It’s no secret that Christmas is the most expensive holiday of the year. Trust me, I get it! Not only are the gifts crazy expensive, but everything else is too! I’m talking about the Christmas cards, pictures with Santa, holiday parties, and everything else on top of the gifts. Now don’t get me wrong. I love Christmas dearly! But for many years the expenses that came with Christmas sucked the joy out of the holiday. I was stressed, overwhelmed, and my bank account was always empty. Have you been there too? Surely I’m not alone!
To be honest, I thought that this was just the way Christmas always had to be. I never knew that it could be different. I figured that everyone around the world was just always poor and stressed during this time. But thankfully, that’s not how it has to be! Can you believe it? It is 100% possible to spend less this Christmas and NOT go into debt! Yes, I said it! And I’ve walked the walk, too! With a little bit of planning and preparation, you too can shed the financial stress that this season brings. And all that’s left is the magic and beauty of Christmas!
So here you have it! Ten ways to spend less this Christmas and NOT go into debt! Even if you just put half of these practices in place, you’ll be amazed at how much less you’ll spend this holiday season.
1. Plan ahead.
Thankfully, Christmas is on the same day each year. There are no surprises when it will show up. You know it’s coming, so go ahead and plan ahead for it! This means deciding who you want to buy gifts for, and how much you want to spend on each person. Set a limit and stick to what you said. Better yet, set a limit and try to spend under that budgeted amount! If possible, start saving money for Christmas months before December. If planning is your superpower then start saving for Christmas in January! Saving just a little bit each month will take a lot of the stress and burden off you financially during the holidays.
2. Cut out extra spending that is not holiday related.
I get it. Not everyone saves for Christmas all year long. That’s totally okay. And if you’re already in the holiday season then it’s a little hard to go back in time and save money. To help combat the extra spending that the holidays bring, consider cutting out spending that is not holiday related. Try cutting down your restaurants budget or your groceries budget. Take a look at your cell phone data plan and see if you can drop down your phone plan. Or finally cut cable once and for all. The point is to sacrifice in other areas of your life so that you can enjoy the holidays without going into debt. Because the worst thing is waking up the day after Christmas with massive credit card debt and buyer’s remorse. So say goodbye to your weekly coffee runs or cut back on your personal spending so you can pay for the holiday extras!Report this ad
3. Cut back or skip out on Christmas cards.
Are Christmas cards cute and fun to receive? Absolutely! Are they necessary? Not at all! Now I love a good Christmas card (they are seriously so fun to receive), but you’ll live if you skip the cards this year. If you’re adamant against it, then order only 25 from an inexpensive place like CVS or Walgreens and only send them out to close family. This is an easy area to cut back on. In fact, you can probably buy a gift or two with the money that you save from spending on cards!
4. Choose less expensive traditions.
I absolutely love the Christmas traditions that our family has started! Thankfully, I knew early on that I wanted our traditions to be inexpensive. We don’t spend a ton of money on entertainment or grand activities. Instead, our family’s traditions include baking cookies, watching The Snowman on repeat, and driving around to see Christmas lights. When I was growing up my friends and I would go caroling and pass out candy canes. The point is to do something that you’ll look back on years from now and smile about.
5. Stay out of the stores.
If you’re anything like me, then you find shopping fun. I love walking through the stores (especially during the sales) to see all that I can buy. But spending a lot of extra time shopping is a slippery slope, my friend. And that includes online shopping as well! An easy way to spend less this season is to just stay out of the stores. Yes, that means you don’t go into Target. It means you stay off Amazon and you don’t click the Facebook Ads for cute clothes. If you stay away from these temptations, you won’t spend the extra money!
Does not matter what time of the year it is, If you ask yourself this 10 questions before to buy something you will take a better decision:
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You’ve heard it said by health experts, beauty gurus, and possibly even your best friend. Collagen is the new buzzword on everyone’s lips, and it can now be found in just about everything from creams and cosmetics, to powders and pills. And the truth is, this may be one instance where the hype is actually warranted.
As the most abundant protein in the body, is available in your muscles, skin, blood, bones, cartilage, and ligaments. You may want to consider squeezing in an extra serving of this vital protein for several reasons, as collagen is a building block that:
- promotes skin elasticity
- holds together your bones and muscles
- protects your organs
- provides structure to joints and tendons
The good news is that your body produces collagen on a regular basis. But, it does slow down with age.
Other lifestyle habits that can bring collagen production to a screeching halt include smoking, sun exposure, and an unhealthy diet. Some health conditions may also deplete your collagen storage. And without this important building block, you may start to see wrinkles and sagging skin, or even experience joint pain.
Keep reading to discover five specific benefits you may experience if you take the time to up your collagen consumption.
1. May ease joint pain
As your cartilage weakens and deteriorates with age, you may start to feel stiff, achy joints. It’s possible that upping your collagen intake may help reduce joint pain and alleviate symptoms of arthritis .
