Tag Archives: anything and everything

Keeping Your Dog Happy, Always

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Keeping Your Dog Happy, Always

If you are a dog owner, you are probably always going to be concerned with ensuring that your pooch is as happy as possible. After all, that is the main aim of looking after them, and it’s something that you should spend your time and energy on if you are going to have a dog at all. But there are a lot of things to consider here, and you need to make sure that you are going to focus on them all if you really want to keep your dog happy. In this article, we are going to discuss just a few of the things to bear in mind, so that you can make sure your dog is the happiest in town:

Show them lots of love:

The most important thing for a dog is that they know you love them. Anyone who has ever had a dog will know that they are very needy when it comes to your love, and you need to make sure that you are showing and expressing this to them as much as possible. If they start to feel that you don’t really care, then that is the biggest way you can possibly upset them, and it can actually lead to some pretty negative consequences on the whole. So do whatever you can to show you love them – cuddle them, kiss them, play with them – and you will be keeping them so much happier for longer.

Give them some freedom:

Dogs still need to feel free to a certain degree and there are a lot of ways to do this. One is to ensure that you take them for their daily walk without fail – which obviously has a range of other benefits for their health, as well. Another is to install a dog door into your sliding glass door so that they are able to come and go into the garden whenever they want to. If you give them freedom in this way, you are going to find that they are much more likely to feel happy with their life, and you will see this in their behavior soon enough.

Keep them healthy:

On top of all of this, you also need to make sure that you are keeping your dog as healthy as possible too. If they are not healthy, then they are not going to feel happy, and you will find that they are much less likely to look as though they are fully enjoying life. This is something that you can always improve, so if you are not feeding them the best food or you know you could walk them more, you should make sure to do that as soon as possible. These changes are likely to make things so much better in the long run, and you will find that you are going to feel like a better pet owner too.

Give your four leggeds the best life possible with the tips above and give them lots of pets for me! 😀

Featured Image By: Pexels

Sweet Surprises: Silly Stuff Edition

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Sweet Surprises: Silly Stuff Edition

Hello! One of the most fun parts about dating Johnny is that I feel like we are constantly surprising each other with gifts that are either totally sweet or really silly. From cute coffee mugs and LEGO sets to random Honey Nut Cheerios found throughout my kitchen, where ever I turn in my apartment there seems to be a reminder of our relationship.

This past week, I arrived home with the DVD seen below and the following morning I woke up to a goofy surprise on my laptop:

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Throughout our days of being in lock down from COVID, Johnny and I talk about literally anything and everything. From world affairs to desert island favorites and the merits of Danny Trejo showing up in the most random movies, it’s never all that boring!

In fact, we’ve talked about Danny Trejo a lot so when I saw the TREJO TRIO DVD at the Dollar Tree I wasn’t not going to buy it. Lol, I was so excited to show Johnny my “can’t believe it’s only a dollar” find and we were completely cracking up after the grand reveal.

Obviously, Johnny and I both love to laugh so it was still surprising but no surprise that the following morning, I woke up to a Waffully Good Joke on my laptop. It was such a little, silly thing but it put me in the best mood when I woke up because I knew Johnny was thinking about me while he made his breakfast in the morning.

I love our relationship and our surprises to each other from the romantic and sentimental to the downright hysterical makes me so happy. A dollar DVD and a joke from the LEGGO waffles packaging kept me smiling all day and, sometimes, the simplest things can cause the biggest impact! ❤

What are some silly things that you and your friends or SO talk about? How do you surprise your loved ones? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Garage Organization Tips You Need To Know

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Garage Organization Tips You Need To Know

If you are currently rooting through your home looking for small DIY jobs to pass the time, you might not have yet considered the garage. Our garage is as much a part of the home as any other but, sadly, it becomes a dumping ground all too often with no rhyme or reason. Today, we want to show you how you can easily organize your garage and keep everything as tidy as can be.

Here are our simple tips for organizing your garage to make it into a functioning part of your home once more:

Clear out clutter:

Over the years you may have accumulated a lot of things in your garage such as random tools, partial tins of paint, and other knick knacks that don’t fit in the house. Now is the time to go through your garage and get rid of anything you don’t need. By clearing out some space in your garage you will open it up for better storage ideas, and it will make the space feel more like an actual room.

Secure the door:

It is important before you do anything else with your garage that the door is secure and safe. You can hire a garage door installer to help you update your door, and be sure that if you choose a rolling door that there is plenty of space around the area for it to open and close. Updating the door will not only make the garage feel new and fresh, but it will increase your security and give you peace of mind.

