Archive for November 29, 2021

Kid-Friendly Hanukkah Crafts That Will Double As Decor

Hanukkah is practically here and with the kids, on Thanksgiving break, you might have a little extra time to create. Luckily, Hanukkah is a great time to help children connect with their religion and culture through crafts. These ten crafts will allow you to have a blast over the holiday season while utilizing the things that you create for décor. This can help save you money and will ensure the time you have together for the holiday is well spent. So, get ready to have a whole lot of fun with these incredible crafts.

1. Sun Catcher
Suncatchers can be an exciting craft for kids. You don’t need a lot of supplies for this craft either. You might start with card stock to help make the shapes of your suncatcher. However, you can use other materials if you do not have this on hand. Cardboard from the recycling bin and other similar supplies will work wonders too. To make the interior of the suncatcher, you will need clear tape and tissue paper. Simply place the tissue paper on the tape that you connect to the frame and you’ll be all set. You can shape the sun catcher in the Star of David, dreidels, menorahs, or anything else you might want to create to represent the holiday.

2. Garland
Another fun craft to make is garland. This can easily be made out of any form of paper and string. If you’re going for durability, then cardstock or a lighter wood might be your best option. Once you have the materials you would like to use, you can cut them into pieces that you’d like to add to the garland. Many people would prefer to stick with one theme, like a dreidel, while others will mix it up with lots of symbols of the holiday. When you get the pieces cut out, children can paint or color them before placing them on the string. Garland can be placed on anything in the home, including the mantle, on window frames, and so on.

3. DIY Lanterns
Without a doubt, lanterns can really set the mood for the holiday. You can make lanterns in so many different ways too, which will help keep the activity fresh and exciting for the whole family. One of the most common ways to make a lantern is to use a mason jar. You can use glue as a way to place the tissue paper on the exterior of the jar or you can actually paint the jar. The key is to make sure that one area of the jar isn’t entirely covered so you can let the symbol you would like to show off shine through. When you’ve finished creating your jar add a tea light or an electric light into the jar and watch as it lights up. These are great additions to tables, mantles, and more. Of course, if you’re looking for alternative methods for the lanterns then you will find great tutorials online.

4. Recycled Menorah Craft
The menorah plays a big role in the holiday, which is why children might be eager to craft their own. There are so many fun crafts you can create to allow your child to make a menorah of their own. Best of all, it can all start in your recycling bin. Let children pick out the materials they would like to use and then help them get to work creating a stunning work of art. Toilet rolls and paper towel rolls might be some of the best options to choose from here, but children can use also anything to create their menorah. You can even use items in your green waste bin, such as sticks. Once the structure is built, children can paint the menorah, add glitter, sequences, appliques, or anything else they’d like to show off their creativity. You might not want children, especially younger children, to actually utilize the menorah. So, it might be fun to create lit candles out of construction paper or similar supplies to make the creation even more realistic.

5. Star of David Frame
Help show off your favorite holiday memories when you create Star of David picture frames. All you need for this craft is popsicle sticks, paint, and frames. You should always start by painting the popsicles sticks before you piece them together. Once they are dry, create two triangles with the popsicle sticks and then place them together to create the Star of David. Once you have the piece together, you can add final details before attaching the photo of choice to the star. Once the picture is in place, you can hang the frame on the wall by placing the double-sided tape on the back or using tacks around the frame rather than through the wood. You can also add a string to the frame and hang it in that manner. Of course, you can make other shapes, but this might require cutting the popsicle sticks up.

6. DIY Dreidel
If your kids love to play dreidel then allowing them to make their own is a great way to bring some fun to the holiday. You can easily find a template to help you make a dreidel out of paper. However, these DIY toys can also double as décor. Simply put the dreidel together with your craft supplies of choice and then hang them from the ceiling, mantle, or anywhere else you can think of. If you’re working with younger children, then making a 3-D dreidel might not be the easiest option. In this case, let your child make a flat dreidel to hang up. You might consider using construction paper or card stock for these options.

7. Candles
Another fun option is to make your own candles. Of course, this is more of a craft for older children to do, but you will still need to supervise. You can purchase candle-making kits for fairly cheap, but if you want to try to DIY the craft completely on your own then you will find plenty of tutorials to guide you along the way. Kids can have a lot of fun playing with colors, scents, and more. Plus, the candles can be passed out if you make an abundance of them. This might even become a new favorite craft that the whole family can enjoy together.

8. Table Décor
If you like to make a big presentation for your guests, then having the kids make crafts to decorate the table will definitely help. There are so many options to choose from here, which can easily be made with items found around the home. Napkin and silverware holders are some of the easiest options, which can be made with construction paper and a bit of glue or tape. You can also come up with holiday-themed nameplates and other items to help guests feel more comfortable. The centerpiece of the table can also be crafted with fun holiday-themed pictures or even paper flowers made by the kids.

9. Mobiles
Without a doubt, mobiles can be a lot of fun as far as décor and creation is concerned. This craft is simple for children of all ages to work on too. In order to make a mobile, you might begin by cutting out the shapes you desire to be on the mobile. You can use a wide variety of materials for this, so it is very easy to work with what you have. Once you have your mobile pieces ready to go, use your string of choice to attach them to a base. One of the best strings to use is the fishing line because it is clear, but any string will do. The base can be made out of a variety of things too. If you used light materials, then you might consider attaching them to cardboard as this is easy to attach to the ceiling. One of the more popular mobile choices is a hanger though, which can be covered to add beauty to the look.

10. Color Sheets
If you have younger children that aren’t ready to work on crafts or simply don’t have the attention span, then color sheets are a great option. These can work wonders for short periods of time when you don’t have activities planned out, as it will keep kids busy so chaos doesn’t ensue. The color sheets can be placed on the wall for even more décor while giving the children a sense of pride over their work. You can find color sheets almost anywhere online, so make sure to look around for the styles you enjoy.

You shouldn’t have to worry about spending too much this Hanukkah when you decorate with the wonderful crafts that you’ve made. These ten ideas will help cater to a wide age range, which can help the entire family have fun while creating the décor that will make your home feel festive.

