Do you Love Christmas? Why September is the Perfect Time to Start Thinking About It!

Brown Pinecone on White Rectangular Board

Mentioning Christmas in September will often get you some funny looks. After all, it IS incredibly early- we haven’t even had Halloween yet! But thinking about Christmas in September doesn’t mean putting your decorations up (like this family did!) or playing your favorite festive album on the way to work each morning. It can simply be a case of planning ahead and getting prepared financially. While Christmas is a lot of fun and a fantastic way to spend time with loved ones, it can also be a huge struggle if you’re working to a budget. Lots of families find themselves in debt in the new year, or just feeling down and upset that they haven’t managed to provide their children with as much as they’d have liked. To get around this, early planning is essential. If you start now, you have plenty of time to spread the cost, get things as you go and come December it won’t be a mad rush to source and buy everything you need. Here are some ideas which will make Christmas easier financially.

Save what you can

Any money you can put away will come in helpful come December. If you have online banking, you could transfer a couple of dollars every week from your main account into a savings account each time you’re paid- it will all add up. You could start a change jar, throwing in any loose change that’s left in your pockets at the end of each day. There are Coinstar machines in most supermarkets which make it easy to change pennies and change into pounds and notes for easier spending. Another good tip is to sell what you no longer need, this raises money while clearing space for new items that will be coming in at Christmas. If you donate your old items to a charity shop, you could be helping another family provide for their children in the process.

Pick up generic presents

Whether it’s stocking fillers for the kids or token gifts for colleagues and neighbors, if you spot something that’s a good deal and would make a great gift then pick it up. Again, it gives you less to buy closer to the time. Bubble bath and bath sets, boxes of chocolates, trinkets and more- these can be bought surprisingly cheaply from discount stores, and supermarkets.

Find deals on decorations

Once the festive season is underway, anything Christmas themed will go up in price. So it can be a good idea to scour bargain stores and places like eBay for decorations now when they’re much lower in price. Think about things like your Christmas table too- glasses, table napkins, place holders and more are all items you can buy ahead of time and put away ready for Christmas dinner.

Start your non- perishable and long life food shopping

Your food and consumables are one of the biggest costs for most families at Christmas. Instead of waiting until December 1st, start grabbing items now. Chocolate, sweets, alcohol, canned goods and and other items can be picked up each week with your normal shopping. Box it up and put it out of sight, and start a stash ready for the festive season. Write a list and tick things off as you go, this prevents you from accidentally buying twice.

4 Things No One Tells You About Labor

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There are certain times in life when it’s totally okay to bury your head and embrace the bliss that is ignorance. It’s things like not checking your bank account during your freshman year at college, not stepping on the scales after a very good Christmas and an even better summer, and not reading what ingredients go into making those bright orange Cheetos. But sometimes, just sometimes, the best thing you can do is soak up all the knowledge you can, even if it scares you, and that’s exactly what you should do when it comes to labor.

 

If you’re pregnant (and we presume you are because you are reading this), you need to accept that a little, tiny, slightly gross-looking but still impossibly beautiful human is going to come out of you, and the best way to prepare is to do all the research you can, speak to moms who have been through it and, yup, be willing to find out all that stuff no one is willing to tell you. That’s where we come in.

 

Not all of the below is going to be pretty, but it will all be helpful.

 

  1. When Your Water Breaks…

It doesn’t happen in some ceremonious flood akin to the Old Testament. We know that’s what happens in the movies, but that’s not what happens in real life. Instead, it will feel like you are peeing yourself and there is nothing you can do to stop it. Oh, and it might not happen all at once. It could last all day. Sorry.

 

  1. Contractions Are The Worst…

Most first time moms think it’s the pushing out a sprog that is going to be the worst, but that’s rarely the case. For most women, it’s actually the contractions that feel like you’ve fallen into that part of hell usually reserved for the worst kind of people. It’s like being prodded with a hundred hot pokers in your lower back and abdomen, and all you can do is breath. The pushing bit feels like a spa session compared to this.

 

  1. Trust Your Doctor…

You are right, doctors are just humans. Yes, they are incredibly well-trained, well-educated and highly-paid humans, but they are still just humans and that means some new moms find themselves Googling https://getlegal.nyc/medical-malpractice/birth-injury-attorneys/. But there is a reason why you chose the doctor you have. You trusted them, you were impressed with their experience and they have a soothing voice. Revel in that.

