pets

Why we got a second dog

Why we got a second dog

Our reason behind getting a second dog

As regular readers of our blog will know, we did have a beautiful boy dog for over 10 years called Buddy. He sadly passed away just under two years ago. Back in January this year the emptiness from not having a loving dog around the home was just too strange and the decision was made to not replace Buddy as he is irreplaceable and will always be forever in our hearts and could NEVER be replaced but to get another dog.

Fast forward a little and we was soon welcoming home a beautiful Siberian Husky girl who we have named Coco. She was 8 weeks old when she joined our family. Coco has brought so much joy and happiness into our lives since joining our family. We had 10 months dog-free before Coco came along and it just felt so strange not having a dog around. After losing Buddy we didn’t think we would be able to get another dog let alone love another but the emptiness just got to much. We’d often find ourselves looking at dogs for sale but then quickly looking away thinking no way, the heartache of losing them is just too much and not wanting to go through it all again. The subject was quickly changed.

So what changed our minds?

A family member visiting you and showing you photos and videos of their friends dogs pups is what. The next day we went to see them and before you know it research on the breed was being done and a day or two later we was visiting Coco a deposit was left and our new adventures with Coco began!

Coco being a Siberian Husky means lots of energy, lots of walking, lots of bikejoring all in all lots of fun adventures. She has been with us 10 months now and has already been on four holidays with us. A caravan holiday, camping holiday, boating holiday and a log cabin holiday. We enjoy forest walks, river walks, bike rides, trips to the park/seaside – her favourite game is to play ball, she will have you throwing a ball for hours on end. She recently enjoyed a fishing trip and enjoyed laying by the river.

Why we got a second dog

We take Coco with us where ever pets are welcome. She has joined us on pub lunches, dinners, for coffee at local cafe’s, she even joined us on a trip to choose our new tent at Go Outdoors as pets are welcome in our local store. Sadly pets are not welcome everywhere which is understandable and there are times she has to stay at home.

We became dog fosterers…

With Coco having lots of energy and being socialised from when we very first got her we became dog fosterers so she would have a friend to play with. We fostered Goldie a beautiful Labrador who was the same age as Coco. She loved having a friend and welcomed Goldie straight away without any problems. Goldie was with us for a week and as lovely as it was for Goldie to find her forever home it was also sad. Coco had gotten used to having a friend about to have fun with and we had all taken rather a shine to Goldie, she was a beautiful girl. As choked up as we all was we had done a good thing and provided a safe and secure temporary home for a dog in need.

Seeing Coco be so happy with having a friend to charge about with (who has much more energy than us) cuddle up with, burn off energy with it was sad to see her on her own again. When out on walks/bikejoring she gets so excited to see other dogs she just loves company. The hunt was on to find Coco her very own friend, one that was to come and to stay this time.

Coco cuddling Goldie our foster dog

Why we got a second dog

Then came dog number two….

The search was then on. Research was then done as some say two of the same-sex are best avoided but then I panicked about two dogs different sex and what we know could happen. The search then began and the cutest of all dogs just stood out and stole our hearts. The boys kept on asking for another German Shepherd dog but to be honest I was very unsure but agreed to look and see what happens.

This is what happened…..

I am a sucker for cute fur babies, look at this 8 week old boy, how on earth could I say no to this.

Why we got a second dog

A week later he joined our family and was introduced to Coco who was very keen to charge about with her very own friend. He is a joint birthday gift to Ian and Coco from us.

Why we got a second dog

Coco loves her new best friend dearly and follows him everywhere.

For anyone wishing to follow Coco and Hunter’s adventures they both have their very own Instagram accounts

Why we got a second dog

 

 

 

Why we got a second dog

We now have two fur babies and love them both dearly. Lots of new fun and adventures now await us which we are so looking forward to.

Do you have any pets?

Finance

3 Ways To Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

3 Ways to Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

Ways you can recover

Life is full of ups and downs, just like our bank accounts. Sometimes, however, we need some extra help in order to get back on our feet after a particularly mean couple of months and the help is always within reach. If your finances have been suffering lately, or even for the last couple of years, you need to find ways to recover and nurse them back to health.

It is, in fact, possible to maintain a healthy financial state and live within your means as long as you pay attention to what you’re doing instead of ignoring the warning signs.

Here is a handful of ways to help you dig your way out of the financial pitfall and get back to prospering again.

#1 Go over your debt

The biggest problem to most people with poor personal finances is that the amount of debt they kept, consuming any hope of ever getting back on their feet. How are we supposed to be saving up for an emergency fund when those bills are putting us in minus each month?

If you haven’t tried debt consolidation yet, you should certainly give it a shot. It could, after all, be what you need in order to dig your way out of that hole and get back to saving money again. Start by having a look at https://www.debtconsolidation.co and go over the different options.

The point is that, by consolidation your debt, you’re making the monthly payments a bit more bearable and can actually gain an overview of all your debt.

3 Ways to Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

#2 Slice your expenses

When you’re starting to get all of your financial ducks in a row, it’s time to look at what you can do to keep your finances healthy. Since you’ve been building up quite a bit of debt, chances are high that you’re spending more than you’re earning. You need to slice your expenses, in other words, and preferably as much as possible.

Live on rice and beans if you have to, sell your car and take the bus, spend your Sunday on cooking up lunch for every day of your working week – in short, do everything you can to cut down on that spending. Have a look at https://www.budgetbytes.com for some great and affordable recipes.

It may feel tough, to begin with, but this is what people do in order to stay afloat when recovering their finances and this is the only way for you to lead a healthier financial life.

