Tag Archives: activities

Monday Update: Fall Fun Edition

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Monday Update: Fall Fun Edition

Hello everyone and happy Monday! I hope that all of you had a wonderful and relaxing weekend. The fall season is officially among us and I, for one, could not be happier. Actually, that’s a lie, I could be happier BECAUSE IT’S BEEN NINETY DEGREES IN OHIO FOR THE PAST WEEK!!!! All of you know by now that I live for the fall and this heat wave is simply unacceptable. So now instead of participating in all of my favorite fall activities listed below, I will simply have to daydream about it until it cools down to autumnal temperatures. Let’s discuss some of my fave fall outings:

  1. Apple Picking: There are TONS of gorgeous orchards in Ohio filled with trees that are spilling over with crisp, fresh apples. I love going to orchards with my family, friends, or on a date and then making something delicious afterwards with the bounty like an apple pie or crisp. So fun and so yum.
  2. Haunted Houses: Ohio also has quite a few haunted houses that I’m always keen on visiting. Being a horror junkie, going to a haunted house during a chilly, pitch black fall night is one of my favorite things to do. I went to the Factory Of Terror last year and would love to go there again and definitely would like to make it to the 7 Floors Of Hell, too!
  3. Fall Cooking: Lil Red loves to cook all of the vegetarian delights, but I especially love making (and eating) fall comfort food. Soups, stews, breads, and huge dishes of mac n’ cheese are just a few of my go to meals. And the fall sweets aren’t so bad, either! Cinnamon rolls, pies, crisps, and cobblers?! Yes, please. Fall food is so hearty, rich, and flavorful, and it makes sitting down for every meal such a joy.
  4. Fall Shopping: This list of fall favorites wouldn’t be complete if I didn’t talk shopping at least a little bit! Can you say boots and peacoats?! I LOVE IT!! I’m pretty well flush for fall clothing, considering it makes up about 75% of my wardrobe but that never seems to stop me from buying all the booties and oversized sweaters. It’s a curse!
  5. Perfect Weather: Although the heat in Ohio is destroying my favored fall weather, I live for the mid 50s and 60s temps that fall usually brings. I love being that slightest bit chilly. The bite that the fall air blows around, which reddens the cheeks and leaves your hands tucked in your pockets is always what I prefer to scorching summers. One of my favorite things to do during a brisk fall day is throwing on a thick sweater and combat boots and exploring one of the many beautiful Metro Parks in Ohio.

Here’s to hoping that the weather in my neck of the woods makes a drastic change so that I can start enjoying some of my fall favorites soon!

So there you have it, this week’s Monday Update: Fall Fun Edition! What are some of your favorite fall activities? What is your favorite season? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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Spur Your Creativity With A Photography Hobby: Here’s How

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Spur Your Creativity With A Photography Hobby: Here’s How

In an effort to become a more wholesome and interesting person in the world around you, it’s likely that you’ll find the need to be creative as high on the list of new things to try. One of the most popular and easy to begin methods of doing so is to pick up a photography hobby. This is a discipline that is totally easy to begin, but incredibly difficult to master. What’s more is that because the art is so subjective in terms of what makes a good photograph, that learning more can be difficult and frustrating. But much like creative disciplines, such as writing, there is a “good” and a “bad” way to go about your practice. If you wish to write but can’t write in a way in which the people around you can interpret it, your years as a professional writer are likely numbered, if not nonexistent.

Luckily, there does exist solid methods for overcoming these difficulties relating to photography. Remember, beginning a creative discipline never demands that you are a master of the art. It simply demands that you try, keep pushing your comfort zone, and also attempt things that help you feel happy and sustained within the hobby. Because if you can’t do that, then why bother picking it up in the first place? The following tips will help you continue your newly found passion with a sense of interest and progression:

Anyone Can Start: Many people think that in order to begin photography you need to make a huge financial investment in the equipment. This is simply not true. Smartphones these days often have cameras capable of taking pictures in 4K and also come loaded with compositional lenses built into the software of the camera.

