4 Simple Reduce Stress Strategies for You & Your Kids

4 Simple Reduce Stress Strategies for You & Your Kids

When we look at our children we can easily think they don’t have any stress. We might say, “What possibly could they be stressed out about?” Kids have stress, just like us. It might look different, but they do, and knowing how to relieve it can be confusing for them, even for us adults. No wonder stress is the #1 cause of illness and ailments. Reduce stress strategies are sure to help. You may be surprised at what you find out!

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Who is Stress?

Think of it this way, whenever we have something important to us get compromised or threatened, ‘Stress’ comes to visit. Let me refer to stress as a person for a second, Mr. Stress. When things don’t go according to our plan, Mr. Stress welcomes himself into our home. When there are projects and deadlines to be met Mr. Stress sees an opportunity to break-in and steal. Hear me out, projects and deadlines aren’t bad, they’re actually super good, what is bad are the distractions that keep us from achieving those goals. And it’s the distractions, when not managed well, that act as precursors to our foe, Mr. Stress.

Mr. Stress can cause memory issues, sore throats, and digestive tracts havoc to name a few. That’s only a few headaches he causes. What happens at this moment is that Mr. Stress wakes up a hormone in our body called cortisol. Cortisol is the ‘bad stress hormone’. So what do we do?

Awareness is critical

Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “Nobody can bring you peace but yourself.” The very first step to ignoring Mr. Stress is to be aware of his triggers. This year I was on a quest to destroy my cortisol feeders. Awareness helps us recognize the cord before it is struck. With awareness, we will then know what circumstance to avoid or to mentally prepare for. On a personal level, I needed to kick Mr. Stress out, so my plan was to simply pay attention to the little things, because the little things add up, and then do something about them. Be sure to check out this post on: How to Reduce Stress in Your Life: 10 Breakthrough Tips

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4 discoveries that fed my killjoy

  • The step-counters. At first, I found it curious. But then it became an obsession. I had to reach my 10,000 steps or it wasn’t a good day. This equaled a DISTRACTION for me. My fix? I took it off and just made a mental note of how much I walked.
  • Social Media. “I’ll just check it”, then 45 minutes later I’m like “What just happened?” Another DISTRACTION. My fix?  I set a timer or don’t check it at all.
  • My purse. Wow, this was really stressing me out. My purse was awkward on my shoulder. It was too slippery…yes, slippery. Too HEAVY! Not organized. Weird zipper. I had no idea how much of a DISTRACTION my purse was. My fix? I changed my purse.
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  • Paper Clutter. I enjoy a clean countertop. What took up the most real estate on my counter was paper. Junk mail, receipts, sticky notes, magazines, old homework, sale ads, and newspapers were piling up. This was not only a DISTRACTION but a stress bomb. My fix? I got a recycle bin and an organization station.
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Tasks are done, stress is gone, or is it?

When the big “tasks” are complete, cortisol levels go back to normal. Everything is fine, right? Not necessarily. Think of a wave approaching the shore. When a wave breaks how does it hit the beach? It crashes. Sand and shells stir and water splashes. It takes time for the water to settle and be calm. Like an ocean, the wave of cortisol might be gone, but our bodies take a lot longer to recover. How do we fix this?

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4 reduce stress strategies

1. Set a daily routine. 

Routines help reduce anxiety, we sleep better, and we are more productive. Let your kids write down what they would like their routine to look like. You can compromise with them to give them a little responsibility and to show trust. Here is a guide to help you and your child achieve their daily goals!

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2. Make a daily to-do list

‘daily to-do list’ that includes errands and simple things like laundry and walking the dog helps your kid have purpose and importance. Having a to-do list is another great habit to teach your kids. It helps them see what they need to do, and then feel that amazing gratification when it’s time to cross it off the list!

3. Reduce Stress Strategies: Get outside

Getting outside every day for at least 20 minutes does wonders for our mental well-being. This is harder for us parents, but it teaches our kids that nature is their friend. As a parent, force yourself to get outside, even better you’re your kids. Show them how important it is to connect with nature.

4. Know what’s going in their minds

Cut out (as much as possible) disturbing TV shows and movies, even the news. We know bad stuff is out there, but we don’t need to be reminded of it day and night. News especially freaks kids out. A friend of mine loves the news, however, she had it on all day. She also has two kids who were around the news. As time went on, the kids got afraid to go outside and play.

Reduce stress strategies come to play with what’s on the screen. A big tip is for our kiddos to watch what is right for their maturity level. For our kiddos and TV shows, be wise with what they watch. Their brains aren’t developed to determine what is real or fake. Even if you say, it’s fake, seeing is believing. So unless you can show them how they make movies, keep to the ‘G’ or ‘PG’ ratings, and turn the news off! I highly recommend Protect Young Eyes to help protect our kids.

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Wrapping up reduce stress strategies

Putting into practice the right reduce stress strategies takes time. You need to get to know yourself and your kids on a personal level. What makes you/them tick? Taking charge of your stress needs awareness and self-discipline. You got this. Here’s another post about stress you may find helpful: 5 Stress Fighters That Most People Forget About

By CT Copyright © 2022 More Than Existence All Rights Reserved.

7 Firefly Facts & How to Care for Fireflies

7 Firefly Facts & How to Care for Fireflies

Looking for firefly facts? You’ve come to the right place! What’s fun about Fireflies? Well…everything! Here are some cool facts and information about fireflies. Plus I include ways to attract the firefly and how to safely catch them. Enjoy and be gentle! Be sure to download my free Firefly Fun Sheet!

firefly facts

Firefly Fact #1

There isn’t just one kind of firefly. There are more than 2000 species of fireflies in the world! That’s a lot of light.

Fact #2

Speaking of natural light, the firefly light is the most efficient light in the WORLD! Yep. Bug light is the best light in the world…natural light. The sun doesn’t count. Let’s face it, what other bug or animal produces its own light?

Actually, there are some other bioluminescent species that exist on this planet, however, most of them live deep in the ocean.

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Fact #3

What else is cool about firefly glow? Not all light from the firefly is the same color. The glow can be yellow, green, orange, or blue! How cool is that? Way cool.

Firefly Facts #4

Their handy blink and frequency of the blink are how fireflies communicate with each other. I kind of like to think of them using Morris Code. They also use their light as a mating signal. Oo, la la!

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Fact #5

Fireflies do not taste good. If I were you I’d cancel that side of firefly and stick with your kale. Fireflies are actually poisonous to some animals if they eat them. When the firefly is attacked they release a little blood. Ew. But the blood contains a chemical that creates a bigger taste and emits poison! It’s how they protect themselves.

