Tag Archives: hobby

The Importance Of After-School Activities For Kids

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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

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Lil Red’s Book Club: The Lying Game Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: The Lying Game Edition

Howdy! I recently finished another Ruth Ware novel called The Lying Game and have read The Woman In Cabin 10 and In A Dark, Dark Wood by her this summer, too. I have to say, I wasn’t overly impressed with either of those books but The Lying Game was a great read and I am happy that I chose to give Ware one more try before calling it quits and finding another author to read. So, without giving any spoilers away, let’s discuss:

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The Lying Game revolves around new mother, Isa, and her three best girlfriends from high school, Kate, Thea (Whose name I’m still not sure how to pronounce!), and Fatima. At their boarding school, the girls reveled in what they called “The Lying Game” and would keep a scoreboard to record the points from the tall tales that they would spin based on the quality and if people actually believed them. The game was supposed to be all in good fun and the rules were simple, including “never lie to your friends” and “know when to stop the lie”.

The girls spent one year at the boarding school together, which came to an abrupt halt when they were asked to leave quietly in the wakes of a possible scandal that directly involved them. And, although it’s a rarity that they talk now as they are all in their thirties, when a friend texts the three words of “I need you” the now women drop their responsibilities immediately and flock to the one in distress.

So, when Kate sends Isa the call to action, she packs up her belongings with her six month old daughter in tow and makes the journey to her, near the old boarding school. The text was indeed an urgent one because once the ladies arrive to Kate’s, it is revealed that a human bone was found in the sea – a result of their “game” being taken too far. With a police investigation nipping at their heals, the once best friends have to come up with a plan and unravel the truth behind their lies before an arrest is made. Were they murderers? Covering something up? Or just plain stupid? Read the book and find out!

I absolutely adored The Lying Game and devoured it in a matter of days. It was so refreshing to read a book with a tangible plot and told from the perspective of someone with a sound mind. Because, let’s be honest, the unstable narrator shtick has been hopelessly drawn out. The Lying Game was filled with twists and turns that actually seemed plausible and I really had no idea what the end result was going to be.

It was interesting to see how a mistake that happened in their teenage years has haunted each woman in the almost two decades since it happened. Each one dealt with the trauma in a different way and it made for fascinating characters with realistic flaws and personalities. The Lying Game was a wild ride and I am now ready to tuck into another Ruth Ware novel ASAFP!

And, now for the star rating…. I award The Lying Game with an eight out of ten. The plot was riveting, the characters were all likeable in their own ways, and I genuinely enjoyed myself while reading it. Highly recommend.

Has anyone read The Lying Game? What were your thoughts on it? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Cool Crafts: Personalized Card Making

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Cool Crafts: Personalized Card Making

Creating cards and letter writing is a lost art. Taking the time to make something with care adds personality to your crafting, something that cannot be replicated when buying cards from a store. That’s actually where most of the fun comes in, making a card that is entirely unique and took incredible patience and skill. If you’re just teetering on the brink of getting started and buying the various equipment you need, then take a look at these examples where card making becomes the perfect craft:

A mark of professionalism:

What if you could make your business card yourself? If you had the freedom, what kind of design would you use? When it comes to card making, it’s not just the normal greeting cards that you will be able to make, but business cards too. Right from scratch, you can decide the material so when someone touches it, they get a unique sensation. A business card made out of foam, for example, is much more memorable than typical card stock. Being able to make your own 3D designs so again, anyone who is rubbing their finger over it gets a different feel. And, rather than the typical rectangle business card, how about curved edges? Any colors, fonts, dies and materials, the choice is yours.

A bespoke wedding:

Wedding cards are, perhaps, the most difficult to choose. It’s not like a birthday that comes around every year, weddings are once in a lifetime. People who have been invited to the wedding will often fret whether or not their card looks extravagant enough and does it warrant being saved by the couple. Usually the married couple will only choose a select few cards that they’re going to save for the rest of their life along with all of the other wedding day memories. To make your card worthy of being kept and valued, you’ll need to make it yourself using Sizzix dies. These dies are some of the most detailed in the crafting world and there are plenty of them to choose from. Characters, letters, houses, animals, patterns and jewelry designs, for starters.

For your wedding card, you may wish to use thinlit dies, which are intricate patterns that are used to cut out the frontal design of your card. This allows the cover to be see-through and show a bit of what’s inside without opening it. The festive repeats, floral, seasonal, and mystical dies would go great for celebrating a moment of love and happiness.

Celebrating a milestone:

Normally, people get into crafting because they want to make a brilliant birthday card, which is fine. But you can use your crafting skills to make a card that marks a special milestone. This could be something like giving your parents an anniversary card for their 20 years together. It might be giving your daughter a card for her promotion at work. A moment in time where an achievement of perseverance and struggle is documented, acknowledged, and celebrated is perfect for making a personalized card.

First, you need custom dies which you can very easily order online. But what kind of dies would you need? For a promotion, how about the logo of the company they work for? For an anniversary maybe a picture from the photo album? Anything that relates to the focal point can be made into a 3D design with a custom die. Next, you should use materials and colors that match the event. Again, you could use corporate colors for the promotion card or the favorite colors of the couple. Ribbons and flowers are a great addition to personalized cards as a change of material and adds depth to the card.