Of course, this is no substitute to a quality SLR camera with actual lenses, but it can help you start and get an idea for framing well. Taking pictures, no matter the device which is used is more of a matter of personal taste and ambition than what lenses you use. The effect is all that matters. It’s unlikely that while attending a photography gallery you’ll hear people complimenting the use of lenses. It’s usually the achieved effect which is the most important, so don’t feel stifled by a lack of equipment just yet, especially in the early days.

Study Skilled Photographers: Skilled photographers are a dime a dozen, so it’s worth looking at people who have managed to make it their career or working passion. For example, artists such as Peter Lik have crafted an interesting niche for themselves by taking stunning landscape photography, selling his work for millions. It’s important to understand just how great and motivational this can be. You should never be in photography for the profit motive, as you’re likely to be disappointed until you can truly call yourself a master of the craft. However, seeing the best examples around can help you feel inspired to truly dare to take the best shots awaiting you. See your life through the lens as these folks do, and you may even train your eye to take in the world around you much more perceptively.

A budding photographer worthy of fame and recognition may wait inside of you. But you’ll only know if you’re willing to practice and fail. Good luck!

Featured Image By: Pexels

The Best Sports For The Whole Family

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The Best Sports For The Whole Family

Getting your kids to exercise often means fighting an uphill battle. Most of the time they’d rather be inside on the computer than outside moving about. The best way of getting them to be active is to find an activity that they’ll enjoy doing. Don’t forget about yourself, either, it’s just as important for you to get a good amount of exercise, especially as you get older.

Exercise is the best way to combat any of the health complaints that come with age, so it’s vital that the whole family gets outside and does some exercise on a regular basis. As well as getting exercise, sports teach your kids a lot of good values. They will learn the importance of teamwork and sportsmanship, which will stand them in good stead later on in life. You can have great quality time together by playing some sports. Here are some of the best sports for you to do as a family:

Baseball: Baseball is a good one to play when you first start exercising because you’ll get a lot of rests between bursts of energy. You can play at the local park with fairly limited equipment. As long as you have a bat and a ball, you can use pretty much anything to mark out the bases. Alternatively, if you don’t have a local park nearby and there isn’t space in the garden for a full game, you can just practice your throwing and catching skills. Baseball is a great sport for the family, which helps you get some good cardiovascular exercise as well as improving your hand eye coordination skills.

sportss#1 😀

Golf: People don’t always consider golf when they’re thinking of sports that are good for exercise, but you’d be surprised by how many calories you could burn on the course. You won’t be running up and down all day but you’ll be doing a fair bit of walking so it’s still going to get your heart going. If you’re going to play a family game of golf, you need to get all of the right equipment. A good set of clubs is vital, otherwise you’ll find yourself stuck in a bunker all day. Look for the most forgiving golf clubs, they’re perfect for beginners and they’ll help you to avoid missing all of your shots. If you get a bad set of clubs and it’s difficult for the kids to make any good shots, they’ll soon get frustrated and give up (Me.).

Before you go, check the rules at your local course because a lot of them have specific dress codes and they won’t let you play if you don’t have the right attire. Golf is a good choice when the weather is particularly hot and you still want to get some exercise without doing anything too intense. Like baseball, it’s a good way to teach your kids good coordination skills and it’s also a good opportunity to help them see the countryside a little more.

Swimming: On those boiling hot summer days, the whole family can cool off in the swimming pool. It’s a brilliant way to beat the heat and it’s one of the best ways to exercise there is. When you swim, you exercise every single muscle in your body and get your heart pumping at the same time. It’s great for heart health, lung capacity, and general muscle strength. The cool water also means that you can sustain that exercise for much longer than you’d normally be able to. As well as being good exercise, swimming is an important skill for children to learn for safety so it should definitely be a part of your summer exercise routine.

sportss1Those shades!