In a 2009 study , participants took a type II collagen supplement made from chicken necks for 90 days. Results showed that osteoarthritis symptoms decreased by 40 percent while the severity of symptoms dropped by an impressive 33 percent.
In an older study in 1993 with the same collagen supplement, participants with severe rheumatic disease saw a reduced number of swollen and tender joints 4 of 60 participants also experienced complete remission. This supplement was undenatured, meaning that the amino acids weren’t broken down as a result of processing and exposure to high heat.
2. May reverse skin aging
One of the most well known benefits of collagen is its ability to promote glowing, vibrant skin. This essential protein provides elasticity to the skin, helping it to appear more youthful and healthy.
But as you get older and collagen production declines, fine lines, loose skin, and dryness can occur. So what happens if you increase your collagen intake with supplements?
A study published randomly chose 46 of 69 women, ages 35 to 55 years old, to take a collagen hydrolyses supplement. The rest of the group took a placebo. The women who took the collagen showed an improvement in skin elasticity within four weeks.
The same manufacturer also conducted another study in 2014 with the same supplement, which significantly reduced wrinkles after just eight weeks.
3. Helps build muscle and burn fat
Collagen is a major component of muscle tissue, so it should come as no surprise that it can have a big impact when it comes to building muscle mass. Plus, collagen also contains a concentrated amount of glycine, an amino acid involved in the synthesis of creatine This can provide source muscles with the fuel needed to power through your workout.
So what happens when you add collagen to your workout routine?
There’s not much research on collagen and exercise, but a study looked at collagen supplements in 53 older males with sarcopenia, a condition where you lose muscle mass due to aging. After 12 weeks, those who took supplements along with resistance training saw an increase in fat loss and muscle strength more than the placebo group.
4. May reduce cellulite
Besides keeping your skin healthy and glowing, collagen may also help improve the appearance of stubborn cellulite. cellulite is when the layer of fat under the skin pushes up against the connective tissue, creating a dimpled or lumpy appearance on the skin.
Another study by manufacturers to see what type I collagen would do for cellulite. They randomly assigned 105 women, ages 24 to 50, to take collagen peptides for six months. Those who did demonstrated a clear improvement in skin texture and waviness.
While it seems promising, more studies are needed to confirm if collagen helps reduce cellulite appearance. A 2015 review found that only acoustic wave therapy had potential benefit for treating cellulite, however, collagen may not have been included.
But remember, cellulite is incredibly common an estimated 80 per cent have it. It’s a natural part of aging and skin formation and not a cause for concern.
5. May improve digestive health
Collagen is in the gut’s connective tissue and can help support and strengthen the protective lining of your digestive tract. This is critically important because alterations in the barrier function of your intestine, also known as leaky gut syndrome, can allow particles to the blood This may result in inflammation.
In fact, an older study in 2003 looked at 170 individuals with inflammatory bowel disease and found that they were more likely to have lower levels of serum collagen.
So the current theory is that by increasing your intake of collagen, you could help build up the tissues that line your gastrointestinal tract and promote gut health. However, current research is limited on the direct effects of collagen supplementation on the digestive system.
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If you want to buy collagen click in the image!
If it doesn’t spark joy, be gone with it. That’s the Marie Kondo method a now universal technique where the Japanese organization expert teaches people around the world to rid their homes of clutter and thus, rid themselves of the burdens of excess.
Kondo’s best selling book, The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up (published in 2014), motivated people around the world to live more thoughtful, mindful lives by means of purging their homes of the things that do not spark joy.
She introduces the KonMari Method, which focuses on organizing your home by the categories of items as opposed to by specific rooms. The categories are: clothing, books, paper documents, sentimental items, and “Komono,” (miscellaneous). Kondo may be the first ever decluttering celebrity, and she has mainstreamed her method even further with her new Netflix series, Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.
There are six basic rules to get started:
- Commit yourself to tidying up.
- Imagine your ideal lifestyle.
- Finish discarding first. Before getting rid of items, sincerely thank each item for serving its purpose.
- Tidy by category, not location.
- Follow the right order.
- Ask yourself it it sparks joy.
And five categories to tackle:
- Komono (a.k.a. Miscellaneous Items)
- Sentimental Items
While many people associate her method with tidying, it’s really about discarding items that lack value. To determine what makes the cut, Kondo has you start by removing everything out of your closets and drawers (category one), all the books off your shelves (category two), all the paperwork out of your desk and bins (you get the idea).
Once you have a big pile, you’re to go item by item and consider if it sparks joy. While Kondo admits that this can feel awkward or unnatural at first, she assures readers and viewers that you’ll get better at recognizing what sparks joy as you go. Once you’ve tossed items in every category, you should have a much smaller set of remaining items that you can return to various closets, drawers, shelves, and boxes. Note that you’re to finish one category before moving onto the next one.
