Four Areas That Could Really Boost Your Year Right Now

New year can be a real anticlimax at times. So many of us put so much focus on making changes that often we can expect too many things of ourselves and we end up failing at the first hurdle. However, it can also be an ideal time to make some of the changes in regards to your foundation, which can then be built upon as the year goes on. We all have big aspirations. Perhaps to run a marathon. Go on holiday somewhere faraway or exoctic, or even just some focus on out self-care and financial goals. So how can you really use this time of year to give yourself a boost? I wanted to share with you four areas that you can do it. I hope it provides you with the inspiration to take on those new year’s resolutions and goals after all.

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Working on your current financial situation

Your finances could be a big problem for you right now, and this could be what is hindering you moving forward to take on some of the other aspects of your life. It can be quite daunting to approach your financial situation and make some changes, especially after the Christmas season. But taking control of things like debt where websites like repair.credit can offer advice, or even reduce your outgoings so you can free up some income to save for other things can really be inspiring to then give you the right foundation to take other parts of your life.

Taking some time to work on your mindset

Your mind is such a powerful tool, and so it can be the difference between taking action and not doing. So it is always worth taking some time for some care with yourself and working on your current mindset situation. Whether you are genuinely a positive person, or find yourself feeling like negative thoughts are creeping in, being proactive with your thought process and taking time for behaviours like gratitude and even meditation and exercise, can help you to improve your mind and general well being.

Embracing a lifestyle change

Maybe you set yourself a goal of a lifestyle change. Perhaps it was to take part in veganuary or cut out dairy or gluten from your diet. Maybe you made a promise to yourself to be more active. It can be hard when these goals can be big changes, so you may want to start off with smaller bite sized chunks to help you get back on track. This can help you stay motivated as you start to achieve things with a lore long term goal in mind. 

Taking action with your career or future plans 

Finally, now is the time it get some plans in place for the other changes you wanted to make, It might have been to do with your career, perhaps getting on the property ladder, or evn just ticking some of those things off your bucket list. Having a plan put in place helps you to make these goals a lot more real.

I hope that these four areas help give you a boost for your year ahead.

Sporting Ruses Not Even Sherlock Holmes Would See Through

Most kids fall into one of two categories. They either love sports, or they hate the stuff. This has been the case for time immemorial, and we can all remember which group we fit into. If you didn’t enjoy sports, physical education would become a traumatic experience. There certainly wasn’t any chance of sports in your free time.

Once upon a time, though, that wasn’t so much of a problem. Even kids who didn’t love sport would go outside of an evening and play with their friends. Now, with the possibilities of games consoles and television streaming, it’s harder than ever to get non-sporty kids outside. And, who can blame them when there’s so much fun stuff to do? But, with childhood obesity now up to one in every five children, it’s crucial you encourage activity in your child.

The good news is, not every sport emits the groans that, say, a suggestion of football might do. In fact, some sporting activities won’t even seem like sports to your kids. Here, we’re going to take a look at some prime examples. Encourage your child to do any of these three activities, and they’ll exercise without even noticing.

Skipping

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 The chances are that you won’t have much trouble encouraging your child to skip. It’s a standard playground game and something that most children will do of their own volition. Yet, jumping rope is one of the most efficient forms of exercise. So much so that your child stands to burn ten calories for every minute they skip. Just half an hour of this could do them a world of good. If you haven’t already, buy them a skipping rope, and encourage them to play with it whenever you can.

Trampolining

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Most kids would love the chance to own a trampoline. It’s just one of those things on the bucket list of just about anyone under the age of 13. And, it might be a good idea to stop resisting them. Trampolining is another incredibly efficient exercise. It uses everything from leg muscles, to those in the stomach. While not as efficient as skipping for calorie loss, this is still fantastic for getting muscles working. Bear in mind that buying a trampoline isn’t as easy as getting a jump rope. You’ll need to ensure you purchase the safest option possible. You can visit Parenting Pod for more information on the best options out there, or do your own research. Once you find a model which fits your need, don’t hesitate to invest.

Horse Riding

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The majority of little girls, and some boys too, dream of the chance for horse riding lessons. As such, it shouldn’t take much convincing to get them to take up this physical activity. At 200 calories per 45 minute ride, this doesn’t have quite the same calorie burning capabilities. But, it’s still physical exercise. And, beggars can’t be choosers when unsporty kids are involved. So, make their horse riding dreams come true, and help them get fit, too.