3 Ways to Recover Unhealthy Personal Finances

#3 Work out a new budget

Finally, you need to sit down and work out a proper budget now that you’ve managed to sort out your debt and know how to cut down on your expenses. Maybe you’re even able to save up for that emergency fund now that you’re spending less money on eating out.

The most important part, however, is that you have enough money to pay off that debt. Focus on that, first of all, and enjoy the feeling of moving forward with your life even if you have to live off rice and beans for a while.

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Bedroom design

4 Beautiful Bedroom Design Trends

4 Beautiful Bedroom Design Trends

4 top trends

Many people will agree that their bedroom is the most important room in the house. After all, this is where you get your eight hours sleep a night (…hopefully). Therefore, it needs to be a room that perfectly emits the feeling of relaxation. Moreover, the bedroom is the ideal place to let your personality shine through. There aren’t many rules in terms of design, especially when contrasted with the likes of the kitchen or the bathroom. If you are considering redecorating your bedroom, this post is just for you. There are lots of fantastic bedroom design trends that have come to the fore so far this year. Read on to discover some of the best…

Girly Oriental

First and foremost, let’s begin with ‘girly oriental’. This trend takes inspiration from traditional Japanese designs, yet you give your bedroom an undeniably girly edge with a pink colour palette. Look for some signature oriental pieces, such as a bamboo chair or something with an Origami-inspired pattern. Yet, keep the room minimalistic and ensure you stick to shades of white, red, and of course pink.

Neutrals and Greys

4 Beautiful Bedroom Design Trends

If you ask someone to describe the word ‘grey’, a lot of people will often deem it to be boring. However, this trend is far from dull. Emulating this trend is simple – stick to neutral colours and various shades of grey. Yet, the effect is astounding. Firstly, you create a place that looks contemporary yet is extremely relaxing. Moreover, by keeping the colours simple you allow various shapes, patterns and textures to come to the fore. Your ceilings and flooring are especially important with this trend. Check out the flooring at Carpet One for some inspiration. These are attributes that tend to be lost when loud and dominating colours are present in the bedroom.

Moroccan Inspiration

You can create a stunning and serene bedroom by taking inspiration from Moroccan culture and traditional designs. The great thing about a Moroccan inspired bedroom is the fact that you can create the perfect balance, i.e. a room that looks glamorous yet is also extremely comfortable. So, how do you create a Moroccan vibe? Begin by painting your walls in a crisp white shade. Once you have done this, you can then bring colour into the room via your choice of fabrics. A mix of bright cobalt blue with dark navy works extremely well. Geometric patterns are bang on trend at the moment and they work brilliantly with this theme, as do pom-pom trims.

Tartan

Last but not least, the final bedroom trend you should consider is tartan. Of course, tartan is a pattern that is not for everybody. However, it is definitely making a massive comeback and has already dominated the runways as of late. Now we see it make the move into interior design. Nonetheless, don’t feel as if you have to stick to the traditional red shade. One of the best ways to use this pattern is to create an industrial vibe. If you take a look online you will see a lot of teal and lime green tartan patterns – a popular adaption of the traditional design. This is an option you may wish to consider.

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games

A Garden In Which Play Never Ends

A Garden In Which Play Never Ends

A few ideas to help keep active outside

Having a large family of young children means the household will always be somewhat noisy. So many people eating at tables and in bedrooms, typing on computers and laptops and going in and out of the house. You need something to keep them occupied and fighting off the boredom by themselves. When kids are bored they get restless, they get agitated. A bunch of frustrated children in confined quarters is never a good thing. Either they’ll end up annoying you, looking for something to do or they’ll somehow end up arguing with each other. A home that doesn’t support an active lifestyle is bound to have these kinds of issues. It’s only natural for growing kids to want to expand their energy no matter if it’s hot or cold, wet or dry outside. The garden comes to the rescue many times, but the fall seasons can make it less than desirable. But here’s how you can keep it active.

All-weather get together

The main goal of a garden that will keep the kids occupied, is flexibility. No matter what the season is your garden should still have something that makes it fun. When it’s hot, late nights out in the garden will become more and more frequent. And, when it’s the fall camping outside with a fire is going to be just as fun for the kids. So, buy an all-weather garden tent that is for families. Designed to be strong and spacious, these kinds of tents vary in their shapes. Some offer more room than others, so it depends on what you require for the size of your family. When the summer comes around they can use the tent as an obstacle to hide in while playing with water guns. Yet when the winter comes, they can use it as cover for a snowball fight.

Less work more play

You have enough on your plate you don’t need more garden chores to be added onto your schedule. Mowing the lawn and keeping it in good condition so the kids can play their sports on it takes a consistent effort. Is the pay off really worth it in the end? Instead you can buy LazyLawn which is an artificial lawn that can be easily fitted to your garden. It’s going to be available to use and play on all year round no matter what season, weather or temperature it is. The highly trained installers know how to fit both a commercial or domestic applications so they already have plenty of experience underneath their belt.

Giant Jenga

A classic game played indoors, now can be made bigger and played outdoors. Giant Jenga blocks can be placed on top of each other and then, let the games begin. The kids can play this outdoors as the pieces are heavy enough to not be blown around by a gentle wind. It’s all about patience and a steady hand in this game.

Getting the kids active is no problem. But, getting them active day after day becomes a challenge. They will get bored before you do so try to make your garden fun all year round. Whether it’s a tent or artificial grass so they can play their sports, change your garden to fit all the seasons.

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moving house

How to pack and prepare for your house move

How to pack and prepare for your house move

Make moving house easier

If you know that you are moving house then you will also know how important it is for you to try and get everything sorted out well in advance. You also need to make sure that you are putting the work in to try and arrange your moving company, and pack up your belongings as well. This is easier said than done and this is especially the case when you have so much on the go as it is right now. If you want to avoid all of this hassle and fuss then there are a few things that you can do about it.

