Christie Carden York from Century Travel & Affiliates is here to give you her best travel advice for the holidays.

York, Christie_cred Christie York


What are the toughest parts of holiday travel?

Availability and inflated rates. The Caribbean in particular is incredibly popular, and many hotels will have severe minimum night requirements (up to 14 nights) that you have to adhere to. Add on the fact that rates can be double that of any other season, and you’ve got a challenge when everyone wants the same type of destination.

How can people overcome those challenges?

Plan early and think outside the box. There are gorgeous places in California that are still in the low 70s during the day. Alternatively, head somewhere cool and enjoy the wintery weather, such as a ski destination.

What are some tips for traveling with family or in large groups?

Don’t over commit and run yourself ragged trying to see or do too much during this time of year. Keep some downtime in place to just be together.

What are your favorite places to visit during the holiday season?

London, Paris and Washington, D.C. are absolutely gorgeous during the holidays. If I am itching for warm weather, I’ll head to southern California.

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Dr. Edmond I. Griffin from Dermatology Associates of Atlanta answers a reader’s question about the latest technology to tighten aging skin.

Griffin, MD, Edmond_cred practice name

Q: I’m looking for a non-invasive way to tighten my aging skin. What’s the latest technology?

A: We recently added the advanced Infini™ skin tightening system by Lutronic® to our selection of services that address familiar skin concerns such as loss of elasticity, hyperpigmentation and acne scarring. The system features two flexible hand pieces that allow for precise targeting with the unique combination of supercharged micro-needling and radiofrequency technology. These work together to volumize and rejuvenate skin while stimulating collagen production to produce tighter and more toned, refined skin.

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Golda Kombucha FPO 1After the heavy food of the holidays, you may feel the need to balance your belly back out. Probiotics are a great way to promote healthy digestion, and they can be found in kombucha, a fermented tea. This drink packs all the benefits of probiotics and is easy to incorporate into your daily diet. Try Golda Kombucha, brewed by local Melanie Wade, who follows her 92-year-old grandmother’s recipe. She brews flavors such as Hibiscus Oolong, Strawberry Mint or Pear Ginger, and you can find them at Nuts N’ Berries, Dolce Vegan Bakery, Candler Park Market and Little Vinyl Lounge for just $4 per bottle.


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Jessica Shops Pick of the Month

jessica shops

Want to make healthy eating easier on your wallet? Stretch your grocery budget at Whole Foods Market with these tips.

Start by picking up the Whole Deal value guide found in front of the store or online, which includes coupons and budget-friendly recipes. As you shop, look for 365 Everyday Value items from the company’s private label brand, which offers quality products at competitive prices. Save 10 percent whenever you buy a case (six or more) of an item, which can be mixed and matched – and yes, this offer is also valid in the wine department! Scoop your own grains and nuts from the bulk bins, which allow you to buy the exact right amount. Take advantage of the salad bar’s new all-you-can-fill option for $12.99. You can also join the Kids Club so your kids can enjoy a free snack while you shop.

And if you’re dissatisfied with any of their products, simply keep your receipt and return the item.

For more info on Jessica, visit


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Dr. Keith M. Dockery from Buckhead ENT answers a reader’s question about sinus and migraine headaches.

Dockery, MD, Keith_need cred

Q: Is it a sinus or migraine headache? 

A: Sinus headaches could have associated eye, cheek or forehead pressure and pain. They might also be accompanied by some nasal congestion and postnasal drip. Migraines often have a preceding aura, involve one side of the head or face, or may even make one sensitive to light and sound. Sometimes migraines might be brought on by a sinus-related issue, so a complete ENT and neurologic exam and appropriate imaging will help in making the diagnosis.

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Career coach Hallie Crawford is here to give you her best advice on how to request holiday time off.

Crawford, Hallie 2_cred Sara Speert Photography

How should employees request holiday time off?

Give them plenty of advance notice. Set a time to chat about it with your boss, as opposed to asking while passing the hallway.

What should employees avoid doing when asking for time off?

Don’t be vague about the time frame, and don’t ramble on about where you’re going. Focus on when you’ll be gone, how long, and have a plan for how your work will be handled in the meantime.

Is it important to look like a team player and avoid taking holiday time off?

You don’t have to completely avoid taking time off – everyone needs a break and balance in order to work effectively. To look like a team player, it’s more about asking for the time (not demanding it), doing so in advance (not last minute), and asking for it in the right way. If this is a busy time of year for your industry, you may stick around for the holiday but take time off before or after.

How can employees fully disconnect during the holidays?

Have a plan for yourself. Leave your phone in the hotel room during the day, turn it off at night – whatever you need to do to truly unplug.

