How to Save Money When You Run a Business from Home

In many cases, a small business spends more in its first year than it had anticipated. So, where do these businesses miss their forecasts, and how can they reduce their business costs? The following are ways to save money when operating your business.

Formulate a Business Financial Plan

The first step towards achieving your financial goals is noting them down. Although this may seem obvious, many first-time business persons find writing down their financial plan too unnecessary and overwhelming in the initial days. Therefore, they skip this process. Developing a financial strategy forces a person to determine their current position, their future goals, and how to achieve the goals. An entrepreneur with a financial plan also makes well-informed decisions and keeps them motivated when facing business challenges. Besides, it also helps you save money. For instance, if you have a commercial laundry business, your plan should include purchasing affordable washing equipment that is also durable, making it a cost-effective option. You can also view this page to have a better understanding.It is crucial to have a disaster recovery strategy since many companies adopt them. Only 25% of organizations never test their disaster recovery system.

Grow Your Network

Generally, growing your professional and business networks has several benefits. People you meet could be your potential customers, advisors, or partners. During the early days of your business operations, this can help you reduce your expenses by converting your skills and time into currency. Besides, the easiest way to forecast your business expenses is to consult entrepreneurs who run similar businesses. For instance, women grow their businesses 2.5 times faster when they are surrounded by other women seeking to expand.

Familiarize Yourself with Free Tools and Apps

Entrepreneurs operating small businesses wish to have more resources and time. However, there are free apps and tools which can significantly help you in running your business. You should avoid buying or hiring expensive software before trying the available free tools since this allows you to determine what exactly you are searching for. In the early days of your operations, you should focus on determining what works and what doesn't work.

Invest In Product Research and Validate Your Idea

When you have a particular product idea, you may be tempted to implement it. However, if you do not invest in intensive research into the concept, this can lead to a financial drain. Manufacturing requires someone to spend a lot of time investing in development and research. Once you develop a prototype, you should ensure that your prospective customers will love your products as you do. Product validation ensures that you create a product that people will pay for to avoid wasting money, time, and effort on ideas that people won't recognize.

Understand Your Shipping Strategy

Small businesses face stiff competition in their attempt to compete with large and well-established companies. Although big companies with high shipping capacities can negotiate lower rates with carriers, small businesses with low shipping capacities lack bargaining power. Therefore, they have to absorb shipping costs and settle for high rates if they want to offer their clients affordable shipping. Typically, small company owners must negotiate rates with each carrier individually.

Understand Your Tax Obligations

Tax regulations and laws are complicated, and they change frequently. Therefore, you need to be well-informed about your tax obligations to avoid hefty fines and penalties. Furthermore, understanding tax regulations and laws enables you to take advantage of various real cost savings. You could also consider hiring a tax expert to help you. About 70% of small companies employ tax experts for tax preparation and IRS concerns.

Starting and operating a successful business is not an easy task. It requires effort, time, business plan, and skills. Additionally, it is also crucial to develop ways to save your business's expenses since this helps increase revenues.

ARE YOU RELOCATING? HERE'S YOUR BEST GUIDE TO MOVING

 


Getting a job, you have been anxiously eyeing for years can be the motivation you need in your life. A job switch can be pretty exciting, especially if you have been looking forward to it. But add to it the need to relocate to a new city or town, and your excitement can taint a little.

Relocating is stressful, to say the least. The pain of leaving behind your comfy old home and the fearfulness of what awaits ahead can make it all the more worrying. It is also lengthy and time-consuming. There is lots of decision-making, and if not done well, it can be way too cumbersome. However, do not fret since moving to a new place can actually feel good when managed well!

Keeping that in mind, here we have a straightforward guide on how we believe you should manage that relocation to make it less stressful and more fun!

·         Hire A Moving Service:

So, the first step that you should be taking is to get hold of a service company for your relocation. Since they have a requirement of renting a slot weeks before the day of your move, it is best to make a booking as soon as you can.

When you are relocating close to your old house, you can skip hiring movers. But when your move is between cities or towns, moving services are necessary. It is best to check all details before hiring services so that your belongings stay in safe hands. You can take a look at MovingOptions.com, which is a great place to find some amazing relocation information and recommendations relating to moving services offered locally.