Declutter Everything

When you are moving house, you really don’t want to move items that you know you are going to throw away as soon as you arrive. For this reason, you need to sort through everything and you also need to make sure that you get rid of everything that you don’t think you’ll need as well. When you are able to do this, you can then feel confident knowing that your move is going to go smoothly and you also know that you aren’t taking all of your clutter to your brand new home as well.

Furniture

It is so important that you are able to picture your new home and whether or not you are going to picture your furniture in there. The owner of the last house should have given you a document which gives you the dimensions of every single room in the home and this gives you the information you need to try and work out what will fit and where. If you can’t find room for something then there is a high chance that you will need to sell it or even give it away. When you do this, you can then feel confident knowing that everything else will fall into place.

How to pack and prepare for your house move

Removals Company

If you can, you should always hire a moving company. If you don’t then this can cause you real issues at a later date. After all, if you happen to break something then it won’t be insured and you will have absolutely no cover when it comes to your insurance either. If you do hire a moving company then you know that they will be able to cover everything for you and they can also give you the help and support you need when it comes to getting everything packed up and loaded too. On top of this, they can save you a lot of time and they can also work with you to make sure that you are more than happy with the service that you have been given so you won’t have any issues there. Companies such as Grange Removals are great for that.

Identify your Breakables

Most of your items can go right into boxes and this is great, but at the end of the day, you do still need to try and work hard to identify any breakables you have. If you don’t then you run the risk of having them shoved into a box and then crushed, so doing this is the best way to get around that.

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health

Health Habits the Entire Family Should Be Following

8 Health Habits to follow

When you’re thinking of ways to keep your family healthy, there are a few different things you can do. Doing these things together as a family gives you more opportunity to build up momentum, and therefore, more chance of success. Take a look below for 8 health habits that the entire family should be using and you’ll see what you can change:

  1. Keeping A Regular Bedtime/Get Up Time

The whole family should have a regular bedtime/get up time. This doesn’t mean that the parents have to go to bed at the same time as the kids; it just means that every night, you should make sure you’re all getting a good night’s sleep by going to bed at the same time, for example, 8pm for the kids and 10pm for the adults. Then, ensure that you get up at the same time each morning. Do this even on weekends, and you’ll ensure your circadian rhythms are healthy and that you don’t feel the need to sleep in! If you do feel like sleeping in on weekends, chances are, you’re not getting enough sleep in the week. Try to get around 8 hours a night. Just bear in mind that you might need a little more or a little less depending on your age and activity levels. Kids tend to need more than adults!

  1. Eating One Meal Together Daily

Eating just one meal together daily can help your family to feel closer together, and science says your kids will benefit greatly too. Studies have shown that kids who eat at least one meal a day with their families do better in school, avoid peer pressure, and have higher self-esteem, amongst other things.

8 Health Habits the Entire Family Should Be Following

  1. Keeping Up Regular Health Appointments

Make sure your family doesn’t skip health appointments. You can save time by getting your NHS repeat prescription online, but that doesn’t mean you should miss doctor’s check ups. If you have symptoms or you sense something is wrong, getting it seen to early could help you to avoid big issues later on down the line.

  1. Daily Activity/Movement

Getting active as a family should be fun, so find something that you all like to do together and stick to it! You could go swimming, walk, or even just play in the garden together for 20 minutes. A little exercise is better than no exercise at all, so get into the habit of doing this and then build yourself up little by little if you want to. You could even go on hikes together, take picnics, and explore new places. Things like this are great bonding activities and you’ll stay healthy.

  1. Limit Screen Time

Don’t be the family that sits together but doesn’t pay attention to one another because you all have your face in a screen. Do your best to limit screen time. Whether it’s your mobile phones, a computer game, or something else, aim to spend real, quality time together.

  1. Fill Up On Real Food

Plan your meals for the week ahead and make a shopping list so you can ensure your family is always full of real food! Buy plenty of fruit and vegetables, and get to know how much you use each week so that you don’t buy food that goes to waste. Avoid having junk food in the house, as if it’s there you’ll likely just reach for it and eat it. Have healthy food to snack on, and get used to reading nutritional labels so you know exactly what you’re putting into your body.

As well as buying the right kind of food, make sure you all drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and avoid carbonated drinks and too much juice!

  1. Find Hobbies And Passions

Set an example to your family by finding hobbies and passions – things that you love to do that light you up! Everybody should have things that they love to do, and if you make an effort to find things you love, you’ll be setting an example to your kids. This could even help to introduce them to something they want to do in college, or even as a career.

  1. Develop A Healthy Body Image

You will usually pass your body image on to your kids. If you talk negatively about your body, your kids will learn to do the same with theirs. Developing your own healthy body image is so important, as so much pressure is put on young people to look ‘perfect’! Make sure you don’t talk about your weight in front of your child, or even mention their weight to them. Put a focus on being healthy, over everything else, but don’t give them a complex.

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healthy living.

Keeping Your Loved Ones Health in Check!

Keeping Your Loved Ones Health in Check!

Keeping Your Loved Ones Health in Check!

Our family are the most important people in our lives, and when you’re a parent, their health is something that’s constantly on our minds. We live in a world where childhood obesity is common, one of the leading causes of death are preventable illnesses due to bad lifestyle, and where more of us than ever work sedentary jobs. In order to keep your family fit and healthy you need to ensure that you’re teaching them good habits to set them up for success as an adult. Here are a few ways you can go about doing it.