Light Up Your Neighborhood This Holiday Season Without Breaking Your Budget

Did you know that December 1st is a holiday designated for putting up your holiday lights? Even if you don’t plan on getting up your lights just yet, you might want to consider a few things before you do plan out your light extravaganza. Holiday lights can be a huge drain on your budget and your energy usage for the month. These ten tips will help you to cut back on spending during the month of December as your lights make the neighborhood glow with all of your festive spirits.

1. Go LED
When you’re picking out lights then you should always choose to purchase LED lights. It doesn’t matter if you’re using stringed lights or individual lights for decorations, LED is going to save you a whole lot of money. Not only do LED lights save you on energy costs, but they do tend to be cheaper in stores too. LED lights don’t get hot either, which can help protect your home from accidental fires during the holiday season. Of course, most stores are going to primarily sell LED lights so you might not have an option otherwise. However, if you’re still hanging up old lights then now might be the time to make the switch so you can keep your home safer and burn less energy during the holiday season.

2. Consider Solar Power
Believe it or not, but there are a few solar options that don’t require you to invest thousands of dollars on panels for your home. There are smaller options that are great for powering small amounts of energy for shorter periods of time. These panels will work wonders for things like outdoor décor without forcing you to spend a fortune on your power bill. The best thing about using solar lights is you won’t have to worry about a timer or anything else when you set up your lights. Simply let them run their course and then watch as the solar energy replenishes the next day. You might shop around for deals if you want to go this route. Of course, you don’t have to put the panels up when you don’t have lights outside. Instead, use it for emergencies or other outdoor activities.

3. Don’t Rely on Lights Alone
Lights can be a great way to show off your home’s personality. However, if you’re hoping to save on money and energy then you might choose to pick out some other elements as well. To begin with, you can use wooden cutouts or other crafts to create a fun look. These can be painted to suit the needs of your home’s décor. Then you have a little something extra to draw in the eye, especially during the day. Displays that use solar power or those that don’t require power can also help to bring more fun to your yard without forcing you to put lights on everything.

4. Look for Competitions
If you’re looking to help offset the costs for your lighting extravaganza, then you might want to consider looking to see if you can sign up for any competitions. A lot of communities will offer small prizes for those that participate, so make sure to ask around the see what is going on during the holiday season. Of course, there are larger competitions you can join in on too. Many are nation-based so you will have to look around to see how to enter the competition. If you do end up taking home a prize, it can definitely help offset the price of lighting up your home while also helping to boost your expenditures for the next year’s light décor.

5. Work with Neighbors
When it comes to holiday lighting, you don’t have to go it alone. If you don’t want to spend a small fortune on lighting up your house, then see if your neighbors are willing to collaborate with you. This will allow you to work towards a bigger theme together, which can help make the neighborhood look better than ever. If possible, see how many people are willing to work with you for a common theme and from there build onto your project. This will allow you to cut back on the lights you feel you need to use as everyone else will be working with you to create a home that will certainly brighten the holiday season.

6. Timer
One of the best investments you can make when it comes to your lights is a timer. A good timer can save you a small fortune on your energy bill, which will definitely help to make the holiday season a lot better. You can set your timer to have your lights on for a few hours each evening. This will allow everyone to see the lights when they are out and about but will turn them off when everyone tends to stay indoors. A timer will shut the lights off for you and turn them on, so you don’t even have to worry about it after the initial setup. A timer can also give the impression that you are home if you choose to go away for the holiday season.

7. Know Neighborhood Rules
Before you purchase a lot of lights and décor, it is imperative that you take a moment to learn about your neighborhood’s rules. Whether you have an HOA in your area, the city has specific rules, or you just have neighbors that are going to give you a hard time, knowing the rules can save you a lot of money. Generally, if you’ve lived in a neighborhood for a year or two, you will have a pretty good idea of what your neighbors are going to do and what they will deal with. From there, you might start by asking your HOA about their updated rules. Usually, these will include city policies, so you won’t have to inquire there. However, if you don’t have an HOA, you might check with the city for regulations. This will ensure you won’t waste money on décor, nor will you have to waste your time pulling down items if they don’t fit into the rules.

8. Have a Game Plan
One of the best ways to prep for the holiday light season is to make a game plan before you just start hanging things up. Take a little time to draw out what you would like to do before you even begin putting things together. Once you have everything on paper, let it sink in for a couple of days. This will allow you to make last-minute changes without tearing things down. This can help save you a lot of time, but it will also allow you to prevent damage to your items, so you won’t have to worry about replacing anything.

9. Safety First
Without a doubt, when you work on your lights, you should always make sure to keep safety in mind. Placing the lights up in the wet weather might not be a great idea, especially if you are working on a ladder or on the roof. You should always make sure your ladder is secure and you have someone outside without you as you begin working. Make sure to use items that work well with your wires too, so you don’t have to worry about sparks and other damage to the lights. You should also choose outlets that are water resistant and store them in a place that will always remain dry.

10. Rotate Lights
If you’d like to put a lot of lights up, but don’t want to deal with the high cost of energy, then one of the best things to do is rotate the lights. You can still put all of the lights up, but instead of turning them on every single night, you might just turn on a few of them. This will allow you to easily show off your lights, without having to worry about the high price of running them all. Plus, this will actually keep your yard fresh each night, so your neighbors will have to step out to see what is happening to catch all of your decors.

Putting up holiday lights doesn’t have to mean you need to spend a fortune. Not only do you not have to spend a fortune on the lights, but you also won’t have to worry about spending a fortune on energy costs. These ten tips should help you to find the balance you need to get the job done with less stress.

Ten Looks You Won’t Want to Resist This Winter

Winter is on its way and in some areas you might already feel Jack Frost nipping at your nose. With autumn rapidly coming to an end, you might be in a hurry to secure some of the top looks for this winter. Luckily, you won’t have to go too far to find the winter trends that all of the top celebrities and fashion gurus will be sporting. These ten tips will help you create a bold look while keeping you warm and comfortable no matter how cold the upcoming season gets.

1. Quilted Jackets
Quilted Jackets are the big deal this season, which is great considering they were also some of the top looks for the autumn months. If you have a quilted jacket, then you’re already set up for success. However, if you purchased a thinner jacket for the autumn months then you might want to use something to line the jacket and make it a bit thicker to get you through the cold snaps. Other than that, if you’re skilled with a sewing machine, you can also make quilted patterns on a puffer jacket that you already own. This can be a lot of fun and may even take your look to a whole new level. The quilted jacket is one of the best options to keep warm too, so you’ll get even more out of your money.