·         Choose A Neighborhood To Live:

If you have not already, you should look into accommodations and communities you would prefer to live in. If you are relocating for a new job, you should look into areas close to your office. It will help you in commuting to work and ease the traveling costs. Also, give proper time researching the kind of accommodations the area offers, such as studio apartments, shared spaces, one-room flats, etc. You should know your budget and look into the spaces that fall within your expense limits. It is best to make an informed decision so that your expenses do not go out of budget and you do not feel burdened with your new job.

·         Get Utilities Up And Running:

We often forget to get the utilities up and running in the new home in the hassle of leaving the old house. It can turn messy if you realize it once you are there. You would not want to sit in pitch dark deciding on what to do next. Therefore, keep it at the top of your relocation checklist and get it as soon as you rent your new space. Moreover, do not forget to get utilities turned off at your old residence. Give the utility company a move-out date to shut down all the services.

·         Pack Your Stuff And Get Moving!

It is now time to get your stuff packed to make the final move. When relocating over a long distance, it is best to keep things to a minimum. It would help if you sold out or give away stuff that you do not need anymore. Your friends and family may be ready to take in a few things. It would be best to declutter and only take what is necessary to stay stress-free and not overburdened during the relocation.

Making a move is already demanding, do not make it more exhausting by taking everything with you to your new place. If there are a few things you do not want to give away, you can keep them in rented storage and bring them to your home later when you settle in. Do not forget to carry essential documents in a bag along with some eatables and basic items for the move-out day.

Conclusion:

Moving houses can be a tiring task if not managed adequately. The best way to go about relocation is to make a checklist of things that need doing. Prioritize these tasks and do not procrastinate. Delaying may seem comfortable at the moment, but when the move-out draws near, things will be in havoc. Therefore, keep in mind the simple steps we outlined above, customize them according to your needs, and produce a checklist suited to your move-out. We hope you have a smooth relocation!

How Moving Homes Can Affect A Child’s Sleep

Moving house is tough on everyone, but there comes a time where there is no other option but to move, especially if your family is getting bigger and you need more room. Some children have problems sleeping in their own beds. So you can only imagine what can happen when you move to a new home. Moving homes can affect a child’s sleep but don't get discouraged. There are a couple of things you can do to help them.

What to do if moving homes affect a child’s sleep

If you are moving this summer with your kids, here are a couple of tips for you. They will help your kids stay busy and mentally healthy while you are taking care of the relocation process or what's left of it. This will also help them not to think that much about the relocation and be tired so that they fall asleep more easily. Don't be surprised if your toddlers do not want to sleep in their new bed or have nightmares in the beginning. They will miss their old rooms. Also, we know that children have vivid imaginations, so they may have nightmares. If you keep in mind that moving homes can affect a child's sleep, you can do something to help them get over it. For example, be sure to make them a part of the process and explain what is happing and why. If necessary, let them sleep with you for the first couple of days. It will help them see that the new home is not scary.

Toddlers sitting on the floor and playing When moving with toddlers, be sure to explain to them what is happening and why. So the process will not confuse them.

Alt: Toddlers sitting on the floor and playing

The effect on the smallest ones

Moving with toddlers is never an easy endeavor. More than that, handling this complicated process with a kid can be stressful for new parents. But by implementing a few tips and tricks, you should not have any problems moving. For example, you should pack the nursery the last and try not to disturb their routine as much as possible. That way, they will not feel the relocating process that much. Also, sticking to your toddler's routine will minimize the chance that moving will affect their sleep.

Cute baby sleeping in their new homeThe biggest tip for you when it comes to your baby's sleep is to stick to their routine as much as possible.

Alt: Cute baby sleeping in their new home, symbolizing how moving homes can affect a child’s sleep

Moving can also affect teenagers

Teenagers can also be affected by moving because they are leaving their friends and school behind. Saying goodbye to everything they know can cause them anxiety. It may also cause some depressive feelings, due to which they may have trouble sleeping. Therefore, you must keep an eye on these signals and help your kid feel more at home. You can let them decorate their room any way they want. And remember, it is possible to transform a teenager’s room without breaking the bank

Moreover, you must show your kid that you are doing your best to help them feel at home. Talk to them to understand how they feel and find out what would help them be more comfortable in the new house. Of course, give them some time to adjust. Sometimes time fixes everything.


Teenager listening to music to relax because they are moving homes Teenagers are already dealing with a lot of emotions. So be careful and talk to them to see what they need to feel comfortable while relocating.

