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Europe’s Christmas Markets Destination Winter Wonderland

Europe’s Christmas Markets Destination Winter Wonderland

There’s nothing quite like ushering in the holiday season than going on a multi-stop European yuletide adventure. Travel in Wintertime In December 2019, my wife and I spent nine nights in Romania and Poland. We looked forward to enjoying seasonal festivities, munching on holiday specialties, and strolling in streets filled with happy holiday-goers, all in an old world setting steeped in traditions and history. Ok, ok. I know some of you must be thinking my wife and I are out of our minds. Traveling from the sunny confines of South Florida to the sub-freezing landscape of Eastern Europe does seem ludicrous. Believe me; you would not be the first person to ask why on Earth did we decide to travel to Eastern Europe in the heart of the winter? Well, I always wanted to visit the Christmas markets, and if you share this interest, that means you need to travel in December.  And, in spite of the frigid weather, we had a great time visiting the fabulous cities of Bucharest, Warsaw, and Krakow.  We had such a good time that we
Ker & Downey: Support Australia Now and in the Future

Ker & Downey: Support Australia Now and in the Future

When a crisis like Australia’s bushfires dominates the news, much-loved travel destinations can quickly be labeled no-goes. In recent years we’ve seen it happen after unrest in Egypt, natural disasters in Nepal, and fires in the Amazon, even when safe travel is possible. There are things you can do (and yes, even places you can visit right now) to support Australia and their recovery from the ongoing wildfires. We invite you to join us in helping our friends “down under”—they’re going to need us, and you. What to do now Ker & Downey is proud to support the NSW Rural Fire Service and their ongoing efforts to control the bushfires. Through April 15, 2020, we will match every new Ker & Downey booking with a $100 donation to the NSW Rural Fire Service. Regardless of where in the world you choose to travel, Ker & Downey will support Australia on your behalf with this gift. Join us and make a secure donation on their website Where to go now While the threat of wildfire is lowest in these areas, it’s
La Pitchoune: “Toujours Bon Appétit!”

La Pitchoune: “Toujours Bon Appétit!”

If you have an appetite for life, you’ll love a stay at Julia Child’s summer home in France. A House Built on Friendship Nestled in the idyllic landscape of Provence, France, the quaint village of Plascassier holds a gem of a place, La Pitchoune. The modest stucco cottage was built in the early 1960s by Julia Child and her husband, Paul. It was constructed on the property known as Bramafam belonging to her culinary friend, Simca Beck, and husband, Jean Fischbacher. The deal was sealed with a handshake and an understanding that the red tile-roofed cottage would be turned over to the Fischbachers after they were done staying there. La Pitchoune means “the Little One” and Child often used her shortened nickname for it, La Peetch. Summers were spent at La Pitchoune as a serene getaway amidst olive trees and lavender bushes for nearly 30 years. The Childs loved to entertain, often hosting the most influential culinary chefs such as James Beard, M.F.K. Fisher, and Richard Olney. In later years, Paul’s health was failing and her long-time friend Simca had
Monthly Gift Clubs: Goodies that Keep Coming All Year Long

Monthly Gift Clubs: Goodies that Keep Coming All Year Long

With a gift club, there’s something for everyone, every taste, every personality, every month! Whew, you made it through the holidays. After all the holiday preparations, entertaining, gift-giving, festivities, and feasting, you or someone you know deserves a pat on the back for a job well done. And there’s no better way to accomplish that than being treated to a special surprise every month. Make it something really special like fine wines, wellness boosts, beauty samples, or grooming goodies, there’s so much to choose from. We’ve put together a list of some of the most popular and unique men’s and women’s monthly and quarterly gift clubs for your perusal. Go ahead, enjoy surprises all year long! The Wordy Traveler Perfect for the traveler who reads and loves tea. Every quarter a seasonal collection box of curated travel-related goodies is shipped. Receive a book, a limited-edition fine art print, ethically-sourced free trade organic tea, and a special gift —all relating to a specific region. This quarterly subscription has an added bonus: every box provides education for an underprivileged woman or girl
Privacy Protection Gadgets: Security in a Digital World

