Tag Archives: hobby

Planning The Ultimate Game Night With Your Friends

Standard
Planning The Ultimate Game Night With Your Friends

Hi! The weather in Akron, Ohio is currently snowy and freezing which ultimately makes going out a real drag. Believe me, I love nothing more than being out and about with my boyfriend and friends. However, it’s a hard pass when I need thirteen layers on to stay warm! This cold existence has left all of us stranded in our homes, riddled with the desire to still do something while remaining on the couch the whole time.

Cue: A game night

This past month, I have participated in so many game nights, I have lost track. Am I mad about it? No! Quite the opposite, actually. You know why? Because I prefer something like this to going to the bar any day of the week. In this post, we’re going to discuss the makings of a perfect game night for you and your friends to enjoy:

Location:

The host of the game night should reside in a good central location from all of the guests if they have enough room for such tom foolery. You might not want to be Keeper Of The Games in your studio apartment! Make sure there is enough space for everyone to spread out comfortably and I do mean comfortably because no one wants to sit on a threadbare couch!

Snacks:

Snacks are a crucial part of the game night and the responsibility can be divided up pretty evenly among your group. Everyone could throw in money for pizza, share a snack of their own, or a potluck style meal could be what suits you guys best. Either way, it shouldn’t be up to one person to provide all of the snacks for your evening.

Drinks:

Does your group of friends enjoy drinking? Great. Everyone can bring some beer or a bottle of wine. Does your group of friends not enjoy drinking? Great. Everyone can bring some pop, juice, or you can make mocktails. All I know is, you can’t be snacking on salty treats without something to wash it down with!

Games:

The games for the event is definitely something that should be discussed beforehand amongst your group. Is it a video gaming night? Classic board games? How about a murder mystery night? This is all important to know ahead of time so everyone knows what to bring or how they should dress.

Normally, my game nights include a little bit of everything from video games and cards to trivial pursuit and dice. You can stick with a theme and alternate weekly or draw different games from a hat. Just make sure that everyone who has a game that they would like to play gets that opportunity at some point.

Game nights are an amazing way to spend time with your friends while saving money that would otherwise be spent at the bar or restaurant. Make your events a weekly or monthly thing and watch your friend group grow even more tight-knit through the bond of good old fashioned fun!

What are your favorite games to play? What are some of your tips for the ultimate game night? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

When Can You Say That You’ve ‘Made It’?

Standard
When Can You Say That You’ve ‘Made It’?

Perhaps the easiest thing in the world to do is compare yourself to other people. As children, we learn this technique to help us understand our place in the social hierarchy, for better or worse. As we get older and compare our grades to other children or our siblings, we continually find out if we’re ‘good enough’ or where we’re lagging behind.

This can translate into adulthood, where the means of our livelihood or how much money we pull in each year can be somewhat intrusive areas of discussion at the Christmas work party or family barbecue. But when can you say that you’ve ‘made it’? We often use this term to express artists that now have enough listeners to guarantee material success, but should we really limit ourselves to this description?

In the following post, we hope to widen the parameters through which you may give yourself the real credit of ‘making it’, allowing us to think along healthier and more considered lines. Please, consider:

A Home You Love:

When occupying a home you love, you have one of the most vital and beautiful possessions anyone could hope for – no matter if you rent or use a mortgage to gain said property. A home you love can be a vital part of your personality, help you raise a family, or schedule the best social events within, and generally give you the room to be your most authentic self. General contractors can help you express your creative interests and tastes over the years, and that in itself gives you the opportunity to design to your hearts content. If you have this, no matter if you live alone or own a property in which you keep roommates or a humble family setup, you have something to be proud of.

Connections You Care About:

It’s very easy for us to mark ourselves as only successful when affluent, or able to define our material success this way. But really, the people we know, the loving connections we adopt, the closeness to our family, the genuine experiences we share with our friends – these are the things that count. It’s possible for someone living on a shoestring budget to enjoy and curate the closest relationships around them, while it’s also possible for someone within a beautiful, million-dollar home to feel completely isolated from those they are supposed to call friends. This realization can help you adjust your priorities accordingly.