Alt: Teenager listening to music to relax because they are moving homes

Moving will be difficult for everyone

Moving house is difficult for everyone. It will take time to adapt to the new environment. Spending time with your kids, playing games, setting up in your new home, and decorating will help. Also, once you begin cooking in your new kitchen, your new house will start feeling like home. And you can involve your kids in the food preparation. You can do this from a young age, as kids like to feel helpful. And not only that, but it will also be a fun and stimulating activity that will ease the effect of the moving. On top of that, you will set the base for a skill they will use and need later in life. 

Be sure to set their bedrooms as a sleeping environment

If your kids are having trouble sleeping in their rooms even after you gave them some time to adjust, you may want to consider removing their toys and other distractors from their bedrooms. It will not be a form of punishment but an effort to associate their new room only with sleeping, with nothing to grab their attention and keep them awake. You can do that while the kids are not at home, while they are out playing, or at school. Only leave the necessary items and a plush toy or a blanket they are used to sleeping with. 

Don't forget to plan your budget when moving homes

If you don't know how much your move will cost you, you can always get a free moving quote by simply filling up a form. As moving experts from Po's Moving & Storage advise, you should anticipate moving expenses ahead so you can plan your budget accordingly. This will help you know how much money you will have left and plan what you can do with it. For example, you can treat your children with something to ease the blow of the change they are experiencing. 


Moving homes can affect a child’s sleep, but you can handle it!

Unfortunately, in some cases moving homes can affect a child's sleep. However, there are always ways to help your kid deal with the changes. Always set some time to talk to them and never fail to tuck them in at night. Also, a bedtime story is never a bad idea, and your child will benefit from that time in more ways than one. 

 

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4 House Repairs You Should Leave To The Experts

 


Being a homeowner is an incredibly fulfilling experience, but it can, at times, get pretty hectic too. On any given day, there are several tasks that you need to complete around the house. These tasks range from small changes to more extensive repairs, and keeping up with them is vital if you want to keep your home in excellent condition. However, it can be tempting to try to handle these repairs independently when they come up. It might seem like a hassle to call over a professional each time, and some repairs need much more urgent attention.

Furthermore, many imagine that calling a professional is an unnecessary expense, and they can better handle the repairs themselves. While this might be true for some situations, there are times when you should leave the dirty work to someone well equipped to handle it. If you want to know when it's best, you take a step back; keep reading below for the top four house repairs better left to the experts.

Water damage

Water damage is easily one of the most common problems homeowners face and can be the toughest to tackle if you mess it up once. Water damage can have a long-lasting impact on your home. It can even cost you hundreds of bucks if you mismanage the situation. There are different kinds of water damage you can encounter in your home. Some of the most common types include sewage issues, where your pipes may get clogged, resulting in sewage spills.

Furthermore, you can encounter structural damage such as seepage, which can weaken your home's foundation. Pipes can also break off and develop leaks, interrupting your water supply and cause great difficulty. You can read more about all the various types of water damage and how experts can tackle them.

If you're experiencing any water damage in the home, you need to call a professional fast. Not doing so won't just cause structural damage to your home but will also damage your belongings and cause health drawbacks. Suppose you see tell-tale signs of water damage, such as wet patches, leaks, seepage, or overflowing toilets. In that case, it is best to call your water damage advisor ASAP.

Electrical repairs

Electrical repairs are common enough, but you shouldn't attempt to handle them alone unless your problem is minor. Electrical repairs can be notoriously tricky to manage and exceptionally dangerous too. Without the proper knowledge, you may end up frying your appliances or getting hurt in the worst-case scenario. You may unknowingly connect the wires in the wrong order, which can be incredibly dangerous down the line.

Messing with electrical repairs won't just put you at risk of electrocution but also cause house fires. Electrical fires are much more common than you would imagine. They cause an average of $871 million in property loss annually. Appliances with frayed cords and faulty fixtures are the most common causes of electrical damage to your home. If you need to have anything installed – even something as simple as a light – get yourself an electrician. Professionals can help you install your devices carefully to avoid unnecessary costs.

Larger landscaping

Smaller landscaping projects are easy to handle alone and make for a fun pastime. Growing garden vegetables, fruits, and various flowers can be an excellent way to utilize your lawn space and spend more time with nature. However, it's essential to know where your expertise ends and where you need a professional to step in and take over.

