Tag Archives: parents

Cheer Up, Charles!

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Cheer Up, Charles!

Hello! My dad, CHARLES, is always spreading joy in the home with his beautiful bouquets and I look forward to seeing what arrangement is going to be on the kitchen table every time I stop by. This is his latest work:

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My dad is the best, funniest, most wonderful man I have ever known and, unfortunately, he broke his arm and dislocated his shoulder this past week. 😦 It makes me so sad and we are all hoping for a speedy recovery for him and are extremely thankful that he’s okay.

I wanted to make a call to action for Operation: Cheer Up, Charles and would love it if all of you could please comment with your favorite flowers and any well wishes. It will be like my readers are sending him a virtual bouquet! It would be so very appreciated and will be sure to make his day.

Thanks in advance to all and get well soon, Dad. I love you! ❤

Rebuilding A Relationship With An Estranged Family Member

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Rebuilding A Relationship With An Estranged Family Member

Families can be difficult and, sometimes, you’re going to argue. Usually, disagreements get forgotten and things go back to normal but that isn’t always the case as some families might end up splitting apart and not speaking, potentially for years. Dealing with estranged family members can be incredibly difficult and many people feel as though they want to keep things as they are and not speak to those people ever again.

However, even though you feel like that in the heat of the moment, it’s something that you could come to regret later on. Many people find that when they become parents and they start thinking about the importance of family, they want to rebuild those relationships before it’s too late. If you have an estranged family member and you want to reconnect with them, here are some important things to keep in mind:

Forgive Them For The Past:

If you are searching for an estranged family member because you feel like you’ve got a score to settle, things are never going to work out. It’s important that you forgive them for the past before you reconnect with them so you are going into this process with a positive mindset. Many people are estranged from loved ones that have been in legal trouble, for example. If this is the case, you need to deal with the practical elements, like how to search for an inmate and set up a visit, but you also need to find a way to forgive them for the mistakes they made in the first place. If you are not ready to put the past behind you, meeting up with estranged family members will only make things worse for both of you.

Establish Clear Boundaries:

Putting clear boundaries in place will help you rebuild the relationship slowly and avoid conflict. You should make your boundaries clear from the beginning and what those boundaries are depends on the relationship and the reason for it breaking down. To start, you may tell them that you won’t tolerate lying if that was a big issue before. Sometimes, you may also need practical boundaries in place about what time they can call you or how often you will see one another. The whole process will be much easier if everybody has clear expectations from the beginning.

Maintain Other Family Relationships:

When you rekindle a relationship with a family member that you haven’t spoken to for years, it feels like you have to make up for a lot of lost time. It’s common for people to throw themselves into that relationship and neglect other family members without even realizing it. It’s important that you are aware of this and you take the time to do fun activities with the family and spend quality time with your partner so they don’t feel like this new relationship has taken over everything else. 

These are all important things to consider but the main thing you need to remember is that you must be patient. Healing old wounds takes time, but as long as you don’t push it, your relationship can mend.

Featured Image By: Pexels

More Spring Flowers To Brighten Your Day

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More Spring Flowers To Brighten Your Day

Hello! At my parent’s house a few weeks ago, my dad got a bouquet of the most lovely orange and yellow tulips for the kitchen table. I was so enamored by the sunburst colors, especially in the middle of winter, and I didn’t think that anything could be prettier. That is, until I saw the beautiful arrangement that my dad made special for Valentine’s Day. The ruby red tulips he picked out were such a unique twist on traditional V-Day roses and it also rang true to my Lil Red namesake so, of course, I was smitten! Check it out:

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Whenever I see a new bouquet at my parent’s house, it never fails to put a huge smile on my face. My dad has never been known to spend more than five dollars or so on flowers but he always manages to make his arrangements look stunning and expensive. These store bought tulips are divine, yes, but they still have nothing on my dad’s wildflower bouquets fresh from his garden in the summer!