Curating Your Interests:

Curating your interests is something that can seem so simple and basic. We’re all supposed to have hobbies. But more than simply watching something on Netflix or playing a video game (which are more than justified methods of relaxing and taking some stress off), curating a real interest can help bring you an incredible amount of joy over the years. It might be reading into a subject, learning a craft, or cooking well and eating a wide array of cuisines. We take interests for granted, but really, we should appreciate them as additional pursuits that give our life value. If you have a few of these to curate, you are truly a lucky individual.

With this advice, we hope you can see the conventional idea of ‘making it’ is only worthwhile when contributing to a healthy, humble life!

Featured Image By: Pexels

3 Tips To Get Your Horse Show Ready

Standard
3 Tips To Get Your Horse Show Ready

 

Showing your horse can be an extremely exciting and fulfilling act. Whether you have shown before or if this is your first time, there are a lot of preparations that you need to make. It is crucial that you don’t wait until the last minute. Here are some tips to ready you and your horse for the next show:

Exercise Your Horse:

Leading up to the show, you will have to practice and train with your horse. Not only does your horse need to be ready for the show, but so do you. Make sure that your animal can tackle all of the different horse show jumps before you arrive on the big day.

Groom Your Horse:

Grooming can serve as a preventative medicine for animals. It increases blood to the surface of the skin and massages the different muscle groups. In addition, when you groom your horse, you are solidifying your bond. It is a great way for you and your animal to be close, leading up to the horse show.

Gather Your Equipment:

You do not want to forget any of your necessary equipment before the show. You should start to prepare to leave two to three days in advance. The longer that you give yourself to prepare, the less likely you are to forget anything. To make sure that you forget nothing, you can also make a list in advance to ensure that you don’t forget your equipment at home.

If you show your horse, then you already know that it can be an exciting experience. If you are new or if you are looking for tips to create a better experience, then these can help prepare you for the next show.

Cycling Safety Tips Women Should Always Remember

Standard
Cycling Safety Tips Women Should Always Remember

Cycling is an exhilarating activity that many people enjoy. Sadly, it does not seem to be a sport with a lot of women involved. In fact, only 29 percent of cyclists in San Francisco are women. Meanwhile in Barcelona, there’s only a single female cyclist for every three male cyclists.

Women deal with many struggles when cycling, which include violence, discrimination, and harassment. Just as much as people need to be educated against such behaviors, women also need to learn how to protect themselves when cycling – whether it is from rude drivers or from potential road accidents. Enjoy cycling by staying safe. Here are eight safety tips that women can apply when they hit the road:

Gear up:

Cycling requires you to be on the road, which means that you will be exposed to hazards every driver faces. Make sure to wear appropriate attire. Don’t let anything hang loose, as it could get snagged along the way. Wearing a helmet is also an extra protection that will save your life. Don’t forget to wear sunscreen, especially on easily exposed areas like the back of your neck. And upgrade your bike to improve its condition and to ensure your safety.

Be seen:

The more you dress like a peacock, the more you will stand out and get seen on the road. Always wear high-visibility gear when cycling. Choose ones that are not only reflective but also breathable. Bringing along a backpack will cover the majority of your back and block your high-vis outfit. You can opt to invest in a reflective backpack to make you visible from the back.

Keeping the lights on will also help you see the road at night and make you visible at the same time. Bring backup LED lights just in case the main lights go off.

Stay alert:

Always keep your eyes on the road and have a presence of mind when you go cycling. Look out for other drivers, motorists, and fellow cyclists. Even pedestrians walking their cute pets can distract you in one second. And anything can happen in that single second.

Follow road rules:

If you haven’t biked or driven lately, you may need to get a refresher course on the road rules, especially ones that are applicable to cycling. Most importantly, know the bike safety rules. This will help you prevent the most common cyclist accidents.

Be confident:

Cyclists have as much right on the road as motorists. Be confident in your decisions and abilities. To keep safe on the road, let road users know your intention clearly early on. This will help keep traffic flowing. Avoid road accidents by steering clear from vehicle blind spots. Staying close to the side or behind a moving car will not end well for you in case an accident occurs.

Prevent doorings:

Always be on the lookout for possible doorings. You will never know when accidents will occur, so you should take steps to minimize this occurrence. Watch out for parked cars and look ahead at their mirrors for any vehicle occupants. Avoid riding inside the door zone as doors could spring open unexpectedly.

Be safe by bringing along some first-aid supplies, such as an elastic sports tape that will help relieve inflamed muscles. These should come in handy if you ever encounter a dooring or any other accident.

