How to Keep Your Kids Happy Even When Times are Tough

Life is not always going to be as full of joy as the day that your children were born. There are natural ups and downs that happen, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t try extra hard to make life a little sweeter and happier for your kids. There are things that you can do when life gets tough to keep your kids happy.

No matter what the difficulty is, your kids deserve their childhood and they deserve their happiness. It doesn’t have to drain you to afford this peace and joy for your children. Here are some ways to keep your kids smiling and happy even during difficult times.

Let Them Be Your Stress Reliever

Although it may not seem like motherhood can relieve stress, there are ways to use your maternity to reduce your stress. Playing with your children can help you feel like a child again and reduce your worries as a parent. Whenever you have to deal with the negativity in your life, take a break to play with your children without the interference of screens or other people getting in your way.

Playing with your kids is an excellent way to keep both of you happy. It may drain you of energy, but like exercise, it can also help you feel better and actually raise energy after the fact so that you feel better in the long-run.

Consult Professionals

Sometimes, the situation is simply too big to face alone. By yourself, it seems like a mountain impossible to cross, so it is good to know some professionals who would have your back. When it comes to your kids, hiring the right babysitter to keep them happy while you deal with life might be one of the best things that you can do for them.

Depending on the situation, you may also benefit from consulting with a divorce attorney, psychologists, and educational professionals. Don’t think that you have to go through anything alone just for the sake of your kids. They can feel your stress and they would want you to get the professional help that you need.

Keep Lines of Communication Open

Talking to your kids is by far the easiest way to sort out anything between you. If there is something happening that is affecting you and the overall health and wellbeing of the family, then you should be open and honest with your kids about it. When talking to them, be sure

  • To communicate in terms that your children understand
  • To be honest, because lying will inevitably make any bad situation worse
  • To talk to them not just about the situation, but about both your feelings and their feelings
  • To keep optimistic

Don’t Think of Money as Being Key to their Joy

Usually, bad times coincide with times where money is tight. However, you shouldn’t think of this time as the need to buy your kids’ happiness. Small kids will be just as fine with the pots and pans that you already have as with the hottest new toy. Take your kids out for a day at the local park when the weather is nice. Both of you could probably stand to smile and swing again.

Get creative when it comes to playing and having fun at home. You don’t need to have anything fancy or special to have a good time.

Keep Routine as Normal as Possible, but Add Fun Where You Can

Your children will appreciate a sense of normalcy during these trying times, so try to keep their routine and schedule as consistent as possible. However, when it comes to fewer fun tasks like chores or homework, try to incorporate fun elements such as rewards, games, stickers, and other incentives.

Doing things together can also help pack more fun into routines. For instance, helping your kids wash the dishes or make their beds can give them something to look forward to more time with you.

Happiness is Never too Far Away

You always have the chance to make and keep your children content, even when it sometimes feels that happiness is far away and an impossible task. Let your children bring you joy and let you be able to return joy to them as well.

A Bright and Colorful Living Room Makeover: Unwind Your Life

A living room is the most important space in your home. Chances are that it is also the place you spend most of your time. After all, this is where you entertain guests, watch TV with your partner and have family time with your kids.

After a long day at work or tiring tasks, this is also the room where you unwind your life and relax. But in order to do so, the overall décor must be not only comfortable but aesthetically agreeable as well. Therefore, here are some bright and colorful ideas for living room makeover that will help you reinvent your space and yourself.

1. Change the colors

While many believe that changing the colors is the easiest way to change the room, it can actually be a tedious task. After all, you need to find the color scheme that all members of the household will like and fit it in the design. But sometimes, choosing a new and unexpected shade can really be the pivotal point of having a bright and colorful living room makeover.

Try living coral shade which is new Pantone Color of the Year and will support natural earthy tones for those who want to add just a splash of bolder tones. Instead of painting all walls, use flower wallpaper on part of the wall to create an interesting pattern and create complex patterns. Velvet is in this season, and green furniture will go well with natural materials like wood and gold details like a vase or mirror frame.

2. Add an interesting detail

Never underestimate the impact an interesting detail can have on the room. And this year, interior design will be about highlighting certain features of the room. A huge colorful painting on the wall can open up space and create a playful ambiance.

But if you are for something more subtle, consider saying goodbye to symmetrical patterns and saying goodbye to a straight line. Since the living room is the place to spend leisure time but also have parties, consider adding a fixture like a fireplace to define the room as both relaxing and dramatic. Use bolder colors like lime green or fuchsia for the mantel and your living room will immediately become ore livelier and fun.