 

Take Christmas To A New Level With These Fabulous Ideas

Christmas is nearly upon us, so it’s probably a good time to begin thinking about preparing for the festive season so that as soon as thanksgiving has come and past, you can concentrate on making this the best Christmas yet. Instead of doing what you usually do, why not take Christmas to a new level with these fabulous ideas?

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Decoration

One of the first things that we begin to notice when Christmas rolls around is the decorations going up in shops and around town. If you’ve been using the same decorations for your home for many years now, or you feel like a change in color then consider going all out for your home decor this year.

Usually, families have a real tree, or a green plastic Christmas tree to decorate in their home. These days, you can get different colored trees to display in your home, either as your main Christmas tree, or one for another room to keep the festivities throughout your home. If your home is stuck to a particular color theme, why not choose a tree that will fit in perfectly with your theme? For example, if you have a black and white theme, a black fibre optic Christmas tree would fit perfectly in your home.

Lets not forget about the baubles either. Depending on what kind of tree you have, or what theme you’re going for you can get corresponding baubles and tinsel to match. Alternatively, decorate and design your own baubles with the kids to make the magic even more real.

Another idea would be to decorate some figures to display in your garden with Christmas colors and fairy lights. For example, creating a snowman out of cardboard or a similar material and decorating him with lights and funky colors would make your home decor stand out from the crowd, and also give the children something to do when the christmas holidays roll around.

Tradition

It’s likely that in your childhood you have traditions from Christmas that you would like to continue with. While that’s a great idea, creating new traditions for your family will be something that you and your children cherish for the rest of your lives. Simple things like making sure you’re all together on Christmas eve to watch a film, with special treats for the family make all the difference to how Christmas feels to everyone.

Many people have traditions like not opening gifts until they have had their Christmas lunch, which extends the excitement even further. Just make it special for your family, whatever you choose to do.

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Gifts

Even though we all know that Christmas isn’t about the gifts, it is a majorly exciting part of the day for everyone involved, especially the children. Whether or not you’ve chosen to include Santa in your children’s lives, the thrill of opening presents is tremendous for them so remember to create some magic in their younger years to look fondly back on.

Stuck for ideas on what to get your children, or possibly even the rest of your family? Check out these brilliant ideas for stocking fillers to see if you can find some inspiration! http://www.giftbeta.com/category/best-stocking-stuffers/. While there’s no rules on how little or much you should spend, try to remember that Christmas isn’t just about gifts, and that spending time together as a family is more important.

Food

While the traditional roast turkey might not be something that can be missed off your shopping list, why not consider adding some unusual delights into your cart? Treats like cheeses, wines, pickles and biscuits can completely step up your food game on Christmas day.

One thing that might make Christmas more exciting for the family is to get everyone involved in cooking the main meal. Giving everyone an assigned task and then showing off all of your hard work at meal time will leave everyone feeling accomplished and more importantly, full.

So when the time comes for you to do your Christmas shop, remember to browse all of the aisles for the delicacies that stores tend to bring out around Christmas time. You might even find a new food to add to your list permanently!

Give

While you may be giving gifts to your family, don’t forget about the people who don’t have much in this world and make their year by giving to them, especially in these colder months. You can visit homeless shelters to serve food, create gift boxes for children in poorer countries, donate to charities, and much more.

Not only will this help those that are in need, but it will give you an enormous sense of well being. If you can’t afford to give money, give your time because that’s just as appreciated for many people who are facing Christmas alone this year. If a neighbor of yours is alone, make a point of inviting them over for Christmas dinner so that they can enjoy the day as much as possible. Nobody should be alone at any time in their life, especially Christmas.

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Remembering what it’s about

As briefly mentioned earlier, many people tend to forget what Christmas is really about due to the over commercialisation of it through the media. You probably already know that Christmas is derived from the religion Christianity. That’s not to say you must be a Christian to celebrate it, but do try and remember about where Christmas came from, and that it’s not solely about gifts and food. It’s also about much needed family time, and appreciating what you have in life. It’s also a time to build bridges with people, catch up with old friends and generally, a very lovely time of year.

So, step up your Christmas game this year with these fabulous ideas and make it your best Christmas yet! Remember, nobody should be alone at Christmas. The more the merrier!