Privacy Protection Gadgets: Security in a Digital World

Finding the right products to protect your digital life can be a daunting task, we’ve simplified it for you. We live in rapidly changing times where technology is advancing faster than most of us can keep up with. For boomers, staying abreast of technological innovations for our smartphones, computers, tablets, and online services is becoming more challenging. Meantime, our data and identity are at greater risk of being stolen than ever before. There are some really great solutions available to help keep your data protected and identity safe, and you don’t have to be a tech wiz to use them. It’s important to take steps to reduce the threat of your privacy being hacked and abused. We’ve made a list of some of the top privacy protection gadgets available that even the least tech-savvy among us can easily use. Mic-Lock with SOUNDPASS Microphone Blocker How private are your conversations? The Mic-Lock with SOUNDPASS Microphone Blocker prevents cyber attackers from using your device’s microphone or speakers to eavesdrop on you. Very compact, it comes with a convenient keychain loop. Just plug
Gear for Dog Lovers: Cool Finds for Lucky Dogs

Gear for Dog Lovers: Cool Finds for Lucky Dogs

It’s a dog’s life! Make it easier on you and your cuddly canine with gadgets that’ll earn you more tail wags. Dog owners are always on the lookout for ways to enhance their pet’s comfort, activity, and health. New innovations and technology are making pet care options more convenient, easier, and safer for both you and your dog. We’ve come up with a list of well-thought out, highly-rated, essential gear and gadgets that’ll keep your furry friend in dog heaven! The Headlight Harness This patent-pending dog harness provides superior lighting for both you and those in the immediate area with its 80 lumen LED focused beam. The Headlight Harness is just what’s needed for those nighttime walks and hikes. Light is projected up to 100 feet and a reflective stripe make visibility easy and night outings safer. Four points of adjustments provide a no-pull design and a customizable fit for superior comfort. Check it out at the Headlight Harness website or on Amazon. Furbo Dog Camera Over 5,000 vets and professional dog trainers approve of the Furbo Dog Camera. It’s
Daniel Gartenberg: How Sonic Sleep Can Help

Daniel Gartenberg: How Sonic Sleep Can Help

As a sleep scientist, I have focused most of my adult life studying sleep intricacies. I use my PhD in cognitive psychology and ten years of experience in the field to help people improve their sleep. I have worked extensively on a sleep application, Sonic Sleep, to enhance sleep environment and thus, overall sleep quality. Additionally, I provide personalized, insightful solutions to help get to the root of your sleep issues. Our work has been featured on TED, Daily Mail and Time Magazine. Sleep is a critical component in optimizing our daily functionality and overall health. There are four common sleep disorders that hinder the ability to get the restful, regenerative sleep we need. It is important to know the potential signs for each one to get the appropriate diagnosis and treatment plan from a professional. Sleep Apnea Sleep apnea is a disorder that involves difficulty and disruption of breathing throughout the night. The word “apnea” literally translates from the Latin to “without breathing.” Snoring loudly is a common symptom of sleep apnea. This occurs during the night when a
Hello Pegan: Hunter-Gatherer Meets Veganator

Hello Pegan: Hunter-Gatherer Meets Veganator

Feel great, lose weight, live healthy: Achieving optimum health through the foods we eat. Some people say going vegan is a healthier way to eat, while others say paleo is. Some say don’t eat meat, while others say don’t eat grain. Which is right? Paleo vs. vegan: both have a lot in common but mainly differ on protein sources. Choosing either one means a dramatic lifestyle shift. But lately, we’ve been hearing about a “pegan” way of eating – a combination of paleo and vegan. So what’s the story behind these food trends? Let’s take a closer look. Goodness Grown by Mother Earth The term “vegan” was created by Donald Watson, founder of the Vegan Society in 1944. He formed the word using the first two and last two letters of the word “vegetarian” as a statement against vegetarians who ate dairy products. Veganism is considered to be an extreme version of vegetarianism. However, there have been ancient societies in India and along the Mediterranean where flesh-avoidance was and still is a common practice. A vegan diet is rich in
Makin Wellness: Anxiety Symptoms and Treatments