2. Loose Fitting Clothes
Grunge has been back in style for a little while now, so it only makes sense that loose-fitting clothing would be a wonderful option for your needs. You will find that you can show off almost any clothes and feel stylish if they are a size or two too big. However, some of the trendiest options for this season are going to be coats that look a bit larger on you. The easiest way to accomplish this is a trench coat, but there will be many other options online too. Sweaters are also easy to find baggy and pair well with a blouse. If you’re looking to save in this department, your local thrift store should have a ton of options.

3. Ribbed Clothing
This season, add a little texture to your day by showing off ribbed clothing. Ribbed clothes can actually help you stay a bit warmer, which is not bad if you don’t like to wear thick layers during the winter months. You can find ribbed clothing in everything from undershirts to turtleneck sweaters, which gives you lots of options to choose from. This will even give you the perfect look for layering, which will improve on your style while keeping you warm. Ribbed clothing can be slimming too, considering it offers vertical lines.

4. Bright Colors
Typically, we’ve seen a lot of dark colors dominating the winter months. This year, everyone is all about showing off the bright colors. You will find clothing that is traditionally worn during summer or spring on the sales racks this year. This can be great considering it will allow you to utilize some of the clothing that you already own. Try pairing brightly colored tops with cardigans, blazers, and overshirts to overcome the lack of warmth that your summer and spring clothes might offer. Of course, you will be able to find some great winter clothes that suit these color trends too.

5. Knits
Knits are a timeless look that you will be able to wear year after year. However, this year, knits are taking on a whole new life. You will find them in all shapes and sizes, which can allow you to have more versatility in your style. Best of all, you can alter the knits you already own to create new looks like vests. One of the most popular items this season is definitely going to be knit dresses. These are going to be cozy and will offer so much warmth that you’ll feel like you’re wearing a blanket all day long. You can also plan out a knit look that will also allow you to pair it with other trends for the season.

6. Fringe
Things will get a little western this winter as so many people are going to be rocking the fringe. One of the most popular items you will find fringe on this season is jackets, but you may also spot it on tops, vests and the occasional top. Of course, fringe found on boots or other items that you might have around the home will also help set you apart. If you don’t own anything with fringe and you’re not sure if you want to invest in the trend, then you can easily recreate the look on your own. There are many tutorials online to help you along the way.

7. Plaids
Plaid is a great way to dress up for the holiday season, but it is also going to be one of the top trends for the winter months. You will want to cater your plaid styles to the traditional holiday colors, but almost any plaid will do the trick if you’re hoping to keep up with trends. Plaid can be worn on anything and everything too. If you don’t want to invest in plaid items then you might consider adding plaid patches to your clothing to suit the trends. Of course, you should also be able to find a pair of leggings for a low price.

8. Leggings
One of the easiest trends to follow this winter is going to be leggings. You will be able to sport anything from winter-themed items to leggings that offer simple prints or solid colors. Of course, you might consider finding thicker leggings if you do live in a colder environment during the winter months. You can also easily layer leggings with your favorite skirt for a vintage look that will continue to impress. You may even be able to find leggings on sale after the holidays, which will help you make your look even easier to keep up.

9. Ruching
Ruching is going to be a really big trend over the winter months. This technique is often found in more formal options, but this season you will discover it just about everywhere you look. From tops to skirts, you will want a ruching style to suit your every need. You can actually accomplish this technique on almost any fabric, so you can create the perfect look without spending a fortune. If you’re in the mood to get creative, then there are numerous tutorials online that will help you get the look you desire on your own. You never know, you might find that you are particularly skilled in this area, which can help you create stylish looks that you will certainly love.

10. Knee High Boots
You can never go wrong with a pair of knee-high boots. However, this season, these boots are definitely going to make you a fashion guru. You can find secondhand boots at most thrift stores if you’re shy on boots; however, there should also be many sales on these boots after the holiday season when stores begin to prep for spring. You will find that knee-high boots pair well with most ensembles, but if you really want to stick to the winter season’s trends then pair them with a mini skirt or leggings.

You can truly look amazing this winter without spending a small fortune on clothing. These ten looks will suit your needs while allowing you to feel confident in the person you are. So, don’t let the season get you down, because you’re certain to feel like a supermodel as the cold weather blows in.

Where to Find the Best Black Friday and Cyber Monday Deals

Black Friday will be here before you know it, which is a great time to get in all of those holiday gifts that are on your list. Black Friday is looking a little different this year though, which has many people scrambling to figure out where they should shop for the items that they need. Many places already have Black Friday deals going, so if you haven’t started your deal hunts then there is no better time than today. These ten stores are offering some of the hottest deals, so you can make sure you’re ready for all of the best deals.

1. Amazon
Amazon has been running deals throughout November, so you may have missed out on some of the low prices. However, there are still lots of items to choose from. Plus, deals for Black Friday and Cyber Monday haven’t yet been announced, so there could be some pretty good gems popping up for those that are willing to wait. Of course, when it comes to Amazon, your best option is to stay on top of flash deals. This year, there have been a lot of electronics, bedding, mattresses, clothes, and beauty supplies on offer. Although their toy deals haven’t been fantastic, you will find that there are a lot of Amazon products to choose from, which make great gifts but can also help your household run efficiently.

2. Walmart
Walmart has been hosting flash Black Friday deals every Friday in November. That doesn’t mean the sales are over though. You will find that Black Friday deals are still happening, which will allow you to show some of the lowest prices of the season. On top of that, you will find that Walmart will continuously be hosting rollbacks. Although deals are offered in-store, you do have a chance to shop the deals early online, so you won’t have to deal with the crowds. As Black Friday deals near an end, you will still find that Walmart has plenty in store for the holiday season during the month of December.

3. Target
Another store that is offering deals throughout the month of November is Target. You will find everything from electronics deals to sales on clothing. Although these deals won’t vary too much from other stores, Target does have some unique offers. For starters, they are offering a 25% discount on one toy purchase, which can save you a lot of money if you shop wisely. You will also find a buy 2, get 1 free deal on books, video games, and games. This sale actually works for items like Playdoh too, which can save you a lot of money if you’re shopping for kids. Apart from that, Target is offering the lowest price of the season deal. So, if you purchase an item today and it’s on sale the week prior to Christmas, then you can get a refund for the excess amount that you paid. This deal is available until Christmas.