Eat meals together

Research has shown time and time again that eating dinner together as a family on most days a week has lots of benefits. The first is that it helps to maintain closeness. When your children feel close to you and can communicate with you how they’re feeling, they’re much more likely to open up about any issues in their lives. As parents, we like to think that we know everything there is to know about our children, but as they get older it’s simply not the case. Spending time together eating in the evening maintains close bonds and allows you all to chat and connect. Eating together as a family has been linked to lower rates of teenage pregnancy and drug use for this reason. Another reason to eat together is that you can cook healthy meals. Families that eat together tend to have lower rates of child and teen obesity, because you know exactly what’s going into your cooking. You can set a good example by filling up on healthy foods, knowing that children will eventually mirror your habits- even if they’re a little picky right now. Many adults get into the habit of feeding children and adults

separately, but do it together if you can. If your partner gets home from work a little later in the evening, give kids a healthy snack to keep them going instead of giving them their dinner.

Exercise as a family

There are plenty of great ways you can all exercise together as a family. Go on a hike, put your dog on the lead and go walking in any nearby countryside, beaches, mountains, rivers or canals. Look online for your local bike trails and go on a bike ride. You could go on a day out which will involve a lot of walking, or even just go to the park and run around together burning off energy. Take a ball or a frisbee and play some games. If your kids are a little older, you could play a sport together. Recreation centres usually have tennis and basketball courts which are free or cheap to use. You could go swimming, go to a trampolining centre and much more. Don’t see it as exercise to stay fit- see it as a fun activity you can all do together! You won’t even realise just how many calories you’re burning and the good you’ll be doing to your body as you’ll be having too much of a good time.

Teach kids the dangers of unhealthy vices

Most kids will experience peer pressure at one time or another. Experimentation with things like drugs, alcohol and smoking are common but it doesn’t mean your child can’t avoid them when they’re equipped with the right knowledge and support. As well as educating them about just how dangerous these kinds of vices can be, you should also make sure they know you’re always available to talk and will support them if they’re ever put under this kind of pressure. Kids who have a better relationship with their parents are more likely to open up about what’s happening, and once they do you have the opportunity to talk to them and advise them what to do. If they don’t have that kind of support and communication, they’re far more likely to just go ahead with these things when they’re put under pressure to do so. Understand that your kids can make mistakes, and if they come to you having done something you don’t like- speak to them instead of just shouting and punishing. Putting that barrier up will mean next time, they simply won’t come to you. We want to wrap our kids up in cotton wool and make sure they’re never exposed to the evils of the world, however, education is invaluable. When they know just how dangerous and damaging these habits are- the illnesses they can cause and the harm it does to their bodies- they’re far less likely to want to give it a try. Kids and teens tend to be experimental because unlike adults, they’re less aware of consequences. Teach them that the consequence of these things isn’t just a punishment if they get caught, as they could simply aim to not get caught. Educate them to know that they could cause serious illnesses and even result in death when they mess around with these kinds of things.

Study a health topic

If you have a strong interest in health, why not study a health related topic? Maybe you want to become qualified in sports massage, study child psychology or nursing? This could be because you want to change career, and take a job in the health industry later down the line, or just because you want to focus on your self development and work on learning new things and brushing up on new skills. Plenty of health topics you can study can directly benefit your family too, take nutrition for example. Knowing exactly how the body works and the nutrients and vitamins it needs to thrive will enable you to make better decisions with your diet and food choices. If you change career, you could get a higher paid job making your family’s finances easier to manage, and being happier in your work could allow you to be a happier and more positive parent. So it’s something to consider, as it can benefit you and your family on many levels.

Make relaxation a priority

It’s easy to think that stress is a problem that only affects adults. However, it’s simply not the case. The things that upset or stress children and teens might be a lot different (and in your eyes, they might not seem like a big deal) however, it is to them. Pressures from school and friends, their changing body, budding relationships, arguments with family and more can all impact a child’s well-being. For this reason, relaxation should be a priority for the whole family. It can be something fun and nice that you all do together, where you can switch off from the world for a while and unwind. It’s good for mental health, physical health and can be great for you as a family as well. Switch off social media and outside distractions. You could have a few hours of quiet time reading together, play a board game or watch a movie. If you have a daughter, you could have a pamper session together where you do manicures, pedicures and face masks. You could bake together, or do a crafting activity. Either way, something that’s enjoyable and allows you to switch off from the worries of the world is good for the health of all of the family. So many of us have children and never get to enjoy their company or even properly get to know them. So this helps to maintain a closeness as well as give you all chance to relax.

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Children's Charity

Running for their lives – Alder Hey Children’s Charity launches Running Hub!

Running for their lives – Alder Hey Children’s Charity launches Running Hub!

Alder Hey Children’s Charity Running Hub

One of the most fun and rewarding ways to raise money for charity is to take part in a running event. Now, Alder Hey Children’s Charity wants to help runners get even more from their race.

Newly launched is the Alder Hey Running Hub, to provide help and advice to runners of any age or ability. Because running a Marathon, or even your first 5k, can help to boost a person’s health and self-esteem, but could also allow them to do something extraordinary for those who need it most.

Childhood should be filled with happiness, laughter and fun.

Unfortunately, for some children, this time can involve more trips to the hospital than the park. But now a trip to the hospital doesn’t have to be daunting or scary. With the recreational and distraction techniques funded by Alder Hey Children’s Charity, we can help children to be children, even when they’re forced to be patients.

The charity also raises funds for pioneering equipment which can improve children’s experience in surgery, and improve their chances of a full recovery.

Just ask Daniel Bell, and his mum Rosalind.

When three-year old Daniel was diagnosed with a brain tumour, he was rushed to Alder Hey, a centre for excellence on brain conditions. The tumour was the size of an adult fist and there was a possibility that the surgery which would save his life could also rob him of key motor and mobility skills.