Makin Wellness: Anxiety Symptoms and Treatments

Many individuals use the term anxiety to refer to a great deal of worry. But what does anxiety really mean? And what does anxiety look like? Awareness of anxiety symptoms and treatments can increase the likelihood of getting help and relieving any stress you may be feeling. What is Anxiety? Anxiety means an excessive worry or anxiousness that lasts for more than six months. The fear and worriedness manifest themselves in various extreme forms. These forms could look like physical and emotional ailments or psychological unrest. The toll that anxiety takes on an individual is very severe. For many individuals, it may not seem clear or evident that he or she is experiencing an anxiety disorder due to the lack of knowledge and information about its manifestation (anxiety.org). Research suggests that women are more likely to develop an anxiety disorder in their lifetime than men (McLean, 2011, pp. 1). Gender differences and anxiety has shown that the manifestation of anxiety in both women and men could be presented in a similar fashion. However, research suggests that the main difference is
Keep Your Dating Pipeline Full!

Keep Your Dating Pipeline Full!

Ladies, get OUT and meet more men.  This is best way actually to GET MORE DATES. How many men did you flirt with this week? How many men did you speak with this week? In line at Starbucks? Seattle’s Best for coffee? Or were you too aloof to notice Mr. Financial District next to you? Too snobby to chat up Mr. Blue Collar ordering the Grande Drip, black? I date a LOT because I make an effort to meet a lot of men. I also REALLY LIKE men. I feel they can FEEL that about me. I appreciate them.  I admire them.  And I am very accepting of them that they are very visually stimulated and think about sex every 3.7 nano seconds.  Wow!  Aren’t you grateful that they do that?  It just means they think about it more than you do, and I am SO glad that they ARE thinking about it more than I.  Or things would just be too, too, too terribly embarrassing, n’est pas? How about yourself?  Do you really LIKE men?  Sure, you’re heterosexual (if you
Lorraine C. Ladish: Creator of Viva Fifty!

Lorraine C. Ladish: Creator of Viva Fifty!

Fabulous, fit, fun, and over 50, she’s inspiring women everywhere to live life to the fullest. 50 Candles An AARP membership isn’t the only thing to be excited about once you blow out the 50th candle. Ask Lorraine C. Ladish, a bilingual author and blogger, who believes that 50 is the start of something new. “It’s the best age,” Ladish says. “You have all this wisdom and confidence at this age, and with the right perspective you feel like you have no choice but to live your best life.” And through her digital publication – Viva Fifty!, Ladish is giving seniors just like her tips and tricks to live a life worthwhile. On her blog, Ladish and other contributing authors use a fun-loving, easy-going writing style to discuss topics that thriving boomers care about, like culture, money, health and fitness, relationships, and style. “I want people in this age group to have fun, all while breaking existing stereotypes around aging and midlife.” Writing is in the Blood Ladish was born in 1963 in Madrid, Spain, to a family of writers, so
Forget FOMO – Embrace JOMO

Forget FOMO – Embrace JOMO

JOMO (the joy of missing out) is a very welcome new trend and the exact opposite of the soul-crushing ethos of FOMO (the fear of missing out) that has dominated so many people’s lives for so long. The Urban Dictionary defines it as: ‘Enjoying what you’re doing in the here and now and not on social media, broadcasting or seeing what everybody else is doing.’ Example: Guy #1: I had a great day, climbed a hill and didn’t check Facebook. Guy #2: Good day? Guy #1: Yea, pure JOMO. Many Digital Apps Are Designed to Be Addictive Steve Jobs knew very well that the devices he designed and many of the apps they run are addictive, and he took steps to protect his own children from them. ‘We limit how much technology our kids use at home,’ he told reporter, Nick Bilton, when she asked about their use of iPads. Bill Gates took a similar approach. He didn’t let any of his three children have a mobile phone until they were 14 years old. Now current and ex-Silicon Valley tech executives
Marian Hamilton and The Ken Hamilton Caregiver Center

Marian Hamilton and The Ken Hamilton Caregiver Center

A private sanctuary for caregivers eases the everyday stress associated with the care of ailing loved ones. Unsung Heroes Imagine having a break in your day, time so precious you can have a moment all to yourself to escape, relax, and recharge. This momentary freedom is appreciated beyond measure by family members whose lives have been dramatically altered to become the courageous caregivers of loved ones with serious illnesses or injuries. Caregivers give their all to support the physical and well-being needs of loved ones. Caregiving is more than a loving, noble, selfless act —it speaks of endurance when courage and strength seem exhausted. But usually, one dives into their newfound role and then realizes how inadequate they are to take on the responsibility. Their own lives become disrupted even to forgo paid work to accommodate the needs of the loved one. Exhaustion, stress, frustration, anxiety, isolation, and depression often creep into a caregiver’s life. Patience and fortitude become precious commodities to survive caregiving. Where does one turn for help? Roughly one third of family caregivers have difficulty in finding
Lisa Klein and Loved Twice: Starting Life with Compassion

