New Year, New Hair

martha matilda harper2015 is just around the corner and everyone wants to look their best for the New Year. Before the clock strikes midnight on New Year’s Eve, many people will have visited their favorite spa or salon to spruce themselves up for 2015. At one time however, hairdressers would visit women in their homes to style their hair. In 1888, a woman named Martha Matilda Harper helped create the modern beauty and hair salon when she opened her first Harper Method Shop in Rochester, New York.

Martha Matilda Harper was born in Ontario in 1857. At 7, her father sent her to be a domestic servant, and later, Harper worked for a physician from whom she learned about hygiene and hair care. Harper believed that the hair care products used at the time were damaging to the scalp and hair and she developed her own hair care formula. When she opened her salon in New York, Harper used the hair care products she created and even designed the first reclining shampoo chair so her customers wouldn’t get shampoo in their eyes. Harper also promoted good nutrition, hygiene, and exercise to her customers, using pictures of her own floor-length hair to advertise the success of her “Harper Method.”

At the time, it was considered inappropriate for women to get their hair done outside the home. Harper’s salons however, helped change this attitude. By 1891, Harper had developed a network of her salons. All “franchise” owners had to run the salon according to Harper’s practices and Harper created training programs to instruct staff on her methods and the use of her hair and skincare products. By the 1930s, there were over 500 Harper Method salons worldwide.

Locate nearby beauty salons and spas using Real Local Pages (RLP). RLP is an online directory containing listings for thousands of businesses across the United States. Visit the website,, and enter your location. Search for businesses or services by entering key terms such as “salon” into the search box or by choosing from the popular categories list on the main page. Every business listing on the results page displays the phone number and address for your convenience. Real Local Pages is useful for finding a variety of services and businesses, from lawn care services to local grocery stores.



Healthy Holidays

_holiday_dessert_buffetHolidays are a wonderful time to gather with friends and family, but the seemingly endless stream of special meals, parties, and holiday-themed snacks at work create worries about weight gain. Studies suggest that adults gain one to two pounds during the holiday season; although one pound seems minuscule, most people never lose that holiday weight and the pounds accumulate over the years. Staying healthy through the holiday season doesn’t need to be stressful, experts say that people should be realistic and focus on maintaining their weight rather than trying to diet during the season. Individuals can follow a few guidelines during the holidays to minimize weight gain:

Before the Party: While it’s tempting to skip meals the day of the party to “save up,” health experts say that skipping meals leads people to overindulge the next time they eat. Instead, cut calories from your regular meals and drink lots of water before the party. Maintain your fitness by exercising regularly.

During the Party: Drink water during the party and monitor your liquid calories. Favorite beverages like eggnog are high in calories, up to 344 per cup. Alcohol, especially cocktails, can make you more hungry, so limit your intake. Use a napkin or small plate to limit your portions and move away from the food table to avoid mindless eating.

Healthy Dishes: Bringing healthy dishes to a party guarantees that you’ll have something wholesome to eat at the event. Choose healthy alternatives to favorite dishes or replace ingredients in the meal to cut calories. For instance, substitute evaporated milk for heavy cream. Replace oil, butter, or margarine with applesauce in muffins and baked goods.

Find local grocery stores to help you make healthy holiday meals by using Real Local Pages (RLP), an online directory of businesses and services in the United States. Visit the RLP website,, and type in your city and state. Search for businesses by entering key terms into the search box such as “supermarket” to find results. Or, search by choosing a term from the popular categories list. The results page will show you the address and phone number of the location for your convenience. Real Local Pages is a useful website for finding a range of services and businesses, from furniture stores to roofing experts.

Principles for Purchasing Furniture

wooden log customize diy side table furniture-10Purchasing furniture for your home or living space can be both exciting and daunting. Many people rush out to buy furniture without considering factors like furniture make and quality, cost, or what fits their home and lifestyle. Some choose furniture solely based on their initial attraction to the piece or because the item is inexpensive, forgetting to look at the quality and longevity of the furniture. Individuals should follow a few principles when investing in furniture in order to make the most of their money.

Make a Plan: Measure the dimensions of the room (width, length, height) you are purchasing furniture for before shopping. Your furniture should not get lost in the space or overcrowd the room. Take pictures of the room(s) to consult when you shop.  Also, consider the intended use of the space and who will be using the furniture: Do you entertain often? Do you have children? Do you own pets? Will the furniture serve multiple purposes; for example, will the dining table double as a desk?

Cost: Set a budget before you shop and check out several stores to compare prices before buying. If you have a limited budget, consider buying items a little at a time or purchasing used pieces.

