Category Archives: Anything & Everything

Passing Time In Self-Isolation Pt. 2

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Passing Time In Self-Isolation Pt. 2

Hello! Crazy times, amiright? And, amid all of this craziness, it is so important to keep yourselves safe and healthy. This means limiting your time in public as much as possible. And, you know what? That’s fine by me! I have been having the best time hunkered down with Johnny (my boyfriend) playing Rock Band, watching Band Of Brothers, and indulging in our new obsession of Magic The Gathering. As much as I enjoy an evening at the bar, a quiet evening in is definitely what I prefer.

I had to laugh at a meme that said something like “when you realize your normal lifestyle is considered a quarantine” because that holds quite a bit of accuracy to me! But, if you’re still struggling to find ways to keep yourself occupied, allow me to suggest the following:

Learn Something New:

Sure, you could spend your time in self-isolation binging TV… And, believe you me, I’ve had my fair share of America’s Next Top Model marathons. But, you could also use this time to learn something new. Take a virtual tour of a museum, which is now being offered through a lot of establishments. Try your hand at a new language. Give a craft on Pinterest a shot. You’ll be amazed at where you end up once the self-isolation recommendation has lifted if you chip away at a new skill every day.

Cook A Great Meal:

I am so thankful that I went grocery shopping a week before all of the closings started happening because my pantry is fully stocked. And, since going out for dinner isn’t possible right now, I have enjoyed cooking in my kitchen every day. I love making breakfast over the weekend for my boyfriend and revel in when I can have dinner ready for him when he gets home. It is never not satisfying to me to lay out a meal that I made.

Open up a recipe book and give a few new ones a go, cook an old favorite, or bake and decorate a cake. An afternoon helping mom or dad bake cookies always goes down well for the little ones, too!

Exercise:

Unfortunately, all of the skating rinks in my neck of the woods are closed so I cannot have my weekly skate sesh. This sucks but it also doesn’t mean that I can’t still be active, which is so crucial when you’re stuck at home and being more sedentary. Do some crunches during your TV time or lift some weights. And, although community hangs are frowned upon – going out for a brisk hike or walk around the neighborhood isn’t.

Rearrange/Redecorate:

If you’re beginning to feel the effects of cabin fever, try rearranging your home or the room that you spend the most time in. Switching out knick knacks, changing the position of the couch, or reorganizing your book or movie shelves can breathe a whole new life into a space. And, if you’re on the hunt for something brand new, order online and make sure you love it since you’re going to be seeing a lot of it for a while. 😉

Although things feel scary right now don’t let it get in the way of enjoying yourself as you try out the ideas above!

How has the coronavirus effected you? What have you been doing to stay occupied? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Giving Gifts To Be Cherished

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Giving Gifts To Be Cherished

Almost anything could constitute as a ‘gift’. That being said, we all know that gifting is a complex and often nuanced art. For instance, purchasing someone a new car, while amazing, does not necessarily make it better via expensive than something perfectly tailored to the person in question, thought of carefully, used as a means to illustrate a beautiful point. The gift’s worth is defined in presence of the particular giftee and gifter,  no matter the particulars.

Yet sometimes it can be that you hope to give a gift that will leave an excellent and positive mark upon the recipient, ensuring that they not only appreciate your generosity, but that they can return to the memory of said item as a truly beautiful thing to appreciate. To help you achieve that, we have some of the following advice:

Experiences:

It’s hard to shed the impression a wonderful experience can leave someone. Each of us only has a set amount of time on this Earth, and so spending that time within an experience that helps us learn, grow, and feel grateful can be truly fantastic. It might be that you bring a family member along for a cruise or that you head on a road trip with your friend to explore the best of what your coastline has to offer. What matters is spending time with those you most love and appreciate, as this generates memories all by itself.

Indulgences & Treats:

A small indulgence can make for a phenomenal gift, because not only are you giving them a wonderfully handcrafted treat from Eastern Standard Provisions, but you are granting them the chance to indulge in a treat they most enjoy. This also serves as the best approach to gifting, because it matters, and it provides them with that sense of comfort they may have been missing thus far. Small indulgences are not small, they are an example of the little things that make life worth living and plenty enjoyable.

A Particular Craft:

Crafting something yourself is perhaps one of the most interesting and satisfying measures you can enjoy. However, gifting said craft to someone you love or appreciate is a cherry on the cake. Don’t think this needs to be some otherwordly example of the craft makers art in order to be assured in this. Giving someone a small clay pot from a pottery course you took, a bouquet of flowers you have arranged yourself, a small knitted jumper for a nephew or niece, or even just a painting you have applied yourself to can all be wonderful. Don’t think that because you may not have spent hundreds acquiring said item that it’s worthless. Quite the contrary, it will have soul.

With this advice, you can leave your signature mark on what you gift your loved ones with in the future.

Featured Image By: Pexels

Pocket Park: 4 Strategies To Raise Funds In Your Area

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Pocket Park: 4 Strategies To Raise Funds In Your Area

People in areas with plenty of farmland may not need parks because they have lots of wide-open spaces and plenty of greenery. But if you live in the city, parks are important. That little bit of oasis can help you maintain your sanity in the middle of a fast-paced city.