Lisa Klein and Loved Twice: Starting Life with Compassion

A new mother finds room in her heart to help at-risk newborns. It’s another busy day at a San Francisco Bay Area warehouse filled with volunteers sorting through mountains of baby clothes. Another box filled to the brim is sealed, labeled “Baby Boy,” and placed on a stack of similar boxes ready for delivery. Among the piles of baby garments, Lisa Klein can be found examining each article and lovingly divvies them up by size 0 through 12 months. A Head Start in Life Klein is the founder of this non-profit enterprise, Loved Twice, that collects and distributes donated baby clothes to help underprivileged newborns, giving them a better start in life. They collect gently used baby clothes that would otherwise end up in a landfill and pack them lovingly into a boy’s or girl’s wardrobe-in-a-box. Each box contains 75 items including socks, hats, pants, sleepwear, booties, bibs, books, and other items. Deliveries are made to social workers who hand out the boxes to desperate new mothers and guardians in local hospitals, shelters, and clinics. It all started in 2005
Susan Nastasi: “Horsing Around” is Good for You

Susan Nastasi: “Horsing Around” is Good for You

Sharing the unconditional love of miniature horses promotes peace, joy, comfort, and healing. Humans and animals have shared a bond since prehistoric times, one helping the other for mutual benefit. Our lives are enriched by an animal’s unconditional love and ability to sooth the wounds of our body and soul. A cuddle, a snuggle, a wagging tail acts like a balm for our emotional, psychological, and physical well-being. Just interacting with animals uplifts our spirit, and the feeling is mutual. What place better for this friendly bond to be experienced than at SOUL Haven Ranch in Winter Garden, Florida. It’s the perfect place to immerse in peace, tranquility, and nature, yet only a half-hour’s drive from mega-parks Disney World, Universal Studios, and Sea World. Guests are welcomed to a charming Victorian-style house with a wrap-around porch complete with rocking chairs. Upscale accommodations await the tired traveler as do friendly dogs, cats, and goats. Relax and unwind in the gazebo, hammocks, and swings beneath the large shady oak trees. There’s even a horse-drawn carriage service available for tours, weddings, birthdays, and

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Plain English Legal Documents Aim to Simplify Legal Speak

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Complicated legal jargon may be fine for some folks, but using plain English makes complex information an easier read. In 1936, Fred Rodell, a professor of law at Yale University, said, “There are two things wrong with almost all legal writing.  One is its style.  The other is its content. That, I think, about covers the ground.” After graduating from law school and spending my career in the business world, I have always felt comfortable with legal documents, a necessity when it comes to making sure your financial affairs are in order, but grossly misunderstood by most.  But are legal documents necessary?  More importantly, are they enough? Cut the Clutter, Gain Clarity For me, complicated legal documents are a necessity.  My legacy is critically important to me, and when my time is up, I will be leaving my assets IN TRUST. Thus, I’ll be providing my loved ones with access to their shares but have the assurance that the principal will remain protected from divorce, lawsuits, and bankruptcy and will ultimately pass to the next generation of my family. These
Myka Meier: Tech Manners & Etiquette For 2020

Myka Meier: Tech Manners & Etiquette For 2020

Should mobile devices be allowed at the dinner table at home or at a restaurant? I advise people put their phones on silent or vibrate and put them away during a meal. Unless it’s a working lunch over business, it can be seen as rude to be taking calls or checking your phone while someone else is dining across from you. If you are expecting an important call that may come through during the meal, I advise telling the person you are dining with at the beginning of the meal that it may come during your time together, and if it does, that you will only be a minute. Then, if the call comes through, you would excuse yourself and take the call away from the table. Is it proper for someone to answer their cell phone and engage in conversation in front of other people? Etiquette is simply about showing respect to those around you. I think it can be dependent on the situation, but in a social setting I think it’s best to put phones away or on
Feeding America: A Generation that Quietly Goes Hungry