Thankfully, his surgeries were aided by Alder Hey’s state of the art 3-T MRI scanner. The device, which was paid for by charitable donations, allows surgeons to scan the brain during surgery and assess the success of the operation in the operating theatre and not many months after recovery.

Daniel is now a healthy and active seven-year old boy, and a budding actor besides, who was recently seen in a production of Little Shop of Horrors with his local Performing Arts Club.

He also raises money for Alder Hey; and was proud to be named a Young Fundraising Ambassador for the charity. So far, Daniel and his family have raised more than £22,000 for Alder Hey. They’ve accomplished this by collecting people’s Christmas trees. But this is just one of the many fun and exciting ways our fundraisers young and old can help out, from bake sales and charity car washes to exhilarating park runs.

Why not explore our brand new running hub? You’ll find help, inspiration and lots of motivation. You’ll find delicious and nutritious recipe ideas, running tips, and training guides for every distance.

So if you’d like to challenge yourself to run a 5K, 10K run for charity or even a marathon we would love to you go and check out the Alder Hey Running Hub now.

***Posted to help raise awareness***
Health and fitness

Kick Your Fitness Goals Into Gear With These Fun Ideas

Kick Your Fitness Goals Into Gear With These Fun Ideas

Way’s to make fitness fun


It seems everyone is trying to improve their health and fitness. As diseases and epidemics become more prevalent, people are making a better effort to be mindful of their actions and adopt healthy lifestyles. As great as it is to be healthy, when you’ve spent the majority of your life doing what you want, getting adjusted to the changes can be trying, to say the least.

From making a commitment to work out daily to transitioning to cleaner eating, many get lost along the way and give up hope altogether. If you’ve been a bit discouraged about reaching your health and fitness goals or are simply having a hard time making the transition, these tips are sure to give you the boost you need.

Use Mobile App Fitness Games

You’re already tied to your smart phone so why not use it to make health and fitness more fun? Did you know that there were multiple fitness games you can download to your smart phone? From running and jumping to push-ups and sit-ups, there are apps you can use to set goals, track, and win cool prizes if you’re a top performer.

Challenge Friends

There’s nothing like a little friendly competition to get you excited about health and fitness. If you need some inspiration, you can always take some of your friends and family members to compete with you. Set goals like steps per day, calories burned, and more and see who will reach their goals the fastest.

Take Dance Lessons

Most make the misconception that the only way to get fit is to join a gym. Though this method has been proven to be very effective for some, it is not an efficient solution for everyone. You can make getting in shape a lot more fun by taking dance lessons. All you need to figure out is what types of classes you’re interested in taking, where to buy toe socks and other gear you’ll need, and how often you’ll need to attend. You could tap, do ballet, jazz, or even hip-hop and burn a lot of calories to a beat.

Learn New Recipes

The thing with healthy eating is that most aren’t familiar with how to make healthy cuisines. They dwindle their menus down to salads and smoothies and quickly get bored. You can make healthy eating fun by learning new recipes. There are thousands of recipes online you could try that will bring new meaning to the phrase clean eating. The more you learn, the more skilled you become at making meals everyone can enjoy.

Reward Yourself

Here’s a great way to make healthy living more fun – rewards. Who doesn’t find it fun to reach goals if they’re going to get something in return? Lost those 5 lbs? Treat yourself to some frozen yogurt. Dropped a size? Go buy some new clothes to wear. The thrill you get from rewarding yourself can often make it easier to succeed.

Lighten Up

Sometimes, people take the fun out of getting healthy and fit by taking things too seriously. Learn to loosen up a bit. The very fact that you’re making an effort is worth smiling about. Set realistic goals, and enjoy your journey to reaching them. When you’re too hard on yourself it’s no longer fun and you become easily uninspired.

Don’t let unfamiliarity or lack of knowledge keep you from reaching your health and fitness goals. Though it is an adjustment, it doesn’t have to be difficult. Find ways to make being healthier fun like using mobile apps, creating a little friendly competition, joining a dance class, expanding your arsenal of recipes, and rewarding yourself for successful progress. Most importantly, remember to lighten up. As much as you want to reach your health and fitness goals, getting there is always easier with a smile.

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health

3 Health Warning Signs You Should Never Ignore

Health warnings NOT to Ignore!

There are a lot of health issues that will, believe it or not, resolve themselves. An example of this would be a cyst. Cysts are common and can occur anywhere in the body. These small lumps can even appear on the nether regions which lead to cancer scares for numerous people. In reality, cysts are harmless and will disappear by themselves within two weeks. However, this isn’t the case for all health symptoms. Some are signs of a far more serious problem. So, let’s look at a few of the health issues that you should never ignore.

Hallucinations

This is far rarer than most people realise, but it can happen. A hallucination will typically be caused by a lack of sleep. If you are suffering from insomnia, this could be the cause of you seeing things that aren’t actually there. Even going two days with low levels of sleep can cause your brain to start to hallucinate. However, if you’re sleeping regularly and you are still seeing or hearing things that aren’t there, you should consult a doctor.

This could be a sign of a psychological issue such as schizophrenia. Or, it could be the sign of a physical issue in the brain such as a tumour. Tumours can cause a range of sensory issues and severe migraines can also be a sign of this rare occurrence.

3 Health Warning Signs You Should Never Ignore

Painful Teeth

There are a number of causes for painful teeth. It’s possible that they are moving and this will be the case if you have or used to use braces. You might also find that your wisdom teeth are coming through, pushing on different teeth in the mouth. This can feel like the adult equivalent of teething can it can get very painful for the individual. Alternatively, it’s possible that you notice a sharp pain in the upper section of your teeth after you have eaten. Be careful of this one because it can be a sign of tooth decay. It’s worth getting a dentist to check your teeth out anytime you notice pain in your teeth that lasts longer than a day or is recurring. Often there will be a simple explanation.