Making a children’s book:

Children will one day grow too old to be read bedtime stories but, while you have the chance, make them a personal bedtime story. You can make up your own characters and story line to reflect the kind of teachings you want them to learn. With using the dies, you can make a 3D book which has lots of opportunity for interactive storytelling. Popup books are popular because they have moving parts, so you might want to incorporate that into your crafting skills, as well.

Handcrafted cards are incredibly personal and will instantly be recognized for the hard work you have put in. Start crafting a card and make something special for someone you care about!

How To Further Enjoy Following Sports Culture

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How To Further Enjoy Following Sports Culture

Not everyone is a fan of sports. Some might shrug when the Superbowl is on or when a particular country wins the World Cup. Some might groan when a pool game is being shown on television or they might avoid sports bars like the plague. But sports are so varied, vast, and community-driven that, often, to dismiss them outright is akin to saying you ‘just don’t like music.’ There’s something out there for you, even if you have yet to find it.

This means that, sometimes, going out of your way to find the sporting interest you enjoy can help improve your life. You don’t need to force it of course, but what’s the issue with potentially finding one more thing that can add value to your life? To us, that sounds wise. Who knows, this might even go further, such as deciding to run a PPH 247 operation or perhaps even getting involved in the sporting interest yourself.

Further following sporting culture can be a worthwhile and important adventure for you, and who knows? It might help you make new friends, too:

Consider A Wider Prospectus:

You might hate watching American football. You don’t like how the game starts and stops continually, the statistics that are continually read out, and how the players smash into each other and cause real injury. That’s fine. It might not be for you. Perhaps you’d be into something with more finesse like soccer (football), or perhaps even racing, such as formula one or drift rally competitions.

Maybe you prefer following one athlete rather than a team, such as watching golf, or even getting involved in the life histories and techniques of martial artists, such as through boxing or MMA. There’s a sport out there you haven’t considered, and sometimes attending a few events, even if they’re just local ones, can help you start to become invested in the sport. Don’t force it, but we would be surprised if your natural inclinations didn’t become just a little excited at this prospect.

Watch With Friends:

While there are some who enjoy watching sports any chance they can get, there are others who simply enjoy the social aspect of it all. Inviting a few friends over for game day, heading to a stadium and having your face painted, or even placing a friendly wager between friends can be a fun idea to help you enjoy and get invested in the sport. You may never watch a game outside of these large events such as derby’s or even the Olympics, but what matters is the fun you have.

Watch A Few Sporting Films:

There are many incredible films about sports out there. For example, Moneyball is a great movie starring Brad Pitt about the wonderful history of baseball and a particularly well-known story within it. Warrior, starring Tom Hardy and Joel Edgerton is a story about two brothers who, through familial breakdown and hardship, end up fighting in the same MMA events. And we needn’t mentioned the Mighty Ducks, or perhaps even hilarious movies such as Space Jam. Sometimes, all that matters is your entertainment to develop a love for the game.

With this advice, we hope you are better equipped to follow sporting culture and gain a new hobby and friends along the way.

Featured Image By: Pexels-CC0 License

5 Self Care Tips To Remember

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5 Self Care Tips To Remember

There is nothing more important than looking after yourself, and we’re constantly being told that self care is the way to do it. Spend some time doing yoga and putting cucumber on your eyes, and you’ll be cured of all of your ills, right? Well, maybe that’s a slight exaggeration, but looking after yourself is still an imperative part of your health and happiness, and it gives you the boost that you need to carry on during rough patches.

But what simple self care tips can you carry with you, in order to make sure that you know how and when to take some time out? We’ve put together five here, for those seeking inner peace and well being.

Drink more water:

Okay, you heard it here first. Well, you probably didn’t. Drink. More. Water. Those three little words are what everybody needs to hear. Not only will it keep you hydrated (obviously) but it will also clear up your skin, clear out the junk from your body, and give you the energy that you need to be as great as you can be. Oh, and it’s practically the easiest thing in the world. Carry a water bottle with you at all times; you won’t regret it.

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Just relax:

A lot of us don’t relax, because we don’t even know how to. Relaxing isn’t scrolling through your phone for hours or sitting there worrying about what you should be doing instead of relaxing. It’s really making an effort to chill out and to clear your mind of everything in order to do so. Work on letting things go, so that you can get to a place of total tranquility every once in a while.

Sleep well:

One of the main things that you need to do if you want to look after yourself is to sleep well. Sleeping gives your body a chance to restore itself and it’s good for the ol’ mind, too. Check out an air conditioning store nearby so that you can get the perfect sleep temperature nailed and try to maintain some kind of routine when it comes to the time that you go to bed and the time that you wake up.

Make time for your passions:

Your passions are what make life worth living and they’re not only great because you find them enjoyable. Escaping into the things that you love is perfect for self care, as it allows you to really be yourself and let go of all of the issues that are whizzing around your mind. Whether you love art, music, or reading, make sure that you’ve got time to pursue it. You’ll feel on top of the world when you do!