3. Make small space bigger

Even the smallest of living rooms can offer an abundance of space and become your sanctuary if you know a few design tricks. The minimalist design may be out this year, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t adapt its principles to the new trends. Think about pieces of furniture that have more than one purpose, like a coffee table that is a storage unit and a chair at the same time.

Instead of going for massive pieces, look for cozy and simple furniture that will be comfortable and not swallow the room. Wall mounted bookshelves are ideal to free the space, while a small colorful rug instead of a carpet will brighten up space. A huge mirror opposite the window will expand the space and also bring more natural light to your living room allowing its colors to pop.

4. Redefine the lights

If you consult with a renovator like Precision Planning, you will learn that lighting is one of the most important things for the room. It will help you define certain areas and set the ambiance which will further mark the overall style in your living room. If you have an open floor plan, then using lights to separate different aspects of the space will make the décor more interesting and dynamic.

On the other hand, small rooms will look bigger if you allow more natural light in and change the fixture so that they have a wider range. Use lamps to set the atmosphere for parties, movie nights or simply to take a nap on the couch.

5. Establish a focal point

If you are keen on darker styles, you can still make your living room bright and colorful. While some details here and there, like flamboyant cushions for the couch, can live up space, a focal point will define it. Choose one area of your living room and place a truly daring piece of furniture, decorative item or art there.

This can be a colorful chair like yellow or red that will be in contrast with the dark walls and add a layer to space. On the other hand, a stone wall with golden details among the natural granite will highlight the elegance and give your room more character.


Sometimes, a small change can make a big difference. A splash of color here, a new art piece there can help you rediscover the aesthetics thus creating a bright and colorful living room. After all, this is a special place in your home where people come together and you find peace to unwind your life.

About the author

Sarah Jessica Smith is a young blogger from Sydney. She is in love with life and all the things that can make her daily routine easier. She loves to write about home improvement, lifestyle, and all the small things that make life such a great adventure.

How to Help Your Child Become a Successful Student

As a parent, you need to make sure your child has the most amazing childhood ever. However, the job of a parent is even more complicated – you need to do everything you can to help your child achieve the best possible results in the future, and this is why you are your child’s most important teacher. The new day and age made things even more complicated as the school expectations are higher than before, so what can you do to help your child become a successful student and thus provide them with a shiny and successful career after the school and college are over?

1. Be involved

The first thing you need to do as a parent is to actually be involved in the schooling of your child. This means attending every parent-teacher meeting, as well as the meetings at the start of every school year. This is a great way to learn more about the actual teachers of your children and get to know something more about the curriculum and the expectations. This is what will help you make your own plans connected to your child’s education as you will know what aspects you need to pay attention to. If you have the option, you can also volunteer at your child’s school and in that way stay closer to the teachers and other parents – you never know when you will need them.

2. Find a good tutor

Once the semester or the school year starts, you will get to see if your child needs more work in a certain subject or if they excel somewhere, and this is where you step in. It is very important to know your child and thus know what type of tutoring your child needs, and try to find the best tutor for your child. It’s also very important to know everything about the pros and cons of online vs in-person tutoring; some children might enjoy the first one, while the latter might be perfect for students who like face to face communication. Make sure to explain to your child that having a tutor doesn’t mean that they’re performing badly, but that you want for them to excel at a certain subject where they need more work. Tutoring is also a great way to make your child learn something more about a subject and stay one step ahead of the curriculum.

3. Respect the homework

Homework is an essential part of schooling. It’s not only there to make the students revise a certain lesson, it’s also there to teach your child responsibility and work ethic – two aspects that will be extremely important for the child’s future. This is why you, as a parent, need to support the homework expectations and do whatever you can so that your child completes this task without any problems. In addition to making your child know that homework is a priority, you can help them by making sure they avoid distractions such as TVs or smartphones. Make sure that you’re there while your child is doing their homework, especially if they’re very young – be there to offer guidance, answer questions and interpret assignment instructions.

4. Teach organizational skills

There’s nothing more important and effective that you can teach your child than organizational skills. These will not only be helpful throughout school and college, but throughout their working life as well, and this is considered one of the most important skills a person acquires throughout their lives. Teach your child how to make to-do lists and how to respect them. If you want to make this task even more interesting for your child, you can use the perks of technology and find a good app that they will use (after all, they are growing up in the era of technology). Moreover, make sure that your child keeps their desk in perfect order and talk to them about why this is important.

