Dealing With Death: What To Do When A Family Member Passes Away

 

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Death is one of the only constants in life, this is both sad and true. We don’t like thinking about it, we don’t like talking about it, and this inevitably leads to us struggling to cope with it. When a family member dies, it will be heartbreaking for everyone. But, it’s even worse when you’re totally unprepared for everything that follows. You heap additional stress and worry on your family, making the whole situation a hundred times harder for everyone.

So, while you might not like to talk about it, understanding what to do when a family member passes away will be helpful. Here are some things you need to think about and might not be aware of:

Organize The Funeral

Organizing a funeral is a lot harder than most people think. It’s also incredibly expensive, and you can go here to see the average funeral costs today. You have to do everything from choosing the location to designing the headstone. It’s easily the worst part of dealing with death as you don’t want to go through all of this. But, if you can prepare in advance it will help you. As weird as it may sound, having a few places in mind for the ceremony and wake, along with a headstone company, will help you when the time eventually comes around.

Write An Obituary

It’s customary to write an obituary for a loved one when they pass away. This is basically a short paragraph that explains the person died and informs others when the funeral is. Obituaries are often posted in local newspapers to get the word out about the funeral service and so other people can pay their respects. But, they can also appear online, and you can click here for more info on how to do that. Either way, you need to write one if you want people to attend the funeral. People will often send sympathy flowers to your family upon reading it too, it’s just the easiest way of getting an announcement out there.

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Support Your Children

It’s so important that you provide as much support as possible to your children during this time. They can be incredibly upset and have trouble dealing with their emotions. This is where great parents come into their own as you’re able to provide the emotional support they need to get through this. There are a few things I mentioned in this article here that can be applied to this situation. Primarily, showing love and affection as well as offering advice. Don’t neglect your children’s feelings, regardless of how old they might be. Even kids in their teenage years struggle with death, make sure you’re there to lend a helping hand.

If you learn how to deal with death, it will be less traumatic for your family. No doubt the situation will still be heartbreaking, but you should be in more control. Believe me, I don’t enjoy thinking about this topic either. However, there’s no point avoiding it as we will all go through this experience at some point.

When You’re Feeling Stretched Thin it is Time to Take a Moment for Yourself

Appointments, practice, carpooling, shopping, reminding, cooking, cleaning, consoling – a mother’s work is never done. Sure, it’s rewarding to finally hear a “Thanks, Mom!” or see your little ones grow into full-fledged individuals ready to slowly take responsibility for their daily lives.

Take a Moment for Yourself

A REAL Break 

But in the meantime, start thinking about your birthday, or Mother’s Day. Just a few times a year when you can guiltlessly ask for a little time off from the family grind. Such occasions are the perfect time to treat yourself to a short vacation.

But we’re not talking about an evening off to see a movie with your friends. Rather, this would be the perfect time to catch up with old college friends, or other moms who could really use some respite, and whisk yourselves away to a new destination where you can unwind.

Here are four U.S. cities you should consider, and why they’re great mom getaways. 

  1. Portland

Nature, art, wine, hotels – Portland is a real up-and-comer in terms of where to go next. If cityscapes aren’t your bag, you and your friends can take a daylong wine tour through the Willamette Valley. You’ll be picked up in the city and given a scenic sipping tour with exceptional views of the Cascade mountains.

There are also a number of boutique hotels who are known for rare pleasures like tea services, as well as rooftop bars, theaters, and more. 

  1. Dallas

Got a little money to burn? Here’s a secret: Dallas, Texas is a shopaholics’ mecca. Book your suite at a Marriott and Uber down to the flagship Neiman Marcus on main Street. The historic building offers personal stylists, trunk shows, an espresso bar, and salon services.

From there, you can visit Highland Park Village, Dallas’ premier shopping plaza with stores like Chanel, Etro, Diane von Furstenberg, Hermes, and Dior. 

  1. New Orleans

If you and your girls really want to cut loose, you might be considering NYC. However, it can be a little tough to nail down what you’re going to get into without serious planning or prior experience. Instead, book a trip to New Orleans and get settled on Bourbon Street. Live music, dancing, drinks, tons of great food – you’ll be talking about it for years to come. 

  1. Charleston

The best word to describe Charleston, South Carolina would be “charming”. You and your best friends can stay at Zero George, a historic, luxurious boutique hotel notorious for its exceptional cuisine – there’s even a cooking school!

Stunning outdoor piazzas, a lush courtyard, beautiful suites, and unparalleled concierge service that will ensure your entire trip is a hit with the whole crew.