Unfortunately, land does not come cheap. Reports show that Sydney, the most expensive city, has land prices to match – a square meter of land is $1000. And, while Perth is much cheaper compared to Sydney, the area will cost you $700 per square meter.

If you still want to create a park in a farming community, your location will determine how much you spend on land. Some farmlands are as cheap as $41 per hectare, while others can cost you as much as $21,999 per hectare.

But whenever the cost is a challenge, you need to think outside the box. One way to get the park of your dreams is by opting for a pocket-park design. Such a plan will enable you to create multiple park attractions within a limited amount of space. But what if you don’t have the funding? Read on to find out more:

Your local business community:

Members of your local business community may be willing to help you raise the funding that you need to see that pocket park design come to life. After all, they also live in the area. They and their loved ones would benefit from having a park nearby, too.

You can reach out to the local business community and ask them for financial support to help build a mini-park. Those who choose not to pay cash can provide the materials or labor required to create the park. What matters is that it gets made.

You can also think of providing free advertising opportunities for businesses that help you get the funding. It could be plaques or free marketing from professionals in the area who donate marketing services as their contribution to the park construction.

Your local media platforms:

Many media stations in your area may be willing to help you create awareness of your initiative if you reach out to them. It would be part of their corporate social responsibilities. The free marketing that they do as well as the influence they wield can get locals on board and inspire them to donate time, energy, and money towards building your pocket park.

Online fundraising:

The digital era has revolutionized fundraising. Platforms like Kickstarter allow you to raise monies for a cause by appealing to the online community. You can also sell branded merchandise as part of your strategy to raise money for your park.

Local NGOs:

Some NGOs may be willing to sponsor the construction of your park. But this depends on whether your goals are aligned to theirs. For example, if you would like to build a pocket park whose design is meant to provide playing and sensory therapy to kids with special kids, NGOs that work with children with disabilities may be willing to help you out financially.

The lack of space or funding should not deter you from realizing your dream of creating a pocket park. All you need to do is think outside the box and find creative ways of getting the funding that you need. Then your local community can enjoy the benefits of your park for a long time to come.

Sweet Surprises: It Doesn’t Take Much Edition

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Sweet Surprises: It Doesn’t Take Much Edition

Hello everyone! With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I thought I would take a minute to commemorate my darling boyfriend, Johnny, because he so deserves it! As we all know, Lil Red is a huge fan of sweet surprises and I like to show my gratitude for any type of gift that is treated to me with a blog post. So, here we are!

I, myself, am a huge fan of administering surprises even though I’m rotten at keeping my surprise a surprise! I feel like Johnny and I are always picking each other up a little something while we’re out and about whether it be a cool find at a thrift store or just grabbing dinner on the way home from work. Either way, it’s fun giving and receiving small treasures from the one you love best.

As the title of this post states, it really doesn’t take much to make me happy. In fact, just a six pack of tiny Diet Coke cans waiting for me in my fridge once I got home from a long day at work was enough to turn my day around. Let’s discuss:

pop

After my horrible oral surgery gone wrong last winter, I totally lost my taste for pop or coffee and became a fairly avid tea drinker. The harshness of the coffee’s caffeine and the pop’s carbonation was enough to put my stomach in knots, especially since I was used to only drinking the flat chocolatey chalk of Ensure for over a month and a half.

Once I was about four months out from my recovery and sunny days were a norm in Ohio again, the thought of an ice cold can of pop was enough to make my mouth water. And, as a bonus, I was able to drink it without an upset stomach. Back in the day, I was a Diet Coke fiend and could drink six cans a day, easily. Now, I might have one or two cans a week. But, when I do, it always hits the spot.

I haven’t been grocery shopping in a while and Johnny knows that I have been mooching on my mom and dad’s pop stash while I work from their home. So, he picked me up my own little cans when he went to the store after he got off from work. I came home and got a glass of wine from the fridge and he told me to look at the side compartment where my treat was cooling down for me.

I was so tickled because I always say that I could go for a pop when I never have it in the house and nine times out of ten he ends up hearing about it. He stifled my Diet Coke cravings for the time being because he thought of what I might need while he did his shopping. This was such a simple gesture but I felt so loved and taken care of and that’s what made it grand to me.

This Valentine’s Day, remember that it doesn’t matter what your gifts costed or if you can post a picture of the fancy meal you had on Instagram. What is really important is the thought that your partner put into it. I feel lucky that Johnny thinks of me when he’s going about his day to day life when we’re not together and I just know we are going to have the happiest Valentine’s Day together! ❤

What is a Sweet Surprise that you gave or received recently? How are you celebrating Valentine’s Day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Valentine’s Day Card Call To Action

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Valentine’s Day Card Call To Action

Hi everyone! I often see people post different news articles about an individual asking for a bunch of cards in the mail for a holiday or birthday. I used to think nothing of it but, when the holiday season hit, I figured that it was the least I could do to send a little holiday cheer to someone who is down on their luck, struggling, or could just use a smile.