 

  1. Epidurals Are Great…

There is so much stigma in today’s world -so much judgment – to the extent that moms think they shouldn’t rock any painkillers and should instead feel every niggle of birth because that’s what being a mom is about. Sod that. Getting an epidural is great. The needle doesn’t even hurt and it brings about a sweet, sweet numbness to your thoracic area. Go natural if you want, but don’t afraid to yell “Yes!” when asked if you want an epidural either.

Parent Tips: What To Think about When Going on Vacation with the Kids

If you are a parent then you will know how important it is for you to give your kids the support they need throughout their life. Going abroad can be a fantastic way for you to show them what is out there and it can also help you to show them other cultures as well. If you are nervous about taking your kids abroad or if you know that you are not too happy about the idea of them flying on a plane because you don’t know how they will react then you have nothing to worry about and the main reason for this is because there are so many things that you can do to really help them to make the transition.

Slow Down

If this is your first trip with the kids then try and make everything much slower than you would normally. Be realistic about the places you want to see and also take note that when you have the little ones with you, everything will be much slower. You may also want to rest more than you’d want to normally as well. Of course, there is nothing wrong with this and when you have kids it is to be expected, but it should play a part in your decisions regarding where you want to visit and how long you want to stay at each place for. If you are not sure what to do here then cut down on the amount of places you want to visit and also make sure that you are taking into account the transportation lines you need to take as well. Sure, the tube may be the best way for you to get around somewhere but if it is packed during rush hour then a taxi may be a better option.

Person Riding Bicycle Wearing Backpack

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Discuss Everything

If you are travelling with another family or even other adults then talk about what each and every person would like to do. You also need to discuss how you are going to split up the jobs that need to be done as well, such as laundry, washing up or going to the store. You may also want to discuss a babysitting rotor as well so one person doesn’t end up having to stay with the kids all the time while other people go out and have fun. This is also a great time for you to talk about any arrangements that you want to have with the bill as well, as this will save a lot of time. You have to remember that at the end of the day, you want to make sure that the kids always have something to do but you don’t want to compromise on adult time by doing this.

Talking with Your Doctor

If you are going overseas, talk with your doctor around two months before you are due to depart. This will give you enough time to talk about your plans and the age of your kids as well. It may be that they need to go for an appointment as well. It is also a good idea for you to talk about their vaccination records as well, and their blood groups. If you know that your child has a pre-existing health condition then ask your doctor about this and try and find a doctor in your vacation location who can help you if anything should go wrong. Kids who are under the age of 18 months generally won’t need to have any jabs done for going abroad.

 

beach, coast, dad

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Weather

You have to really look into the weather as well before you go. Remember that kids tend to feel the cold much more when compared to adults, so it helps to make sure that they have plenty of layers to keep them warm. When you do this, you also have to ensure that they have gloves and hats as well. This may take up a ton of room in your luggage and this may be the last thing that you want but at the end of the day, it is far better when compared to buying a ton of new clothes when you are out there. If you know it is going to rain a lot, look into your hotel’s laundry service to find out if they can dry your clothes for you and split the bill among your family. After all, wrapping up in cold wet clothes is the best way to catch a cold!

Finances

When you go abroad, you have to make sure that your finances are in order. It is so important that you go through all of the payments that you have made for your holiday and it is also important that you have enough spending money as well. Saving up beforehand is the best way for you to make the most out of your vacation and it also means that you won’t feel a huge hit to your finances when you do set off. If you are struggling to save then there are some bad credit cards unsecured providers that can help you and this is a great way for you to get the money you need without compromise.

Location

When booking your hotel, it is important that you make sure that it is close to the local amenities you want to visit. When you are traveling with adults, catching the bus into town or into the main city isn’t hard and it is a great way for you to save money as well. When you have kids however, the whole operation can be a bit more difficult and the best way for you to avoid all of this would be for you to make sure that you are in walking distance of the places you want to visit. When you do this, you can make the journey much easier for you and the kids and you can also save money by doing this as well. After all, you may be paying more for your hotel but you won’t have to pay steep transport fees every single day and these payments can really add up