Make use of plastic trays:

Plastic trays will soon become your best friend as you try to organize and improve your garage. You can buy steel shelving similar to warehouse shelves and buy plastic trays to fit inside which can hold all of your tools, spare paint tubs, and random items such as bungee ties and wire. Labeling your plastic trays with the contents of them can also be a helpful trick to use.

Hang up tools:

When you have large garden tools such as an axe, rake, shovel, or hoe – it is a great idea to hang them up rather than standing them awkwardly in a corner of your garage. You can install hooks cheaply or even use sturdy nails in the wall and hang these larger objects to so no one trips over them.

Use your paint:

If you are short on space and have some random partial paint tins in the garage, why not use them to spruce up the place? A well placed white or cream on your garage walls can make all the difference to the space and it will allow you to get rid of empty tins rather than waste paint that is perfectly good.

Utilize vertical space:

When you have a garage and a lot of things to put in it, it is a good idea to make the most of vertical storage. This means using hooks and shelves on the walls of your garage to maximize how much you can store safely away from the floor. Such an effective way to clear clutter!

Using these small tips, you should be able to make a positive change to your garage this winter and store all the things in a much more organized fashion!

Featured Image By: Pixabay

Lil Red COVID-19 PSA

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Lil Red COVID-19 PSA

Howdy!! Unfortunately, COVID-19 is still causing a lot of grief for everyone. Fortunately, there are many steps that you can take to better protect yourselves and your loved ones. Like some of the following:

Mask Up:

Whether you’re rocking a surgical mask or a homemade cloth one, it is so important to wear a mask if you are out in public. Yes, some people find them uncomfortable. But, you know what’s more uncomfortable? People getting sick and dying. Wearing a mask is a sign of respect to those around you, for yourself, and for your loved ones. It is the absolute least we can all do.

Social Distance:

If you are out in public, be sure to follow proper social distancing protocols by standing at least six feet apart from those around you. Many stores have handy markers on the ground to help keep everyone the appropriate space apart. Be aware of them, use them, and don’t be that person who is up in everyone’s space despite the PANDEMIC going on. Also, while in public, make sure you are using Purell or your preferred brand of hand sanitizer often.

Just Stay In:

As someone who works with very high risk people, I have been hunkered down since March to better protect myself and my clients. Would it be nice to continue to go here, there, and everywhere as if things were normal right now? Yes. But things aren’t normal right now and most outings like restaurants, bars, or large get togethers are completely unnecessary.

Order take out, have a wine night at home, or Zoom everybody in for a hang sesh in the evening. It has been so difficult for me to give things up that I love like ice skating weekly, seeing my friends, and in store shopping trips. However, I value everyone’s health and safety far more than all of my favorite activities combined.

If You’re Bored…

And, if you’re super bored, you are always welcome here on lifewithlilred as a guest blogger! Fill up some ample free time by emailing me at: sarah.mush6794@gmail.com and we can arrange for you to be my featured blogger of the day. The best part? lifewithlilred is about creating a family in the blogosphere and all of my previous guest bloggers will always have a home on my page when they want to have their work featured again. Stay in for an afternoon and become part of my ever growing blogging family! ❤

How do you stay safe in COVID times? What is something that you miss doing the most? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

4 Ways To Create A Low Maintenance Home

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4 Ways To Create A Low Maintenance Home

Even though you’re spending more time at home at the moment due to the coronavirus pandemic, you don’t want to be spending all of your time cleaning it! It’s nice to have a home that you can just sit and relax in without thinking about what jobs need to be done or being surrounded by clutter. It can sometimes feel like housework is never-ending, but that doesn’t have to be the case at all because with a little work up front now, you could create a very low-maintenance home. This would be like a gift to yourself and mean that you can sit and enjoy your home while doing things you like, such as reading and watching TV, knitting, or playing games with the family.

Choose Easy Flooring:

When you have flooring that has gaps or joint lines, you have a lot more dirt to clean as this type of flooring gives it a place for dirt to settle. Look into flooring services to find something that would suit your home and give you an easy life when it comes to cleaning, something that means you’ll only need a broom and a mop to keep it clean. There are plenty of options when it comes to flooring, so you won’t find it difficult to get something to suit your home, needs, and budget.