Volleyball: When summer comes, there’s no better way to spend time with the family than down at the beach. You could spend all day sunbathing but that won’t keep you and the family healthy. A great sport that you can play at the beach is volleyball. It’s a very active sport that’s great for cardio in short bursts. Short bursts of energy, with small breaks in between, is one of the most effective ways to exercise and helps you to keep a healthy heart. You can get yourself a net if you’re serious about your game but a line in the sand will do just as well.

Quidditch: Quidditch started as a fictional game in the Harry Potter series but since then, fans have developed it into a real game. It’s not quite the same as in the books and movies, of course, but the basic rules and play are the same. It’s a great way of getting some exercise and the kids are sure to love it. To play a proper game, you’ll need quite a few people and lots of different balls so this is one that you could perhaps play with a few other families in the park. There are plenty of different positions to be played so by switching everybody around, you can keep everybody interested in playing for a long time. If you get really into your game, there are teams and leagues that you could consider joining.

sportss2Lol.

Insect Soccer: Although the name might suggest it, insect soccer isn’t a game of soccer played by ants. It’s a variation on a normal game of soccer that’ll make it much more fun for the kids. Group everybody into twos and threes depending on how many players you’ve got, and get each group to link arms, these are the insects. Each team plays against each other until one scores a goal, and they have to stay linked at all times otherwise they lose the round. This is the perfect game to play with the kids because it has all of the exercise benefits of a normal soccer game but it also teaches valuable teamwork and cooperation skills.

Basketball: When the good weather goes away, it can be easy to fall into bad habits and your exercise regime can fall by the wayside. One of the best indoor sports to play in winter is basketball. There should be a local indoor court that you can use but you’ll probably need to hire it out so check beforehand. Basketball is a good team sport for kids to play and it’ll massively improve their ball skills. If they enjoy it, you can carry on into the summer on a free outdoor court.

sportss3#Ballin

Summer time is all about going out and getting active – and what better way to do that than as a family?!

Turn Your Love Of Crafts Into A Full Blown Business

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Turn Your Love Of Crafts Into A Full Blown Business

Do you love trying your luck with some at home DIY? Perhaps you love sinking your teeth into a craft project and not stopping until you have a finished result that is both stunning and a major conversation starter. If that’s the case, it might be worth considering whether you can turn your love for crafts like sewing, knitting, or woodwork into a full blown career. If you love it that much, it’s never a bad idea to explore the possibility of basing your life and your earnings around it. Let’s explore how to get started with this idea:

Getting Set Up:

If you’re completing woodwork, at the very least, you’ll need a tuner and a few saws. You might also need a work table and, if you are operating in a small space, a piece of equipment to keep the air clean. Safety might also be a concern for this one, so make sure that you have goggles because if a wooden splinter gets in your eye… you’re going to cry. For some crafts, the set up is a tad simpler. If you are sewing clothing, for example, you just need something like an embroidery machine. You can get an affordable embroidery machine for your business on the market at a price that you should easily be able to fit into your budget. Once you have this, you can get started producing gorgeous products.

It is worth pointing out that at this stage, you should not be focused on making money. Instead, you should put all of your time and effort into producing items that are of high quality and will interest a few buyers. But quality should always be your top priority.

How To Sell:

Once you have a few products ready to sell, you should think about the source that you’re going to use to sell them. The easiest option here would be to set up a website. That way, you will be able to sell all of the products you want without any trouble at all. If you don’t want to invest a lot of money into this idea just yet, it’s worth just starting with a free blog using a basic template. As your business grows, you’re going to need to be a little more clever with marketing. But for the first few weeks, you’ll probably only be selling to family, friends, and acquaintances anyways.

Finding The Right Price:

When you start your business, it doesn’t matter what price you sell your products at. You don’t even have to make a profit, because it’s all about finding your footing on the market and gaining the interest from target customers. But eventually, you will need to focus on making money, and to do that you need to have the right price to make a profit. You will need to take into account production costs, the price of materials that you use, and deliveries. When all of this is taken into account, you might find you need to sell your items at a tad more than you expected.