4. Wayfair
If you’re hoping to get some deals on items for your home, then Wayfair is going to be the best place to visit. Wayfair already has lots of deals going, so you may want to look into these sales if you don’t want to miss out. Wayfair will mostly likely roll out more deals on the day of Black Friday, as well as Cyber Monday. Currently, you’ll find some of the biggest discounts on items that you’ll see all year. Rugs and wall art are up to 80% off, while bedding is 70% off. Of course, if you look hard you should also be able to find deals on outdoor items since it is currently out of season.

5. Best Buy
If you’re hoping to get electronics, then you might want to check out all of the things that Best Buy has to offer. This season, you will find lots of laptop deals, which will make going back to school in the spring even more enjoyable. Apple will also have a ton of good deals too, which is perfect if you’re looking for some of the season’s hottest items. Headphones will also be in abundance, which will definitely make it much easier for you to get everyone something on your list. Apart from that, Best Buy is following Target’s lead by offering the lowest price of the season deal, which will allow you to ask for a refund if your item goes on sale before Christmas. Best Buy is also doing price matching, which is just one more way to save.

6. Costco
If you have a Costco membership, then you’re in store for some pretty amazing deals. Costco is known for its outstanding deals in the television department, so if you’re hoping to get the deal you desire without having to be lightning-fast then this might be the route to take. You will find lots of other great electronics on Costco’s website and in-store too. One of their big items is going to me massagers, which will definitely bring you comfort for the rest of the year. Blankets are also going to be big sellers this Black Friday season. Of course, Costco will have an abundance of jewelry available too.

7. Sam’s Club
Sam’s Club is another store you won’t want to miss out on when it comes to amazing deals. You’ll find that the store does offer some incredible deals on televisions, just like many other stores do. Sam’s is also known for its great discounts on Christmas décor during the Black Friday season. Of course, they will offer numerous other deals, many of which will be accompanied by gift cards for added incentive to purchase. If you don’t have a Sam’s Club Membership, then have no fret. When you purchase a membership now, for $45, you will also receive a $45 gift card, which makes the price of membership practically free.

8. Lowes
Over the last few years, Lowes has really pushed hard to compete with the big names for Black Friday greatness. This season, you’ll find some pretty awesome items to keep your shopping list satisfied. While you can find some items that you might want from other stores at Lowes, you should primarily concentrate on items like patio furniture and tools. You should also be able to find some good prices on home security and holiday décor. These items will be available online too, so you don’t have to step foot in the store.

9. Home Depot
Home Depot is also offering a lot of great deals to help you get the most out of Black Friday. During the sales, you will largely find things like lawn supplies, which will help you stock up for the next season. This is the perfect time to actually upgrade lawnmowers to ride-on mowers and so on. Of course, you will find deals elsewhere. One of the biggest deals to look into is solar panels. This can help you to charge devices during a power outage, or even just save on your energy bills. Home Depot will be offering electronics and furniture deals too, to ensure you can easily shop for everything you need in one spot.

10. JC Penney
Many people think JC Penney is a place for just clothes. You will find that they now offer so much more. Of course, during Black Friday, you will find that a large portion of their sales will be on items like clothing and shoes. Another great thing to consider shopping for would be jewelry, as their deals will be low without sacrificing quality. Items like backpacks, purses, and other accessories will be on offer. You’ll find many home goods like towels and small appliances on sale too.

Shopping around for Black Friday deals might be a bit tough this year because there are so many great options to choose from. These ten stores will definitely help you find some of the top prices around. You will find that many are already offering deals though, so make sure to hurry to catch some of the best prices around.

Celebrate Universal Children’s Day Without Tapping into Your Tight Budget

The holiday season is rapidly approaching, so you might be wondering how you’re going to fit Universal Children’s Day into your budget. The truth is this holiday doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money. In fact, you can spend very little on it as it is largely about celebrating your child and the role they will play in the future of our world. These ten tips will help you map out the day, so you can all have fun and truly enjoy everything about your child and the rest of the children in the world.

1. Talk About What Makes Your Child Special
One of the best things you can to do celebrate with your child is taking the time to tell them what makes them special. Often enough, we get lost in the motions of the day, so taking some time out to tell your child all of the things that you love about them can help boost confidence while allowing them to know how special they are in your eyes. While going over the remarkable things about your child, you might take some time to come up with activities based on your child’s personality. These don’t have to be elaborate or expensive. For instance, if your child is creative, then come up with an art project to work on together. It can even be as simple as chalk art outside. If your child has a giving heart, then take them to donate food or clothing. You will be surprised by how this simple task can help your child thrive as they acknowledge their strengths.

2. Cook Their Favorite Foods
Sometimes, giving your child their favorite meal is one of the best ways to show you care on a holiday such as this. Before the holiday arrives, plan out a meal that includes your child or children’s favorite dishes. It doesn’t have to be a traditional meal either, so if you have mashed potatoes with spaghetti, don’t worry about it too much. You can also work with your child’s favorite snacks. Allowing them to have some fun with food will brighten their day while ensuring you have celebrated in a fun way.

3. Craft Time
Spending time with your child on Universal Children’s Day is a wonderful way to celebrate. One easy and cheap way to make the time pass is to craft together. You can make crafts that appeal to your child’s needs or work on items that are actually designed to celebrate the holiday. You will find craft ideas for all of these things online, so you won’t have to spend too much time researching or coming up with ideas if you’re short on time. Apart from that, you will find that you can easily use items like recycled goods to help you find exactly what you need to create fun projects that will keep everyone entertained for hours on end.

4. Play Together
Playtime is another great way to help you embrace the holiday and your child. Playing together is not only a great way to bond, but it will also help your child to learn and boost their confidence. Playing together will even help you understand your child better, so you can actually shape play to their needs. Of course, you can take turns picking the game to ensure things are lively and that your child will learn how to take turns and respect others’ boundaries.

5. Let Them Dress Up
Another great way to celebrate your child is to let them be themselves. For this day, let them dress themselves, within reason. Some children might dress like their favorite characters while others will keep it casual or mismatched. Some children may even want to dress to impress. As long as the clothing is weather appropriate and decent, then let them be. This is a great way to let them show off their personality and personal style, so they can grow and feel confident in themselves.