Keep Things Simple:

Keeping things simple not only makes your home look clean and tidy rather than cluttered, but it also helps you to keep it clean and tidy. When you have fancy moldings on your walls, they will do nothing but collect dust, protruding edges will attract spiders and webs, detailed light fittings will want dusting regularly, and blinds or shutters collect dirt. All of this creates more jobs for you; however, if you do like your home to be full of ornaments and trinkets, then put them in easy reach so that dusting is not an even bigger task.

Choose Stain Resistant Fabrics/Materials:

If you have children and often spend your time wiping up after spills, then choose furniture with materials such as leather or fabrics that are durable, stain-resistant, and easy to clean. This way, you won’t have to spend your time scrubbing and trying to get pen marks or food stains out of furniture that you love.

Declutter:

When you have fewer things in your house, you automatically will have less mess, and when you have less mess, you have less stress. Having a clean and tidy house will make you feel calmer and more relaxed. If you declutter your home and donate or sell things that you don’t need or use anymore, then not only will your home look cleaner but there will be fewer things to clean. Total win/win!

Cut your cleaning time significantly with the tips above and get back to your Netflix marathons! 😀

Featured Image By: Wokandapix from Pixabay

Top Tips For Looking Your Best

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Top Tips For Looking Your Best

When you look great, you usually feel great, which is a recipe for success and joyfulness. You can’t help but have confidence in yourself and hold your head up high. The dilemma may be that you’re not taking good care of yourself and are letting your self-care slip because you’re busy.

Make yourself and your wellness and beauty a priority, and you’ll be much happier about your appearance. Review the following tips so you can look your best and get back to living life to the fullest with a smile on your face. Have fun with it and enjoy the transformation when you’re in a better place:

Get Enough Sleep:

One tip for looking your best is to get plenty of sleep. Lack of sleep can take a toll on your mental and physical health. Sleep not only gives you more natural energy, but it’ll ensure you don’t have dark circles under your eyes too. Your skin will glow and have fewer blemishes, and you’ll find it’s easier to maintain or lose weight. Sleep is essential to you feeling motivated to achieve your goals and tackle your to-do list.

Take Care of Your Smile:

Another tip for looking your best is to take care of your smile. Smiling makes you feel lively and will help you give off a friendly vibe to others. Visit your dentist regularly and brush your teeth and floss at home to maintain white and healthy teeth. If you’ve lost any teeth due to injury or illness, you may want to consider dental implants. After this procedure, you can smile confidently and will no longer feel self conscious when speaking and interacting with others.  

Do Your Hair & Makeup:

Wake up each day and take a shower and get ready so you can feel and look your best. Commit to doing your hair and applying makeup, which will make you feel ready to seize the day. You want to leave the house feeling good about yourself and the way you look. If you roll out of bed with messy hair and no makeup, you might feel tired and lousy all day. If you’re in a rush, then find quick up-dos you can use for your hair and, at the minimum, put on mascara and lip balm to add some color to your smile.

Exercise & Eat Well:

You’re going to look your best when you’re at a healthy weight and are free from stress and anxiety. Two ways you can reduce your worry and get into better shape is to exercise and eat well. Find physical activities you enjoy doing, and that allow you to burn calories and break a sweat. Get in the habit of cooking for yourself at home and carrying healthy snacks with you to eat throughout the day. When you combine healthy eating with regular exercise, you’ll be setting yourself up to love the way you look, and you’ll feel energized and content inside your mind and body, as well. 

It’s hard to feel good when times are so crazy but the tips above will help get some pep back in your step!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Blogging Through 2020

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Blogging Through 2020

Hello! For over six years, lifewithlilred has been going strong on the blogosphere and, unless there are some crazy circumstances, I write each and every day. You all have been with me through a lot from graduating college, break ups, car accidents and everything in between. With that in mind, there has never been a lack of anything for me to write about because it always felt like something new was happening.

Then, COVID-19 came around in 2020 and said “hold my beer”. As someone who works with extremely high risk families every day, all of my previous favorite activities fell by the wayside to not only protect me but all of my clients and loved ones. This meant no more shopping in store, no movies, no restaurants, no bars – no nothing, really.

This change from a constant on the go career as well as bopping around here, there, and everywhere with Johnny as his band played shows to a mostly sedentary lifestyle in my apartment was a huge shock. I have never had a lack of things to talk about on my blog but now, some days, I just don’t feel like I have anything to say!

But, we all know that Lil Red having nothing to say is impossible and I still have managed to write every day of 2020 despite the constant ups and downs. This is something that I am really proud of myself for because I have had to get so creative with my content to keep new posts coming, which can be uber difficult when you barely leave the house, lol.