5. Take attendance seriously

Finally, be the kind of parent who takes attendance seriously. Of course, if the kid is sick and cannot go to school, it’s always best to stay at home, but if your child is missing a lot of school due to illness, make sure to check with the teacher about the work that needs to be completed.


As you can see, your child’s performance at school does not depend solely on them – you should, as a parent, do whatever you can to teach your child how to take school seriously. Use fun ways or even games to teach your child good organization and responsibility. The day when they will be extremely grateful to you for this will eventually come.

A Busy Mom’s Guide To Staying Healthy And Losing Weight


Most people think they lead busy lives and don’t have time for anything, but those people usually aren’t mothers. Even though their lives might be busy, they have no idea how much work, effort, and dedication it takes to bring up a whole other human being while still taking care of yourself. Some mothers lose themselves completely to their children, but your life isn’t over just because you have a baby. In fact, the healthier and happier you are, the happier and healthier your child will be as they thrive off positive emotions, especially at a very young age.

1. Schedule workout time

Even though you may have many obligations as a dedicated mother, it’s not impossible to set aside a few hours a week for yourself. You could leave the children with your husband, parents, or babysitter and go for a run or to the gym. Some time away from your kids will help you both grow as individuals without damaging your bond.

More importantly, you’ll learn it’s not a sin to devote some time to look your best. Let your workout time set you free. It will help your body process stress more easily, rejuvenate your mind, and make you fitter. All of this will also be extremely beneficial for your mental health. Being busy is only a matter of shifting priorities and your workout time should definitely be at the top of that list.

2. Don’t starve yourself

A mistake most mothers make is that they skip meals and go on crash diets which basically restrict anything but water. This way, it seems like you’re losing steady weight but as soon as you start eating normally again, it just comes back. What you’re actually doing is starving your body from all the nutrients it needs. The same happens when you’re skipping meals- you may think you’re doing yourself a favor but you’ll just be hungrier later which will lead to junk food cravings and set back your progress.

Try another approach. Eat little, but eat frequently. Three meals a day and two snacks should be enough. Make sure these are all well-balanced and home-cooked meals which include a lot of vegetables, protein, and even some carbs. If you don’t have time to cook daily, try prepping your meals a week in advance. Cook the same food for your kids to build healthy eating habits from a young age and enjoy your results together. If you are into supplements, and based on the advice of your doctor, you may also try fat burners formulated for women.


3. Join other mums

The key to success can sometimes lay in numbers. If you’re having trouble sticking to your diet or workout regimes, you can find a mum group and ask them for help. All of these women are on the same journey you are, and sticking together makes them stick to their resolutions. These groups usually plan activities together and have similar goals in mind, so it’s fairly easy to fit in.

Another benefit of joining hands with other mums is that you always have someone to lean on. When the rest of the world doesn’t understand what you’re going through, these mums will. You can always talk to someone about your concerns, and there’ll always be someone to cheer for your progress. If there isn’t a mum group in your area, you can try forming one with your friends or neighbors. It might be an excellent opportunity to make new friends or strengthen bonds with old ones, too.

4. Consider getting some work done

If you need some help along the way to health and happiness, you can always consider getting some work done. Reconstructive and plastic surgery can make you more confident, enhance your health, and give you the motivation to stay on your new journey. It’s time we let the stigma toward surgery die and realize the amazing benefits they can have; especially for busy mothers who need a push in the right direction.

In most cases, no major surgery is needed. In fact, as Dr. Ross Farhadieh trustfully says: “Often, the most subtle surgical enhancements can have a profound effect on your self-confidence and self-esteem”. These subtle changes can be enough to make you realize your worth, too. What’s more, they’ll give you a head start in the losing weight department and provide fertile grounds for success. Don’t stop yourself from being the best version of yourself that you can be just because you’re too afraid to step out of your comfort zone.


5. Play with your kids

Children are naturally curious and like running around and exploring every environment they find themselves in. Encourage and join them in their new adventures, and you’ll find out just how much more you’ll be moving. Plan outside activities where you can all play in the park or at the beach. Teach them to ride a bike and have family rides around the neighborhood every day.