Sounds so good that you won’t want to leave, right? Well, one of the most unexpected benefits of taking this time for yourself is that when you return, you’ll feel like a whole new person. Distressed, recollected, and renewed, you’ll get back to life the way it once was – except better!

Tech Hobbies To Encourage In Your Kids

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Technology gets a lot of stick when it comes to its relationship with your kids. OK, so sure, there are some bad points to consider, but if you are a Luddite in these modern times, I’m afraid to say there’s no doubt your children are missing out. Technology gives them a whole bunch of fantastic opportunities, which you or I may not have had when we were kids. Let’s take a closer look at the sort of thing you can encourage – all thanks to the wonders of modern tech.

Coding

First and foremost, if your kids get enthused by coding, who knows where it might take them? The world is literally their oyster if you can get them excited to learn the fundamentals of coding and create incredible apps, systems, games or websites, and the earlier they start, the better. There’s a massive push toward getting kids into technology, and in particular, lots of options that will show them the ropes. Pick up a Raspberry Pi, and get them into services like Tynker or Kodable.

Music

It wasn’t too long ago that kids had a choice between a traditional instrument or nothing when it came to learning music. But these days, it’s another story entirely. Every iPad comes equipped with the brilliant Garage Band, where your kids can create tunes of any kind. There are smartphone apps, too, like Crayola DJ and Sesame Street Make Music. And once they have made their first album, you can even use a professional audio CD service, order in bulk, and send everyone in the family a copy – or two. There’s never been a better time for kids to get involved in music, and who knows – perhaps your little one will end up being the next Mozart?

Gaming

Too much gaming can be damaging for little ones, of course. But there are benefits to gaming, as well. Not only will children start developing skills like coordination and reflexes, but gaming is problem-solving in its most basic form. And if they are good at what they do, they could even compete – some of the pro-gamers around these days earn an astonishing amount of money.

TV

OK, so no more than two hours of TV on any given day – that’s a given. But when your kids are sat in front of the box, what are they actually watching? Shows like Bill Nye, the Science Guy are well worth watching, and you have the likes of Horrible Histories for those that prefer culture over physics. Common Sense Media have a formidable list of TV shows that will ensure your child is actually learning something, rather than just be a passive participant of the technology they use.

Art

Finally, let’s move back to your smartphone or tablet. If your child has a passion for drawing or painting – and which children don’t! – there are plenty of options when it comes to tech. Color & Draw For Kids, Morton Subotnick’s Pitch Painter, and Doodlecast for Kids are all excellent outlets for budding Monets.

Any more tech hobby ideas for kids? Let everyone know about them in the comments!

 

The Importance Of Protecting Your Home From The Elements

The Importance Of Protecting Your Home From The Elements

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What is the reason you own a home for? Is it to provide loving experiences, shared by all your family members? Is it so you have a place to house all of your belongings? Is it so you have a place to lay your head at night, so you can comfortably sleep and begin the next day refreshed? Or, is it to protect yourself as a shelter from the elements outside?

Of course, it is likely all of these reasons in one, but there’s no denying that last part is the one with the most immediate priority. Our homes are often so beautiful and refined compared to the shelters crafted by humans in the far past that we forget their primary and sole purpose – to keep us safe from an unpredictable outside world. Not only do the walls help keep us in, but they help keep everything else outside.

For that reason, protecting your home from the elements should be carefully considered, and not taken for granted. Of course, no amount of preparation can prepare your home for the unfortunate issues which took place in Florida and the Caribbean in recent weeks, but a little foresight can surely help some of the most commonly insidious and preventable issues from arising.

Here are some tips for the budding homeowner:

Water

Water can enter your property in many different ways. From leaky taps to flooding, to appliances going haywire, sometimes we are dumped with a little more moisture than we’d like. Solving this can be an issue, especially when you don’t have the tools to best remove the issue. For this reason, it’s best to use a sump pump such as those found here https://www.crawlspacecharlotte.com/sump-pump/, which installed under the foundations, can give you a perfect draining solution to solve the problems in a matter of minutes.

However, water damage doesn’t always enter the bottom or basement floors of your property. A leaky roof or a poorly insulated window can both contribute to letting the rain in, especially when it’s falling with some intensity. It’s important to be wise about the solution you use here. Applying better and more insulated roofing felt in the property, as well as using silicon applications to overcome any insulation issues is sometimes the best place to start. 