If you have any larger landscaping projects in mind, you need to get a professional to come over. Not only could you end up ruining your garden, but you might harm yourself and your property too. Planting giant trees, for example, can be a tricky repairing project to take on. If you're removing any trees, falling limbs could be damaging to your house and yourself. Similarly, if you try to uproot a tree, you might find that the roots go incredibly deep, and you may damage the entire landscape. Instead of attempting to handle these changes alone, opt for professional help.

Gas pipes and appliances

Water, gas, and electrical fixtures are used most commonly in the home, making sense that most of the repairs we need revolve around these areas. Gas problems are common, but it's imperative to deal with them quickly. Any delays can be incredibly dangerous and impact your and your family's lives immensely. If you attempt to connect any of your gas appliances yourself, you might cause a gas leak which can prove fatal in just a few hours.

Carbon monoxide poisoning is lethal, and it's a silent killer. If you experience any of the related symptoms, you need to evacuate the area immediately. To prevent any chance of such a situation occurring, you should leave installing and repairing gas pipes and appliances to the professionals. Not only will this help save money in the long run, but it can protect yours and your family's life.

Conclusion

Trying to save some dollars can often come with long-lasting repercussions when it comes to household repairs. Conversely, hiring a professional is a one-time investment that can safeguard your home and your family. Professionals can fix the root of the issue and ensure that you don't need any costly repairs again. Furthermore, they can ensure that your house is as safe as possible, and you can live in comfort.

How to Save Money While Practicing Self-Care Before Your Wedding

When you're planning for a wedding, it's normal to be stressed. You have a lot to take care of in a short amount of time, and you're in charge of making a lot of important choices while working within a limited budget. It's important to make time for self-care, while also saving money and sticking to your planned budget.

Here are some tips for frugal living while also focusing on your own self-care leading up to your big day.

Plan Beauty Treatments Early

Be sure to plan any necessary beauty treatments well in advance of your wedding date, so that you have time to plan for the expense and add it to your budget. This is especially true of more expensive spa treatments, cosmetic dental treatments, Botox, or fillers. Fillers, for example, are injected into the face to improve contours and fill in fine lines and wrinkles caused by age or genetics. These may be necessary for your wedding day so that you can look your best, but can be hard on the wallet. Often, a local spa will offer package deals, allowing you to plan and budget for several items at once.

Plan for Enough Sleep

Be sure to allow enough time to sleep well in the few months leading up to your wedding. Lack of sleep can actually increase your stress, making everything more difficult and you more irritable. Allowing a full 8 hours each night for you to get enough rest can help make the wedding planning go more smoothly and is an excellent self-care method.

Make Time to De-Stress

As your wedding day gets closer, it's normal to feel more stressed and anxious. In fact, more than half of women report that wedding planning is more stressful than they'd estimated and that they're spending more than 11 hours per week planning their wedding. If you've found yourself in this position, know that it's completely normal. Make some time each day to unwind after wedding planning, and do your best to set aside some time each week to focus on relaxing and managing your stress. This time can help you feel as if you're more in control of your life, and the dedicated time can help you manage your stress.

Focus on Communication

In many situations, couples experience communication issues as the wedding date approaches. These are often related to managing finances, wedding preparations, and issues with extended family. If you and your fiance are struggling to get along as the wedding date approaches, focus on communicating with each other and how important this process is. If necessary, contact a professional therapist and visit for a few appointments so that the two of you can learn some new communication skills and techniques.

Keep It Simple

As you plan your wedding and the date gets closer, you may need to begin to eliminate some of the things you'd initially planned for in order to save money and practice appropriate self-care. Your wedding is an important day, but your relationship with your partner is more important than the event itself. In fact, around 70% of couples live together before they opt to get married, so the celebration is of a relationship that is already strong and involved. Keep your plans simple so that you can continue to focus on the important parts of the relationship and build a stronger union that will last a lifetime.

Planning a wedding is an extremely stressful event, so it's important to focus on self-care throughout the entire process. Doing so can help make sure that you're as calm and healthy as possible for your big day, and that you're entering your relationship on the best possible footing.

Tips For Finding The Best Ducted Air Conditioning Repair Service Provider

Ducted air conditioning systems have become very common. These are huge investments, and hence, one must ensure their timely upkeep and maintenance. Regular servicing and timely repair ensure that the problem doesn’t aggravate, and you get a consistently performing air conditioning system.  Similar to any other machine, even the best-ducted air conditioning system demands repair. And for this, you need to trust the best-ducted air conditioning repair service provider. Many such companies are claiming to provide the best servicing and repair, but not everyone can live up to the customer's expectations. So, you need to look for a company that can guarantee quality service and repair. This blog highlights some of the key factors that should not miss your eye when looking for a ducted air conditioning service and repair company.