You also need to watch out for ulcers in the mouth that won’t go away or white marks on your inner cheek. Both can be a sign of a serious health condition that should be looked at.

3 Health Warning Signs You Should Never Ignore

Weight Loss

We often think of losing weight as a positive occurrence. It’s always good to drop those pounds, right? Don’t be so sure because losing weight can be the sign of something serious going wrong in the body. Particularly if the weight loss occurs suddenly and it’s accompanied by a loss of appetite. While a range of different conditions and factors can cause this issue, it’s worth being aware of the problem and addressing it by speaking to a doctor. They will be able to check if the issue is serious of if it’s just a case of taking the right medicine.

3 Health Warning Signs You Should Never Ignore

Take this advice, and you won’t ignore some of the most serious health warning signs.

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Fitness

Get Moving! 5 Ways To Keep Your Teenagers Active

Get Moving! 5 Ways To Keep Your Teenagers Active

5 Ways To Keep Your Teenagers Active

Many of us find it difficult to fit exercise into our everyday lives, but for teenagers, this task can be even more tricky. After all, they have school to go to, as well as household chores and homework to complete, and maybe even a part-time job. With all of this to do and more, it’s understandable why most teens would rather skip an hour at the gym and play video games instead. However, exercise is vital for physical and mental health, so it’s important you do what you can to get your kids moving. To help you with this task, here are five useful tips.

  1. Start With A Chat

Although you’ve noticed your child’s lack of activity, chances are, they haven’t, which is why you need to point it out to them, but you should make sure that you do this in a calm and non-judgmental way. Remind them of the benefits that staying active can bring and the potential consequences of their inactivity. If you’re struggling to get through to them yourself, then you may want to consider asking your family doctor to talk to them instead.

  1. Find Activities They Enjoy

Different physical activities will appeal to different kids, so make sure that you explore a range of different ideas and help your teen find something they genuinely enjoy to do, whether that’s jogging or karate. You should also do what you can to encourage these activities, like helping them to learn how to tie a karate belt or offering to pay for their running shoes. Don’t force them into an activity they aren’t interested in, as this will only make matter worse and cause problems.

  1. Set A Good Example

From a very young age, children tend to mimic the actions of their parents, and while this does lessen as your kids grow, it never goes away completely. For this reason, it’s vital that you set a good example for your teenager and make sure that you stay active yourself. You should also try your best to incorporate physical activity into everyday family life. There are a number of ways to do this, like walking instead of driving and planning active days out.

  1. Discourage Any Sedentary Activities

When your teen spends a lot of time sitting or lying in front of the television, it can be difficult for them to get enough physical activity. Because of this, it’s vital that you monitor your child’s screen time and set time limits if you feel that they’re necessary. To make this easier, you may also want to ask that screens are kept in your home’s family areas. You should also encourage your teenager to exercise while they’re watching television.

  1. Try Not To Nag

Encouraging your child to stay active is incredibly important, but nagging them is a completely different story. If anything, this will hurt your cause and make your teen want to watch television just to annoy you. If you feel that your encouragements have crossed over into nagging territory, then you should take a step back from your teen for a while. Instead, focus your attention on your own health and planning active activities for the family.

Keeping your teenager active can be difficult, but these tips should make your task a little easier.

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Finance

Unique Debt-Relief Tricks That You Never Thought Of

Unique Debt-Relief Tricks That You Never Thought Of

You’re in debt but dying to get out of it? Join the club!

Almost everyone who has to pay off the minimum amount on their credit card each month wishes their account wasn’t overdrawn. Unfortunately, dreams don’t come true when you have the national average of £8,000 debt on your back. It’s not as if you can click your fingers and, POOF, it’s gone. Plus, the tried and tested methods are okay yet don’t seem to get you very far. After all, transferring the balance only prolongs the pain.

What you need is unique and effective relief advice, and you find it underneath.

Get Divorced

Wait, what?! Talking to expert divorce solicitors is only an option when you want to split up for good. At least, that’s the conventional way to use a lawyer. Another option is to break up in the eyes of the law to provide more opportunities. Think about trying to buy a house as a couple. If you or your partner has terrible credit, then the amount on your mortgage will be low and you’ll need to find ways to borrow extra. When you’re not married, you can get an individual loan and the best possible rates. It’s drastic but it works.

Start Haggling

Bartering isn’t a secret, yet it is something people in the west don’t do too often. Go to the Middle East and everyone haggles over every penny. Considering every little helps, it’s worth the effort. Start by going to your creditors and asking them for a discount. This might sound cheeky and unrealistic, but they want their money back and will go to great lengths. For instance, they might eliminate the interest and set up a payment plan. Next, you can trade services. Does the flat that you rent need decorating? If so, tell the landlord you’ll do it for one month’s rent and put the money towards your debts.

Unique Debt-Relief Tricks That You Never Thought Of

Join Uber

Not as a customer but as a driver. The best way to get out of debt is to increase your earning potential. The bad news is it’s historically difficult to do due to a lack of time, skills and opportunities. However, Uber is in demand around the country and all you need is a car and a licence to get started. Once you are part of the family, you can choose hours to work during the week to boost your budget. You can make your own schedule so it’s flexible and lucrative at the same time.