6. Go to Story Time
You will find that sharing stories is a great way for children to feel celebrated. Many stories will even help children learn more about other children around the world. Luckily, we live in a world where there are many options for children to enjoy storytime. Most libraries will offer storytime on a weekly, or even a daily, basis. So, you might check your local library’s schedule to see if there is anything you can attend. Bookstores are also great places to join in on storytime. Many venues might be more likely to host a storytime on Universal Children’s Day too. Of course, if you prefer to stay home or don’t have a storytime option, then there will be many online options to choose from.

7. Take Part in Events
Universal Children’s Day tends to be celebrated in most major cities around the world. So, you might check your community message boards to see if there is anything in the works. Of course, if your city isn’t celebrating then you might still find options to choose from. For instance, children’s venues might offer discounted rates. There might be musical or story-based events in parks for children to attend. You might even be able to get discounts on food at your favorite local restaurants. No matter what event you attend, it will help you entertain your child for less.

8. Watch Celebrations
Universal Children’s Day is celebrated around the globe, which means there are going to be a lot of celebrations that you can stream online. Although this holiday might not be a huge deal in the United States, many Asian countries actually take the day off to celebrate the holiday. This will create a wonderful opportunity for children to learn more about other countries and how children around the world celebrate this special day.

9. Special Activity
If you’re looking for educational opportunities to help make the holiday phenomenal, then planning a special activity is a great option for you. There are so many things you can do to get the ball rolling on this activity. To begin with, you might consider taking your child to a museum, zoo, aquarium, planetarium, or anywhere else that their childhood curiosity could be sparked. Some venues will even host a free day, so be on the lookout. Of course, simply taking your child to the park might be a special activity that will allow them to easily have fun and learn on their special day.

10. Small Gifts
The gift-giving season is practically here. So, it is understandable if you don’t want to go out and purchase more gifts for your children. However, this doesn’t mean that there aren’t some small presents that you might want to provide for the holiday. For instance, an educational gift, like a toy, will help your child learn and grow during this special day. A game that you can play as a family might also work wonders and improve the bonding experience. Of course, handmade gifts are always a great choice and will teach your child the value of your work and how much you care about them.

Universal Children’s Day is all about the kids, which is why you won’t want to miss out on celebrating this day. These tips should help keep your budget low while still allowing you to feel confident about your child’s ability to have a blast on this incredible day.

Quick Ways to Transform Thanksgiving into a Tailgating Extravaganza

For many families, Thanksgiving is going to look a lot different than it did last year. A lot of families are trying to cram in as much of what they missed out on last year into each celebration, which is why many are considering enjoying a Thanksgiving of tailgating and family fun. If you’re worried that tailgating might cost you a small fortune, or that it simply won’t work into your Thanksgiving traditions, then these ten tips will help bring you some reassurance. So, grab your favorite autumn essentials and foam fingers, because you will easily be able to embrace a year of tailgating on Thanksgiving.

1. Deep Fry the Turkey
Unless you plan on cooking the turkey ahead of time, then you might be wondering how you’re going to get your turkey cooked all the way through while tailgating. One of the easiest solutions to this problem is to deep fry your turkey. This actually takes just a couple of hours, depending on the size of your bird, which will allow you to get your favorite holiday meat done in record time. Deep frying your turkey will actually suit the theme of tailgating a bit more than a regular bird might. Of course, deep frying will take a few extra steps like bringing and choosing the best oil for your deep fryer, but it will be worth it when you enjoy the turkey while waiting to cheer on your team.

2. Take to Crock Pots
Cooking items on small burners can be pretty annoying, especially when you have to take turns using the burner. Although bringing along the burner for some dishes is probably a must, you might also consider bringing the crock pots that you have too. This will allow you to cook up things like mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, gravy, and so on. It can also keep dishes warm while you prepare the rest of your food. If you need to make space for multiple items, then use tin foil to separate the dishes you are keeping warm. This will help you to make your feast stretch further without forcing you to use too much propane or deal with cold foods.

3. Grill the Veggies
It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without a lot of amazing veggies. However, cooking them while you’re in a parking lot or other non-kitchen environment can prove to be a bit of a challenge. If you’re used to taking your grill along for your tailgating events, then this might be the perfect solution to your veggie problem. Simply wrap some of your favorite items in tin foil and you’ll be ready to go. There are lots of recipes online that will help you get started. You never know, you might make the change to doing this every Thanksgiving as the flavor of grilled vegetables can be a game-changer.

4. Consider Portability
It isn’t always easy to have a meal when you’re on the go. Some paper plates and other portable eating supplies will just let you down. So, when you do plan out your meal, your best option is going to be to consider the portable aspects of the food you choose. One of the easiest routes to take is to just make sandwiches with your dishes. You can utilize special rolls to make the sandwiches feel fancier. Of course, you might also consider baking foods into the puffed pastry, for a food pocket that can even be enjoyed while rooting for your favorite team in the stands.

5. Desserts
Desserts can be one of the toughest things to plan around when it comes to making a meal tailgating friendly. One of the easiest routes to take is to transform pies and other items into alternative dishes like turnovers or pasties. This is actually very easy to do as all you need to do is make the filling you typically use and add it to the pastry in a new way. You might also consider making cakes into cupcakes. This can even be done with cheesecake. Of course, items like fudge are also fun to make and can beat eaten on the go without a lot of changes.

6. Warm Drinks
In most areas, the weather is going to be a little crisp for Thanksgiving, so if you’re planning on tailgating you might consider having some warm drinks to keep you warm and ready to cheer. There are a lot of options to help you out with this. Coffee is one of the easiest options to choose from. You can brew it in most coffee makers without burning up too much energy. Another great option is hot chocolate as this can be enjoyed by the entire family. Apart from that, cider is simple and easily made in a crockpot. If you don’t want to go to great lengths to make these items, then you can always bring along instant mixes and use heated water to make them.

7. Appetizers
With all of the delicious smells going on in the tailgating area, you and your guests might feel too hungry to wait until everything is finished. One of the easiest ways to cut back on hunger is to offer appetizers. You can really keep things simple by offering items that relate to the meal, or you can keep things classic. Chips and dips are generally popular, but you can also create items rolls with dips to bring on the Thanksgiving theme. Appetizers can also be at home before the game, so everyone has something to snack on as all of the food is cooked.

8. Consider a Potluck
You don’t have to take on the burden of the entire meal yourself. If you’ve invited guests to tailgate with you, then one of the best routes to take is to ask others to bring something along. If you can get with everyone before the event, people can plan accordingly so your meal will be better than ever. Of course, if you’re tailgating on your own, you might consider joining a network of tailgaters. You can barter food with one another so that the meal stretches further, and everyone has plenty to eat without spending a fortune.

9. Bring Chargers
Since the holiday season will be in full swing, there is a good chance you will want to keep in touch with loved ones while you tailgate. On top of that, you might need forms of entertainment such as your favorite movies or playlists to keep you occupied while you wait for the game to begin. You might also want to keep up with holiday traditions like the Macy’s Day parade. So, it is imperative that you keep your charger with you, or else you might be dealing with a dull prep period. It will also save you money if you can’t deal without any entertainment and choose to go looking for a charger at a store on Thanksgiving Day.

10. Dress the Part
Dressing up can be one of the best aspects of tailgating, so you shouldn’t put it off just because it is a holiday. Instead, consider showing off your favorite jersey, tossing on some face paint, and sporting your favorite foam finger. You might also dress up like your team’s mascot. If you want to keep things Thanksgiving-themed, then whip up a fun pilgrim costume and enjoy making your meal dressed like you were taking part in the first-ever Thanksgiving. If you have guests coming to join you then you might ask them to dress up too, so everyone can embrace the fun.

Tailgating on Thanksgiving Day doesn’t have to mean you’ve decided to skip out on the holiday. These ten tips will allow you to celebrate Thanksgiving in new and fun ways that will help you feel like you’re getting more out of your year. So, embrace the holiday and the food, because you might want to make this a new tradition.

Cheap Toy Ideas That Will Ensure You Stay Off Your Budget’s Naughty List

The holiday season is rapidly approaching, which might leave some people stressed out over their shopping list. If money is tight Christmas and other gift-giving holidays can really make you feel stressed. Luckily, there are a few ways to work around the high cost of the holiday so you can spend less while still bringing joy to the ones you love. These ten kid-friendly ideas will allow you to make or buy toys that will certainly make many children happy.

1. Slime
Without a doubt, slime has really hit the big time in the world of toys. You can find slime in almost any store, and it is reasonably priced to suit your needs. You can find basic slime, which is fairly cheap, as well as bulk packs to help you spread the slime out a bit. On top of that, there are numerous slime kits you can choose from. Some of these kits allow children to make their own slime, while others offer themed accessories to keep the slime fun. Of course, if you’re looking to save money and get creative, you can come up with your own slime kit. After making the slime simply add themed items into a container and you have a homemade gift that will definitely aim to please.

2. Craft Kits
Another thing that is bound to appease most children is craft sets. These can be found fairly cheap at department and hobby stores. If you’re lucky, you can even find a few items on clearance to help you find an even more affordable option. Craft kits are a great gift because they aren’t presenting the child with a toy. Rather, they are offering an activity that is certain to keep a child busy for some time. When the craft is complete, children can wear the item they made or put it up on display. There are also science kits that might be a great option. These kits can also be made at home if you’re looking to save some money but still want to offer the supplies a child will need to create something cool.

3. Ball
Without a doubt, a ball is a timeless gift that will suit children of all ages. Balls are a great gift because they can be purchased to suit almost any age group. Spending under $5 for a bouncy ball will make most toddlers feel happy and ready to play for days. Older children might be satisfied with a ball from their favorite sport. No matter what type of ball you choose to purchase, you will walk out of the store for fairly cheap. Generally, the best gift to give with a ball is time as most children will love playing with the item with someone else.

4. Bulk Toys
When you’re shopping for specific items or items that you know many of the kids will enjoy then you might want to search for bulk packages of toys. This will typically give you more than one toy of the brand for a reduced price when you compare it to buying the items single packaged. If you shop this way, you can always split up the bulk set so that it is stretched further, or so different children get the toy they enjoy. Bulk packs are also perfect for stocking stuffers if you open them up and place each unique item in the stocking to be discovered.

5. Dress Up Clothes
With Halloween over, you will find that there are lots of great goodies leftover at a discounted price. If you act fast, you can purchase all sorts of costumes at a great discount. This can help you allow your child to have a great collection of dress-up clothing. If you want to spice up the gift, you can even take a recycled box and decorate it to look like a treasure chest. If you shop for costumes that are larger in size, children will be able to use them for much longer too, so the gift will stretch even further, which will add to the fun. You should even be able to find some awesome accessories at a low price.

6. Board Games
When it comes to keeping children busy, especially when they can’t have screen time, then a board game is the way to go. Most board games can be purchased for next to nothing and will allow children of all ages to learn and have fun with their families. One of the best things about board games is they are the perfect gift for siblings. If you are gifting to a family then you can easily choose a board game as a gift for all of the children, which can save lots of money. Board games tend to last for years too, opposed to toys that are often outgrown.

7. Dolls
When it comes to gifting to children, one of the best toys you can get is a doll. No matter the gender of the child most children will love playing with dolls. You can purchase dolls in a wide assortment of price ranges too. You can choose dolls where lots of imagination is required, or you can choose dolls that have numerous different features. If you know a child that already has dolls, then doll accessories are an easy option too. This should help satisfy your shopping list while ensuring you get plenty of toys for the children on your list without breaking the bank.

8. Puzzles
Another great option that will suit children is puzzles. You can actually find a fairly large puzzle for next to nothing at many department stores. Puzzles for younger children tend to be higher priced because they use wood and other supplies, but even these won’t break the bank. If you’re looking for puzzles that make the perfect stocking stuffers, then you might check dollar stores. They will often share puzzles of popular characters for a dollar or less, which will allow you to stock up on items for all of the kids you know.

9. Off-Brand Playdough
Most kids tend to love playing with Play-Doh. However, the brand can get a bit pricey. Luckily, there are numerous off-brand options to choose from so you can get a lot more for your money. Many of the off-brand options will even offer fun accessories, like cookie cutters on the lid of the containers. If you aren’t interested in buying play dough then you can also make it yourself for next to nothing. Simply mix it together with smells, glitters, colors, and more, and then place it in special packaging. Kids will love playing with the dough and may even get more out of the gift since it is homemade. You might also look for cheap accessory options like cookie cutters, which can also be made if you have the right skill set.

10. Blocks
It is hard to leave blocks off of any toy list as they are popular with most children and also add an abundance of value to their playtime. However, blocks aren’t always the cheapest option when it comes to toy shopping. Luckily, there are many block deals during this time of the year that will help you get a lot more out of your gifts. Some of the cheapest blocks on the market are Mega blocks though, which are perfect for younger children learning how to work on their motor skills.

Shopping for the perfect budget-friendly gift for kids doesn’t have to be tough. These ten ideas will have you coming in under budget while still allowing the children in your life to have fun with the items that you choose for them. So, don’t stress this shopping season, because you will definitely have things covered.

Budget Friendly Travel Options for Your Holiday Needs

The holiday season is on its way, which means a lot of people will be traveling to get to their loved ones or to simply enjoy some time away from their hectic lives. Holiday travel can be pretty pricey if you’re not careful, especially when you’re traveling in today’s world. Covid-19 restrictions could cost you a lot more money and stress. These ten tips will help you to find exactly what you need to travel so you can embrace the holiday season with as little financial strain and stress as possible.

1. Book Non-Crowded Flight
Flying is probably the fastest mode of transportation, but not usually the cheapest. If you’re worried about Covid-19 then your best option is to purchase a ticket for a flight that won’t be as crowded. For instance, flights in the late-night hours to the early morning hours are generally less crowded and might even be cheaper. Flying out on a Tuesday can also save you quite a bit of money while allowing you to feel more secure on your flight. Luckily, flying isn’t as bad as other modes of transportation as the air inside a cabin is generally fresher and from outside. Most flights are also trying to enforce a vaccination rule, so you also have this to consider when flying as opposed to taking other modes of public transit.

2. Book Early
Another thing to consider when you choose to plan your trip is how early it is. You are going to want to schedule most things well in advance to ensure you lock down at a good rate. It might already be a bit too late to book a Thanksgiving flight at a reasonable price, but you may still be able to find some decent deals. Booking a flight for Christmas now is a good option though and will help you ensure you have the best possible price. Of course, you should book more than just flight information. Hotels, especially, should be booked in advance, as hotels tend to raise their prices as the holiday season guarantees them more bookings. Even if you’re traveling by train or bus, you should still consider grabbing the ticket as soon as possible to lock in a good rate and ensure you get a seat when you need one.

3. Purchase Cancellation Insurance
In these trying times, it is hard to predict what is going to happen when we plan ahead to travel. So, one of the best things you can do during this time is to purchase cancellation insurance. Cancellation insurance can actually be added to a wide assortment of options, including flights and rentals. This will ensure you are able to get your money back on your hotel if your flight is canceled, and so on. Cancellation insurance isn’t expensive either. So, even if your plans aren’t canceled you won’t be out a lot of money, which can definitely make you feel better about the purchase. Cancellation insurance can also make it a lot easier to cancel other reservations if something does fall through.

4. Consider Driving
When it comes to safety today, one of the best ways to travel during the holiday season is by car. This will help limit your exposure to illnesses like Covid-19, so you will feel more comfortable about getting around. Apart from that, it will also allow you to travel at your own pace, which can make the experience a bit easier for you. Of course, gasoline can be a bit pricey, so it is best to be strategic about fueling up. If you find a good price, you should stop and top off your tank to help save money in the long run. You should also fuel up outside of cities. There are many gas apps that can help you find fair prices along your route; however, you should never push your gas tank too low, as you don’t want to end up stranded if there are large gaps between towns.

5. Stay with Loved Ones
If possible, staying with a loved one while traveling is one of the best options to take. Hotels can be very expensive during this time, especially with so many people hoping to travel this year. In fact, you can probably save hundreds if you just stay with someone. Sleeping at a loved one’s home will also help limit your exposure to illnesses. Since you will already be exposed to the loved one and other family members, it will cut back the number of people that you encounter. Plus, it will allow you to get the most out of your experience with friends or family after having to spend so much time apart.

6. Avoid High Traffic Areas
Areas with high traffic can be a real pain during the holiday season. Generally, these areas will have even more traffic than you would expect on an average day which will mean you will be burning more gasoline by traveling through them. Not only that but passing through large cities can be confusing which might leave you feeling frustrated. Apart from that, restaurants and stores may charge you a bit more for items that you’d buy cheaper elsewhere, so it is best to stick to routes that aren’t as trafficked. Of course, if you’re worried about Covid-19, then you may be more exposed if you stop in these areas as well.

7. Pack Extra Supplies
No matter how you choose to travel, one of the best things you can do is pack extra supplies. One of the most important things to have on hand is clean masks. If you have reusable masks these are great. However, while traveling you might want to invest in some disposable masks. These will allow you to always have something on hand so you’re not carrying around a bag of soiled masks while you travel. You should also keep the sanitizer on hand. You can only have small bottles on an airplane, so sanitizing wipes might be the best option for you. Other than that, you should keep some snacks and water on hand when you can, especially if you’re driving. This will ensure stops are purely for gas and bathroom breaks.

8. Plan Your Seating
Another important thing to consider when traveling is where you are going to sit. Some modes of travel don’t have the restrictions that others do, so it is important to protect yourself in these circumstances. Your best option is to sit near a window if you’re on a bus or train. This will allow you to let in the fresh air, so you can ensure airflow near you. If you can, sit with the people you are traveling with or alone to ensure you aren’t being exposed to others. If you are on a plane, don’t choose a middle seat. In fact, see if there are any spots where the middle seat is not taken. When traveling, always wear your mask and sanitize when necessary.

9. Avoid Cash
Although it is always wise to have a little cash with you when you travel for emergencies, it isn’t wise to carry around a lot of cash. In this day and age, you want to limit the amount of transactions you make that require you to touch things that other people have touched. Giving cash as payment and receiving change, just makes you more vulnerable to getting sick, especially if you don’t sanitize right after each transaction. On top of that, traveling with cash makes you a target for crime. If you do travel with cash, always keep it hidden away so that potential muggers or con artists won’t attempt to steal from you and put you in a dangerous position.