Finding the best company for ducted AC repair:

Ducted Air Conditioning

1. Know about the system

Before you go ahead and hire a ducted air conditioning repair service provider, you must acquaint yourself with complete knowledge about the system's key components. This will help you make the right call regarding the technician. You should know about the model, brand, and maintenance history. In this case, you can read the manual of your air conditioner and you will find the necessary information about your air conditioner in the manual.

2. Don’t hesitate to take the recommendation

One of the key points you need to consider is to recommend your acquaintance when it comes to finding the best technicians. You can always look for a technician by checking out their reviews and ratings. Read the testimonial and check the third-party website for reviews and ratings. Make sure that you don’t settle with the first option that you encounter. You can make a list of three air conditioning services and compare them based on their availability, credibility, and cost.

3. Licence and insurance are a must

While you must certainly count on the technician's experience, there is yet another important factor that you must not miss, and we are talking about the license and insurance; click here to know more. When searching for the best-ducted air condition repair service provider, you must look for the one who has a license and valid insurance papers. If anything goes wrong during your air conditioning servicing then the insurance company will cover your expenses and you do not need to take any liability. In the case of ducted air conditioning services, people need to work on height and it is a risky job. So you need to hire an insurance professional.  

4. Provides after repair maintenance

Ducted Air Conditioning

When you finalize the best technician for ducted air conditioning repair, you should check their after-sales services. There can be times when the air conditioning system breaks down even after repair. In such a situation, the AC repair service provider should be ready to help you with the repair work without charging an extra amount. You must ask this question to the service provider before hiring them.

5. Emergency services

You must also ask them if they provide emergency services while hiring a ducted air conditioning repair service provider. Imagine the air conditioning system stops functioning in the middle of the night and you need a service provider who can help you with the repair work during emergency hours. So, don’t miss asking about their service hours.

Conclusion

These are some of the key aspects that should be on your radar when hiring a ducted air conditioning repair service provider. Regular upkeep and timely repair of the AC ensure that it performs efficiently in the long run. Make sure that you hire the best technician to keep your AC running in good condition.

 

Six Benefits Of Doing Your Funeral Preplanning

 

Planning your funeral isn't an "I'm feeling on top of the world" feeling. Honestly, why would it be? But you know what, there's tremendous value in doing so. 

If you've planned a funeral before, you may have some understanding of the practical and emotional difficulties of the whole process. From choosing flowers to sorting out the finances, there are many aspects to consider and decisions to be made, all while going through a dark cloud of grief. One day, your precious ones will be doing the same for you. Don't get us wrong, we'd love to see you live, but what if you could somehow minimize the burden? Today, you are allowed to preplan your funeral, and in a series of ways, which seems absurd since you're going to die. 

In all seriousness, there are some benefits to planning your funeral. It takes a butt-load of courage to do so, but you will find it very fulfilling once it gets done. 

Here are six benefits that come with putting yourself in an early grave – pun intended.

1.       You Can Have It Your Way

One of the best benefits of having a preplanned funeral is that you can do have things your way. For starters, you can choose how you want your loved ones to remember you. Maybe you will be passionate about animals and would like to encourage contributions in your memory to your local charity. Perhaps you had a long career in the military that you would like to rejoice. When you plan everything ahead of time, you put your needs on paper so that your treasured ones will know exactly how to honor your memory.

2.       You'll be able to Pick the Best Funeral Planner. 

This one may feel like a knife to the gut, but once it gets done, you'll be thankful. 

Like any service, funeral-planning agencies come with a reputation. Therefore, picking the best one comes down to research. If you were going to book a vacation, then a reliable travel agent will always come in handy. Similarly, when planning your funeral, performing research to discover the right funeral provider is just as important. Not all funeral providers will move on to the same standards. Why does this matter, though? It is essential because your funeral will be in the right hands. 

3.       Peace of Mind

Another thing, planning your funeral will offer you peace of mind in the knowledge that all arrangements have been made. It's just you that needs to arrive, whenever the day may come. Other than that, you will take the load off your family. Now wouldn't that be worth it?

4.       Source Of Meaningful Conversations with your Loved Ones 

Planning your funeral isn't a slap in your loved ones' faces. Instead, it shows you're responsible. You care enough for your family that you don't want them to go through any trouble because of you. 