Feeding America: A Generation that Quietly Goes Hungry

Most of us look forward to the years following retirement. Some even consider it the best years of their lives. But for millions of Americans, the golden years aren’t so golden. There are 37 million people across the U.S. who struggle with hunger and barely get by because of life’s unexpected hurdles, and a large portion are at more risk than we realize – older Americans. While the rate of food insecurity for senior citizens has decreased in recent years, it is still much higher than it was in 2007, before the recession. The current number of seniors who are food insecure is more than double what it was in 2001 – a number that is expected to increase as the baby boomer generation ages. Feeding America is working hard to prevent this, but it’s important to understand the issue to inform policy and charitable efforts and eliminate hunger for older Americans. The Facts According to Feeding America’s The State of Senior Hunger in America report, 7.7 percent of seniors age 60 and older were food insecure in 2017. That
Kevin Sorbo: From Mythical Hero to Purveyor of Faith

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As the invincible Hercules, he has thrilled audiences around the world. Now he inspires with messages of hope, faith, and family. In 2019, the release of the faith-based action film, The Reliant, fueled more debate on one of the most burning issues of our day. Kevin Sorbo, who starred in the movie, supports the film’s defense of the second amendment and how faith in God provides sanctuary during troubled times. Sorbo doesn’t mind controversy when it comes to difficult subjects, and when it comes to faith, the veteran actor is immovable even if it means being shunned by Hollywood. Emerging Star It wasn’t always this way for him. Sorbo rose to international stardom but attributes his success to humble beginnings. Born in 1958 in Mound, Minnesota, and proud of his Norwegian heritage and small-town upbringing, he was raised in a loving Lutheran family and taught Christian values. His father was a junior-high-school teacher, and his mother gave up a nursing career to raise their brood of five children. His passion for acting was sparked during a school trip to a
Story Musgrave: Conquering Life in the Cosmos

Story Musgrave: Conquering Life in the Cosmos

An astonishing list of achievements in the life of one remarkable man has inspired many to strive for their own story of success. Is it possible to be a pragmatist of the highest order while your spirit floats above the earth seeking the age-old answers of what it means to be human? Is it possible to peer into the heavens, connecting with the vastness of it all, while rummaging through your NASA toolbox for just the right screwdriver? Does a man exist who admits he knows nothing about a problem but is confident enough to know he can fix whatever you’ve got if you just let him try? Why yes, he does. His name is Story Musgrave and his life can be a lesson to all of us. He’ll walk through any door of opportunity so the chance isn’t wasted. If the door is closed, he’ll stick his foot on the threshold and talk his way in. He shows us just what can be accomplished with enough bullheadedness not to give up; not ever. A Born Survivor Musgrave was born
David Černý: Prague’s Bad-Boy of the Art World

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Shock and Awe: Czech sculptor revels in creating outlandish, highly controversial public art. Known as the “bad boy of Eastern European art,” David Černý doesn’t mind stirring up controversy through his bold art forms. Skilled in mixed media, he is most known for his larger than life sculptures dotted around the city of Prague, Czech Republic. His best-known works project his displeasure with communist and post-revolution politics. Some of his sculptures are 3-dimensional commentary on Czech grin-and-bear-it attitudes through hundreds of years of occupation by other countries and Marxist regimes. Others display his interpretation of inept and corrupt politicians directing the course of the nation. In the post-communist era, repressed ideas and suppression are unbridled as the country embraces democracy and free thought. For the non-conformist Černý, the freedom of artistic and political expression has become the perfect storm for boundless inspiration. His brazen attitude is perhaps best portrayed in his bronze sculpture of two men with swiveling hips urinating into a pond shaped like the Czech Republic. The water stream is actually writing famous Czech quotes. Unabashed, he delights
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Jason deCaires Taylor: Art in the Depths