Anything can be a fun activity and an opportunity to keep moving if you try hard enough. When it’s rainy outside, make your own playground at home. Play inside a tag or hide and seek, build a pillow fort together or play pretend. Tap into your inner child and enjoy youth with your children. Not only will you bond through all the family activities, but it will also boost your immune system and help you lose weight. Cherish every moment you have together and use it wisely. Both you and your children will benefit from it.


As you can see, being a happy, healthy, and fit mum isn’t impossible. Sure, you’ll need to work on your organizational skills, but in the end, the results will be worth it. You won’t be less present in your child’s life just because you took some time for yourself. Setting an example for your children by managing to lead a healthy lifestyle will give them the grounds to grow into healthy adults who have the right values in life. If not for yourself, you should be healthy and fit for your children.

How to Get The Best Out of January Sales in London

Few would disagree that the January sales aren’t quite the thing they were a few years ago; murmurs in the retail world have suggested that Black Friday is the big event nowadays.

Nevertheless, it’s still a prime shopping period and one that shops brace themselves for. This also means that the majority are more than happy to plaster their marketing with January sales deals – all in the bid of getting us to spend a little more money.

London is arguably the capital for January sales. Bearing this in mind, how exactly do you prepare for this period of intense shopping? Let’s review some tips to help you along.

Go with a shopping list

It sounds utterly boring, but January is also the month where most of us are looking to save money as well. Ultimately, you don’t want to be purchasing anything that catches your eye on the high street, there needs to be a genuine requirement for it.

This is where the shopping list comes into play. Yes, it’s structured, but if you happen to be heading over to Covent Garden firstly research if the shops with sales on are there. In truth, it’s not really a conundrum with this area of London due to the sheer number of retailers there, but the advice is universal.

Keep both eyes open with new or unusual brands

We all love a bargain, and when it comes to sales season it can be tempting to pledge your money with a new brand that seems to be offering something completely out of the ordinary. Electronics brands usually fall into this category, as it’s so easy to catch consumer’s eye with tech buzzwords.

For example, a 4K TV from an unknown brand might sound the real deal from the packaging, but delving deeper into the spec may give you the real reason it’s priced so much lower than Sony.

Always ignore the ‘saving’

Nowadays, shops tend to advertise huge ‘savings’ wherever you turn. Across January especially, it can be tempting to think that all of these savings mean that you will pay significantly less than the original price.

As such, simply look at the cost and compare to other shops. Even if there appears to have been a 50% drop in the price, there’s no guarantee that this original price is in line with the market anyway. This is another reason why it is so important to make sure that you have researched what you are buying beforehand. It doesn’t just mean that you don’t buy “wasteful items”, but it can help manage your price expectations correctly as well.

The returns policies can vary

There are a lot of misconceptions about returns policies. By law, shops don’t actually have to have them. Of course, the vast majority do, but this is worth investigating if you think there is a risk of your returning items.

At the same time, over Christmas returns periods tend to be extended. Find out whether these extended returns policies extend through to the new year or not.

How Can Window Awning Be So Beneficial For Your Home and Sleep?

Everybody knows the basics of what not to do before bed. Thinks like drinking lots of coffee and gorging yourself on food can inhibit the full sleeping experience. However, there are some things you can miss if you haven’t done your research. Lots of things can affect your sleeping pattern and it’s good to stay informed if you want to feel well-rested every morning.

1. Color can affect a lot of things

Color is one of the most important things when it comes to room decorations. Understandably, some people might prefer vibrant colors and interesting patterns on their wall. However, not all colors are created equal. Some can affect the quality of your sleep. Bright and bold isn’t the way to go if you want some good shut-eye when you hit the sack. Chaotic patterns act much like clutter because they excite the mind and encourage activity.

If your brain is buzzing and registering these patterns as something worth staying awake, it will prevent you from getting a good night’s sleep. It’s best to keep your walls a calming color with as a few patterns as possible. Earthy tones and hues are the way to go.

2. Blue lights are bad lights

With the amount of technology that surrounds us increasing constantly, you will find more things that shine brightly in the dark than ever before. Some of these lights come from screens on standby or phones being charged. Either way, they aren’t very good for sleep. Research has shown that the blue lights emitted by electronics can disrupt your sleep patterns and even wake you up if you aren’t a very heavy sleeper.