While talking to your loved ones about "death" may sound unsettling. Still, in most cases, it leads to meaningful banters about what's important. Yes, death isn't a pleasant topic, but it's underrated as well. Many people want to talk about the end of life but don't want to bring it up because it puts them in an awkward stance. Some might even jump to conclusions and call it "crazy," but it's the reality of life, and everyone should face it.

So when you talk about your last day on earth, you'll come to know that your family might also share their preferences and thoughts. 

If you're unsure of how to bring it up, you can use this post as an excuse. Say something like, "I read an article yesterday on the benefits of planning your funeral. It made me ponder a bit, so I wanted to know how you'd want things to do." Who knows, this conversation might lead you to learn unexpected things about your family.

5.       All of Your Wishes Will Be Met

Most people have ideas regarding what they would like done on their death. Whether you'd like a lively celebration of your life over a gloomy affair or you'd feel like burial is essential due to religious reasons. Planning your funeral will take care of everything. 

That isn't an odd thing to do because you'll get the chance to sprinkle a little bit of your personality into the event. That can also provide a lot of comfort in your last days.

6.       You Can Save Your Family from Financial Troubles

Preplanning your funeral doesn't imply paying for it in advance; however, doing so could prevent your family from the financial worry your funeral may bring. Some relatives may even put themselves in a vulnerable financial position when paying for a loved one's funeral to guarantee they get the final sendoff they deserve.

Paying for your funeral beforehand saves your family from the inflated funeral costs. On the other hand, if you're unable to pay for your funeral and your family struggles to come up with the funds, then you can gain help from the country or state. However, the level of financial aid varies at both the government and state levels. Even if your loved ones receive a contribution, this may never be enough to hold a memorial. Instead, direct cremation is likely to be carried out.

Conclusion

You see, planning your funeral isn't such a bad idea after all. You become in charge of everything, mainly your ground digging. So what are you waiting for? Tomorrow isn't guaranteed; get in touch with a funeral planning agency and start making arrangements for your demise. 

Just for future reference, you will be missed!

6 Tips to Keep Kids Busy & Mentally Healthy This Summer


With school winding down soon and summer break almost here, kids will have a lot more time on their hands. How can parents keep their children occupied and mentally healthy over the long break?

 

Dr. Stephanie Hancock, PsychDNP, is the CEO of Pool of Bethesda Psychiatric Health, a trauma care expertand the bestselling author of 24 self-help books. She offers these tips:

 

-        Get away: Just like adults, a change of scenery and a break from the everyday routine is important for your child’s mental health. The traditional summer vacation trip might be a little more difficult this year, but even just getting away for a few days can be beneficial. Small day trips can have the same positive effect. Whatever you do, family time builds memories and is good for your child’s mental well-being. 

 

-        Help them find a purpose: Teaching kids responsibility and giving them a purpose is important to their mental health, especially over the summer when there is less for them to do. Create a list of daily and age-appropriate chores around the house. If they are old enough, consider a parttime job. Encourage your kids to volunteer at a local nonprofit organization, school, church or workplace.  

 

-        Incorporate some education: Summer is a time for kids to unwind and have fun. It’s also important for them to stay mentally sharp and incorporate some educational activities into their routine. It doesn’t have to be boring. Consider age-appropriate books on topics that your child will enjoy reading or maybe a weekly refresher class with some friends, so they don’t forget everything they learned this past school year.

 

-        Try something new: The days of summer can be long, and you don’t want your children getting bored, so use this time to introduce them to new things they wouldn’t otherwise get to experience. It can be cooking or baking, playing a new sport, playing chess or checkers, attending a lecture at a museum, playing a musical instrument or whatever. 

 

-        Limit electronics: Most kids love their electronic devices, and in moderation there’s nothing wrong with this. However, too much screen time can have a negative effect, disrupt your child’s mood and bring on stress and anxiety, interfere with sleep and take a toll on their eyes. Age five and under should be limited to one hour each day. Six years and up no more than two hours each day. 

 

-        Set a flexible routine: Having structure and routine contributes to better mental health for your kids, but over the summer you can be a little lenient with it. Make sure your kids get enough sleep, eat three healthy meals and stay hydrated each day, and get plenty of physical activity. Besides from that, if things don’t go according to plan everyday over the summer, give yourself and your kids a break. It’s okay to stray once in a while over summer break.  