Blogging through 2020 has taught me about finding inspiration in unlikely places and being more forthright in my own opinions and beliefs. I am so thankful that all of my beloved readers have stuck with me through such crazy times and it makes me that much more motivated to get up early every morning and write before I have to head to work.

Honestly, I have always been my toughest critic and it’s sometimes hard for me to come up with nice things to say about myself. It feels so good to see the fruits of my labor every day with a new post on lifewithlilred and having such a sense of pride in my work has increased my self esteem tenfold.

Times are hard right now and everyone’s situation is different. But, in Lil Red’s world, we’re all in this together so thank you for continuing to share in this crazy journey with me! ❤

Has it been difficult for you to blog during 2020? What do you do when you have writer’s block? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

What Have I Been Up To?

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What Have I Been Up To?

Howdy! I will always be the first to say how much I miss pre-COVID life. I miss going on dates with Johnny, seeing all of our friends, and not worrying my head off every time I’m in public. And, as someone who works with very high risk families, nonessential outings just seem unimportant to me. So what in the heck have I been up to, then, if I don’t do much of anything in public any more? A whole lot of the following:

Reading:

I love, love, love to read and always have so ample at home time has meant finishing beaucoup books. I try to read at least two chapters or thirty or so pages depending on the book daily. Right now, I am finishing up the prequel to The Hunger Games called The Ballad Of Songbirds And Snakes and it is excellent! I have such a hankering now to go back and read the entire series and watch all of the movies, of course. 😀

The Sleeping Nymph by Ilaria Tuti is what’s on deck after my Hunger Games book. I am also always open to suggestions of your favorite books so be sure to let me know in the comments!

Duolingo:

Like reading, I try to practice all five of the languages I’m learning daily on Duolingo. I am currently on a twenty day streak of studying French, Spanish, Italian, German, and Czech and that is huge for me. The last time I had a streak that long was when I was recovering for a month from my oral surgery gone wrong.

I am very motivated to keep that streak going and I am so excited for Johnny to get me Duolingo Plus for Christmas so I no longer have to worry about having enough hearts to complete each practice session. I also plan on adding Swedish, Latin, or Greek into the mix next!

Video Chats:

My ultimate BFF, Lea, and I still see each other about once a month to have a social distanced drink at either one of our homesteads. Other than that, I do a lot of FaceTime, Skype, and Zoom to “see” all of the rest of my pals in my friend group. I love setting aside an hour block or so on the weekend to catch up with friends both near and far and it definitely helps keep me sane to chat even if it isn’t face to face.

Video Games:

Johnny and I are both in love with our Nintendo Switch and when I have some free time, I enjoy playing Animal Crossing. It is so relaxing and fun and I am always excited when the game updates so that you can catch new fish and bugs and participate in different activities like growing pumpkins or foraging mushrooms. I cannot wait to see what our island looks like for Christmas!

I also just beat Paper Mario: The Origami King last week and it was an absolute blast. Johnny got it for me for our one year anniversary and it felt so good to finally beat it. The game was insanely entertaining, visually beautiful, and it was challenging without ever being too too hard. I plan on buying a new Mario game for the Switch soon so if anyone has any favorites, please let me know. 🙂

Online Shopping:

Finally, there is nothing like a little bit of online shopping to help perk me up. I have so enjoyed all of my early Christmas shopping and I am very pleased to say that I am almost done buying for everyone on my gift list. Of course, that doesn’t mean I don’t pick out a little something something for myself too – especially since I haven’t gone shopping in person since February.

I love ordering small pick me ups like face masks to pamper myself with and, when I really feel like splurging, I never say no to a new pair of shoes!

Are the activities I listed above the most exciting? Not by a long shot. But I value my safety and those around me much more than needing to be out and about right now. So, in the end, it’s not all that bad. ❤

What are your favorite at home activities? What do you miss the most from pre-COVID times? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Gourmet Instant Food You Need In Your Life

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Gourmet Instant Food You Need In Your Life

The words “gourmet” and “instant” don’t usually go together. But in our high-tech world of technological voodoo, that’s no longer the case in the realm of food. Today there are all sorts of instant gourmet options available. And it’s taking instant gratification to a whole new level:

Cheese Stuffed Burgers:

Why put cheese on top of your burger patty when you can put it inside, instead? That’s the idea behind cheese-stuffed burgers. As a home chef, you just cook the burgers as you usually would. Then when you bite into them, the cheese oozes out, and you get a massive dose of flavor.