 

Family Fun Activities to Get Kids Outdoors

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Parenting, like most things in life, is all a matter of balance. While it’s not right to demonise use of technology- there can be some apparent developmental gains to be made in letting children use technology– so time spent on the iPad needs to be balanced out.

Encouraging our kids to get outdoors and make the most of the world around them is a journey, and by setting up fun activities as a family that make the most of our natural environment, you can create some precious family time memories, while also finding that balance. Here are just a few ideas to make your days out sparkle:

Go on a treasure hunt

Revealing the wonder of the natural world can be as simple as making a game out of an ordinary nature walk. Create a list of flora and fauna that are all around your natural area – leaves, flowers, birds and small animals you are likely to spot and have your children do a treasure hunt to locate these all around you. A fun trip outdoors like this will have more benefits than just adding a glow to their cheeks – it also requires observational and problem-solving skills that will get them thinking. Make the outdoors special to them by creating a map of their favourite spots along the way.

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Fly a kite

What could be a more cheerful activity outdoors than flying kites together? These traditional toys are great fun, whether you buy one or even have fun making your own from construction straws and crepe paper. There is a range of coordination and even engineering skills involved in making your own kite, and running around outside flying them is lots of exercise without seeming it. Find out more information on how to get started with family kite flying at stuffkidslove.net.

Grab some chalk

An effortless way to engage young minds in the outside world is by giving them some chalk and letting the sidewalk become their canvas. What art can they create inspired by the features of the natural landscape? There are also endless spelling, counting and physical games that can be played when you have that drawing board – from traditional playground favourites like hopscotch to hangman and connect four. Let their little imaginations run wild, or try incorporating natural elements like leaves and pebbles into drawings.

Have a campout

Vacations in the great outdoors can be a happy childhood memory for many of us, but if you don’t have the time or budget to go on a trip, or have younger children that need their home comforts, a great way to get started is by camping out in your own backyard! The Great American Backyard Campout has lots of ideas for fun games and activities to be enjoyed doing this, but you can’t beat telling stories by torchlight and even having your children make shadow puppets to use in putting on a show.

Making the most of outdoors can be as simple or as complicated as you want it to be, and once you’ve had a taste of all the family fun to be had outdoors, you’ll be looking for any opportunity!

 

Raising Humble Kids Isn’t Hard, Here’s How

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As a parent, you always want the best for your kids. You not only want to make sure that they’re happy and lead fulfilling lives, but you want to make sure that the turn into incredible people too. And one of the ways you can do that is to ensure that they always remain humble. It’s not always easy to achieve, but ensuring that your kids are kind, loving, and polite is easy enough, and so why shouldn’t it be the same for making them humble? If you want your kids to be both humble and happy, here are some ideas for achieving it.

Stress The Importance Of Listening

First of all, you’re going to want to make sure that your children are great listeners. This is definitely one the of hardest things to do, as kids aren’t always great at listening first and speaking second – they often want to share what they have to say. But, if you can teach them to listen first, they will always be humble. But not being selfish, but instead putting others first, they will always live a humble and happy life.

Appreciate Hard Work

Next, you’re going to want to instill in them what it means to work hard and why it is important. It’s easy to feel like you should do everything for your kids, but you’re not helping them become the best they can be by doing that. Hard work is definitely one of the life skills that you need to teach them. If they can appreciate and value hard work in life, it will go a long way in keeping them grounded.

Teach Them To Help Others

You should also do what you can to show them how important it is to be selfless in life. Helping others is always an important part of leading a rewarding life. So, it’s a skill and consideration to show them early. Charitable organizations are great to work with here. The work that they do, like MERS Goodwill with providing opportunities, is so important for the community. By giving back and getting involved in charity projects, you will show how important it is to help others and be humble.

Show Them The Value Of Money

One of the things that can spoil people in life is money. Money is often a way that people can fall off track and lose their focus on what’s really important. So, to ensure that your kids stay grounded, especially when it comes to money, be sure to teach them the value of money young. This Parents post should definitely help with that. But giving a set allowance, showing them how to spend and teaching how many works can definitely help here.

Value Their Relationships

A huge sign of a humble person is the importance they place on their relationships. If you want to ensure that your kids grow to be humble adults, you need to stress the importance of valuing the relationships they have in life. It’s easy to see the value in materials things, but material things aren’t what matters most in life. So, teaching them to value their relationships will go a long way.