10. Pack Snacks
Snacks can be one of the best travel hacks known to man. When you pack snacks, you will ensure you have food, which can bring you comfort even if you’re not conscious of it. Having snacks on hand also means you can go without spending money for longer periods of time, and you won’t have to touch things that could be infected. Of course, traveling with kids makes snacks absolutely crucial. No matter what mode of transportation you take, you will need snacks to keep children satisfied. If you are traveling by car then you should also keep drinks on hand. This will allow you to drive for longer stretches so you can arrive at your destination in a timely manner.

Traveling during this time can be nerve-racking and spending money is inevitable. However, there are many ways that you can travel without having to spend a small fortune. These ten tips will help you to find more peace of mind as you embrace the world of holiday travel again.

Ten Cheap Ways to Show Some Love on World Kindness Day

World Kindness Day is just around the corner, and with the holiday season nearing quickly, it is the perfect time to get outside and spread some of your kindness. Luckily, it doesn’t cost money to be kind, so you’re already off to a great start. These ten ideas will help you further spread the kindness you have so that other people can truly benefit from everything that you have to offer. So, enjoy this holiday for all that it’s worth as this is the last holiday you might get to enjoy that doesn’t involve spending money.

1. Donate toys
Since the holidays are coming up, one of the best things you can do is donate some toys. Of course, purchasing new toys is always appreciated, but in most cases, you can simply go through your children’s toys to find the items they no longer play with. You might be surprised by how easy it is to find items in your children’s rooms that they no longer play with. If you rotate toys, it may even be easier than ever as many children will forget all about the excess toys that they have. Donating toys to your local church or thrift store can help children that normally would go without having some presents to enjoy. There are many charities, like Toys for Tots, that will gladly take any unpackaged toy you may have or purchase, so if you are looking to spend money this is a great way to do it.

2. Bring Someone Lunch
Sharing food is one of the best ways to show a little love. So, if you’re looking to be kind then you might choose a person to share your lunch with. It doesn’t matter who you share your lunch with either. If you have to work on this day, then you might consider bringing in a lunch for a colleague. If you’re off and your parents live nearby then perhaps you may want to whip them up a delicious lunch. There are also people in need that could benefit from a nice lunch, even if it is just a sacked lunch. Sharing lunch doesn’t have to be pricey, so if you’re on a tight budget don’t feel that you have to purchase food from a restaurant.

3. Clean Up a Park
Another great act of kindness you can try out is cleaning up a park. All you’ll need for this activity is bags and gloves, so you will spend next to nothing. If you don’t have a lot of time on your hands then half an hour to an hour of cleaning up can actually do a world of good. This good deed will make your community look amazing while helping children to play in a clean environment. On top of that, this will help the environment immensely. It can even help to keep birds and other animals safe, especially as they prepare to migrate or settle in for the winter months.

4. Offer to Shop for Someone
In today’s world, going out to shop can be a difficult task for so many. For the immunocompromised or those that care for young children or the elderly, shopping can be even more taxing. Unfortunately, grocery delivery can also cost a small fortune. So, if you have a little extra time on your hands, you might offer to go shopping for someone that can’t easily get out of the house. This can allow someone a little peace, especially as flu season arrives and covid is still lurking around. If you don’t know of anyone that needs assistance, then you might consider contacting a local nursing home or any care facility to see if they know of anyone in need.

5. Help Your Child’s Teacher
Another group of people that are always in need of a little help is teachers. If you have a child in school, then you might email your child’s teacher to see if you can be of assistance in the classroom. Sometimes, a teacher might need help organizing some things around the classroom or even decorating for the upcoming holiday season. However, sometimes, it might be as simple as dropping off some extra tissue paper for kids to use during the sick season. Either way, any effort is usually appreciated especially with teachers taking on so much extra. If you are dealing with in-home learning or parents aren’t currently allowed to help due to restrictions, then you might just consider sending something nice to your child’s teacher, such as a cup of coffee or a nice craft to show your appreciation.

6. Salt Sidewalks
If icy weather has already arrived in your neck of the woods, then salting the sidewalks might be one of the best acts of kindness you can do. Salting sidewalks isn’t incredibly tough to do either and won’t cost you a small fortune. Rather, it will allow you to easily feel confident that no one in your neighborhood is going to slip and fall. This can be especially great for people with small children or the elderly as it may be hard for them to get outside and salt their own sidewalks. You might even notice that your neighbors may even return the favor later on down the road.

7. Leave Positive Notes
When it comes to brightening someone’s day, one of the best things you can do is leave random notes. There are so many ways you can about this too. One of the easiest is to write out positive messages on sticky notes. Then, when you find a place that someone might need a happy note, simply stick it on and walk away. Bus stops, bathroom stalls, library books, and more are all great places to spread some cheer. If you’re not sure what to write on your notes, then there are countless ideas online. You may even find a few inspirational quotes that you’d like to share with those that may need them.

8. Volunteer
November can be a tough month for volunteer programs. A lot of people go out of town to spend time with their family while there are also more people in need during the colder seasons. So, if you have extra time on your hands, then you might want to spend it helping others. There are many great charities you can assist too. If you’re looking for something local then you might ask around at local shelters, soup kitchens, and so on. Churches will also be able to direct you in the right direction if you’re not certain of local options. There are many national options too, including the Salvation Army, Habitat for Humanity, and so much more. You might even be able to find a volunteer option that the entire family can enjoy.

9. Send Friends Kind Messages
Sometimes, our friends are truly the people that deserve an act of kindness. So, to celebrate the holiday, you might head to your favorite social media platform and send some compliments to your friends. You don’t have to go too crazy with the messages, just send some love or a positive message and enjoy making someone’s day. You might even use this to rekindle some old friendships as offering some positive words can transform the way someone feels while opening up conversations that can help you reconnect and enjoy some time chatting together.

10. Smile
Sometimes, all you need to spread a little joy is to put a smile on your face. This is probably the cheapest and most minimal way to spread some kindness on this holiday. It is scientifically shown that when a person smiles at another person, it can actually boost their happiness while helping to create a sense of trust in an individual, even if they are a stranger. By smiling at others on Kindness Day you may even make some new friends, which will make the holiday even more rewarding.

Without a doubt, a holiday like this is definitely a good thing to add just before the holiday season when everything gets chaotic. These ten ideas to help make the holiday special for those around you will definitely help you enjoy the holiday even more, too.