Light triggers the body’s natural mechanism for waking up. Even having your phone light up from a message can suddenly reduce the amount of melatonin your body is producing. This will affect light sleepers the most, so they should focus on diverting those light sources from their bed,

3. The mattress does the heavy lifting

They can be quite expensive purchases nowadays, but quality mattresses are essential nonetheless. Sleeping on an old and worn out mattress can harmful for both your back and sleeping patterns. With an inadequate one, you might find yourself sleepy and groggy even with a full nights’ sleep.

Getting a good mattress is a solid investment either way you look at it. For starters, you get to enjoy the comfort it provides, but you also get to appreciate some quality sleep. Memory foam is considered a top choice when it comes to healthy sleeping. The material gently contours around your body and helps you get into healthy positions while you sleep.

4. Windows are a weak point

Once the sun goes down, lights go up. Street lights and cars illuminate the night and they can enter through your window and disrupt your shut-eye. Getting your window covered properly is crucial if you want an uninterrupted snooze. A good way to cover a window and prevent that pesky light from entering is getting yourself some Venetian blinds or window awnings. If you don’t know where to look, well-known companies like Oztech can give you some good examples.

Light isn’t the only thing creeping into your bedroom, there are also lots of noises to look out for. Nightlife is dynamic and loud, but there’s no reason for it to keep you up if you just want to hit the sack. Soundproof your windows and aim for thicker walls for your bedroom to keep out unwanted noises.

5. The temperature will make or break sleep

Whether it’s keeping warm in the winter or keeping cool in the summer, the temperature is a hot topic when it comes to sleep. It’s understandable that going too high or too low won’t be comfortable when you’re in bed. When it’s too hot out, AC units and fans are often used, but they can be noisy and inefficient. This doesn’t mean you should stop using them, however.

Getting good thermal insulation should be your goal. If possible, upgrade your walls and windows so that heat isn’t constantly entering your home and it has time to cool down during the night. There are blankets that you can use in both winter and summer, due to being made from good insulators that will keep both the heat and the cold.


Sleep is more complicated than we give it credit for. Just about everything can affect your sleep pattern and you have to be prepared to make some changes.  Changing the color of your walls and covering your windows might not seem like much of a change, but doing these things will ensure you have a proper night’s sleep.

Recovering After A Holiday Fraught With Overspending

Americans spend $700 per individual on average, nationally, every Christmas. Australians spend $1,300+ in the same area every Christmas. That’s a lot of money! If you’re in a two-parent household, you’ll likely spend $2,600+ this year. That’s enough to buy your teenager their first used car! That’s community college tuition for a semester or five months’ rent!

January is a month that is cold in the United States and hot in Oz. Everybody’s uncomfortable for one reason or another, and also a little lighter in the wallet. How you bounce back in January can set your course for the entire year. This is one reason each year in your life seems to go faster and faster: you hit the ground running in January and never get a break until the end of the year.

Such is life, though; if you don’t hit the ground running, the best you’ll be able to do at the end of the year is tread water. If you do start the year off right, at the very least you can rest with your family for a few weeks.

With this in mind, following are some tips to help you overcome holiday losses. Don’t panic, there are always options out there. Here’s a site of professional solutions to help you fill out your financial New Year’s resolutions; and following are some considerable tactics worth looking into.

Examine Finances And Draft A Budget

What have you been spending money on over the last three to six months? You should include Christmas spending, but qualify that by examining yearly spending outside the holidays. Eliminate unnecessary expenditures. Determine what is more discretionary than necessary, and draft a plan going forward to free up resources.

Refinance Loans

If you’ve got debt from multiple areas, you can combine it together and refinance. Say you’ve got $3k in credit card debt and $10k in student debt that you’re paying a certain amount on every month. Now say every year you pay about $1,000 in additional interest.

You could refinance these debts into a single monthly payment with reduced interest, perhaps dropping $500 from what you spend annually. It’s not it’s something. What you can save will depend on how much you owe, and the kind of interest on your loans. Still, there is always room to save resources.

Live Beneath Your Means And Cut Out Creature Comforts

Here’s the big reason people go into debt: they’re trying to keep up with the Jones’ and end up living beyond their means. Ignore the Joneses, don’t worry about them. Worry about saving money and increasing that which you own beyond government or corporate interdiction. Live beneath your means.

Are you eating out every week? Would you say you spend $100 a week on either fast food or fine dining? That’s $400 a month, or $4,800 a year. If you can just replace that with home-cooked meals for a year, you’ll save almost enough for two Christmases in a two-person household.