Fact #6

Okay, this one is super important. Firefly numbers are reducing in the world. Some of this is due to climate change, but another reason is because of their habitats. The healthy living environments are being destroyed; not to mention, they are also being ‘harvested’ for their luciferase (their glow substance). Luciferase is used for scientific research for forensic tests and food safety. They do have a way to make this stuff synthetically, but people still kill these amazing bugs (beetles) for the natural stuff…

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What can we do to save the fireflies?

We can make a firefly habitat!

Fireflies love to eat snails, worms, and slugs. Where there are snails, worms, and slugs, you’ll likely find fireflies. A garden is a perfect place for fireflies to enjoy life. Firefly larvae enjoy a good pile of wet leaves. It is suggested to make a compost pile of leaves and to keep the leaves moist throughout the year. The leaves will attract the slugs, and the baby fireflies will eat them as they grow. In the Spring, put some of the leaves in your garden as compost. Do this every year and watch your firefly population grow!

Fact #7

Fireflies also enjoy these plants: Passionflower, Morning Glory, Goldenrod, Asters, and River Fern. They also like trees! Good choices are Sycamore, Cottonwood, Elm, Bur Oak, Dogwood, and Trumpet Creeper.

How do we safely catch them?

We can catch them carefully. When they land you or when you gently catch them, simply put them in a glass jar with many holes punched through the top for oxygen. Place a damp paper towel in the jar to prevent them from drying out. Put a slice of apple in there for them to munch on. Please only keep the fireflies for 1 day. They only live for two-three months, let them be free and enjoy life.

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Want the glow to last longer?

If you want the fun glow and blinking to last longer, first let the fireflies go, then buy fairy lights and put them in a jar. I personally love these lights. The solar-powered ones are pretty cool, I keep them up all year round. Super awesome for wedding table decorations!

That does it on firefly facts! Hope you learned something new. Thanks for visiting!

References: FireFly.org and EcoWatch.  
Be sure to check out these other great posts!

How to Have a Happy Family: 3 Revolutionary Steps

Nature Quotes: the power of the outdoors

Kid Activities at Home: 10 Things You Can Do Right Now!

5 Best Pieces of Advice for How to Simplify My Life

5 Best Pieces of Advice for How to Simplify My Life

How to simplify my life is more than just throwing your stuff out. We’re getting rid of stress and welcoming happiness into our home. Simplifying and organizing are sometimes used interchangeably, but we’re not going to organize today. We’re going to focus on simplifying our space by knowing how to do it without stress or frustration.

If you want to have peace, experience freedom, and have more space, let alone functional space, it starts with who you are and how you operate. You are a smart person, you’re creative, and you have an amazing future. So this task of simplifying is going to need your mind, creativity, problem-solving skills, and an understanding of yourself.

Are you ready to reduce stress in your life? Let’s break through the clutter to seriously unleash your potential to live a do more than exist kind of life in your space.

The top 5 pieces of advice to simplify my life

1. Simplifying your life is a lot harder than you think.

To make simplifying work for you, you must include your brain. To make this experience a fantastic one, you’ll want to do two things: get in the right frame of mind and understand your motives.

Do you want to find things easier? What about getting rid of sour memories to make room for sweet ones? Do you want to create more space? Clean up? Do you want to live lighter? Or do you want to downsize? What is your motive in simplifying?

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2. Ask yourself questions.

Since I’m on a roll with questions, we’re going to keep going! When asking yourself, “How do I simplify my life?” Ask more questions. Let’s say you come upon your old t-shirt from high school ask yourself a few things:

– Why am I holding on to this?

– How is this going to change my life for the better?

– When was the last time I used it?

– Can someone else use it?

– Is this something I could sell this week?

– Is it worth the space in my house let alone mind?

It’s important to ask yourself these questions when you run into something that might be hard to let go of. When push comes to shove, just remember you can’t take it to heaven.

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3. Simplify my life step by step, but not too slow.

Okay, so decluttering and cleaning isn’t a fun thing for you? We all have our dislikes but we still need to do them if we want something done. For instance, I don’t like washing the kitchen floor. However, what helps me get it done is if I put it on the calendar. I can then mentally prepare myself and start visualizing how awesome it would be to have a clean kitchen floor. With that said, take a look at your schedule and block off some time to start your decluttering project. Get serious about your space.

Yes, this kind of task is a big deal. Have you seen those shows about hoarding? There’s a little hoarder inside of us all. Go about this step by step. Maybe tackle the kitchen one day, then the bathroom another day, and so forth. You got this!

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4. Get it out of your living space.

When you start to sort through things, get them out of your living space. By removing it from your living space you’ll get a taste of how much you really miss it or not miss it; plus you’ll see how much stuff you are getting rid of. This is an easy technique that is extremely helpful.

This can be a big eye-opener and can even change your spending and collecting habits for the better! I have been known to do snow angels on the floor after a declutter day.

5. Make 4 piles.

Make piles: keep, donate, sell, and pitch. When you plan on having a garage sale, designate a space to keep all those things…like your garage or closet. Same rule for things to donate or to sell online. As for pitching, start a pile and fill your garbage bin every week until it’s gone.

When all said and done to simplify my life.

We’ve lived in the same house for over 17 years. Within those years we have had four garage sales and numerous trips to the donation center. Every garage sale blew my mind with how much stuff we were keeping and not using! With our quarterly clean-out, I still get amazed at how much stuff we accumulate in a matter of months! As for selling things online, the best place I’ve found to be is to use Facebook Marketplace.

When you get in the right mode for simplifying you’ll be surprised at the things you had kept over the years and the things you still want to keep. This is your living space we’re talking about, so make it the way you’ll love it. When you enjoy how you’re living you’ll be a whole lot happier.

Before you go check out these other posts:

Stress Free Moving: 2 Critical Steps

How to have a happy family: 3 Revolutionary Steps

Benefits of a Garden: 1 huge reason to take up gardening

How to Reduce Stress in your Life: 10 Breakthrough Tips

By CT Copyright © 2020 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved.

How to Brighten A Room Under $60: 8 Amazing Tips!

How to Brighten A Room Under $60: 8 Amazing Tips!

Learn how to brighten a room for under $60. For most people, your home or office is where you spend the majority of your time. So it’s important that the room you spend a lot of time in makes you feel good. If you want to be a happier person, take a look around and brighten the room! I’ve got 8 great tips you can do today to transform a room for under $60.

how to brighten a room

The key to making these powerful yet simple suggestions work within a $60 budget or less is to do it yourself. There is greatness in DIY (Do-It-Yourself) projects. For one, it helps your mind work more creatively. You simply have to pay better attention to what you’re doing, which makes your brain work a little harder and smarter. The second benefit to DIY is that it builds confidence. If you can make something happen with your hands and skills, it magically gives you more self-esteem! And the third plus with DIY is personal gratification. It’s okay to say “I did that!” When you transform a room, an object, or a landscape with a little sweat and hands-on, you’ll instantly feel fulfillment! We all need a bit of that in our everyday life.

Let’s get to work and make a space more cheerful! For where there is light, darkness can’t reside.

8 Amazing Tips on How to Brighten a Room

1 Clean up

First things first, clean up. Sure you can pay for a cleaning service to clean your house, but it can get pretty pricy. When you clean your own home, you not only get instant gratification, but you also get a workout! You might also find some things you misplaced, and you may even find money in the couch, pant pockets, or laundry. Do yourself a favor and take charge of your living space by cleaning it yourself. Cleaning the House: 5 Factors to Understand

2 Open the shades

Draw back the curtains. Natural light is healing to the soul. It improves your mood, helps your natural clock sync with nature, it helps us be more productive, and natural light even helps us focus. And the beauty of this tip is that it’s $0.00.

What if you don’t have a window? A great tip on how to brighten a room without a window is to get a nice size mirror. Its reflections mimic a window feel and actually make the room feel bigger than it is. A large mirror will go beyond our budget, so you must plan when you can go out and shop. Look for sales, smaller mirrors, head to the hobby store, or check out secondhand shops.

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3 Buy yourself some flowers.

This doesn’t need to be a $40 bouquet. There are great flower deals at ALDI’s, Trader Joe’s, and even Costco. Don’t forget about your local roadside flower stands! You can get some amazing flowers for under $10. Why flowers? Flowers can help you know how to brighten a room in a pinch. They bring bright colors or softness into your home. A vase of flowers is welcoming and a lovely centerpiece. Grab an old mason jar and arrange a little sunshine for your kitchen island or end table. $7.

4 String lights

4 String lights aren’t just for Christmas. String lights bring light to the darkness. How to brighten a room without windows? You got it, string lights! They look kind of like fireflies! String lights are inexpensive for what they do. You can get your standard Christmas lights for around $12, if you purchase after Christmas you can get some amazing deals! I personally like to string them in a faux tree or along the fireplace mantel. You can also decorate around a window, line them vertically on a wall, or outline along the ceiling! There are endless options for string lights. There are of course the LED moving lights, those are fun, but they are not what I am talking about. I’m talking about the standard simple Christmas tree lights. You can get them in white too! $12.

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5 Get some greens

Add some plants or faux greens. Putting a touch of green in your room brings the outdoors in. Even if it isn’t a real plant, there is something about green leaves that presents freshness and peace in a room. Plants can lower stress and anxiety, they can boost healing and energy levels, and plants have the ability to improve your mood. When it comes to indoor plants I struggle at times to give them what they need to thrive. So I simply head to a hobby shop and buy faux plants. I particularily wait until they are on sale. But if you can’t wait for sales, you can get some great faux ferns or pine boughs for under $14.

6 Paint!

There’s nothing better than a coat of fresh paint. When some people think of cheerful colors they might pick red, yellow, orange, or purple. But in all honesty, simply go with white. If you want to know how to brighten a room with paint, especially without out windows, choose white! White is a canvas that anything goes with. If you like to change your mind about decorating, paint with white. White flows with the seasons and gives you a sense of cleanliness, freshness, and peace. If you need another color paint one wall with an accent color. Painting can be a bit more expensive, so it depends on the size of the room and the type of paint you buy. Let’s say 1 gallon of paint is $20. When you DIY, you’re saving even more money and honing in on a skill!

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7 Add some tunes

Music is a great way to set the tone of a room. Play some music that will lift you up! Find your go-to tunes that will bring peace and calm to your heart. Music is essentially free if you have a radio. I know that’s old school, but it’s free. There are, of course, Spotify, iTunes, Sirius XM, and other music subscriptions, but when it comes to managing money know what subscriptions you have!

8 Wall prints

Need some simple yet powerful wall art? Head to Etsy and download some awesome wall prints. I personally like Scripture art. There is nothing more powerful than the Word of God. Displaying His truths sets the tone. When something feels off in your day, speak the Sword of the Spirit and command the darkness to flee in Jesus’ name! Seeing His promises daily helps you live out His promises, not to mention, memorize them. Just knowing His presence is with you is power and encouragement in itself. Why not display it on your walls? You can easily download scripture art or other prints off Etsy for about $2.50. Dig out an old frame from your closet and you’re good to go!

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Let’s see how we did:

Cleaning – $0.00
Open the shades – $0.00
Flowers – $7.00
String Lights – $12.00
Faux plant – $14.00
Paint – $20.00
Music – $0.00
Wall prints – $2.50

GRANG TOTAL = $55.50

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In conclusion to how to brighten a room

How to brighten a room can be done for less than $60. It’s a fun transformation that you can do in a day. And when you carry out the do-it-yourself mojo anything is possible and so gratifying, not to mention money-saving! Try these simple tips today and lift up your well-being in a bright and beautiful space.

Before you go check out these posts:

Benefits of a Garden: One Huge Reason to Take Up Gardening

How to Reduce Stress in your Life: 10 Breakthrough Tips

How To Be Less Busy: #1 Mistake People Make

Claim Your Life Back: 7 Steps to Fight Spiritual Warfare

Nature Quotes: the power of the outdoors

Stay Connected
By CT Copyright © 2022 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved.
How Smiling Reduces Stress

How Smiling Reduces Stress

Smiling is more than an expression of how you feel. Simpling reduces stress! A smile can also have positive effects on those you smile at, and could even set the course of your day. It’s crazy how a simple action can have huge rewards. Learn more about how smiling reduces stress and the benefits smiling has on others. A little smile will do you good.

smiling reduces stress

The expression on our face

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In Dale Carnegie’s book How to Win Friends and Influence People, a book every young twenty-something should read, Dale says “The expression on one’s face is far more important than the clothes one wears on one’s back.” Not only that but Dale also mentions what Professor James V McConnell, a psychologist at the University of Michigan says about smiling, “People who smile tend to manage, teach and sell more effectively, and to raise happier children.”

A campus visit, what I saw shocked me!

A while back I visited my alma mater. When I was there I noticed something strange…no one was smiling. I even did the ‘smile test’ in the women’s restroom, you know, when you smile at someone and they smile back? Well, that’s what is supposed to happen, but it didn’t work! I felt invisible. And shocked for that matter. So I tried again in the hallway. Still nothing! When I went outside, I tried again. Not even a look in the eyes! This was getting quite comical.

When I got home from my campus visit, I told my recruiter friend who visits many college campuses what I experienced and how sad I was about the emotionless students. She told me that it isn’t just happening there, the ‘no smiling’ thing is happening on other campuses too. What the heck? Life isn’t that bad, you’re in college!

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Smiling and stress relief

Stress is a crazy and life-altering thing. We all know that stress can cause us to make poor decisions. It can make our bodies ill and imbalanced. How can we reduce stress naturally and simply? First, we need to understand how some hormones work.

Endorphins are the ‘feel good’ hormones’. They are produced in your brain to help reduce stress, relieve pain, and improve your mood. What naturally releases endorphins? Exercise can help improve your mood and reduce stress. But what if you don’t want to exercise? You can simply smile or even force a smile. Intermountain Healthcare says, “When you smile, your brain releases tiny molecules called neuropeptides to help fight off stress. Then other neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins come into play too. The endorphins act as a mild pain reliever, whereas the serotonin is an antidepressant.”

What’s the big deal about a smile?

Smiling is a natural, automatic expression we reveal when we are happy or when we feel good. Psychology Today says we pretty much need to smile to stay sane! I don’t know about you, but after a pandemic, political warfare, and pure evil, I think we all better get our Smile on.

Here’s a minor example about smiling; when I was in college I remember a time when I was walking through the Arboretum. On the way to class, a stranger smiled at me. As a natural response, I immediately smiled back. In fact, I remember my smile was over-exaggerated because I was so shocked he smiled! Throughout that day I thought of the smile moment and it honestly made my whole day! I even remember telling my roommates that some random guy smiled at me, not like a slimy-lets-go-on-a-date look, but a ‘hey, hope you’re having a nice day’ kind of smile.

Smiling makes us feel good and it boosts our confidence.

I didn’t know how to smile!

In Kindergarten I didn’t know how to smile. Yep. I had no idea. My sisters tried to teach me but I just couldn’t get the corners of my mouth to go up on cue. Who knows, maybe I was stressed as a kid? Anyway, school picture day was coming up. I desperately wanted to smile, but every time I tried, my lips clamped shut and the corners of my mouth turned down.

How did I learn to naturally smile? With lots of tickling by my sisters in front of the mirror, I finally understood the smile. By 3rd grade, I was smiling on demand. Yes, it apparently took me that long to get it down. Who would have known in my Senior year in high school I got voted ‘best smile’. 🙂 

Smile and watch what happens!

If we simply smile more often, we’re going to be happier, less stressed people. Smiling around your kids is a big one. They need to see that you are happy more often than angry. You may have to force a smile at times too, and that’s okay! You deserve to feel good and they deserve it too.

Smiling reduces stress in not only you but in others that receive your smile. Smiling says many things beyond what words, e-mails, tweets, texts, or instant messaging could say. Don’t discredit the smile. Keep on smiling before you forget how to do it, it really does make life a lot more rewarding.

All in all

When you smile, people will be curious about who you are because you look happy. People seek happiness and they want whatever is making you show your teeth. Let’s put our phones down, take our earbuds out, and pay attention to people walking to class or in the grocery store, heck even in the car next to you. Smile and see what they do in return. A little smile will do you good.

Before you go, check out these other posts about reducing stress naturally

How to Reduce Stress in your Life: 10 Breakthrough Tips

Learn How to Relax: 5 Essential Must-Have Tips

How to Have a Happy Family: 3 Revolutionary Steps

5 Best Pieces of Advice for How to Simplify My Life

Stay Connected

Copyright © 2014 More Than Existence All Rights Reserved.

How to Have a Happy Family: 3 Revolutionary Steps

How to Have a Happy Family: 3 Revolutionary Steps

We all want to have a happy family, but how do we have a happy family? Every family has its traditions, quirks, and drama. First and foremost, you have an amazing family. Family is fun in it’s own way, simply watch your family and learn what makes it tick. However, there are some seasons within the home walls that can be challenging. How do we navigate through these times? This post will help you bring light to the surface and give you 3 amazing steps to know how to have a happy family.

Put your seatbelt on for a ride that has game-changer effects on how your home and family feel. Learn how to be a better person, how to help your kid, and how to simplify life. Put joy back into your every day. Let’s jump into how to have a happy family.

This is about who?

This is about who? Your family, of course, but more importantly it’s about someone else. Whether you’re a mom or a dad, or someone who has filled that role, how to have a happier family starts with the foundation, and that’s you. No special toy, no vacation, or no incredible treat is going to give your family long-lasting results. The only outcome with that will be a spoiled kid. I get it…that was harsh for me to say; seriously though, how to have a happier family is all about you (the parent).

Who said parenting was easy? You might not like this.

Babies are so cute. But babies grow up to be their own person, just like you. The way babies learn how to grow up is by watching, listening, and copying you. They watch your actions, they listen to every word you say, and to the tone you are speaking. They know how you treat other people, they know your opinions, they know your habits good and bad. Parenting is a responsibility, it’s not all fun and games, or a box to be checked off. So, if you want to have a happier family, then be a happier parent.

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3 Revolutionary Steps to How to Have a Happy Family

Step 1. How to be a happier parent

A happier parent isn’t just a surfaced smile and a tickle attack. It’s much deeper than that, it starts with taking care of YOU and tending to your heart. Important note: There is a delicate balance between working on yourself and selfishness. A selfish parent is a toxic parent. But a parent who takes of themselves to better themselves is a healthy one. This is where self-care really comes into play.

When you are at peace, when you are healthy, when your heart is full, when your relationships are in check, and when you love your job…your kids are going to feel the difference, your kids will copy you, your kids will learn how to have joy simply by watching and listening to you. In other words, if you want something to change in your kid…let’s say their weight, then YOU lose weight. Do that journey together! They need someone to learn from, to walk alongside them, to feel their pain with, and to meet them where they are at.

Step 2. Get rid of the junk

Another thing you can do to help your family be happier is to lose the junk. As silly and simple as this sounds, picking up around the house makes a difference! Clean up the house and get it organized. This sounds all fine and dandy, but where do you start? You start with the things you can see. This means taking a look at your surroundings.

How to clean the house easily is a loaded task. What does “clean” mean? Does it mean dusting or organizing? Either way, get your home feeling lighter and brighter. Here are a few tricks up my sleeve to help your home feel happier and more welcoming.

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5 Fun Tips to Brighten Your Home

1. Open the shades and curtains. Natural light has a way of making you feel better. Check this Healthline post about natural light. Let the sunshine in!

2. Buy yourself some flowers. Flowers can bring bright colors or softness into your home. A vase of flowers is welcoming and a lovely centerpiece. There are great flower deals at ALDI’s, Trader Joe’s, and even Costco. Don’t forget about your local roadside flower stands!

3. String lights aren’t just for Christmas. They look kind of like fireflies! String lights are inexpensive for what they do. String them in a faux tree, along the fireplace mantel, around a window, or along the ceiling! There are endless options for string lights. There are the LED moving lights, those are fun, but they are not what I am talking about. When Christmas lights go on sale, buy a couple of boxes and have fun with them.

4. Clean the house. Yep. Get down and dirty and do a deep clean. I’ve got a post that may help you with this: Cleaning the House: 5 Factors to Understand. It talks about hiring a cleaning person to doing it yourself.

5. Tidy up the yard. This is something your family can do all together. Pick up the garbage, trim the bushes, cut the lawn, start a garden, maybe power wash the siding or deck; make your house look like a home that cares. Did you know the appearance of a building makes a difference in how you feel about that particular place? Make your home welcoming, whether it starts at the street or at the door of your apartment. Get it looking nice.

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Step 3. This step might get hard, but it will change the course of your life

Take care of yourself. I’m not just talking about your looks, yes, that’s important too, but I’m referring to deep self-care. Let me put it this way, your thoughts will eventually become your actions; Matthew 15:17 tells us this. Put POSITIVE things in your mind, through self-talk, good books, positive music, encouraging shows, and clean videos. You need a break from darkness. Your soul needs it too.

Let me explain when you watch or listen to dark videos, movies, video games, foul language, or music; it’s an invitation for darkness to come into your world. Do you really want that? Be aware and look around you. What do you see on your playlist? What do you see in your entertainment cue? Rated R? Horror? Crime? Do you feel that nothing good happens to you? Does something bad happen to you every day? Check out my post on Spiritual Warfare.

Breakfree now!

Allow yourself to break free from the world’s view of you. Tidy up your body by losing weight for good, clean up your diet, and get your body moving. Learn more about yourself and understand who you are, you may want to look back to see if you’re making decisions based on what others want for you instead of yourself. I call this “being stuck in a mold”. Please protect your kids from getting stuck in a mold that’s either coming from you, your parents, or their friends. When you allow your kids to discover who they are, they are going to be a happier camper.

Personal wounds? Listen up!

Address your personal wounds, yeah, I’m talking to you right now, not your kids. How to have a happy family is about the stability of the foundation. Remember that foundation is you, the parent. Please listen with an open heart. This is so critical to your lifelong happiness and joy. We’re all wounded. But the families and couples that are full of joy and peace, are the ones who heal from their past wounds. So if you know how to heal, then you can help your child learn how to heal.

Deep personal wounds bleed into our actions and words, no matter how hard we try to hide them. How do we heal from past trauma? Yes, a counselor can help you, but be careful in finding one. There is only one person who can heal, Jesus. A great way to start the healing process is to pray and ask Him to come into your life. I have a prayer here to help you. Find a church either online or in your community and learn more about Him. He helped me, and I know he’ll help you too.

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Jesus knows

Get to know Jesus. He knows what you’re battling with. He’s waiting for you to ask for help from him, so get to know him first. Read Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John in the Bible. When you feel it’s the right time, ask a friend who follows Jesus to pray with you. During this time, ask Jesus to go to that specific wound and to show you how to heal, to shine his light on it.

If there is anything in the post I want you to remember, it is this part. Jesus will heal if you grab His hand. I highly recommend you ask your church to pray for you and to talk to a Christian life coach or professional Christian counselor. Healing your wounds is a game-changer. Doing this, will not only help you, but it will help the people around you. Feel free to contact me, I’m a certified Life Coach with a Christian perspective.

Uh oh. Are your kids getting in trouble? Buckle up Buttercup

Are your kids getting in trouble at school? Your kid who is misbehaving in school, your kid who is bullying others…(hang tight) this is your problem, not theirs. I’m going to circle around and ask that you do a personal check with what’s going on with yourself. What are you talking about when they are around? How are you talking, are you swearing, are you yelling, are you gossiping, are you judging and being critical? Are you even around? Did you move? A divorce? Change jobs?

Walk alongside your kid. They don’t know how to navigate through major issues. Walk through it together. Learn together. Talk with each other. Pray together. If they’re stressed, help them to know how to manage the stress.

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Finally, the fun stuff!

Whew! We had to take care of business before we got to the fun stuff. But like I said, how to have a happy family isn’t all fun and games all the time; most of the time it’s the little things like opening up the curtains, baking cookies together, communicating, or watching the game with everyone. Kick off the home happiness with a really fun and inexpensive time with your family, do this Scavenger Hunt Challenge. Seriously this is so fun and full of laughs, even your teenager will like it!  

Here are a few posts that you can do with your kiddos to brighten their day and yours for that matter! Please don’t forget to laugh and be goofy every once in a while. They may roll their eyes, but deep down it makes them feel loved. And remember, everyone wants a little “me time”. Be sure to give your kid a little bit of that special time with themselves so they can learn more about who God made them to be.

Kid Activities at Home: 10 Things You Can Do Right Now!

13 Family Games Worth Playing, Plus a little History

8 Best Children’s Books for 4-year-olds

How to have a happy family conclusion

This has been a tough post to write and listen to for that matter. I need this post myself! If you want to know how to have a happy family, to have more joy in your home; then work on yourself. You got this. Your kids will be happier, more confident, and will have peace. Be sure to check out The #1 Way to Simplify Your Life for Good! Pay attention to the simple things that bring light. If you want more tips on simplifying, find some fantastic tips on how to simplify my life in 5 Best Pieces of Advice for How to Simplify My Life. Keep shining your light!

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By CT Copyright © 2022 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved.
Cleaning the House: 5 Factors to Understand

Cleaning the House: 5 Factors to Understand

Cleaning the house has been one of the most toxic yet healthy tasks in life. Sure we could pay someone else to do it but stay humble friend. Living in a clean house is not just healthy for our bodies, but for our psyche. Learn how to make cleaning less stressful by understanding 5 key factors.

cleaning the house: 5 factors to understand to make it less stressful

There have been numerous times my husband has suggested hiring someone to clean our house. Each time he brings it up three reasons keep me from saying yes:

1. I would still clean the house before they came to clean!

2. It’s hard to find a good cleaner, let alone one you can trust.

3. It’s one more thing to add to the budget.

Someday I will probably get there, but I honestly don’t have any excuses for why I can’t clean my own house. So if you’re like me, listen up to loosen up about cleaning the house.

Why cleaning the house matters

First off, living in a clean home does a body and mind good. When we don’t dust or vacuum as often as we should, dust mites build up and can lead to allergies. Not to mention lingering smells and sticky surfaces. It’s like a welcome mat for various germs and bugs with large bodies and little legs…that will motivate me to clean!

Like mowing the lawn, cleaning provides that same kind of instant gratification. Accomplishing a clean house is a huge win, especially if you put your own sweat into it. When I’m cleaning I like to think of all the money I’m saving from paying someone to do it, not to mention all the calories I just burned! Cleaning the house has benefits: weight loss and money management!

5 factors to determine how often I clean

I’m not a deep cleaner every time I clean my house. Deep cleaning and the number of times to clean will depend on your situation. I’ve found there are five factors to determine how often to clean your house.

Pets

If you have a shedding dog or other messy pet, cleaning is probably going to happen more often. To easily clean fur off of furniture, use a dryer sheet, rubber gloves, or a lint brush.

children's books for 4-year-olds

Kids

The number of kids determines how often to clean. With kids, you must consider their ages. Starting a child out at 5-years-old with an easy cleaning chore helps them understand you’re not their servant. The older they get the more they should help period.  

 

Allergies

If your husband’s allergies flare up, dusting and vacuuming will be more frequent. When my husband sneezes in the morning, I know it’s time to clean. My son has the same issue. I’m getting a lot of miles on my vacuum!

Location

Where you live plays a factor in how often to clean the house. Do you live in a dusty field, near a construction site, or pollen-invested forest? Again, in these instances, allergies could attack.

Personality

And lastly, don’t forget about your personality. Ask yourself these questions: Are you a ‘Laidback Jack’ or an ‘Anal Andy’? Do you like to do things yourself or are you a delegator? What about how you were taught? How often are you entertaining? Get an understanding of who you are and how you want to move forward.

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All in all

When it comes to cleaning the house, get in the right frame of mind. Schedule a cleaning day and make sure your kids or husband understand what cleaning is and what their responsibilities are. Remember your cleaning schedule depends on where you live, who lives with you, and how you’re living!

Before you go check out these amazing posts:

5 Best Pieces of Advice for How to Simplify My Life

Kid Activities at Home: 10 Things You Can Do Right Now!

How To Be Less Busy: #1 Mistake People Make

How to Get Motivated: 4 Critical Tips to Start Anything

By CT Copyright © 2020 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved.

Quick Healthy Meals On a Budget? 5 Criteria

Quick Healthy Meals On a Budget? 5 Criteria

How can we make a quick healthy meal on a budget? When it comes to meals I use five criteria to measure success: taste, health, speed, digestion, and budget. These days we need anything that helps! Dive into my secrets to help you get more flavor, more money, and better health. Let’s jump right in.

quick healthy meals on a budget

#1 My secret ingredients to flavor

Have you noticed when you eat something that tastes good, stress doesn’t exist for that moment? Bland food is quite boring and can leave us unsatisfied. Let’s fix the “blaa” with a little “bam-bam”. Here are some of my favorite flavor touches that are easy to use and give you healthy meals on a budget:

McCormick’s Steak Seasoning.

This is so simple and super tasty.

Hot sauce.

My husband is Mr. Hot Sauce. He enjoys Red Hot and Sriracha.

Fresh garlic.

I make my own garlic bread with fresh garlic, I simply use a mincer. It’s a much cleaner and healthier way than garlic powder or garlic salt. 

Oregano.

This herb helps fight bacteria, it’s high in antioxidants, helps reduce viral infection, and has many more benefits.

Salt.

We love our salt but need to watch our blood pressure and bones. Salt helps with fluid balance, nerve transmission, and even muscle function.

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#2 Methods for healthy meals on a budget

My second criterion for reducing stress in the kitchen is to create a healthy meal using the right tools. There are a ton of kitchen gadgets, but we’re going to keep it simple and focus on five ways to cook and heat up a meal.

5 Ways to Cook & Heat Up a Meal

Oven

Baking fish and starches instead of frying save us a lot of heartaches…literally…and calories for that matter. Roasting potatoes, squash, and even cauliflower are super easy and a healthier method. Simply cube the veggie, toss it in olive oil with a little salt, set the oven at 350 degrees, and bake for 30-40 minutes. Test with a fork for your liking. You may like my Warm Kale Salad Recipe!

Air Fryer
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If I’m in a hurry yet want a break from the microwave, I opt for the Air-fryer or the toaster oven. I use them for warming up homemade waffles, a small batch of cookies or brownies, garlic bread, sweet potato fries, a small pizza, and chicken nuggets. Both cooking devices automatically shut off when the timer is done, so I can put my dish in it and forget it. The air fryer is awesome for making camping more comfortable. We use this one.

Grill

We use our grill all year round and we live in Michigan! To keep grilling safe and healthy, it’s important to keep it clean. Be sure to scrape the grill with a brush before using, and clean the grill at least three times a year if you’re a heavy user; meaning, giving the grates a good soak in Dawn dish soap. One of our favorite dishes is bacon-wrapped chicken legs, this recipe is a keeper!

Microwave

Yes, I use the microwave to warm up meals when I’m in a hurry. My main reasons for the microwave are frozen veggies, chicken nuggets, and microwave popcorn. Microwaves have come a long way and are safe to use.

Cast Iron
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This is my secret weapon in the kitchen when it comes to speed, taste, and easy cleanup. This pan, as my son would say, is ‘Beast’…meaning cool. When it gets hot, it stays hot. And cleaning it is a piece of cake, no soap! Simply rinse and heat back up on the stove to dry. Easy peasy! I love my cast iron pans. Salmon in a skillet recipe is totally bussing.

Fried Walleye Recipe
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#3 Speed

I do love my Crockpot, but I only use it maybe once a week. There are loads of kitchen gadgets promising this or that; we get excited for a few weeks then tuck them away in an abyss cupboard. Keep it simple in the kitchen, and stick to the old fashion way of cooking. You’ll find it actually goes pretty fast. My favorite crockpot recipe is Simple Game Day Sloppy Joes.

Cast iron pan

I wasn’t joking about old fashion. Everyone should have a cast iron pan. Read the benefits above.

Boiling water

The old saying to put a wooden spoon on top of the rim of the pan to make the water boil faster? Well, it works. Simply lay a wooden spoon across the top of the pan, kind of like a bridge. In about a handful of minutes, the water is ready for the pasta.

Freezer meals

I’m not a fan of freezing meals unless it’s leftover chili or stew. Lasagna is another good freezer meal, but other than that, it’s easier to resort to the grocery’s freezer meals. You should venture into your freezer and clean it from old food every quarter.

IBD help

#4 Digestion

There are a lot of factors leading to diarrhea, gas, bloating, constipation, acid reflex, and cramping. They range from food allergies, food sensitivities, food combining, eating too fast, the lack of digestive enzymes, hormones, bile acid, autoimmune disorders, gut flora, leaky gut, and/or viruses and bad bacteria.

My first strategy in figuring out why I feel icky is to eliminate the most common inflammatory foods: dairy, gluten (wheat), nuts, soy, and eggs. Most likely one of these foods is your trigger. Food elimination will take time, but it’s worth it when you figure it out.