What’s nice about these burgers is how runny the cheese gets when you cook it this way. The meat prevents evaporation, so you wind up with a sous-vide-style experience. These burgers tend to work best with semi-sweet sauces, like BBQ, but you can also pair them with coleslaw or onion rings.

Gourmet Calzones:

Call up your local late night pizza delivery services these days and they will probably offer gourmet options around the clock. Today, it is a completely different experience. Takeouts know that their patrons want quality ingredients and new taste sensations. The standard options are still popular. But there’s also a big market for the finer flavors.

Today, gourmet calzones are a big hit. That’s because you can fit more quality ingredients in them than you can a standard pizza. Goat cheese, spinach, sun dried tomatoes, and roasted peppers are all par for the course. And the taste experience is dramatically improved for foodies with sophisticated palates.

Specialty Ramen:

If you thought that ramen was just for students on microscopic budgets, think again. It turns out that multiple vendors are now making gourmet versions that harken back to the original Asian dish. With these meals, you’re getting much more than just some cheap noodles suspended in MSG-filled water. Many come with things like king shiitake mushrooms, wholefood glass noodles, sugar snap peas, black fungus, and marinated tofu. In fact, the number of options is quite spectacular. If you haven’t checked out the market yet, you definitely should!

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Mac n’ Cheese With a Twist:

This classic American dish is usually something you put in the microwave and enjoy steaming hot a few minutes later. But even this “plain” dish is going through a revolution.

The standard version is just a cheese sauce with refined macaroni pieces. It’s comforting, but it’s not healthy food. Today, though, people are discovering that they can create a better experience by combining flavors and using whole food ingredients. So, instead of using refined pasta, they’re using specialty wholemeal versions. And instead of using cheese sauce, they’re replacing it with cashew and nutritional yeast. A lot of budding chefs also like to char some broccoli with soy sauce before mixing into the main meal.

Bean Sausages:

Finally, we’re seeing the rise of bean gourmet sausages made with fresh ingredients. In these recipes, the base is always beans and wholemeal breadcrumbs. People are then adding their choice of herbs to create a variety of flavors to keep them interested throughout the month.

Is your mouth watering yet? Use the ideas above and transform your family dinner tonight!

Featured Image By: Pexels

Are You Ready To Move In With Your Partner?

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Are You Ready To Move In With Your Partner?

So, you’ve met the perfect person. They make you happy in so many different ways and dating them is a dream. Sure, you’ve got your ups and downs, but nothing so far has been a deal breaker. If you’re wondering whether you’re ready to take the next step – moving in together – then take a look at these four key signs that you can start apartment-hunting:

It’s something you’ve already talked about:

If you aren’t talking about your future, then it might not be the right time to spring a conversation about moving in together on your partner. Not only is it healthy to keep communication lines open with your partner about what your expectations are of the relationship, but it will also indicate that you both want the same things and are prepared to take that next step together.

It’s not about “fixing” things:

You should avoid taking steps in your relationship because you’re expecting them to fix things. Moving in together won’t patch up a rocky relationship – that needs to come before you pick up the keys. Moving in together is a big deal, but it won’t suddenly mean your S.O. becomes a better communicator overnight, or more ambitious, or any other little annoyance that you’ve been ignoring up to now. If that’s your expectation, it might be time to put on the brakes.

You mostly agree:

Okay, we’re not saying you have to agree on everything – that would be pretty boring. But there does have to be a bit of common ground. If everything you’re looking for in an apartment is different, then that’s a reason to pause for thought. Are they interested in buying an apartment off the plan, but it’s not something you want? Or they’d prefer to be further outside the city whereas you want the nightlife? There should be an overlap of what you both want in the place you decide to cohabit. Of course, there will be points of compromise for both of you down this path, but that should make your relationship strong, rather than be a point of contention.

You’re okay with loosing some of your independence:

Again, this isn’t something that you’ll lose entirely. It’s usually a sign of an unhealthy relationship if you’re too dependent on each other. But at the same time, you will be giving up some of your own space and time for someone else. Rather than focusing on anything practical, like whether or not your lease is running out or you spend most of your time sleeping over at each other’s places, think about the emotional side of cohabiting. Is this person who you want to wake up next to every morning? Share meals with? Go through the ups and downs and life stresses with? If there’s a question mark hovering over those things, then you might be rushing into it.

Don’t downplay how important moving in together is – it’s usually the first steps towards a bright future for you and your partner. Just make sure you’re going in with your eyes open before you start picking out bedroom furniture!

Featured Image By: Pexels