Because you’re actively choosing items that spark joy, and discarding what doesn’t, the intention of the KonMari method is to end up with a clutter-free home that is better able to bring more joy and prosperity to your life. While tidying, she encourages you to visualize the life you want to live to be less stressed, for example and what you need to get there. Anything that won’t help on that journey isn’t deserving of your space or you, she says.
What are the highs?
Sees the value in checking in with yourself as you work through your space. Holding each item in your hands and asking yourself if you need it by tuning into the feeling in your heart is a definite pro.
The simple questioning technique makes a lot of sense. “By simplifying the exercise of decluttering from a series of difficult questions (i.e. Do I need it? Do I use it? Was it expensive?, Is it worth anything?) into one core question: Does it spark joy? Kondo immediately gives you permission to let go of clutter with less guilt and more clarity.
The biggest pro of this method is that it only leaves the good stuff behind, allowing you to live an uncluttered life in which your possessions and surroundings are beautiful, functional, and make you happy. And who wouldn’t want that?
What are the lows?
Though Kondo’s prompt provides a great jumping it probably won’t apply to every item in your space and that’s totally OK. We all have things in our homes that don’t bring us joy but are necessary. For example, my first aid kit. It’s not beautiful, and it’s not joyous, but it’s necessary. If you go too far in the uncluttering, you might do yourself a disservice.
Her method also calls on people to declutter their entire space in one session, which is probably unrealistic for most people. I don’t believe organizing a home can be done in one big swoop for most people. When chronic disorganization and ADD are involved, this can be a very ambitious project, especially done alone.
Most of all, I wish Marie Kondo would just say stop! Stop buying all this stuff. The only solution to our waste crisis is to halt the consumerism clogging our landfills, polluting our oceans and overcrowding our homes. Because what would really spark joy would be a world that isn’t overflowing with garbage
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Do you know what Eco friendly packaging is? If the answer is not, do not worry few months ago I did not have idea. But the things are changing and Public consciousness about issues like climate change is influencing buying habits and consumer choices. Among the many desirable features, they choose products for their packaging. Increasingly, Eco-friendly packaging isn’t just an Earth-friendly way to sell a product; it’s how to broadcast a company’s values.
Eco-friendly packaging goes by a few other names such as sustainable packaging, green packaging and environmentally-friendly packaging. To be eco-friendly, packaging can be biodegradable (but preferably compostable), recyclable, reusable, non-toxic, made from recycled products, based in biomass or natural products or manufactured through low-impact means.
For instance, yogurt available in glass bottles is eco-friendly, while plastic containers are not. Glass meets the green packaging definition because it’s recyclable but also infinitely reusable. Unless it’s broken, glass lasts for centuries.
How do Eco-Friendly Products Help the Environment?
Consider the glass yogurt bottle. It can be reused until some butter-fingers drops it, otherwise it gets easily recycled in most of the world. But to make that glass involves someone collecting silica sand, which is facing a shortage worldwide and trucking that sand to a factory. The truck uses gasoline and emits carbon dioxide, a “greenhouse gas” contributing to climate change. Then, turning that silica into glass requires electricity as well as other fuels to heat the furnace used to melt and form the glass. It requires machines to shape the glass, plus paper and inks to print and label the bottle.
Every time someone reuses the bottle, it’s one fewer time that whole process of using natural resources occurs. And every time someone recycles a glass bottle, it may still need energy and cause carbon dioxide pollution from trucking the bottles, melting them down and reforming them, but at least sand isn’t used, and that’s a resource that experts are increasingly saying needs conservation.
Eco-friendly products and packaging can be helpful in other ways, too. They may be biodegradable or made from more sustainable, faster-replenishing natural products like bamboo. Bamboo, for instance, can be harvested for paper and other materials every two-to-three years, versus upwards of 60 years for a new tree to grow.
Advantages of Using Eco-Friendly Products
Countries around the world are realizing they must act to reduce the impact that trash is having on the planet. When trash doesn’t biodegrade or compost, it’s a long-term problem they are forced to find space for. Non-friendly packaging is an eyesore and a logistical nightmare. A collaborative report from a few departments of the U.S. government listed the time it takes for some packaging to break down in the environment. They include:
- Glass bottle: 1 million years.
- Plastic beverage bottles: 450 years.
- Aluminum can: 80-to-200 years.
- Plastic bag: 10-to-20 years.
It’s not just Australia taking a strong stance. Morocco has already entirely banned plastic bags in the country. In Kenya, one faces a possible four-year jail term or a hefty fine for the use or sale of plastic bags. China has cracked down on plastic bags, too.
The point is that laws are changing and companies that don’t lead the way by embracing eco-friendly packaging now will soon be perceived as dinosaurs. By being a part of the solution today, it doesn’t just save the planet, it demonstrates corporate responsibility and states company values loud and clear.