 

Hacks to Solve the Rubik Cube


The face of the world had greatly changed from the time that this cube toy was invented in 1974 by Erno Rubik, an architecture professor, and sculptor in Hungary. The market has been frenzied by the Rubik’s cube, which was fondly called the “magic cube” when it was launched in the US market in the 1980s. The craze over the simple cube toy continues that it even reaches a market sales of $250 million in the year 2017. 

The “magic cube” has been conceptualized and regarded as a toy for a kid to solve, and a lot of youngsters before had almost cracked their heads in solving the puzzle in the Rubik’s cube. Without even thinking that there could be a scientific process in solving it. Youngsters of the millennial generation now have all the access and are acquainted with the process of how the puzzle in the Rubik’s cube can be solved. The internet became the fertile source for information and tips on how to effectively solve the puzzle as it provides different methods such as the CFOP Method. You can learn CFOP method by reading the GoCube’s detailed guide.

If you are still cracking your head in solving the puzzle of the Rubik’s cube, let me guide you on the different steps on how to solve the puzzle in a minimal timeframe effectively. You may take it as a guide in order for you to gain mastery in solving it.

You may explore different methods of solving the Rubik’s cube. It entirely depends on how adept you are in a given method. The different steps that will be provided are for you to have some basic insights on how to solve it, but still, everything is exploratory. You must be able to know which method or process perfectly works for you.

Step 1

If what you have in mind is creating an image of a daisy in the cube, which is actually the yellow square in the middle and is surrounded by the white colors. Such concept of having a daisy may take different processes and methods and may entail different attempts and tries. As you try to create it, you must have the necessary ways of how to achieve it.

Step 2

The second step involves placing and lining up the top middle color with the center color. This is actually being done in one of the faces of the Rubik’s cube. If you are already done wherein all the colors were already lined up with this specific part of the cube, then move on to the other side of the cube. Turned the other side of the face of the cube twice so that it will be in the upside-down position. Since there are four sides of the cube, just repeat the same process on each side until you are able to create a shape of a white cross on the bottom side of the cube. Continue with the process and hold the cube wherein the white side color is facing down.

Step 3

At this stage, you may already be aroused and challenged to continue solving the Rubik’s cube, and it can easily be done by concentrating on the white colors on the top layer. There may be some “tricks” that can be done wherein you may rotate the side or face of the cube on its left or right side and continue doing it until all the squares are already on the bottom.

On the right side or “face” of the cube, you may proceed to do the “right trick” by rotating the right side or “face of the Rubik’s cube right clockwise and do a counter-clockwise on the top side or “face” of the cube.

On the left side or “face” of the cube, you may do the left “trick”  by turning the left side or “face” counter-clockwise and do the same with the top side or “face” and clockwise on the left side or “face of the cube.

Step 4

Whew! We are almost halfway through, and the adrenalin to finish it is rising up, and now shift your attention to the squares on the second row. The top layer of the cube must be rotated until it is upside-down with the shape of “T” that contains only one color scheme. The color must be complemented with the color either on the left side “face” or the right side “face” of the cube. There should be no yellow color square on the bottom row of the top face. Its color must reflect either the left or right side.

You may perform the left trick if the square reflects the left side “face” of the cube and rotates counter-clockwise the topside. It will be the right “trick” if the side or “face” of the square reflects a right side, then perform the clockwise rotation on the top side of the cube.

In doing the rotation, you may have to move some of the white squares, then the replacement of the white square may be done by repeating the process stated in step number 3. Repeat the entire process until the second is complete.

Step 5 

On the top side of the cube, you may create the shape of a yellow cross through the process of rotating the front side “face” of the cube clockwise, do the same with the front side “face” and on the right side “face” of the cube. Eventually, proceed rotating the top face doing a counter-clockwise and same with the right face and on the front face.

Step 6

This will be the alignment to the right position of the middle colors on the top layer.  Just rotate the top layer color counter-clockwise and make sure that the colored square is facing on your side.  

Step 7

All the colored squares must be on the correct “face” or side, and you can achieve it by turning counter-clockwise the bottom, right “face” of the cube. Repeat the entire process until the yellow square is on the top side of the cube.

What to Do If Your Baby Will Not Sleep


Many first-time parents know not to expect much sleep once their baby is born. However, what some parents don’t know is that even when a baby starts sleeping through the night, there will be times when sleep issues still arise.