As you can tell in the pictures above, there was snow on the ground when my dad made this bouquet and the contrast of the freshly fallen snow and the fiery red flowers was like Mother Nature putting on her own personal show special for us. I can’t imagine anyone not being able to delight in beautiful, colorful flowers and I feel so lucky that I constantly get to enjoy them at my parent’s house. ❤

What is your favorite flower? Do you have a green thumb? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Enjoying The Kitchen As A Family

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Enjoying The Kitchen As A Family

The kitchen is often considered the heart of the home so why not get better acquainted with it during your next family night as opposed to the usual movies or games. Kitchens are meant to be used and enjoyed and creating a meal with your family gives you the opportunity to work as a team in a different activity while still spending quality time together. Who knows, you might just have a secret chef in your home! Try the following during your next family night for some good food and good fun:

Agree On A Menu:

If you are going to prepare an entire dinner with your family, then it is best to agree on a menu beforehand so you can pick up all of the necessary ingredients and save you from any surprise trips to the store. Is there going to be a cuisine style that should be adhered to? Is each person going to make their own dish or will tasks be delegated? Will there be enough options for people with dietary needs? All of this should come into consideration while preparing the menu to ensure that everything goes smoothly while cooking your meal.

Don’t forget to read your recipes carefully for instructions that you must complete beforehand or a crazy long cooking time so you can plan accordingly. It also doesn’t hurt to assign stations for everyone to work in so no one gets their toes stepped on and remember to tend to any fridge repairs that need done so all of your leftovers can keep!

Baking & Decorating:

If you’d rather move right onto dessert than try your hand at cooking a whole meal as a family, then that’s okay too! Baking and decorating desserts is fun for children and adults alike. You could even incorporate a competition element to the evening by offering a small prize for the best tasting (or decorated) dessert. Classic desserts are sure to please but there are plenty of creative updates on old favorites that you can try like cake pops and hot chocolate bombs. Making your own chocolate is also a great activity for those with a sweet tooth. 😀

Smoothies:

Going out for a hike with the family in the afternoon and returning home to make some smoothies seems like the perfect way to spend a spring day. Encourage everyone to make their own concoctions with a wide assortment of fruits and low fat yogurts to pick from. Smoothies are also great for sneaking in some veggies like spinach, kale, or carrots.

Slime & Play Dough:

Perhaps, you’d rather use your family time in the kitchen to whip up a few batches of slime or play dough together. If so, there are countless recipes online that you can follow for some colorful, creative fun made with ingredients in your own house. Your kids are sure to have a blast!

Retire your living room for family night and head to the kitchen instead for a more hands on, interactive evening. Creating in the kitchen as a family will encourage team work and help introduce children to different concepts in math like fractions and units of measurement. It’s just as educational as it is wholesome fun.

Hosting A Fun Family Game Night

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Hosting A Fun Family Game Night

Many of us have exhausted a range of activities in the midst of societal lock down. We’ve baked, we’ve cooked, we’ve tried foreign cuisine, we’ve read, we’ve relaxed. So, it’s understandable if you’re feeling restless or irritable once your options for activities have been depleted. Not being able to ‘get out’ and enjoy the warm weather (by virtue of it being winter) also limits us a little more. You shouldn’t feel guilty for feeling irritable, as a lot of people are – myself included!

But what’s best for when you’re feeling irritable? To us, playing games and having fun with our family members can really help. Games help us act creatively, to compete in safe settings, and moreover, to have fun and a laugh. Hosting a fun game night with the family can be lovely then, and perhaps a weekly tradition.

But what sort of game nights could you have with the family? Your board game collection is a great place to start or you could order a couple of games online for something totally different. Why not also consider some of the following options?

Word & Quiz Games:

It can be fun to test your general knowledge or show off your Words With Friends skills with a word game. My personal favorite word game is Scrabble and using a descramble words tool can help you buff up before the games begin. Memory games, general trivia, and even games like timed ‘random Wikipedia journeys’ can be a great idea. These games will help you get a brain workout by the end of them! And who’s to say they aren’t competitive?

Video Game Parties:

If you have any video games consoles and games that offer cooperative play, you will be in for a blast. Four play Mario Party can be phenomenal, for instance, helping you enjoy a range of mini games across a players board, building stars, and dunking on others as you go. You’re sure to have fun with Mariokart, Keep Talking, And Nobody Explodes to show you what friendly competition is all about. We would also recommend Human Fall Flat and Fall Guys if you’re looking for something comical and cartoonish.

A Homespun Talent Show:

It can also be a wonderful idea to enjoy a homespun talent show, one that helps you feel connected, appreciated, and able to express your silliest joys. Perhaps you and your partner can do a magic show for the children, while they can lip sync and play air guitar to their favorite song. It sounds very silly, and it is! The goal is for everyone to be grinning from ear to ear. You can all judge and score each act and work up to the semi finals and finals over the course of a weekend. It might be a bit of work, but the outcome will be well worth it!