Damp

Damp can arise similarly. Cold air outside can lead to excess moisture inside, and if this doesn’t have any way to escape the heat simply piles upon your walls, window fixtures and potentially electrical implements as moist mould. This can grow over time and lead to spores which can, in their worst estimation, make you very sick. Damp prevention is usually easy, but it will require a stern eye, good ventilation, and a solid understanding of the fault points that are most likely to carry its symptoms around your home. This is more a reaction to an outside element than one inside, but the validity of preparing for it is no less important.

With these simple tips, you are sure to have a leg up in repairing the potential damage of your home, and preserving its value and safety.

 

 

5 Ways to Support Those Closest to You

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Providing support to those closest to you is an integral part of being a good friend or family member. Any kind of relationship should be a two-way street, so you want the support that you give to be reciprocated. In this post, we will look at five ways that you can provide support to the people closest to you both emotionally and practically.

Be Available to Listen and Offer Advice 

Sometimes, simply the act of listening to someone can make a world of difference to their emotional wellbeing. So, by making yourself available, you have already taken a big step in supporting those closest to you. Sometimes, you may want to go one step further and provide advice relating to the specific situation and circumstances. But remember, when you are providing advice you should try to make it as uncritical and unbiased as you can – though sometimes this may prove to be difficult if you are emotionally involved.

Offer Practical Support

Some situations will call for practical support rather as well as emotional support. It may be something as simple as running a few errands to take a bit of stress away from the person so they are free to focus on bigger issues. There also may be other things that you can arrange such as insurance details – take a look at termlifeinsurance.co for some more information if you are in need of it. Helping out in any practical way you can make the world of difference to those closest to you.

Support the Decision-Making Process 

Depending on what situation your loved one is in, the decisions that they take could have a big impact on their life. So, you can provide support with the actual decision-making process, talking through the different options with them and what the possible consequences may be. It often helps to have another perspective on a problem and this is exactly what you can provide.

Show Love and Affection

On some occasions, it is just love and affection that the other person is looking for rather than advice or practical support, but this is not less important than the other two things that we have spoken about. In difficult situations, it is often enough to know that someone cares about you and is on your side.

Be a Person Who They Want to Turn to 

Once you have shown yourself to be a supportive presence in their life, your loved one is much more likely to come back to you. Simply knowing that you have a person to turn to in difficult situations can be a huge relief, and you are much more likely to establish a relationship that allows you to go to them when you are in trouble.

Providing support for those closest to you is a central pillar of any relationship, and these five methods can help you to give the support that your loved one is looking for.

Time To Take Control: What Can Be Forgotten Now You Are A Parent

Getting that positive pregnancy test, welcoming a newborn into your life, and becoming a parent for the first, second, third or whatever time is always a remarkable and amazing experience. You become entered into a bubble, a special club, that only you and other parents understand. The sleep deprivation, the overwhelming feeling of love, and the fact you no longer mind the look and smell of dirty nappies. However, because we can become embroiled in the world of parenthood, there can be a few things we simply forget to do or even think about. Even though they may impact our family in the future. I thought I would share with you what some of them are.

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Taking out life insurance

While it may feel inappropriate to think about a time when you might be here if we are truthful with ourselves not one of us really knows what the future holds. The last thing any of us wants to do is to leave our partner or our children struggling to pick up the pieces. This is when it might be worth considering a life insurance policy. A life insurance will pay out a lump sum if you are no longer around, some people tend to take it out to cover a mortgage and any debts you may have. Even covering a loss of income, etc. Some people may assume that life insurance doesn’t cover you long term, but this is when companies like Whole Life Insurance comes in. You may be wondering what is whole life insurance, so head to the website to find out more about eligibility criteria. You may be surprised to realize that even with the biggest of issues in your life, you can still secure your family’s future.

Saving for your children’s future

It is hard to think about years ahead when right now you can’t see past tomorrow due to lack of sleep. However, these children grow up so fast and before you can even blink college and university will be here. This is why it is so important for parents to start saving for this as early as possible. It isn’t just about education either. You may want to have money set aside for their first car, even to help them get on the property ladder. We all know how hard that is for young adults these days. It could be a small amount each week, saving any birthday or Christmas money they receive in a bank account, but over the weeks, months, and years those small amounts can really add up.

Securing your own future

Finally, we can often forget about ourselves and our futures, so it’s just as important to have general savings to cover family expenses, trips, and even to help with your future finances when retirement comes along. You also might want to think about getting a will in place now that you are a parent. Every one of us has assets, be that of monetary or sentimental value, and it’s important that should anything happen, that your children and family know what your wishes and intentions are.