Learn Something New

Anyone who doesn’t have the qualifications can get them by going back to school. After university, people traditionally find a job and settle down. You are different because you want to learn something new which is why you need to enrol again. Don’t go down the classical route, though. Instead, find an online course or one at a night university. That way, you can continue your day job while boosting your qualifications and (hopefully) searching for a new job.

Are you thinking outside of the box enough to eliminate your debt?

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Finance

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Are you struggling to achieve financial stability?

Being financially stable requires more than a decent income. That’s why so many people struggle with their money. Perhaps you find yourself in the same boat. But your salary might be better than you realise; it might simply be that you’re squandering it on unnecessary things. Financial stability is all about mastering money management. You can make your funds go much further if you think more carefully about the way in which you choose to spend or save your money. Here’s some advice that’ll help you to achieve financial stability.

Take a look at your monthly expenses.

The first way to achieve financial stability is to take a look at your monthly expenses. So many people spend more than they can afford. That’s the reason for widespread debt, but we’ll talk about that more in the next point. If you want to ensure that you live within your means and actually have some disposable income every month then you need to organise your expenditures more effectively. Make a note of how much money you need to set aside for the essentials in life. Calculate how much of your monthly income remains after those costs have been covered; that’s your excess income. But you shouldn’t aim to blow it all on luxuries. You need to limit yourself. You can set yourself a spending limit by taking out a certain amount of cash at the start of every month and calling that your “spending money”. Even if you spend it all, you’ll still have some disposable income left for your savings. Again, we’ll discuss that later in the article.

Also save money when it comes to your essential expenditures. You shouldn’t cut corners, obviously, but you might be spending more money on things such as food and electricity than is necessary. You might want to save money on your grocery bill by searching the internet for coupons and discount codes before you check out your online shopping basket (you can find coupons and vouchers to use in stores too). This could save you a lot of money on a weekly or a monthly basis. In terms of heftier monthly bills, such as your mortgage repayments, you might want to check out this reliable housing loan calculator to make sure that you’re paying a reasonable amount per month. You need to make sure that you’re paying your bills in the most cost-effective way possible.

Be smart when it comes to debt.

Not all debt is bad. In fact, borrowing money can be good for your financial situation. If you can pay back loans on time then you’ll improve your credit rating, and this will make you more reliable in the eye of potential lenders. In turn, this will make it easier for you to take out loans for big purchases (e.g. houses, cars, etc). And it might help with the size of the loan or the interest rate you face. But borrowing money is still something you should do cautiously.

Only ever borrow what you can afford to pay back, for starters. You might not be able to afford the down deposit on a house, for example, but you have to make sure that you’ll be able to afford the monthly repayments on that house before you take out a loan. Additionally, you need to make sure that you never try to compensate for a costly debt repayment by borrowing more money. That’s how you end up in the debt spiral. If you want to achieve financial stability then you need to make sure you only take out loans you can afford. That’s the crucial thing to remember.

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Start investing properly.

There are many different ways to invest your money, but you should find one that works for you. Financial stability comes with wealth, and you can increase your wealth by searching for income streams outside of your main salary. You might want to invest in assets that will increase in value over time, for example. It’s all about playing the long game. Maybe you’ll try your hand at the stocks market. You could even invest in Bitcoin. But the property market is an area that attracts many first-time investors. It’s an asset that’s always valuable, even if prices fluctuate constantly. You could make a sizeable ROI by buying and selling houses. Or you could even buy to lease if you want to pull in a regular income on a monthly basis.

There are plenty of ways to get stuck into investing, but the point is that you need to be doing more than sitting on your money. If you want to achieve financial stability then you need to think about the future. For many people, even a sizeable salary isn’t enough to ensure that they have financial savings for their retirement years, their children’s university funds, and all the other big costs they face in life. Starting to invest will ensure that your wealth can grow month after month, regardless of the income you earn from your full-time job.

Are You Struggling To Achieve Financial Stability?

Prepare some savings.

Finally, financial stability depends on savings. You need security for the future. For starters, you need a rainy day fund. Not everything in life can be predicted. You need to be financially prepared for the unexpected. Cars can break down, and natural disasters can damage houses. Not every cost can be included in your monthly budget because you might not be able to foresee everything. But what you can do is prepare an emergency fund so that you’re ready for the unexpected. Set aside a little bit of money on a monthly basis until you’ve got a sizeable fund built up ready for a costly event.

You also need to prepare some savings for something you can predict: your retirement. We’ve touched on this topic throughout the article, but you really need to start thinking about things in the long-term. You need to continuously build up your savings if you want to make sure you’ve got enough for your later years in life. Start saving now, and you’ll be thankful for it in the future.

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Pet care.

Essentials For Anyone Thinking Of Getting A Dog

Essentials For Anyone Thinking Of Getting A Dog

Dog Essentials

We’re sure you’ll all agree, when you have a dog, they become a member of the family. Every decision you make as a family revolves around whether your dog is included and if not, what care you can arrange for them. Dogs can need as much (if not more) of your time, love, and care. That’s why, if you’re thinking of adding a pooch to your family tree, you’re going to need more than just a bed for them to sleep in. Take a look at these essentials if you’re thinking about getting a dog so that you can make sure your new furry friend has everything they need to live a happy and comfortable life.

Eternal access to drinkable water

Have you ever suddenly realised how thirsty you are? Think about how far you were from getting a drink, and how important it is that you keep up your water intake. The same goes for dogs, as they can become dehydrated just as fast (if not faster) as we can. Make sure that not only does your dog have a full water bowl at all times, but access to drinkable water even if they’re not in the house. For example, you can now get water fountains for dogs that allow them to operate a water fountain for them to drink from. So, even if you’re out and you’ve let your doggo loose in the garden for a little while, they will be able to stay hydrated and reduce the risk of becoming ill due to dehydration.