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Like a siren song, her dream beckoned her to become a huntress in the deep blue sea. Valentine Thomas traded in her business suit for a wet suit. As a former finance lawyer in London, she felt constricted. But one happenchance diving adventure in Egypt changed her life. By 2010, she was hooked, diving down the South Atlantic with whale sharks, lobsters, and African pompanos. Today she is a well-known spearfisher and an Instagram star with over 200,000 followers. She’s given TED talks and has been featured in Forbes. Find her on Instagram, and you’ll usually see her modelesque good looks posing with the catch of the day. “I eat everything I catch,” she says. Aside from that, Thomas pushes a message of conservation and what goes into putting food on the table. “Spearfishing allows me to feel one with nature. It shows me how to respect nature,” and adds, “When you are in the ocean with sharks, and you can easily be a part of their food chain, it makes you respect the hunt.” Thomas also offers freediving courses, expeditions,
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TV personality inspires others to live their life without limits. As a child, Trice always wanted to see her name in lights. Today, her dreams have come true as she conquers the airwaves as a media personality, actress, and model with her own weekly daytime talk TV show which secured over two million viewers in just two years. On The Melody Trice Show, Trice discusses topics that mean the most to women — from food, relationships, career, health and beauty, and overcoming abuse. Most of the topics are taken from the chapters of Trice’s life, as she’s overcome health issues and domestic violence, and continues to put her best foot forward as an example for other women. The Melody Trice Show Every week, viewers in Los Angeles, Long Beach, San Francisco, Pasadena, Monrovia, Berkeley, and Duarte can tune in via a local broadcast, while others enjoy her show over the Internet and through social media. The Melody Trice Show covers trendy topics like business, music, technology, careers, entertainment, health, and consumer trends with the special vibe that only Trice can bring.
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Jessica Cox: A Real-Life Superwoman

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Do you own a smartphone? If so, is it an iphone or an Android? Do you only use it to make phone calls and texts? Your smartphone is millions of times more powerful than all of NASA’s combined computing in 1969. Let’s get the most out of it! The growth rate of technology has increased exponentially in recent years, and keeping up with it is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity. Smartphones are amazing and constantly changing with new features and cool apps, while constantly integrating additional internet functionality with multiple devices; this is called the Internet of Things, or IoT. More about this in following articles. Smartphones can save you both time and money and I’m not talking pennies. Discounts for hotels, flights, ride shares and retail apps can add up. Time savings by ordering your prescriptions online, and banking online saving trips to the bank. And for all snowbirds you know during season, that can save 40 minutes a trip! Spend more time on what you WANT to do. Tennis anyone? Another round of golf? Throomers

Michelle Gomez: America’s Best Bounty Hunter

There’s an old adage, “Good things come in small packages.” In this case, it depends which side of the law you’re on. The 4’11” dynamo, Michelle Gomez, has been called “the world’s best bounty hunter.” We’re not intending to test the veracity of the claim first-hand, instead we’ve hunted down her story from the safety of our editorial room. A professional ‘skip tracer’ is a private investigator hired to track down people who’ve “skipped out on the court without a trace.” Consider an old western movie where immediately after a bank robbery or saloon shooting, the sheriff gathers up the most brave and forms a posse to hit the trail in pursuit of justice. Michelle Gomez is of that ilk but even more courageous. In taking on a job, she’s a relentless, revved-up posse of one. Since 2003, this Texas-born woman has run her own business, Unlimited Recoveries, where she specializes in the most difficult cases whose trails have gone cold. She outthinks her marks by using clever ruses and rummaging tirelessly through the cyberworld to uncover seemingly scrubbed digital

Krystle Wright
: Canon Master Photographer

Shooting on the Edge: One gutsy woman takes adventure photography where few dare to go. What does it take to live the life of your dreams? For Krystle Wright, the sacrifice is massive. She’s suffered internal bodily damage, a fractured foot, blood clots, swallowed her own broken teeth, and more. But after each injury, she smiles at the camera and continues her journey. It is all, of course, worth it, when you get to live your life to the fullest, skyrocket to the top of your field, and have the freedom to follow your instincts without limitations.  A Sense of Adventure  Wright, a 31-year-old from Australia, is an adventure photographer, director, and cinematographer. She’s known for her extreme photographs taken at perplexing angles. Growing up in Australia, she’s used to beautiful scenery. When she was a child, you could find her surfing along the coast, playing sports, hiking, or exploring nature. In high school, she began toting a camera along with her and unknowingly began her lifelong mission to do whatever it takes to get the right shot. She started