Be kind to yourself:

Many people beat themselves up all of the time, for various reasons. Maybe you’re not where you want to be with your career, you think that you’re not thin enough, or you believe that you’ve done something wrong that is going to follow you forever. However, you need to be kind to yourself. You’ll make mistakes, but you’re on the right path. You still deserve to be happy, so don’t forget this.

Enjoy improving your self care rituals; you deserve it!

Six Ways To Bring Out Your Inner Artist

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Six Ways To Bring Out Your Inner Artist

Art is often seen as something that is reserved for a dedicated few. It’s something that seems incredibly beginner unfriendly, inaccessible, and also expensive – but all three of those claims are far from the truth and the reality is that everyone possesses the creative mind required for art. The big hurdle to overcome is the initial step and, in this article, we’re going to show you six ways to bring out your inner artist:

Visit an art gallery or art-related event:

There are likely dozens, if not hundreds, of art-related events and galleries that you can visit for inspiration. It could be an art gallery, it could be a photography workshop, or even just a speech by a famous artist or design professional. Whatever the event is, attend it and see if it can change your mind to bring out your inner artist.

Look at the art of your favorite books and movies:

Everyone has a source of inspiration for their creative works and yours could be from your favorite books, movies, or cartoons. Plenty of cartoonists love watching different cartoons from all different eras for inspiration and some painters enjoy fantasy scenes from movies and use them as references for creations.

Find an alternate art medium:

You don’t have to stick to paints and canvas or even pencils and paper. There are plenty of fun and expressive mediums and tools that you can use such as chalk, graphite, sculpting, or even using Lego to create unique works of art. There are no limitations when it comes to art, so use whatever you want to be expressive and create something unique to you.

Try and go digital with your art:

Many people stay away from traditional art tools and mediums because they believe that it’s hard to recover from mistakes and they just hate to see their work crumpled in the bin. This is where digital tools can come in handy. With features like copy and pasting, layers, and the ever-so-useful undo button, it can make getting into art a lot easier.

Make friends in the art community and learn from them:

There are plenty of ways to get out there to meet the art community either in your local area or even over the internet. You could attend a paint and sip class to make friends while you work or you could join art communities over the internet and discuss things such as art tools and ideas together. You’ll find that it’s much easier to bring out your inner artist if you have friends that enjoy the same things as you.

Have a purpose for your artistic creations:

Lastly, try and find a purpose for your art. If you just use art as a creative stress reliever, then that’s perfectly fine. But if you’re interested in art because you want to sell fashionable shirts or posters, then having a goal to work towards will help motivate you and bring out your inner artist.

Remember that art isn’t about being perfect so create, explore, and always have fun!

Featured Image By: Unsplash

Lil Red’s Book Club: Those People Edition

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Lil Red’s Book Club: Those People Edition

Hello, hello everyone and welcome to a new edition of Lil Red’s Book Club! Today, we are going to be discussing the whodoneit thriller called Those People, written by Louise Candlish. I have been going through books left and right during my free time, and out of the past handful that I’ve finished, Those People has definitely been my favorite. It leaves you questioning how far you would go to stand up to a bully or, in this case, a neighbor from hell. Without revealing spoilers, let’s discuss:

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Lowland Way is the suburban dream street. Beautiful homes, posh neighbors, and a quiet peacefulness that makes it the ideal neighborhood for the families living there. That is, until Darren and Jodie move in, wreaking havoc on the once “family friendly” street. Loud music, parties, swearing, foul attitudes, a used car business ran from the front yard, and noisy as can be home renovations make the new neighbors on the block less than popular. Especially considering that their business and construction make them a massive eyesore on the picture perfect community.

What’s worse is, the more that Jodie and Darren’s neighbors like Tess, Sissy, Naomi, Em, Ant, and Ralph plea for the noise levels to be kept down, the more intense everything seems to get on their property. And, Darren and Jodie often scoff at any of the uptight neighbors coming to their yard with requests. As if all of this wasn’t bad enough, someone died on Darren and Jodie’s property as the result of an accident on their construction scaffolding.

Once this misfortune happens, the neighbors begin banding together to put an end to Darren and Jodie’s reign of terror. Even if that means committing a murder themselves. However, the scaffolding accident wasn’t so clear cut and while the neighbors are plotting murder, they are being investigated for one as the screws on the structure were tampered with. So, who committed the deed that made the “wrong” person die and can the neighbors work up the nerve to attempt murder again to get it right? Read Those People to find out!

This book was such a quick read for me because it was simply riveting. I loved how the chapters were presented from a different neighbor’s point of view each time and it kept me turning the page because I wanted to see how situations were seen in the other character’s eyes. There were two whodoneit scenarios in the book and I enjoyed piecing together the information from each neighbor to try and figure out what their role was in the crimes committed.

Those People was a nice break from the unstable female narrator books that I have been drawn to lately and it was well worth the read. I don’t think any of you will be able to put it down! I am going to rate it with a 7.5 out of ten and highly recommend it.

Has anyone else read Those People? What were your thoughts on it? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah