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Happiness, Healthy Living
5 Life Changing Wellness Habits to Start the New Year

There’s never a better time than the start of a New Year to resolve to make a change and after a rough year in 2016 I’m more determined than ever to practice wellness and self-care throughout 2017. I’m not just talking about eating healthier or getting enough sleep – I’m talking about the habits that really make a difference inside and out, mentally and physically.

Here are my top five wellness practices that I’ll be doing more of this year.

Practice Gratitude

If it wasn’t for practising gratitude throughout the last year I would have struggled to see the light in some pretty dark times. It can be really difficult to work a grateful mentally into your daily life, especially if things aren’t going well, but try starting by finding just one thing you have been grateful for in a day. I do this just before I go to bed so I wake up the next day with the intention of finding something to give thanks for again that evening. Whether it’s the food on your plate, the plants in the garden or a smile from a stranger – there is nearly always something to be grateful for in each day. Continue Reading

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Using 2016’s lessons to make 2017 amazing

And just like that – it’s a new year again! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas filled with fun, laughter and love and have been able to greet 2017 with positivity and happiness.

I for one am writing this with my tail between my legs – this is the first time I’ve updated the blog in quite some time! No matter how good your intentions are as a blogger when it comes to regularly posting new content – life always manages to get in the way now and then. But here we are, at the start of a new year so what better way to kick it off than with a look forward to what 2017 may bring?

The anticipation of a new start sets you up with such high hopes for what may come, believing that this may really be your year and motivating yourself to do all the things you wished you’d done the year before, and you never want it to start on a bad note – and when it does you can’t help but feel that the tone has been set for the entire year ahead.

It wasn’t too long ago that I wrote a post about how the beginning of 2016 was particularly difficult for me, filled with loss and grief and an uphill climb to finding happiness again. But I did it, and I’m still here so I’ve been thinking about what I’ve learnt and how I can use those lessons in 2017. Continue Reading

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Happiness
Help others and feel better

Nowadays we all seem to be so programmed to only give something to others if we receive something back. The act of helping others just for the sake of it has become a rare one and the desire to behave in this way an elusive quality to find in many people. In fact, many of us see those who help others as ‘do gooders’ but think about it – isn’t it a sad place to be in when we actually start looking at people who dedicate some of their time to others in a negative light?

What a lot of us don’t realise is that taking some time to help others not only helps them but also ourselves. And we’re not just talking about that warm feeling you get or the good karma you can expect to come your way. There is actual scientific evidence that shows there are benefits to helping others such as making us happier and even lengthening our life span. Hard to believe? Research has shown that those who volunteer demonstrate and improved ability to deal with stress, reduced rates of depression and even a decrease in physical illness. Continue Reading

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Finding happiness whilst grieving

For so many people, the beginning of a new year is filled with positivity and anticipation, as the family festivities of the end of the year die down and routines get back to normal, there is a sense of motivation for what the year ahead may bring.

And that’s where I was at the beginning of 2016 until, on the morning of the 18th January, I had a phone call to tell me my Uncle had suddenly passed away. All of a sudden all the excitement and planning for the year had to be put on a shelf whilst the inevitable formalities following the death of a family member had to be focused on, not to mention helping my five-year-old son understand mortality for the first time. Continue Reading

Food, Recipes
3 Delicious Ideas for Cheap and Easy Weekday Dinners

Weeknight dinners should be tasty and involve minimal effort on behalf of the chef. Instead of reaching for ready-meals packed with nasties, why not add these budget meals into your weekly menu.

  1. DIY Pizzas

Pizzas are quick to prepare, fast to cook, and popular with children. That’s a win on all levels in our house! Homemade pizzas are also a fantastic way to involve kids with cooking and teach them healthy habits from a young age. You can either make them using pitta bread bases, or throw together a no-rising-required pizza dough. As well as being a clever way to incorporate vegetables, pizzas are useful for using up things like leftover chicken. Continue Reading

Happiness
100 Reasons to be happy

 We all search for something in life. Some of us look for love, some of us look for career and success, while some of us look for money and wealth. We set our targets, we chase them and sometimes we even reach them. However, does it really make us happy when we reach them?

Can we even find a lasting happiness in love, money or career? When it comes to career and money, we know that we can always get more.

There is always more to reach and even if we reach what we want, we still want more and more. Things are a little bit more complicated when it comes to love, because no matter how strong it is in the beginning, love can slowly wear down as it stands the test of time.

As we chase our ambitions in our life, we keep hoping that finally we will be happy when we reach the income or career level we want, or find the love of our life. While we chase for our ambitions, we keep postponing happiness. Yet, we never completely feel that our ambitions are fulfilled so we never actually reach the happiness we seek. Continue Reading

Parenting
All About the New Car Seat Laws

We’re constantly on the lookout for potential dangers falling across the paths of our kids. I don’t know about you but I’m always on the alert – whether that’s crossing roads, playing in parks or especially when it comes to car journeys.

No matter how cautious a driver you are it’s an unfortunate fact that accidents do happen, which is why the laws surrounding children being seated safely in cars have changed.It’s likely that you’ve seen news coverage over recent weeks but perhaps you’ve not had time to examine the ins and outs and update your existing equipment. The new laws might mean you have to invest in some new gear for your little one, but if you think of the alternative, it’s a no-brainer.

It’s likely that you’ve seen news coverage over recent weeks but perhaps you’ve not had time to examine the ins and outs and update your existing equipment. The new laws might mean you have to invest in some new gear for your little one, but if you think of the alternative, it’s a no-brainer.

A few years ago the thinking was that using a booster seat for kids in cars was better than using nothing at all and taking the chance that adult-sized belts would do the job. Legislation came into play which required all little ones under 3 years to have a belt specifically for their age and size, and subsequently children measuring up to 135cm had to be seated in a booster. So what’s new? Read on to see how the new laws affect you and what action you need to take. Continue Reading

Happiness, Healthy Living, Lifestyle
Do You Have a Morning Routine?

Successful people have a good morning routine. They don’t just wake up and hope for the best; they have a plan. A focus. A tried-and-tested way of getting from where they are when they wake up, to where they want to be. I have long admired people who have the discipline to stick to a good morning routine so I have made it my focus this month to start every morning well hoping that, after 30 days, my mornings will be calm and productive rather than hurried and stressful. Continue Reading

Healthy Living, Lifestyle
A Gradual Approach to Healthy Living

It would seem incredible to those born a century ago that today’s adults need to be educated about making the right choices for our bodies, but changes in food, work, and leisure activities over the generations mean that, despite advances in modern medicine, we are unhealthier than our great-grandparents!

The Department of Health reports that a third of people in England die before they turn 75, and of these “early” deaths, 100,000 a year are avoidable because they are deaths where a person’s actions (such as being overweight and inactive) could be directly attributed to their cause of death. It’s scary stuff!

The rising number in avoidable, lifestyle influenced illness and death is a trend which clearly needs to change, and it starts with healthy living. To live healthily is to make the best choices for your body and mind. It is moderating elements we know cause poor physical and mental health, such as lack of exercise, and stress, and consciously choosing to treat ourselves with care and respect. Continue Reading

Travel
Our weekend away in Brighton

The summer holidays have arrived, and we’re excited to dive into the next six weeks. There’s a lot of time to enjoy all that the summer holidays have to offer. Luckily we had the added bonus of my brother and his family coming to visit the UK for three weeks. We decided that it would be a good idea to Brighton for the weekend. There are lots of things to see and do there, and it is perfect for families.

Brighton is a beautiful seaside town in the south of England and has a stunning coastline. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the UK, bringing in people from all over the south and the midlands. Brighton has a vibrant and family-friendly town centre so we were lucky enough to find plenty of places to eat and visit. We set about packing our buckets and spades into the car to set-off for a fun-filled weekend away. Continue Reading