Five Pregnancy Problems You Might Not Be Aware Of – And How To Treat Them

There are few things that are as challenging to your body as carrying a baby and giving birth to your child. Not only can it be a strain in pretty much every area of your life from your relationship to your finances to your emotions, it’s also extremely physically difficult. Everyone already knows about morning sickness and a constant need to pee when you’re pregnant – but what are some other symptoms that you should be prepared for? Here are a few things you might be feeling…

Swollen feet

Especially if you’re pregnant over the summer, swollen feet might be an issue for you. This is mostly because of water weight, and they usually end up going down after your baby has been born – although this isn’t the case for every woman, so don’t start buying any heels in preparation for your post pregnancy life! If you’re experiencing the discomfort of swollen feet, make sure that you soak your feet in cool water when you get home from work and that you wear comfortable, supportive shoes at all times.

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Hyperpigmentation

When you’re pregnant you might suffer from discoloration on your face – look up facts about melasma if you want to find out more. This can take the form of brown marks on your face that can make your complexion look dull and sallow – which definitely isn’t the pregnancy glow that you were promised and can have a rough effect on your self esteem. Change up your makeup routine – apply a lightweight BB cream every morning and make sure that you keep moisturising. If you want to distract from any discoloration, go for a bright lipstick that pops.

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Depression

We’ve all heard about postpartum depression, which a lot of women suffer from – but prepartum depression is also a huge issue that simply isn’t talked about enough. If you’ve had to come off your usual depression medication during pregnancy, make sure that you talk to your doctor about it, and be kind with yourself – take time out when you need it, schedule time to relax and to hang out with your friends and do what you love. Remember that the way you’re feeling is valid, but that you can change it if you want to speak to a medical professional.

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Stuffy noses

Twenty to thirty percent of women experience stuffy noses during pregnancy – as if you needed to feel as though you have a permanent cold to add to the other extensive lists of unpleasant symptoms that you’re going through! This is caused by high amounts of estrogen that make your nasal membranes swell. Talk to your doctor about whether you can use decongestants or not.

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Dizziness

Finally, a lot of pregnant people experience dizziness thanks to all the changes that your body’s going through and the stress that you’re under. Make sure that you wear a bump on board badge to guarantee you a seat on public transport, and allow extra time when you’re going out so that you can take time out to sit down and rest without worrying.

 

 

Are you too Selfish to be a Parent?

It’s happened, you’re pregnant. Congratulations! While you may not be feeling excited about this new journey in your life, there’s lots of good that comes from becoming a parent. As a mom of three, I can tell you it’s the most exhausting yet rewarding job I have ever had and I feel blessed to have a chance to own that title of Mama. With that being said, becoming pregnant isn’t always a planned event. Birth control options have an error rate and even when taken correctly can cause an accident to happen. Basically you must know that having physical activity with your partner, even when using birth control methods, can result in pregnancy.

What happens when you find out you’re pregnant by surprise and you aren’t quite sure that you are ready? Well there are various options and there are also support groups and family who will help lead you forward. Adoption is one option many think of when faced with an accidental pregnancy, and that can provide a loving family with a child of their own. It’s great to be able to opt in for having your newborn baby adopted if you are adamant having a baby isn’t something you’re ready to take on right now. As a mom of three, obviously I never selected that option.

We all choose what’s best for ourselves and our relationship as well as future goals.

Once you find that you are pregnant and it wasn’t planned, you really need to do some soul searching and be honest with yourself about your character. Sometimes people are just too self-absorbed to take on the role of Mom or Dad and that’s okay, so as long as you can be honest with yourself and your loved one so that you don’t put them into a situation where they end up bitter and alone.

How can you Determine if Ready for Baby

While there is no one way to determine if you are ready for a baby, there are a few things you can think about and may need to change if a baby is coming into your life.