What about coffee? If you’re spending an average of $3 a day on coffee from a little cafe near your house, that’s $1,095 a year. Instead spend $95 on coffee filters, machines, and grounds, and don’t buy those $3 beverages. Combined with dine-in savings, you’ve just saved $5,800.

How much do you spend at the bar on average? $100 a week? How about on smoking? $20 a week? If altogether you’re spending $500 on your vices every month, cutting them out could save you another $6k a year!

Bouncing Back

The holidays are hectic and expensive for everybody, but you don’t have to go broke buying people presents. If you think about things conscientiously from the beginning, look into secondary means of expanding existing assets like remodeling, live beneath your means, and refinance existing debt, you can free up thousands of dollars every year.

Guide To Pick The Right Quilt Kit

Quilt kits are used to create the blankets and can also be used to create some beautiful piece of craft. Quilt kits come with all type of things which are needed to make a beautiful blanket. In quilt kits, you will find a different type of fabrics patterns and cut pieces of fabrics. So, the quilt kits are considered as the best one which let the quilting process easier and picks it wisely. It should follow the right pattern that has implemented with new techniques for crafting and changes in the modern pattern.

Floral Appliqué Table Quilt Kit

This is an interesting model that has been undergone with the table’s cape and other ideas. This is highlighted with basic foundation so that it remains coasters attention too. In addition, the quilt kits are turned with large and hand-quilted for absolute design. This is made up of personal touch so that it needs to undergo by stitches made with the floral appliqué table design. It will match coasters too and determine how to implement it.

Rectangle Quilt

If you wish to get a charming look, then choose the rectangle quilt kits. It must come under rose petal pinks and sage greens for giving exclusive look. It makes the perfect option and bedroom quilt kits denote changes in the modern world. This is identified with printers with polka dot prints and able to carry out quickly and colorful quilt designs. Most often, the pattern is simple so that it remains to cheer any room. It is made up of charming collections and suitable for bedroom and living space.

Customized Mouse Pad

When you are looking at the customized and modern pattern, it helps to turn a bit of fabric into wonderful reason. This is highlighted with a customized mousepad and able to provide a good condition for the home. It will able to check pattern and thus put around friends and family members. They are sure to appreciate the gesture by installing customized mouse pad quilt kits forever.

Baby Quilt Kits

It has distinct patterns and uses to put together in a modern baby quilt kits design. It should go with soft, pastel colors for designing with a natural look. When you acquire perfect look, then pick baby quilt kit that looks awesome and cuddling up with bed or couch. It should be identified with a modern baby quilt that has been used to give perfect look anyways. Your baby will look cute when lying on a quilt on the bed or couch.

Use in-wall Hanging

If you want a bit of inspiration, then go for a luxury pattern of quilt kits. It brings together for wall hangings that are made up of intricate designs of flowers and others. This is identified with lots of things and able to partner with the addition to private space. It must consider a bit of inspiration and thus go for patterns to give an attractive look for walls. As a result, it should deliver a perfect look and even utilize luxury quilt kit patterns for premises.

Themed Decors

Go with the admiring quilt kits that have been functioning on boat patterns and add a few bits of themed designs. This is highlighted with lots of lovely packs so that you could adhere to the rest collections. Some of the themed decors quilt kits are highly capable of delivering an attractive look to the premises. Go ahead with pre-cut collections and fabrics have been feeling right together.


When picking the best quilt kits, you could follow the above steps to get a clear idea. In fact, the themed collections are really awesome and able to provide whatever theme wants for designing. It has been operated with distinct collections and thus able to quilt kits operate for large purposes.

Self Care: Things Every Mom Should Do to Enjoy a Little “Me Time”

Becoming a mother is one of the greatest gifts in the world. You begin to develop a special bond with your children the minute they’re born…you knew from the very moment you laid eyes on them that your entire world felt much fuller and more fulfilling.

As your children begin to grow older, your motherly responsibilities begin to increase. You’re having to do this, and do that; go here, and go there…it can be maddening. Granted, you absolutely love being a mother, and everything associated with motherhood, but you can begin to lose yourself without even realizing it.

You’ll slowly start to notice that you’ve stopped doing things that you used to enjoy (such as following a fitness routine or having a hobby), and instead do things to cater to your kids. It’s perfectly fine because you love your kids, but you’re also afraid that if you want to do something that isn’t centered around your kids, then you’ll look like a bad mother…that couldn’t be further from the truth.