Sleep can be disrupted for several reasons, including teething, growth spurts, and illness. When a baby sleeps peacefully, it’s better for everyone in the home. So, what do you do if your baby will not sleep?

0-3 Months Old

When your baby is 0-3 months old, it’s normal for her to wake frequently. Babies need constant nourishment, so you may find that she wants to feed every 2 to 3 hours. On average, parents have to wake during the night for three feeds because babies are still learning the difference between night and day.

But don’t worry, this phase won’t last. Your baby could start to sleep for nine to eleven hours throughout the night from as early as three months old. It may take other babies a little longer.

3-6 Months Old 

At three months old, your baby is starting to recognize that there is a difference between day and night. You can help by introducing sleeping cues, like bath time, lullabies, or reading a book. If your baby isn’t rolling yet, you can also swaddle her, which gives her a sense of security.

Take a look at what to know about swaddling your baby safely. During this time, your baby may start to suffer from teething pains during the night and if you choose to move your baby into a cot, it can all add to sleep disturbances.

6 Months +

At six months or older, you and your baby should be getting into an easier sleep routine. Unfortunately, there are still things that can wake your baby throughout the night. 

At this time, your baby can go through significant growth spurts and milestones, like starting to crawl. You may find that your baby is awake for no apparent reason during these times, but her body is just adjusting to being able to do new things. She may also go through bouts of separation anxiety.

What to Do

It’s not always easy to figure out the root cause of sleep disruption. However, if you know your little one is teething, you can offer some pain relief before trying to settle her back to sleep.

Similarly, if your little one seems to want to be close to you, she may be going through separation anxiety. She’ll benefit from a lullaby and touch. Then try replacing your hand with her favoritetoy so she has some comfort as she sleeps.

Try and stick to your sleep schedules and if you suspect your baby is unwell, visit your doctor as soon as possible.

Baby Will Not Sleep: Quick Fixes

Unfortunately, there are no quick fixes when your baby will not sleep. For most babies, it’s just a process they go through to learn more about the world around them.

Why not take a look at more of our articles for great advice on family and relationships?

 

How to Save Money on Healthcare Expenses

Despite the growing disparities in income per capita and healthcare expenses, healthcare remains a vital interest to most American citizens. This is why it's necessary to use means that allow you to reduce your out-of-pocket expenses while retaining good value for your money. Here are a few ways to keep your healthcare spending in check so you can balance your family budget.

Lead a Healthy Lifestyle

If you really want to spend less on hospital bills, then the place to begin is maintaining good health habits at home. Good health habits are cost-effective and in some cases, absolutely free. This has nothing to do with your income or age. All you need to do is to get started. The first thing you need to do is practice eating healthy. Avoid eating foods that make you feel sick or cause stomach pain. In addition, you'll want to stay hydrated. The average person should be drinking at least 64 oz. of water daily to maintain proper hydration. Getting enough sleep each night can help you avoid accidents and injuries related to exhaustion, as well.

Stay Fit

You can't very well lead a healthy life and prevent unnecessary medical treatment without proper exercise. More often people visit the doctor out of a medical emergency and not habitual examination. If that is your bracket, exercising could help you save a great deal by just maintaining your body fitness. And the truth is that you don't always need a gym for that. Cultivating a fitness routine that works with your body and schedule can help you build up strength, endurance, and may even help boost your immune system.

Maintain Your Current Medical Equipment

If you're one of the 37.5 million adults who experience hearing issues, you might not be able to afford a visit to your audiologist for replacement hearing aids as often as you'd like. That's why maintaining your current medical equipment is so important. Taking good care of equipment like hearing aids, canes, catheters, and more is essential to reducing your healthcare expenses in the long run. If you're unsure how best to care for the medical equipment that you use, don't hesitate to reach out to your doctor with questions.

Look for Alternative Treatment Options

When it comes to health issues like orthodontics, traditional treatment may seem like the only way to go. But when almost 20% of the population doesn't have an ideal bite, there are plenty of treatments available that may be more cost-friendly for you. For instance, using Invisalign instead of traditional metal braces for orthodontic treatment could end up saving you money. You may have to change Invisalign retainers every two weeks, which makes this treatment option slightly higher-maintenance, but the cost benefits typically outweigh the time spent on treatment maintenance.

When you want to save money on healthcare expenses, it's important to pull from a variety of sources. Maintaining healthy habits and doing your research in regard to which treatments you pursue can make a big difference in the long run.

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