I hope this helps you take back some control of the future.

Making your Child’s First Dentist Visit Fun and Enjoyable

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There is plenty that you can do to ensure that your child enjoys their trip to the dentist. Taking care of their dental health is one of the life skills that your little one will have to learn.

Some kids are naturally relaxed about all medical appointments and take the whole visit in their stride. Others find the surroundings and equipment at the dental surgery terrifying.

Establishing a good dental hygiene routine is essential to prevent decay and cavities and ultimately avoids your child from having to endure a toothache and distress. There are a few useful ways in which you can make a trip to the dentist both fun and interesting for you and your child.

Start visiting the dentist as soon as you can

Choose a dentist that is experienced in working with children. When you visit Drs. Coakley, Trainor & Mancuso you get 30 years of experience and affordable financing so you will feel relaxed about the visit. This will put your child at ease too and make the trip less stressful for all of you.

The biggest mistake you can make is waiting until your child is in pain or discomfort. They will already be upset and will associate the dentist with a bad experience rather than a positive one.

Many parents start routine check-ups from around three to six months of age. The number of teeth that your child has is not important at this stage. It is all about getting them familiar with the experience. It is fine for the visit to be short. It could be little more than having a seat in the chair and having the light shone in their mouth.

Turn it into an educational experience

Children are naturally curious and like to learn about new things. The trick is to turn this into an interesting visit. Let them explore the equipment in the dental surgery as far as is safe. Your dentist may allow them to touch some of the equipment.

As your child gets older, your dentist can talk to them about the treatment room and what goes on in there. The chair is always good for entertainment because they can ride up and down in it! They may also like to listen to the drill.

Watch your language

Your child will take their lead from you so it is essential that you keep your tone light and casual. Prepare as if you are going to the park or to the library. This sends the message that the dentist is a fun place to go where your child will get encouragement and praise and will be the center of attention. What kid does not like that?

Use positive words and watch your body language, especially if you are feeling anxious yourself. You need to be a great actor.

Re-enforce what the dentist has said to your child when you get home but never threaten your child with the dentist if they are refusing to brush their teeth. The carrot is far better than the stick in this situation.

Run Out Of Ideas? New Ways To Make Exercise More Fun For Kids

In this day and age, it can be really difficult to tear kids away from TV screens and tablets. With summer finally here, it’s a perfect time to try and get your children more involved in exercise, and to ensure they have fun when they’re on the go. If you’ve run out of ideas and you feel like you’re fighting a losing battle against a games console, here are some new ways to encourage your kids to be more active.

Join local clubs and teams

Joining a team is an excellent way to make it easier for your child to make friends, and it’ll also encourage them to spend more time running around and letting off steam. There are so many team sports you can try, from football and touch rugby to cricket, netball, hockey, and tennis. Being part of a team gives kids a sense of belonging and identity, and it can also teach them valuable life lessons like working with others and being cooperative. If you’ve moved recently, and you’re not familiar with the area, search online for local clubs or ask your child’s teachers or other parents for recommendations.

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Encourage healthy competition

Life is all about competition, and it’s important for children to learn what it means to win or lose. If your kids take an interest in sport, encourage them to stay motivated and to try and progress and develop by promoting healthy competition. Race each other, try and score as many goals as possible in the garden or set up your own summer sports competition and invite friends and family members to participate. If you take a look at sites like Trophies Plus Medals, you can order child-friendly cups and medals that can be awarded to the winners. Set out a schedule, send out some invites, and work out what kinds of activities you’re going to try. You can put your own spin on sports day with sack races, running races or egg and spoon dashes, or take inspiration from the Olympics with sprints, throwing events and jumping, or tennis, gymnastics or swimming competitions.

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Spend more time together

Setting a good example is the best way to get your kids on board with a new, more active lifestyle. Try and take advantage of the long, hazy days and spend more time together. Go swimming, go dancing, take a trip to the ice rink or get your bikes out. Even if you don’t have any equipment, you can still enjoy the great outdoors. Next time you’ve got a free weekend, why not go for a walk in the woods and hit the beach armed with a badminton set, a ball or a frisbee?

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If you’ve tried and failed to get your kids more interested in active pursuits, hopefully, this guide will prove useful. Kids want to have fun, so try and vary the kinds of activities you do, spend time together, and get friends and family involved. Get outdoors, play games, encourage your kids to be competitive and take advantage of those sun-drenched days. We all know they won’t last for long!