Quality: Don’t skimp on furniture—purchasing durable, quality furniture will last longer and save money in the long-run. Avoid pieces held together with nails, staples, or glue as they can come apart more easily. Make sure all corners of the piece rest evenly on the floor.

Design: Pick furniture that suits your tastes and plan for the room. Don’t buy something you dislike or choose trendy items that will look dated in a few years. Also, choose sofas and armchairs in neutral colors as they tend to stay in style longer, it’s also easier to match a neutral color with other items in the room.

Finding nearby furniture stores using Real Local Pages (RLP), an online directory of businesses and services across the United States. Visit the website,, and enter your state and city into the search box. You can search the site by entering key terms into the search box (for example, “furniture”) or by choosing from the popular categories list on the main page. Results will display the name of the business/service in addition to the phone number and address.



History of the Legal Profession

ancient greek orator smallerAs of 2013, there were over one million practicing lawyers in the United States. Lawyers are integral to the everyday operation of modern society; as the systems of laws have expanded, the need for lawyers has grown. The first “lawyers” were the Athenian orators of ancient Greece. The Athenian court required individuals to plea their own case; many people avoided this by hiring friends to advocate for them. These advocates never grew into a formal profession however because Athenian law forbade them from accepting money in return for their services. This practice continued in the Roman Empire until the first century C.E. when Emperor Claudius ended the prohibition on collecting fees. Roman advocates trained in rhetoric, not law. Law experts were known as jurisconsults, and both judges and advocates would consult them on legal matters. It wasn’t until the 4th century C.E. that advocates were required to study law as well as rhetoric. By that point, advocates were more organized and were regulated by established rules and standards.

The legal profession went into decline after the collapse of the Roman Empire. Specialists in Canon law existed within the Christian Church, but almost no one practiced civil law until around the 12th century. Widespread distrust of lawyers in medieval times led to regulations concerning the practice of the law.  Over the centuries, practicing law evolved into a true profession, with ethical standards, education requirements, and specialties of study.

Locate practicing lawyers in your region using Real Local Pages (RLP), an online directory of businesses and services in the United States. Enter your city and state into the search box on the home page, Then, choose a category from the popular categories list on the main page or enter terms related to the business/service you are searching for; for example, “attorney,” or “lawyer.” The results page will show the business listings and include the address and phone number of the business. RLP users may also add reviews of the business by clicking the “add review” option next to the business listing. Real Local Pages is a great tool for finding a wide variety of businesses and services, from clothing stores to lawn care specialists.

Learn more about: How Hoyer Law Firm Excels.

Days of Chocolate Past

chocolateWith the holidays coming up, candy is on everyone’s mind. Sparkling candy displays at stores and the season’s parties give plenty of opportunities to indulge a sweet tooth. Candy canes are a favored holiday treat, but chocolate is a year-round favorite. The chocolate desserts we enjoy today however are a recent development; for much of its history, chocolate was a beverage. Around 3,500 years ago, the Olmecs in southeastern Mexico cultivated cacao trees (where chocolate comes from), and developed a process for drying, roasting, and grinding cacao beans to create a bitter-tasting drink. The Olmecs passed these ideas onto the Mayans, who in turn traded cacao beans to the Aztecs in central Mexico. Cacao was highly valued by these civilizations; the beans served as currency, and the frothy drink made from cacao was used in sacred rituals.

Spanish explorer Hernán Cortés brought cacao to Spain in 1529 where the Spanish used it to cure ailments. Chocolate drinking eventually spread to the rest of Europe, and by the 17th and 18th centuries, other European countries were growing cacao trees on their colonies and the increased chocolate supply made it more affordable for the masses. In 1828, Dutch chemist Coenraad Van Houten invented a hydraulic press that he used to create cocoa powder. This innovation paved the way for the creation of solid chocolate forms like the chocolate bar, invented in 1847 by Englishman Joseph Fry who combined melted cocoa butter with cocoa powder to make solid chocolate. Inventors developed new types of chocolate candy, and with the proliferation of advertising, chocolate’s popularity skyrocketed. Today, the average American consumes half a pound of chocolate every month.

Find nearby chocolate and confectionary stores on Real Local Pages (RLP). The RLP website,, has listings for thousands of businesses across the United States. Enter your city and state into the search box on the home page and include search terms like “candy store,” or “chocolate.” Users can also search for businesses and services by clicking on one of the popular categories options on the home page. The results pages will show the business listing along with the phone number and address of the business for your convenience. Real Local Pages can help you find a wide array of services and businesses, from pest control experts and roofers, to museums and pizza shops.