Ride smart:

Plan when to ride ahead of time. Early mornings or evenings will let you ride in less traffic and keep you a lot safer. Avoid peak times, especially if you ride anywhere near shopping centers or school zones. If you find yourself riding in such settings, though, be extra careful. Watch out for pedestrians and drivers and always be prepared for anything.

Stay secure:

Keeping yourself safe also means keeping your trusty steed secure. Don’t forget to include a bike lock when you prepare for a ride. This is especially useful when you’re taking a quick stop and have to leave the bike in an unfamiliar area.

Both women and men have the right to participate in cycling. Just like any sport, there are many hazards that surround it. But these shouldn’t stop people from doing the activities they love. Simply follow the rules of the road, apply the right safety tips, and you should enjoy cycling to the fullest.

Featured Image By: Shutterstock

Lil Red’s Book Club: The Death Of Mrs. Westaway Edition

Standard
Lil Red’s Book Club: The Death Of Mrs. Westaway Edition

Helloooo everyone! I recently just finished the fifth book out right now by Ruth Ware called The Death Of Mrs. Westaway. I, for the most part, have had a very positive experience with this author. Though there were a few books like The Woman In Cabin 10 and In A Dark Dark Wood that I wasn’t wild about, I highly enjoyed The Turn Of The Key and The Lying Game. Unfortunately, The Death Of Mrs. Westaway was a big miss for me with the grand reveal so, without giving any spoilers away, let’s discuss:

book3

The Death Of Mrs. Westaway revolves around twenty-one year old Harriet AKA Hal, a tarot card reader who runs a small stand on Brighton Pier. She inherited the shop from her mother after she was killed in a car accident and needed to take up shop immediately to try to make ends meet. Young, broke, orphaned (she doesn’t know who her father is), and owing money to a dangerous loan shark Hal is in way over her head when bills pile up, her stand is lacking customers in the winter season, and the threats from the man she owes to turns dangerous.

Hal feels the need to escape and she can do that if she can swing fooling an entire family into believing she’s related to them. When she receives a letter in the mail claiming that she is the recipient of a substantial inheritance from the deceased Mrs. Westaway, it seems almost too good to be true – especially considering that she believed her grandparents to be dead. Despite committing a major act of fraud, Hal has nothing left to lose and everything to gain and heads to the funeral with the claim that she is the daughter of the deceased woman’s daughter, Maud.

At the funeral, Hal encounters the three brothers of her “mother” and, though lots of questions are raised, she is supposedly in with a family that she seemingly has no connection to. Or so she thinks. Because when she discovers her real mother in a photo of the siblings at their elaborate Victorian manor, everything she thinks she knows about herself and her mother becomes flipped. Does this family know who her father is? What is Hal’s mother’s relation to them? Is she a rightful heir to the inheritance after all? Read the book and find out!

I am not sure how to feel about The Death Of Mrs. Westaway. I actually loved it until the grand reveal and, although I saw it coming, I was disappointed with the outcome. I genuinely can’t say anything more than that without giving it completely away. But, what I will say, is that I did enjoy a solid ninety percent of the book. It was well written, suspenseful, downright sinister at times, and I liked almost all of the characters.

I appreciated Hal’s bravery throughout the novel and I liked that she didn’t back down to find the answers that directly pertained to her. She was able to play herself off as the mousy long lost niece and all the while she was making plans and using her intuition to solve the mystery of her own life. She was a heroine that I rooted for the entire time and I wish that the grand reveal did her more justice.

All in all, I’m going to rate this book with a six out of ten. I did not hate it but it was certainly not my favorite Ruth Ware novel by any means. I feel like I ended my reading journey with her on a sour note and am looking forward to a new book by her so that redemption can possibly happen.

What are you reading right now? How did you feel about The Death Of Mrs. Westaway if you read it? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Lil Red’s Book Club: The Turn Of The Key Edition

Standard
Lil Red’s Book Club: The Turn Of The Key Edition

Hello! In today’s edition of Lil Red’s Book Club, we are going to be discussing another one of Ruth Ware’s novels called The Turn Of The Key. If Ruth Ware’s name sounds familiar to you, that’s because it probably is! I have spent this past summer reading all of her novels and she has been featured in many a Lil Red’s Book Club posts these past few months.