Now, every time I see a post on Facebook of someone with a card request, I happily comply and send some snail mail their way. I also like to publish it on lifewithlilred so a larger, world wide platform can be reached for those who would like to make a Random Act Of Kindness.

A few days ago, I saw a post about a 104 year old WWII veteran asking for an overflow of Valentine’s Day Cards. You can read the full article here and send a card to the following address:

Operation Valentine
ATTN: Hold for Maj Bill White, USMC (Ret)
The Oaks at Inglewood
6725 Inglewood Ave.
Stockton, CA 95207

I hope that Maj. White enjoys his Valentine’s Day and the influx of cards that he is sure to receive. He is going to keep every single one and it makes me happy that one of them is going to be mine! 🙂

How do you do Random Acts Of Kindness throughout the day? What is a Random Act Of Kindness that you have received recently? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Paranormal Activity Pt. 3

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Paranormal Activity Pt. 3

Hi! So as all of you know, I have experienced some paranormal activity in my apartment. The major occurrences happened when I first moved in and the last activity before the most recent one took place about a month ago. This spooky situation came about on Friday the tenth around two in the afternoon and it had me SHOOK. So, let’s discuss:

I always have the afternoons off on Friday and some of the days are spent running around doing errands while others involve curling up with a good book and a cup of coffee. This Friday afternoon happened to be one of those days, so I lit my candles, got myself comfortable, and cracked open one of my comic books.

All was going well and I was enjoying my time relaxing when a piece of paper I had on my coffee table FLOATED ON TOP OF ONE OF THE CANDLES. This paper was sitting on top of a board game that was about a foot and a half away from my candles and when I adjusted my head I saw the paper in the air.

Luckily for me, the piece of paper landed on a candle that was burnt down enough that the flame wasn’t going to touch it. But, the candle that it did fall on was about six inches away from a brand new Yankee Candle that I got for Christmas whose two wicks were burning close to the top. Yikes!

Needless to say, I freaked out and phoned my parents who know about the haunting situation in my apartment and they freaked out too. Lol, it was such a crazy thing to have witnessed and I still get goosebumps when I think about it. There was just no way that that paper floating could have happened on its own. It had also been sitting there for months and a situation even remotely similar has never happened.

I have come to associate my “friend” in my apartment with being a man. When I first moved in, I always seemed to hear heavy footsteps at night coming from the office in my top floor apartment. In fact, I used to have to go downstairs to make sure there was no one there.

There is also a mirror in my loft bedroom with a skylight shining directly on it. And, at night when the light from the outdoors is coming in, the shadowy shape that forms behind the mirror looks like a poor silhouette of a man to me. Believe you me, nothing makes the hair on the back of my neck stand up like when I see that at bedtime.

The paranormal activity I had in my apartment in December seemed to be a friendly one but this last occurrence was anything but. I think it will be a good long while before I light my candles again!

What did you do to deal with paranormal activity if you’ve ever experienced any? Does anyone have any advice for me? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

7 Ways To Say Thank You

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7 Ways To Say Thank You

The most difficult thing to do these days is to tell someone “thank you”, and do it with feeling. There will be people in your life who you are grateful for every day, and sometimes, the words are just not enough to convey how thankful you are. The best thing to do is to go the extra mile and make your thank you the best one ever. This means getting a little more creative sometimes; more than just firing off an email and hoping for the best.

With our help below, you’re going to have seven new ways to say thank you to those whom you love the most. Let’s take a look:

A New Gift:

We don’t mean running to the nearest store and buying bath salts. Sometimes, only the most unique Hawaiian gifts will do! You can pair this with a beautiful home made gift bag like the ones that you find here. It’s a great way to show your appreciation to someone who deserves it!

A Toast To Them:

Not many people enjoy public speaking – we get that. However, giving a toast at an event you’re both at can make them feel so good! A sincere toast is one that is well-received, so practice in front of the mirror so that you can see that your toast is done with eloquence!

Write A Heartfelt Poem:

Words really are all you need. Go online and do some searching for the best poetry rhythms around and you’ll likely find something that is perfect for you and the person you want to gush to! Write a poem according to that rhythm and make them feel fantastic about themselves.

Take Them Out:

There are times where a thank you cannot be put into words or gifts and you need to do a little more. Does your friend or relative love musicals? Why not take them to a show and treat them to dinner while you’re there? It can make a huge difference: your time is all they need.

Think About A Gift Card:

Choosing a present isn’t always easy, but a gift card for a store that you know that they love is always a good way to go. They’re not impersonal if you know the best stores that they shop in, and if you make the amount on the gift card generous enough, you’re going to find that you have the perfect present.

Write A Letter:

You can say why you are thanking someone on the phone but it never seems to have the same impact as the written word. Never panic about how long the letter is – it can be as long as you feel is necessary to get your feelings across.

Declare Thanks On Social Media:

Everyone knows that social media has an impact on people these days; a positive one for the most part. So, put out a blast on social media and let them know how much they mean to you there, too. Social media blasts can then be shared, and everyone will know how grateful you are to that person.

The holiday season is the perfect time for giving thanks to your loved ones. Do so with the tips above!

Featured Image By: Pexels