If you use these steps, you will find yourself with the starting blocks to turn a passion for crafts into a money making career. Good luck, you beautiful, crafty genius!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Does It Feel Like You’re Running In Place With Your Workout?

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Does It Feel Like You’re Running In Place With Your Workout?

There are a lot of reasons why people end up abandoning their pursuit of physical fitness, leaving rowing machines to collect dust and gym memberships to go unused. Sure, it’s easy to say that the only real reason is laziness, but it’s actually a lot more complicated than that. In reality, the thing that causes a lot of people to give up is the feeling that they’re not really getting anywhere. They feel like, no matter how much effort they put in, they just don’t see any results. This can be incredibly demoralizing as it makes them feel like they’re wasting their time and giving blood, sweat, and tears for nothing. Sure, the results of exercise take time to manifest themselves, but that doesn’t mean that you should put up with months of seeing nothing changing in your body. With that in mind, here are a few ways to get the most out of your workout and to start seeing real results:

Have Clear Goals:

One of the biggest mistakes that people tend to make when they start working out is that they have incredibly poorly defined goals. They go in with things like “lose weight” or “get fitter”. Sure, these things are positive and should be a goal in mind, but if you’re only thinking about things in the vaguest possible terms, then you’re never going to be able to really push towards anything. All you’ll be able to see is that you haven’t lost as much weight as you would like and you’ll end up getting discouraged. Instead, think about exactly how much weight you want to lose. That way, even if you’re only losing a little bit at a time, all of it is chipping away at that goal bit by bit, making it much easier to stay committed.

Pick The Right Routine:

Of course, not every workout is going to be perfect for every goal. If you’re trying to bulk up and build muscle, then that’s not going to require the same kind of workout as someone who’s trying to slim down and drop a dress size. The workout plan and schedule reviewed here is perfect if you’re looking to lose a bit of weight and tone your body. However, it’s not necessarily going to be right for someone who’s trying to lose weight for health reasons. By knowing what you want, you’re going to be in a much better position to find the workout routine that’s going to help you do just that.

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WERK

Keep Things Interesting:

One other major factor that causes a lot of people to give up on their workout plan is boredom. The last thing that you want is to end up getting bored of your workout and walking away before you see any real results. In order to prevent that from happening, mix things up from time to time. Sure, you’re going to want to stick to the same kinds of exercise, but there are plenty of ways to change it up within those constraints. Instead of the treadmill, hit the rowing machine for your cardio. Perhaps switch the free weights for the bench when building muscle. That way, you’re going to avoid getting bored while introducing a new workout AND working towards your goal. It’s a win/win!

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Switching things up!

Although working out can be a pain, it should ultimately be enjoyable. These tips should get you right back into the swing of things in no time!

Featured Image By: Pexels

3 Lessons Every New Photographer Will Learn In Time

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3 Lessons Every New Photographer Will Learn In Time

Photography is a hobby that’s easy to pick up, but difficult to master. Most people enter the world of photography as a fun side activity, but quickly begin to get immersed once they realize the creative potential and open-to-interpretation nature of partaking in said hobby.

With so many beautiful photo editing sites available on the market, and a seemingly endless amount of interesting events, people, and places to photograph, the only difficulty you’ll have from the day you pick up a camera is ‘shutter anxiety’. Shutter anxiety is best defined as wanting to photograph everything you come across but realizing that 5000 pictures might be hard to organize afterwards. It happens to the best of us.

Photography is a brilliant hobby because if you begin by using the right Sony camera, it will train you to see the world in your daily life. The smallest details will present themselves to you with wonder, and you’ll notice that your creative ability is bolstered throughout other means of expression, too. Drawing or painting a landscape is a beautiful feat when you have countless hours photographing nature packed away in the back of your memories.