With this advice, we hope you can enjoy a fun game night with the family – and no doubt end up having a ball. You will feel much better afterwards too! 🙂

Featured Image By: Pexels

Holiday Haul: Boyfriend’s Family Edition

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Holiday Haul: Boyfriend’s Family Edition

Hello! The day after Christmas, Johnny and I visited his parents and it was so nice. Due to COVID, I have not seen them in forever and I was really happy to safely spend time with them. We opened gifts, caught up, and watched National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation as per their family tradition. I feel lucky that this was my second viewing with them and I can’t wait for many more. Johnny and I were gifted with such beautiful presents and I am so tickled that they even got me a stocking for their mantel! Check it out:

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^^^ The adorable “Our First Pandemic” ornament is from Johnny! 🙂

I love all of the gifts from Johnny’s parents so much and I love that many of them are from local businesses in our area even more. The unique earrings came from a local boutique as well as the bar soap and delicious smelling Gingerbread Caramel lotion, which was from Hope Soap. They have a store in downtown Cuyahoga Falls and I have always wanted to check it out so I’m really eager to try their products. And, don’t even get me started on the popcorn from Amaize because it is the BEST. Johnny and I were gifted with a huge sampler of their different flavors last year on our birthdays and we made very quick work of it!

Johnny’s parents also gave us several different ornaments, which was so thoughtful because despite not having a Christmas tree in our apartment this year, we will definitely want one for next Christmas when we are in a bigger place. It will be so much fun to collect ornaments for our own tree and we already have a nice start! I particularly love the middle ornament in the picture above – it is so pretty. 🙂

Being able to spend time with Johnny’s family was the best gift of all. I miss them so and I can’t wait until things are significantly less crazy so we can see them more often. ❤

Do you have an ornament collection? What is your favorite ornament or holiday decoration? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

If The Slipper Fits: Minnetonka Edition

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If The Slipper Fits: Minnetonka Edition

Hello! My adorable mom was a sneaky Santa, as she presented me with a “decoy” (As she called it) shoe box this Christmas before gifting me with the L’Artiste sandals that I had been drooling over. What was in my decoy box, you might ask? An oh so comfy pair of moccasin style slippers by Minnetonka! I’m not going to lie, I was a bit disappointed when I opened my slippers and they weren’t the sandals. But, after testing them out once I got home, I have practically lived in them and I can’t help but smile at my mom’s little prank every time I put them on. Lol, check it out:

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When I was a teenager, I got a pair of Minnetonka moccasins that I still own to this day. I can’t seem to throw them out, even though they are riddled with holes now because I would wear them literally all the time. But, with these new slippers, I definitely might be more inclined to pitch my waterlogged old faithfuls since I now have an upgrade. Despite them being house shoes, they still have a thick rubber sole so I know I can have them on when walking to take the trash out or going to the gas station drive thru.

I was a bit worried that the faux fur lining in the moccasins might be too warm for me but they are just right – especially in my cold apartment! I love my slippers because I have never owned a pair in my life and they are something that I wouldn’t have bought for myself. My mom is basically the cutest person ever and I just adore the fact that she knew exactly what my reaction would be when I opened my Minnetonkas but gifted them to me anyways because she also knew that I was going to warm up to them immediately. The Sneaky Santa award most definitely goes to her! ❤

Have you ever received a decoy gift? What was the decoy prezzie covering up? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

If The Shoe Fits: L’Artiste Sandals Edition

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If The Shoe Fits: L’Artiste Sandals Edition

Howdy!! My parents, AKA Santa, were so generous this Christmas and treated me to a gorgeous pair of mini wedged sandals by L’Artiste that I have been drooling over ever since I saw them on ModCloth. It was the last present that I opened and they clearly were saving one of the best for last! Check out these pretty new babies and let’s discuss:

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Now, the heels on these sandals are, admittedly, pretty low for Lil Red but I am more than willing to sacrifice a few inches of height for them. I mean, just look at the patterns, colors, and details! As soon as I saw my new sandals on ModCloth, I was blown away by how beautiful they are. I love the contrast between the jet black base, the stark white stitches, and the shocking oil pastel style colors on the floral patterns. The chunky buckle adds a touch of edge and I feel like I would be the belle of the farmer’s market in them!