While recovering from the car accident, I was able to dedicate my time to reading The Turn Of The Key in a matter of days and I enjoyed it very much. So, without giving any spoilers away, let’s discuss:

key

The Turn Of The Key revolves around Rowan, the new live in nanny for an extremely wealthy husband and wife architect duo and their four daughters. They live in a remote location in the hills of Scotland in an old house with an eerie combination of extremely modern technology and the original layout of the home from decades ago. The technology is so advanced, in fact, that everything can be controlled by an app called “Happy”. The shower settings, lights, curtains, doorbell, coffee machine, and oh yeah – the video monitoring in the bedrooms.

Rowan gets thrown right into her new position, as Sandra and Bill, the parents travel a lot for work and is almost immediately left alone with the girls Maddie, Ellie, Petra, and Rhiannon. The seemingly “perfect” position with the plush pay and fancy accommodations is anything but, though. Especially considering all four of the previous nannies were driven out by forces that can only be described as supernatural.

These powers that be get to work as soon as Rowan starts her new gig. From creaking in the attic to a freezing cold bedroom and the Happy app working on its own, all of the frustrations of caring for the difficult children and a lack of sleep begin to catch up with her and everyone is a suspect. The maid, handyman, children, – heck, even the parents could have a role in what’s going on because Rowan firmly doesn’t believe in ghosts.

Is what’s going on a prank, the old house just being an old house, or something far more sinister? And is everyone in the home really who they say they are? Read The Turn Of The Key to find out if Rowan can uncover the mystery before someone gets seriously hurt.

The Turn Of The Key has easily become one of my favorite Ruth Ware novels. Wrote in the form of a series of letters, this page turner keeps you guessing until the very last sentence of what really happened in the house during Rowan’s stint as the nanny. So many bombshells were dropped and twists and turns happened that I simply didn’t see coming and, normally, I’m really good at that!

I can’t give too much away in the synopsis of the book without spoiling the surprises but, if you’re in need of a good story to crack into, then definitely give The Turn Of The Key a try. Especially since I’m rating it with an: eight out of ten stars. For a unique story line, interesting characters, and being absolutely un-put-down-able. Bravo!

What book are you reading right now? Have you read any of Ruth Ware’s other novels? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

The Importance Of After-School Activities For Kids

Standard
The Importance Of After-School Activities For Kids

Being able to give your kids the best start in life is important to any parent and, with that, their education and the life experiences they have growing up is essential. Activities for your kids can help keep them engaged and on a successful path. There are plenty of reasons why after-school activities are important to take part in for your children, like the following:

New Experiences:

As a child, you remember everything, and that’s both the good times and the bad. The experiences you get through life help you become who you are when you reach adulthood and, even then, you’re still learning! After-school activities will provide your children with new experiences that they may not get in the school itself. Opening them up to more of this is only going to be better for creating the memories that will stay with them forever and that they may end up passing onto their children.

The Opportunity To Socialize:

Being in a group environment and meeting new people helps to build a child’s ability to socialize successfully. Being shy is nothing to be worried about as this is a personality trait, just like any other. However, it’s good that even someone who’s shy can still have a conversation with someone. Doing activities that involve sports or team communication are a great way to help speak to others and, more importantly, to find those friendship groups where they fit in. It’s often something we learn as we grow, but there’s no harm in finding those you know you’ll like sooner!

Helps Them Figure Out Their Passions:

With an afterschool stem class, there’s so much more that a child could be tapping into that they just don’t get in normal school timetables. This is where passions can be discovered, and it may end up helping them in figuring out what career they’d like to do when they’re older. Of course, as children grow up, their career aspirations dramatically change. However, there’s nothing wrong with encouraging that exploration into what brings them happiness and joy.

Builds Confidence:

Confidence is something that some are naturally gifted with and, for others, it’s something you gain and grow over time. Being confident can help push you to achieve what you want in life. As a child, being in a new environment can feel a little nerve-racking, but the more that they’re exposed to these activities, the more confidence you’ll see in them each time. As parents, it can be wonderful to see this confidence in your children. To see them be determined or to not let anything get in their way is one life lesson that’s certainly worth learning for everyone.

After-school activities contribute to giving the best start in life for your child. Find some classes or groups that they might have interest in and watch them grow!

Featured Image By: Pixabay