Disclosure

*Please note, I’m not a doctor, nor am I trying to be. I share information I have either experienced myself or am extremely interested in, and then I keep things simple and give you the nutshell version. Please consult your physician before jumping into new things.

Just so you know, it takes about three weeks for cow’s milk protein to vacate your system. For wheat, it takes two weeks to feel a bit better, but around three months for it to be out of your system. For soy and eggs, it’s two weeks. Here’s a good post from All Ways Well on how to go about it. Keep it simple, your body will love you, and you’ll help it heal!

#5 Budget: 6 ways to save on meals

1 – Join store membership

One of the ways I save money on meals is to join the store membership. In fact, one of my stores kicks back $7.00 after I reach a certain goal. They also have online coupons. Not to mention member-only specials! And you can even shop and scan with the app. They might know what you buy, but they’ll also send you coupons to match your shopping list.

2 – Buy what’s in season

Another way I save is to adjust my menu with what is growing in season. For squash dishes, I delay until fall and early winter. Strawberry pie is good in March. Here is a quick guide to knowing what fruits and veggies are in season so you know when you’re getting the best deal on them. Download my In-Season guide now.

3 – Go to different stores

A third trick is to go to different stores to get the best price. For instance, the coconut milk ice cream I buy isn’t on sale at my normal store, but it is on sale at my secondary store. This may be a lot of running around, so you’ll have to make the call whether it’s worth the gas, but I find this technique helpful. I have about five go-to stores to get the best deals. But how do you remember where you got what? You can download the Where I Buy Memory Guide from Freebies and tuck it in your planner or handbag.

4 – Buy store brand

Buy store brand. There is not much difference in taste and quality from name-brand goods to store brands. Simply look for the store brand and compare prices. You can even keep track at how much you save!

5 – Watch the ingredients

Watch the ingredients! Yes, you can save money by reading the nutrition label. How? Some food manufacturers use ingredients that are addictive, like High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and MSG…not to mention salt and just plain sugar. When you eat more, you buy more of it! Steer clear of HFCS and MSG. I know they’re tasty but they don’t do you any favors from a wallet and health perspective.

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6 – Don’t skimp the protein

Don’t skimp on the protein. Sure some proteins can be expensive, but so are second helpings and snacking! When our bodies don’t get protein we are hungry all the time, which can lead to overeating, weight gain, and crankiness…yes, carbs do that. Make a point to eat some kind of protein at every meal. To save even more money, buy protein in bulk at a membership store like Costco or Sam’s. Be sure to look at the price per unit to make the best decision.

Sources of protein include nuts, dairy (unless you’re sensitive), seeds, chicken, fish, pork, beef, turkey, tempeh (soy), quinoa, broccoli, and lentils.

In conclusion

When it comes to meals, use your head not your stomach. My five criteria get the job done for me. I go for taste, health, speed, digestion, and budget. My hope is that you found some new ideas to test out. As an added bonus, here is a 5-day menu plan based on all my criteria. Enjoy!

Before you go, check out these awesome posts:

7 Surefire Ways to Save Money Grocery Shopping

How to Help Money Problems: 9 Must-Do Steps!

How to have a happy family: 3 Revolutionary Steps

Stay Connected

By CT Copyright © 2020 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved.

6 Simple Ways to Save Money on Valentine’s Day

6 Simple Ways to Save Money on Valentine’s Day

Let’s save money on Valentine’s Day this year. You’ll get my 6 simple ways to save money on Valentine’s Day along with a little history about February 14th. Explore my simple and inexpensive gift ideas for you, your family, and your friend; but first I gotta tell you what I learned about this ‘loving’ holiday, it certainly surprised me!

6 simple ways to save money on valentine's day

Valentine’s Day originated from a Roman festival. It had nice intentions of celebrating the coming Spring. Because as we know, with Spring comes rebirth. The Romans capitalized on this season and promoted fertility at this time. Side note; if you have a November birthday, your parents probably practiced the Roman tradition. LOL! Anyway, what I didn’t expect was a dark side to this ‘lovers’ holiday.

The Dark side of Valentine’s Day

This Roman festival included, what sounds like, arranged marriages by a lottery. Say what? All I can picture is taking a ticket at the meat counter and waiting for someone to call my name and hope and pray I was attracted to him. This does not sound very romantic, but they did it!

And according to legend, there was a priest whose name was Valentine. The story isn’t clear of whether the priest secretly married people behind the emperor’s back to spare men from war, or if the priest signed a letter to a jailer’s daughter “from your Valentine” which created havoc. Either way, the emperor, Caludius II Gothicus, martyred him! Yes murdered the guy named Valentine.

As for cupid, he represents the Roman god of love. Are you as confused as I am? This holiday is messed up, murder, love, lottery, and a naked baby with a bow n arrow. The Romans back then had some mental issues.

What We’re Spending

I get it that we’re celebrating this guy, Valentine, but “Be My Valentine” or “Will you be my Valentine?” sounds weird to me now that I understand the back story. Frankly put, these days, retailers use the holiday to get more business. In 2019 53% of all Americans spent a grand total of $30 billion. Heart-shaped candies and decadent chocolates get me all the time, but I spend maybe $25- $50 on Valentine’s Day, that’s including dinner. However, the average person spends about $225 on one person. There is nothing wrong with that. Your significant other’s love language may be ‘gifts’. But if you’re on a tight budget there are other ways to go about showing your love.

Save Money on Valentine’s Day with Simple Ideas

Valentine gift ideas under $25

The Card

The average cost of a Valentine’s card is $4.99. That can add up with kids and even pets. Yes, they have cards for pets. Three kids alone plus a dog could cost $20. Ouch. Here’s a different idea, back in the day, my husband and I were strapped for money, and so instead of buying each other a card, we took a picture of the card in the store then shared the pictures with each other. I know that sounds lame, but it was actually quite fun. There are many benefits to this: it’s inexpensive, saves the environment, and you can keep it on your phone forever! In fact, if you found more than one perfect card, you can take a picture of that one too!

As for kids, homemade Valentine’s are the best. Any kind of gift made with our very hands means so much more than something you buy. You can Google a joke or cute saying and incorporate that into a homemade card.

The Gifts

Unless it’s your birthday on Valentine’s Day, big gifts are out, at least in our home. Money doesn’t buy love. Time does. Time with your spouse, friend, kids, and pets says a lot more than the latest video game. What are they going to remember more? The gift and who got it for them? Or will they remember the memory of playing Battleship and Clue and the epic popcorn-launch-in-your-mouth game? Actually, the Game of Clue might be appropriate for Valentine’s Day…remember Roman times? Here’s my skinny on gifts and what we do in my family. Candy.