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Dr. David M. Whiteman from Southern Plastic Surgery answers a reader’s question about an implantless technique for an ethnic rhinoplasty.


Q: What is an implantless technique for ethnic rhinoplasty?

A: Ethnic patients’ nose structures are all unique, so implants may be ineffective. For example, African American patients have more fibrous tissue, while Hispanic patients have slightly fragile nasal bridges, both of which may not effectively support a facial implant. Instead of using silicone implants or other synthetic materials, I graft my patient’s own skin, bone and tissue to augment areas of their nose. Using your own materials significantly reduces the risk of complications and provides a more natural looking result.

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Stephanie Clark from The Atlanta Counseling Group is here to give you her best advice on how to enjoy family during the holidays.

Clark, LMFT, LPC, Stephanie_cred herself

Why are holidays tough to be around family?

For some families, expectations around the holidays are often very different for each member. We become attached to our holiday traditions and rituals. When those events don’t go as planned, perhaps because of a new family member or the loss of one, it can make the holiday emotionally difficult.

What tips can help deal with a difficult family member? 

Keep things light and pleasant. Steer away from controversial subjects and issues. Acknowledge emotionally painful memories if you must, but don’t wallow in them – it’s not the time or place. On the other hand, acting like the painful stuff never happened can make matters worse. Acknowledge it, apologize if appropriate, and keep it moving. Focus on the “here and now.”

How can someone handle conflict with a family member during the holidays?

Acting like the painful stuff never happened can make matters worse. Acknowledge emotionally painful memories, apologize if appropriate and keep it moving. Focus on the “here and now.”

What tips can diffuse family conflict during the holidays? 

1. Control your emotions. Remain as calm and non-defensive as possible. 2. Talk privately. This reduces the possibility others will be pulled into the conflict. 3. Try to validate the issues of the conflict that matter most to the other person. Letting them know you understand their complaint will go far to diffuse the heightened emotion. 4. Suggest setting a different time and location to meet and discuss. Commit to it.

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In 2003, after having jokingly discussed the rebirth of the moustache, Melbourne, Australia natives Travis Garone and Luke Slattery embarked upon the creation of a campaign to promote men’s health and prostate cancer awareness. A campaign now commonly referred to as “Movember.”

During the month of November, men around the world are encouraged to give their razors a break in exchange for a donation to this campaign. Male supporters of “Movember” have been coined “Mo Bro’s” while women are also encouraged to join in the fun as “Mo Sistas.”

With the help and support of Garone and Slattery’s friends, by 2004 the group had grown to 450 Mo Bro members, with a total of $54,000 dollars raised and donated to the Prostate Cancer Foundation of Australia.

moustacheBy 2007, the “Movember” campaign grew internationally as Los Angeles, California was the first to launch “Movember” in the United States. It was the official organization to spearhead men’s health awareness.

Since its inception in 2003, more than 770 men’s health projects have been funded while more than four million Mo Bros and Mo Sistas continue to participate in “Movember” annually. Garone and Slaterry have literally helped changed the face of men’s health.

Here at Best Self, we are excited to support this initiative with our 2nd Annual Moustache Dash held at New Balance Buckhead this Sunday, Nov. 16. Join us in wearing a moustache and running this race! Register now at

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Does your holiday party really need another calorie-dense casserole? Try this fall salad idea from local produce delivery company Nature’s Garden Express. This easy dish features cranberries, blue cheese and roasted pears with dashes of cinnamon and brown sugar. With a prep time of just a few minutes, this salad lets you enjoy the tastes of the season in a healthy way.

pear and walnut salad recipe_cred Nature's Garden Express MAYBE


2 d’anjou pears, cut from core and thinly sliced

1 tbsp butter, melted

1 tbsp brown sugar

½ tsp cinnamon

Pinch of salt

1 head red oak lettuce, washed and chopped

½ cup dried cranberries

½ cup pecan halves, roughly chopped

½ cup blue cheese, crumbled

¼ to ½ cup white balsamic vinaigrette, to taste


Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place pears in a mixing bowl, add butter and toss to coat. Add the brown sugar, cinnamon and salt and toss again to coat evenly. Place pears on a parchment-lined sheet tray and roast for 7 to 10 minutes, until pears are soft but still have a little bite. Remove from oven and allow to cool. These can be stored in refrigerator for 5 days.

In a mixing bowl, toss the lettuce with vinaigrette, half of the pears, and ¼ cup each of the pecans, cranberries and cheese. Place salad into bowls and garnish with the remaining pears, pecans, cranberries and blue cheese.

–Courtesy of Nature’s Garden Express,

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