I am so looking forward to sporting my sandals come late spring and summer because they are going to be absolutely charming with sun dresses and shorts. And, even though I could walk for forever in twenty inch heels, the smaller wedge will be a nice break while browsing outdoor shopping centers. Can all of the winter snow melt now, or? 🙂

My parents know how much I love my shoe collection and I am so happy to add these beauties to it. I felt so spoiled this Christmas and am so thankful for all of the wonderful gifts I received. I am also extremely thankful that Santa knows that I’m a size six! ❤

How would you style these sandals? Do you have a collection of anything? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Holiday Haul: Lillianne Robe Edition

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Holiday Haul: Lillianne Robe Edition

Hellooo everyone and happy 2021! Santa was very good to Lil Red this year and one of my favorite gifts that I received is easily a vampire fang adorned robe by Lillianne from my mom and dad. I have never owned a robe before and as soon as I saw the little number seen below on ModCloth, I had to have it. I’m also not going to lie… I am very jealous of how comfy Johnny always looks lounging in his cheetah print robe! Lol, take a look at some pics and let’s discuss:

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Now that I think of it, it is kind of crazy that I have never owned a robe considering I have at least one of everything else in the fashion department! I guess I was just waiting for the right one to come along and my Lillianne robe spoke to me. If you are a Lil Red super fan, you will notice that the pattern on this robe is almost identical to one of my tattoos on my shoulder and I was so tickled when that was the first thing that Johnny said about it. 🙂

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^^^ Don’t mind the face mask, you can just see my tattoo really well in this pic!

I have basically lived in this robe since Christmas day and my only regret is that I can’t wear it all the time because it is SO. Damn. Comfy. The fabric is nice and soft and it provides an extra layer of warmth without feeling too hot. I love the soft blush color paired with the punchy red and black and the embroidered “Bite me” on the back makes it the perfect robe for me. Not to mention it has really deep pockets to either warm my hands with or put a bunch of snacks in. 😀

My parents knocked it out of the park with this gift and if you see me roaming around Akron, Ohio in my new robe, then just know that I succumbed to the comfort and to mind your business lol!

What is your favorite gift that you received this holiday season? How did you celebrate the holidays? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Simple Tips When Caring For Elderly Relatives

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Simple Tips When Caring For Elderly Relatives

Looking after the people you care about is always a priority in life. Whether young or old, you want to make sure that your family is in a good position, and there are plenty of ways to achieve this goal. As the people in your family get older, the types of care they might need will become clearer. This can create challenges, especially if your loved ones need permanent care, but there are tips that you can follow to make this easier for yourself. Let’s take a look at some of your options to get you started:

Emergency alarms:

Having an emergency alarm to use when they desperately need help can make caring for your loved ones much easier. This will take away the stress of checking on them all the time, giving them the freedom they want while enabling you to maintain a normal life. Tools like this can prove life-saving in certain circumstances, with just about every care facility in the world providing them. You can buy special pendants that can either connect to your phone or a special operator that will be available at all times.

Walk-in baths:

Being able to clean themselves is a key element of your family member’s independence. Having a wet room can be perfect if they are disabled, making it easier for them to clean themselves and for carers to do parts of the job for them. Walk-in tubs are better for those with more mobility, but who would still like to be able to get into the bath or shower without assistance. Walk-in bath tub installation isn’t too expensive, especially when you consider the difference it can make.

Ramps:

Even when you’re not dealing with someone with a disability, you’d be surprised at how useful ramps can be when used in the right circumstances. Small steps can get harder and harder to climb as someone gets older, but ramps ease this process, giving your loved ones the chance to make their own way into their homes. Stair lifts can be good for full sets of stairs, though this can be quite pricey if you want an option that will last for a long time.

Key safes:

Being able to access the home of your loved one is crucial if you want to be able to look after them. Key safes are a great way to be able to give access to a group of people without having to have loads of keys to keep track of. If you need a doctor to visit when you’re not there, for example, you can have them use the key safe to let themselves in if there isn’t an answer at the door. Like an alarm, this can prove to be invaluable.

With all of this in mind, you should be feeling ready to make your life caring for your loved ones a little bit simpler. There are more options out there to help with this, making it well worth doing your research before you decide which you will choose.

Featured Image By: Unsplash