Summer jobs help teenagers explore their work habits, goals, and motivation. Apart from that, they also allow them to learn about proper time management and deal with consequences as they move towards adulthood. 2. Responsibility Teens are mostly used to being directed by their parents and teachers, but working alongside their boss and colleagues is different. Summer jobs expose teens to new duties and challenges, which will make them learn the value of income and help them grow into responsible adults. 3. Getting to know themselves Most teens are indecisive about their future careers, but if your teen starts a job outside of their interest, this could serve as an opportunity for them to learn some brand new skills and become more committed to their goals.  4. Self-Esteem Building self-esteem is the most important part of growth. According to American scholar, Jeylan T. Mortimer’s 2005 research paper, high school students who work part-time or full-time jobs have more confidence than those who don’t. These jobs force teens to step out of their comfort zones and test their capabilities to help them to boost their self-esteem.  5. Financial Literacy Having a summer job and earning money can be a golden opportunity to learn personal finance basics. It helps teens learn the value of money and how to distinguish between needs and wants. You can find more advice on how to teach your teen financial literacy here. Tips to Help with the Job Search Job searching can be a frustrating and overwhelming experience for your teen. That is why it’s important for you to guide them to find a suitable summer job by understanding their goals (like saving up for their own car or buying the newest iPhone model). Having such goals will help them focus on their struggle or even know their areas of interest, strengths, and weaknesses.  You can help your teen prepare for the interview by giving them some tips and helping them master

10 Last-Minute Mother's Day Gifts Calling all procrastinators, Mother’s Day is this Sunday! Yes, even though it feels like we only just turned our calendars to May, we are approaching Mom’s weekend already. Not sure what to get the amazing women in your life? Read on for some ideas from our last-minute Mother’s Day gift guide that will really make your mom feel special and appreciated on her day this year. SkinGear LED Face Shield Give Mom a glow-up with this LED Face Shield and experience all the benefits that LED light has to offer, right in the comfort of your home. This cordless, hands-free technology is designed with efficiency and convenience in mind. LED light therapy has multiple health benefits and this face shield features three different light modes! BLUE light: to kill bacteria, treat acne and regulate natural oil production. AMBER light: to reduce dark spots, hyperpigmentation and promote even skin tone. RED light: to stimulate collagen and elastin, and to minimize redness and wrinkles. Price: $138.50 on sale Where to Buy: Shop for the LED Face Shield online SkinGear BESO Lip Mask & AMOUR Eye Mask (10 Pack) Introduce Mom to the newest duo to join the SkinGear squad. The Besos Hydra-gel Lip Mask is ultra-hydrating and is infused with nourishing ingredients designed to soften, smooth and restore lips for a visibly plump effect. Pair it with Amour Eye - the ultimate eye treatment! Formulated to instantly refresh the under-eye area, reduce dark circles, and soften fine lines and wrinkles to reveal a luminous youthful glow. Price: $33.74 Where to Buy: Shop SkinGear online Dr Teal’s Melatonin Collection Treat Mom to ultimate relaxation with Dr Teal’s NEW Pure Epsom Salt Melatonin Sleep Soak and Foaming Bath. Infused with beneficial vitamins, minerals, essential oils and Melatonin to restore and rejuvenate both mind and body while promoting a better night’s sleep. Price: $9.99 each Where to Buy: Shoppers Drug Mart BRÜMATE Winesulator Gift Set This is the go-to giftset for wine lovers! Summer weather is approaching and what could be better for your Mom than sipping some wine and relaxing by the pool? Great to travel with to the beach or on camping trips. BRÜMATE’s winesulator holds a full bottle of wine and will keep your Mom’s favourite Pinot Grigio at the right temperature for 24 hours. This giftset comes with two matching Uncork’d XL wine tumblers for easy sharing. With so many different colours and designs to choose from (you can even customize your own giftset!),