The Candy

Candy is instant, enjoyable for everyone, and easy. Get whatever is their favorite sugar bomb. I know it’s not the healthiest, but skip dessert and have the candy instead…don’t forget portion control. My son loves those Sweetart Hearts, my husband is all about Nerds, and me, well, my hands-down favorite of all favorites is See’s Candies. Seriously, these are the best chocolates I’ve ever had. AND they are gluten-free! If you don’t have a retailer near you, you can order online, believe me, it’s worth it. They are SO good!

The Flowers

If candy isn’t your thing, flowers do make a great gift. Here’s the kicker. Keep the flowers simple. They don’t have to be red roses. The jester is what counts. Recently, my husband stumbled upon white roses at Trader Joe’s. He got a dozen for like $7.00. Can’t beat that, and they lasted a long time. They were beautiful. Thank you Trader Joe’s! The other option with flowers is to go for the carnations. They are a simple flower that comes in a variety of colors. A large bouquet is about half the price of a dozen roses (roses not from Trader Joe’s). I personally like to mix carnations and roses together like in this picture.

The Touch

Besides the gift of time, sweet treats, and flowers, touch is just as important if not more. Touch is another language of love. It’s definitely my husband’s. Intimate time with your spouse or boyfriend is probably all they want for Valentine’s Day. Stop spending your money on other things, just give him some lovin’. As for kids, snuggles or tickle-attacks while watching “Be My Valentine Charlie Brown” serve the best of both worlds for child and mom/dad. Feel goods with hugs and laughs with tickles are a joy to the heart.

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Save money on Valentine’s Day dinner

Let’s talk about dinner. If it’s just your spouse/friend with you, you’ll spend an average of $50 at a restaurant. And don’t forget to tip! Oh, did I mention the babysitter? As for time, Valentine’s Day is one of the busiest nights at restaurants. You may have to wait for a table. I didn’t even mention traffic or weather. A different option is to have a candlelight dinner at home. This saves time and a great way to save money on Valentine’s Day. I know it may sound boring, but that’s up to you. Dress up, get some music playing, and have your kids wait on you and play restaurant at the same time. It’s something different to try this year. At the grocery, you’ll spend at least half of the amount on a meal than at the restaurant. Get some steak, salad, and garlic bread. Start up the grill and “By the Power of Grayskull, I HAVE THE POWER!” Yes, I have dated myself with He-Man. Dinner at home can be fun for everyone!  

Final Tips for a Great Valentine’s Day

Lastly, decorating with construction paper hearts tapped on the sliding glass door gets everyone in a loving mood. This is an easy way to save money on Valentine’s Day. You don’t need to go all out with decorations. Keep it simple. It’s a gentle reminder that Valentine’s Day should be fun and not filled with a martyr. Now, don’t forget the chocolate! For more ways to manage money, be sure to check out my post on money here!

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By Christy Copyright © 2020 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved. 

7 Surefire Ways to Save Money Grocery Shopping

7 Surefire Ways to Save Money Grocery Shopping

Save money on grocery shopping every time you shop. Let’s get to be better shoppers so when inflation hits we’re not going hungry. I’ve got seven surefire ways that will help you to know how to grocery shop and save money. It’s not just coupon clipping anymore. You’ll be amazed at how much you save by making these simple adjustments. Let’s jump right in.

7 ways to save on food

1 – Join store membership

One of the ways I save money on meals is to join the store membership. One of my stores kicks back $7.00 after I reach a certain goal. They also have online coupons. Not to mention member-only specials! And you can even shop and scan with the app. These memberships offered at your store may know your buying habits, but you’ll save money using them.

2 – Buy what’s in season

Another way I save is to adjust my menu with what is growing in season. For squash dishes, I delay until fall and early winter. Strawberry pie is a March and April thing. There are lots of options. Big shout-out to farmers to make this all happen. Thank you farmers! Here is a quick guide to knowing what fruits and veggies are in season so you know when you’re getting the best deal on them. Download my In-Season guide now.

3 – Go to different stores

A third trick is to go to different stores to get the best price. For instance, the coconut milk ice cream I buy isn’t on sale at my normal store, but it is on sale at my secondary store. This may be a lot of running around, so you’ll have to make the call whether it’s worth the gas, but I find this technique helpful. I have about five go-to stores to get the best deals. But how do you remember where you got what? You can download Where I Buy Memory Guide and tuck it in your planner or handbag. Now you’ll never have to remember where you got what again!

simple finance journal
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4 – Buy store brand

Buy store brand. There is not much difference in taste and quality from name-brand goods to store brands. Plus you can save a substantial amount of money. Next time you’re at the store see for yourself and compare brand name prices with store brand.

5 – Watch the ingredients

Watch the ingredients! Yes, you can save money by reading the nutrition label. How? Some food manufacturers use ingredients that are addictive, like High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) and MSG…not to mention salt and just plain sugar. When you eat more, you buy more of it! Steer clear of HFCS and MSG they could be triggers for your indigestion. I know they’re tasty but they don’t do you any favors from a wallet and health perspective.

IBD help

6 – Don’t skimp the protein

Don’t skimp on the protein. Sure some proteins can be expensive, but so are second helpings and snacking! When our bodies don’t get the protein we’re then hungry all the time, which can lead to overeating, weight gain, and crankiness…yes, carbs do that. Make a point to eat some protein at every meal. To save even more money, buy protein in bulk at a membership store like Costco or Sam’s. Be sure to look at the price per unit to make the best decision.

Sources of protein include nuts, dairy (unless you’re sensitive), seeds, chicken, fish, pork, beef, turkey, tempeh (soy), quinoa, broccoli, and lentils.

7 – Forget the delivery shopping

I know this is a luxury, but it’s not necessary to survive. Prices using this service go up at least 10% per item. Then you have the annual dues, not to mention the tip for the shopper. And, yes, you need to tip your shopper or your delivery person. When you go to the store yourself stick to your grocery list, with no exceptions. Eat a snack before you leave home or work so you’re not hungry while you shop. Going to the store yourself will allow you to check the freshness of produce and meat, plus it will give you a chance to choose healthier options, read labels, and discover new products; not to mention, to get out and interact with your local grocery store.

In conclusion

When it comes to knowing how to save money grocery shopping, use your head, not your stomach. Know ahead of time how much you have to spend. Understand what meals you need to cover in the week ahead. Study the grocery store deals. You can save money grocery shopping by making just a couple of simple adjustments.

Check out these other great posts on how to save and manage money:

How to Manage Money Better

How to Help Money Problems: 9 Must-do Steps

Stay Connected

By CT Copyright © 2022 Simplify Firefly. All Rights Reserved.

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