Photography trains people for the better. If you’re looking to potentially delve into picking up photography as a hobby, you might not understand how it will change you. For the most part, you can expect:

An Appreciation For The Environment: While traversing the plains, exploring abandoned buildings, climbing sky-high towers to witness beautiful skylines, or simply private events that usually go unnoticed, you’ll develop a much keener eye to observe the gorgeous world around you. Not only that, but you’ll become proactive within it, always considering what visual beauty can be captured around the next corner.

It’s rare for a hobby to help instill in you a sense of adventure, but photography can do that to no end. In fact, comically, it can work to your detriment. When out with a friend, you might insist on taking the road less traveled to get to your destination, and this is something a non-photographer might not understand as easily. However, they surely will once you show them the final photo results.

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Click!

You’ll Develop Perfectionist Tendencies: Photography is an art that demands a creative touch. You don’t need to adhere to the ‘tried and tested’ methods of composing shots well, such as using the rule of thirds or figuring out where the light travels to best guide the eye of a future viewer. However, perfectionist tendencies do develop after a period of photographing. You might find yourself waiting until 2 AM to catch that perfect shade of moonlight over a town statue that you respect. This can bleed over into all aspects of your life. Your creativity will certainly be boosted as well as your attention to detail.

Your Digital Media Fluency Will Increase: To best develop photographs in the modern day, using an SLR camera will require that you have some form of electronic storage capacity. To upload the photos, using apps like Instagram might work well for you, but you’ll need to learn how to correctly size and maybe edit the photo in a program like Photoshop or Gimp to best squeeze the most value out of every snap you take.

No matter who you are, no one will look at the world in the same way as you. Photography is a natural extension of your worldview and it’s up to you to get out there and capture it.

Featured Image By: Flickr

Great Ways To Get Your Kids Outdoors This Summer

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Great Ways To Get Your Kids Outdoors This Summer

Summer is upon us, and with it comes great opportunities to spend time outdoors with the family. However, try as you might, you may find it difficult to pries the smartphones from your children’s hands as you try and get them to do something different. When you mention the idea of getting some fresh air, their solution of opening another window is not going to help your cause. But don’t despair! There are some great activities for families to enjoy, and none of them require an internet connection. So while your kids may kick up a fuss initially, it is possible to get them out of the house and into the fresh air. Bribery is entirely optional! 😉

Go For a Family Bike Ride: For some reason, children hate walking almost as much as eating their green vegetables. But suggest a bike ride, and you may see their faces light up. Go somewhere as a family, such as a nearby place of beauty and spend the day on two wheels. While out, there may be the perfect opportunity to point out things of interest, such as different aspects of nature. Don’t make it too educational, but turn it into a fun activity, such as a scavenger hunt. I love those. :*)
Do Something Exciting: The one thing children seem to say more than anything else is “this is boring”. As a parent, you probably want to scream every time you hear them utter those immortal words, but let’s be honest, maybe the activities you have planned for your kids really aren’t that interesting. You might think going for a walk is a good idea but your children certainly won’t.

Look online and find activities near you that are going to give your children new and exciting experiences. Many leisure centers and parks have great summer activities. Giant hamster balls, also known as zorb balls and inflatable zorbing balls are now all the rage. They can be used on land and on the water, but make sure your kids don’t have their lunch before getting in one. There may also be rock climbing activities nearby or water based sports such as canoeing if you live near water. Do your research and plan your day so that boring isn’t an option.

Turn Your Garden Into a Play Area:
You don’t need to venture far from home if you have an adequate garden space for your kids to play in. From water games including slip ‘n’ slide mats to giant games of Jenga, there are many things that you can purchase to make your garden a fun place to be. Your children may benefit from one other thing while outdoors. No, we aren’t talking about ice cream, though you really should stock your freezer. You are the important factor in your child’s fun. If you have the capability and the energy, get outside with your kids and have some fun playing with them. Build a den, play tag, or throw a Frisbee around. These are precious moments so make the most of them.

Summer is a time for new adventures and experiences. Brain storm for an evening and help give your kids the best summer ever!

Featured Image By: Pixabay