Safety measures

Much like children, you will have to make sure that what your dog is doing isn’t going to harm them. We’re sure you already know about leads to prevent them from running into a busy road or straying too far away from you, but the safety shouldn’t stop there. Even if you’re taking your dog out in the car, you will need to ensure that they are strapped in with a dog car harness so that they are as safe as you are in the car. Imagine having to make an emergency stop and your pooch suffering because they haven’t been strapped in – it doesn’t bare thinking about.

You should also consider placing safety gates around your home too so that your dog isn’t able to get into anything that could harm them. For example, many dog owners like to put a gate on their kitchen door so that their dog isn’t able to get into cleaning products or food that isn’t theirs and could potentially harm them. Baby safety gates usually do the trick, but you can get dog gates if you wish.

Play time

Think about how dull your life would be if you didn’t have those moments of enjoyment? Whether you’re someone who would rather curl up with a book, or even go skydiving, without your favourite things to do, you’d get bored quickly. The same goes for your dog. Dogs have a lot of built up energy that needs burning off each day, so it’s important that when they aren’t out having a walk with you, that they have toys to entertain them. You can choose from a plethora of different dog toys from your regular pet store, but some owners even choose to build their dog something in the garden so that they are able to get as much exercise as possible.

Don’t just leave your dog to play by themselves either. Make sure that you’re giving them time out of your day to spend giving them a fuss, and playing catch or tug of war. This will create a bond between you and your dog and they will also be able to learn the difference between playing and when you’re serious.

Insurance

Unfortunately, dogs get sick just as much as we do. However, dogs can’t be treated on the NHS like we can, so it’s important to make sure that you’ve taken out a reliable insurance policy for your dog. That way, if your fur baby does fall ill or become injured, you can rest assured that you can bring them back up to full health as much as possible.

It’s also a good idea to have your dog micro chipped so that if they do wander off on their own, you have more of a chance of having them returned home, as your vet will be able to trace them back to you.

Essentials For Anyone Thinking Of Getting A Dog

Rules

Again, very much alike children, dogs need rules. You often hear people complaining about their dog being naughty when in fact, it’s down to the discipline that they’ve been given (or not been given). Whether you’re getting your pup from an early age, or you’re rescuing a dog from a shelter, it’s important to establish ground rules from day one so that they know how to behave in your home and also around people.

If you’re struggling to discipline a dog that’s come from a rescue shelter, then dog obedience classes might be the right route for you to go down. Remember that dogs can learn to behave from tone of voice rather than actions, so make sure that you’re practicing a stern voice for those times that you’ll need it!

Somewhere to feel safe

Like humans, dogs become scared from time to time. Whether they’re scared of the post man or a bad thunderstorm, it’s important to have somewhere ready for them to curl up and feel safe from everything. Your home by itself should be a safe haven for your dog, but you may notice that when they are scared, they will go to the same spot each time. Once you’ve established this, make sure that it’s always available to them so that they can feel protected at all times.

Finally, dogs will often choose an item of comfort too, like a squeaky toy or teddy bear. Keep track of it so that your dog can find that sense of comfort whenever they feel it’s needed. Doing this will ensure that you’ve got a happy and healthy dog at all times!

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Exterior design

3 Simple Ways To Enhance The Curb Appeal Of Your Home

3 Simple Ways To Enhance The Curb Appeal Of Your Home

Enhance The Curb Appeal Of Your Home

When was the last time that you drove past your humble abode and viewed the facade with a critical eye? You want your home to match up to the calibre if not surpass those around it. Ideally, your home should be inviting, welcoming, neat, maybe a little bit colourful and homely. If your windows are dirty, the roof tiles are slipping, and the front driveway has seen better days, it might be time to spend some of your hard-earned cash on enhancing the curb appeal of your home.

The Garden

You may be lucky enough to have a garden area or a driveway to the front of your home. This will be the first aspect of your dwelling that visitors will see. It’s time to get a little bit green fingered and start pruning your plants, dead-heading the rosebush and mowing the lawn. At the very least, your outside area should look neat and tidy. You don’t want weeds coming up through your driveway, or patches of nettles encroaching on your perfectly coiffed grass. If your budget will allow, consider investing in some colourful hanging baskets to add a touch of brightness to your driveway. While you may not have a horticultural bone in your body, you can inject some much-needed flora and fauna into your outside area to enhance your home’s curb appeal.

Windows

Just like the eyes are the windows to someone’s soul, your windows are the eyes of your home. Even if you don’t back straight onto the street, people will often have a cheeky little look at the facade of your humble abode. If you haven’t replaced the glazing for a couple of decades, it will pay to invest in getting some new windows installed. You’ll save money in the long run on utility bills, and your home will be more energy-efficient. On top of this, your home will look neater and more appealing from the outside. You could opt for wooden casings or uPVC fascia.

Alongside your new windows, you should consider how you wish to dress them. Shutters can look classy while affording you some much-needed privacy. If you fancy blinds rather than curtains, consider roller or vertical blinds for ease of use. When looking at how to install vertical blinds, make sure you purchase them made to measure to ensure that fitting them is relatively straight forward.

Roof

If you look up and see holes, slipped tiles or cracked slate, it might be time to take a look at your roof. While you may not have the budget to replace it in its entirety, you will need to fix the broken tiles that are present. This will not only make your pad look more aesthetically pleasing, but it will also prevent damp or rot from encroaching into your home and costing you a small fortune to rectify in the future.

While you may have the most gorgeous, show home interior within your four walls, you may not be exuding that quality on the outside of your humble abode. Focus on your exterior to ensure that you turn heads for all the right reasons and enhance the curb appeal of your property.

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