As a mother, you have to still be yourself. Having a child shouldn’t change the person you are; if anything, it just adds another title and job description to your name. You’re no longer just a wife, cook, and accountant anymore…you’re also a mother now, and with that title, you can add 50 more job duties to go along with it!

All in all, just because you became a mother, that doesn’t mean you have to do away with who you once were, and stop doing the things you once enjoyed…in fact, becoming a mother makes it more important than ever to take time and enjoy what makes you, you. Take a look at some of the ways you can still enjoy being a mother while having a little “me time” as well.

Shop for Yourself

As mothers, this is one area that we all too often neglect ourselves in. Ever since your child was born, it was all about the baby…rarely was it ever about you. It really is a change in lifestyle. Just imagine: you started out being single, worrying only about yourself; then you get a boyfriend; and later, he became your husband. At that point, you were looking out for both him and yourself. Then boom! The babies come. Now you have multiple mouths to feed, and multiple people to make sure took their bath for the day.

The same thing goes with shopping. The kids need clothes, so you get them clothes… but what about you? You’ve had two pairs of jeans that you just refuse to get rid of because you don’t have anymore…that’s a problem. With the New Year right around the corner, you need to make yourself a resolution that you will start shopping for yourself on occasion. Whenever you buy your daughter an outfit as sassy as her, you need to buy yourself a dress as chic as you are! As a matter of fact, grab a couple pairs of shoes while you’re at it!

Hang With Girlfriends

This area is detrimental to your adulthood sanity. You love your kids, but you will need that break from them eventually; there’s only so many conversations about “Princess Fiona” and “I got a boo-boo” that we can handle in one stretch of time. A lot of moms go wrong in this area, because they lose themselves in their children, to the point that when they do get around their peers, all they can talk about is their kids.

Talking about your kids is perfectly normal, and your real friends will love to hear all about your adventures in motherhood, but what about the hot and juicy gossip, or recapping the latest drama from your favorite reality TV show? There are definitely other adult things to talk about outside of the kids. Next time you get around your girlfriends, try to make the extra effort and talk about something else… and leave the feelings of guilt about it at home!

How to Travel with Kids on a Budget

The idea of showing your kids the big wide world while they are at a young age and see the magic in everything is a compelling one. In an ideal world, we would all be jetting off with them and watching them experience the wonders of London, Paris, Sydney, Tokyo, Dubai, and a dozen other iconic destinations.

Of course, we then wake up from our daydreams. But the truth is, traveling to far-flung places as a family is within closer reach than you might think if you follow these simple tips.

Shop around for everything

This is an age of choice. Whatever you are looking for, there will be plenty of people wanting to supply it, and desperate for your business. This puts you in a strong position. Flights can vary enormously in price if you are prepared to be a little flexible as to dates or you don’t mind flying indirectly. The same goes for travel insurance, where you can visit a site like uhcsafetrip and be selective about what you need and what you don’t. It all adds up to maximum bangs per buck.

Stay Longer

It sounds counter-intuitive, but if you have a short break, you tend to splash out on restaurant meals, taxis and other expensive costs that you would be less likely to incur on a longer visit. Essentially, the longer you stay somewhere, the lower your costs per day, so think long and slow. It’s also a far better way to really experience a different culture if you are shopping in local supermarkets, taking bus journeys and strolling beyond the main tourist areas. Not to mention that if you drop by Idaho, there are ski resorts near boise idaho to visit.

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 Travel further

There is a similarly twisted logic when it comes to where you travel. Once you are on a plane, the further you go, the less it is costing per mile and the long-haul carriers are really working hard to reduce costs. But the savings are even more tangible than that. Destinations in Western Europe such as England and France are very popular with American travelers but are also expensive. Consider a trip farther afield, for example to China, Indonesia or even Africa. This brings two advantages.

The first is that basic expenditures when you arrive are far lower for things like food, local transportation, and accommodation. The other advantage is that this provides a great opportunity to show your kids a truly different culture, as opposed to western Europe that is really not so different from America.

Do free things

Sure, every kid wants to visit a theme park or a zoo, and there is no reason not to include one or two of these kinds of activities in your vacation. But try to make those the exception, not the rule, and when you do, book in advance to take advantage of online discounts and reduced family rates that might be available.

For the most part, however, remember that long days at the beach, walks in parks and even visits to local museums will not cost you a cent, and these are often the things that create the most memorable vacation experiences.