  • Does Future Plans Leave Room for Baby? You may have your future goals set out and you are ready to move forward with them. You want to be successful and life has always been just about you. If you have found yourself expecting a baby but you know in your heart that you simply aren’t ready to be as selfless as one must be to be a parent, then you may not be ready.
  • Can you Adapt for new Baby? Once you become a parent, it’s inevitable that your world will revolve around this little human being. Everything you do or say will be taken in by this little baby from day one and you will have to learn to adapt for new baby. If you are someone who can’t foresee adapting to become the best parent possible, then perhaps you are not ready for a new baby.
  • Are you Financially Ready? While most parents find that they weren’t financially ready for a baby, sometimes this is an important factor for a person. If you are deathly afraid that you will not be able to afford a new baby, then sit down to write logical reasons why you will not be able to financially support a baby. Be realistic and figure out if you can adapt finances to suit a new baby or not.
  • Are you Emotionally Ready? A baby will take on most of your strength during that first month or so of living. You will get little sleep, especially if you work outside of the home and your life will revolve around this little one. Think about your mental health, are you emotionally stable and truly capable of handling the extra mental strength a newborn will place upon you? Sit down to chat with your counselor or family to determine what’s best for you and this unborn child.

How can you Get Ready for Newborn?

In all honesty, even if you feel that you are just not ready for a baby but can adapt to this new life that will call you Mama or Daddy, then you can move on to get ready for a newborn. Make a commitment that you will be the best parent possible and put this baby as well as the other parent’s needs as a priority in your life. Prepare to know that you may have to give up some things or adjust how you do them because you are a parent to a newborn and your partner is counting on you to help not just sit back and be selfish.

Often times relationships break up when a newborn comes along because they simply didn’t discuss how the new baby will be taken care of. They didn’t discuss what each will expect from the other and they didn’t take time to financially prepare, such as purchasing diapers and other items before baby was born. If you want to have this newborn child and bring it into your life then you will have to think before you make future goals that may leave your newborn with just one parent who is pulling all of the weight and getting exhausted.

Being a parent is the most selfless act out there, and I am honored to enjoy being that person.

Once you find that you are pregnant and it wasn’t planned, you really need to do some soul searching and be honest with yourself about your character. Sometimes people are just too self-absorbed to take on the role of Mom or Dad and that’s okay, so as long as you can be honest with yourself and your loved one so that you don’t put them into a situation where they end up bitter and alone.

Read What to Expect in First Trimester and What to Expect in Second Trimester.

 

How To Teach Children To Be Kind

Kindness is one of the important qualities to foster in children. There is no obvious way in teaching your kids how to imbibe kindness. It’s not as easy as teaching them the letters of the alphabets or how to make their beds.

Kindness as a quality comes easily to some children. Children already have a great capacity to be compassionate, but with all the pain and wickedness in the world today, it becomes necessary to nurture these innate qualities of kindness in them and show them the benefits of compassion so they do not allow the world harden them before they grow up into adults. Teaching children early enough to be compassionate and empathetic helps them build up values that they will follow for as long as they live. When children learn to be kind and to give, it helps their development, and it helps them feel good about themselves. Being kind promotes a positive attitude in children.

How To Teach Children To Be Kind

Here are a few ways you can use in teaching your children how to be kind

Children, as expected mostly learn by examples, seeing their parents or guardians practicing something rather than doing it, helps them learn. When you demonstrate compassion and empathy to those around you and even strangers, it shows them the importance of showing empathy, and they begin to assimilate instances when kindness has been shown, and if by chance they find themselves in that situation, they know the best action to take in that situation. Even in your everyday interactions with your children, show them kindness. A child cannot be kind when they have not experienced kindness.

Teach Gentleness

Show your child how to be gentle with humans and animals. When you see them being rough in their actions towards others whether their siblings or to their pet, you should be quick to correct them and show them how to handle others with love.

Involvement

Get your children involved in kindness project. Allow them to pitch in when you are trying to send meals to a neighbor who might be ill or has lost a loved one. When you go to deliver these gifts, take your kids along, so they understand the importance of showing sympathy and the joy that comes from making someone smile.

Sharing

Teach your kids to share. Make it a duty to learn to donate items they might not be using to charity or to share their toys with their friends or other kids when asked.

Think of Others

Tell them always to put themselves in someone’s shoes before they react at any given time. Learning to put yourself in someone’s shoes before taking any decision makes you kinder because you think of how you will want to be treated in that same situation and act accordingly.

Avoid Rudeness

Avoid being rude to others. When you are in a restaurant with your kids, mind the way you speak to the waiters or even when buying something from the supermarket, be careful with the way you talk to the sales person. Children notice when you are rude. If at any point, you see your child speaking or acting rudely to someone, correct them and make sure they apologize. Teach your children always to compliment others and to be appreciative of any service rendered to them.

When teaching your children to be kind, remember it’s on you to be a good role model for them.