We have to understand that not only government and companies are responsible to reduce non environmental friendly products, is our task too. do not purchase this items because if we demand the products companies are going to keep producing it.
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Eco- friendly shopping bags here!
Social media dramatically changed the way we communicate, socialize, and make and maintain friendships. While there are benefits to living in a digital world, there are also risks. Today’s youth miss out on critical social skills development when they spend the majority of their free time connected to and interacting through a screen. They can also get lost in a world of unrealistic comparisons, cyber bullying, and feeling left out.
Research shows an increase in major depressive episodes from 8.7% in 2005 to 11.3% in 2014 in adolescents and from 8.8% to 9.6% in young adults. The increase was larger and only statistically significant only in the age range of 12 to 20 years.1 Clearly depression is on the rise among teens, the question we need to ask ourselves is how much does technology and social media contribute to it?
It’s no big secret that connecting via texting, Instagram, and Facebook can include harsh judgments and comparisons. It’s easier to make statements on a screen that would otherwise be difficult to verbalize face to face. And disjointed shorthand conversations can easily result in misunderstandings. It doesn’t help that digital communication occurs at a rapid pace, one that is difficult to process at times.
One report by the Royal Society for Public Health in the UK surveyed 1500 young people, ages 14 to 24, to determine the effects of social media use on issues such as anxiety, depression, self-esteem, and body image. Their findings show that YouTube had the most positive impact, while Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and SnapChat all had negative effects on mental health.2
While these findings might make you want to delete all social media apps and ban your teen from any digital communication, avoidance isn’t the answer. Teens use social media to connect, seek friendship and support, and even ask for help at times. A better bet is to understand how and why your teen uses social media, stay connected, and know what to look for if your teen shows unexplained emotional changes.
Watch this video and make your own conclusions
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By now, many of us already have a business cocktail, a department meal and a dinner with friends. And that Christmas has not started yet. Ahead, we have two weeks of intense social life and lots of food. Not getting fat seems an impossible mission, and for many it is. According to experts, people normally earn between 2 and 4 kilos during these holidays.
If you also want to avoid this outcome, these are the tips you should take into account.
Do not deprive yourself on the indicated days. “Christmas Eve, Christmas dinner, New Year’s Eve dinner, New Year’s dinner , if there is no pathology, it is totally forbidden to diet”. Those days we must enjoy the delicacies that have historically been cooked in the cuisine of our family, but always in moderation. Even people who follow a diet (of thinning) should not do it on the dates indicated; “There is a psychological part that you have to take care of and it can not be that on Christmas Eve you have a grilled steak”.
Not the fast. “It is counterproductive to compensate the Christmas meal with not having dinner that day or directly to fast the next day or just to drink liquids”. It is always necessary to eat food since fasting could have a rebound effect and cause the alteration of energy and hormonal processes. If you want to compensate these meals, it is recommended to eat fewer calories the rest of the day but never eliminate solid foods: “On Christmas Eve we can eat a salad and two pieces of fruit and at Christmas, have two yogurts and an apple”.
Routine the rest of the week. The days indicated are to enjoy the food and the rest of days to recover the routine. Between event and event, it is advisable to “eat what we usually eat during the week”. That way we will not ingest more calories than normal.
Prohibited leftovers. They are the biggest enemy of the scale during the holidays. it is only finds two possible endings for these foods: “Let the children eat them or freeze them and organize a meal with them for the whole family at the end of the month”. Not following these tips would take us to eat party menu (much more caloric) during all the holidays. Also the Christmas leftovers are tempting between food and food.
Keep the sweets in a closed place. They are not forbidden but you have to think that they are the dessert of the parties, that is why “we only have to take them out on the indicated days or if we have a visit”. The rest of the week sweets must be under lock and key. If we have them in sight, it is easy to fall into the temptation to bite at any time.
Fruit, vegetables and whole products. “It is highly recommended to increase your consumption during these dates and even incorporate it in the dinners and festive meals”. Vegetables barely contribute calories while in turn produce satiety during and after meals. In addition, being rich in vegetable fiber are absorbed more slowly so that hunger takes time to appear.
Drink a lot of water. Because if you drink water there will be other caloric fluids that you stop drinking. These would be sugary sodas or alcoholic beverages such as wine and beer. In addition, water provides a feeling of fullness and contributes to less hunger. For this it is advisable to drink two glasses just before starting a main meal.
Walk. If you play sports normally, chances are you will not leave at parties. But if your life is more sedentary you should leave this routine aside at least during these two weeks. It is best to go for a walk every day for at least 35 minutes. As incredible as it may seem, walking at a speed near 7.5 kilometers per hour burns more calories than running at 10 kilometers per hour. The reason is that when walking, more muscles are involved.
Merry Christmas Everyone!
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