Sunday, March 27, 2022

Everything You Need To Know About Marketing

Some people are natural salespeople, and know just how to sell and market a product. Other people, such as myself, are not. If you need to reach customers, you need a marketing plan, and for that, I invite you to read this below, submitted by a long time reader, on how to market yourself. But before you do that, you should know that it is very important to believe in your product, because if you don't believe in it, why should anyone else?

When it comes to marketing, businesses have a lot of different options. But when it comes to improving profits, online marketing is the clear winner. This article will discuss why online marketing is so powerful and how your business can use it to improve its bottom line.

Online marketing offers a number of advantages over traditional offline marketing methods:
  • It's more cost-effective. You can reach a large audience without spending a lot of money on advertising.
  • It's more efficient. You can track your results and adjust your campaigns in real-time based on what's working and what isn't.
  • It's more targeted.
  • You can use data to laser-focus your marketing efforts on the people who are most likely to buy from you.
There are a number of different online marketing channels that you can use to reach your target market. Some of the most popular include search engine optimization (SEO), pay-per-click (PPC) advertising, social media marketing, and email marketing. But there are many other options as well. The key is to experiment and find what works best for your business.

Friday, March 25, 2022

Taking a Much Needed Break

Just a stock photo...

I have been so incredibly burnt out lately. I am feeling constantly exhausted with no mental or emotional energy to do what I need to do. I have so much on my plate and yet the thought of doing any of it seems impossible; I can barely muster up the strength to do the bare minimum to survive. It's really, really rough.

I was talking about this with my therapist, about this emotional hole I'm in, in part caused by some really intense things the past 4 months in which I have not gotten a single moment of a break, and in general since corona started when I haven't had any real breaks. (I did go away for a weekend with a friend and I did go camping with my kids, but those were not enough time/not alone which is what I needed, and even those were longer than a year ago.) I was trying to figure out how to survive this situation and move forward when she came up with a brilliant solution. 

"You should go on a vacation," she tells me. I've been seeing her long enough that she knows how much my trips abroad have been a balm to my soul and give me strength and emotional fortitude and bring joy into my life, basically what my mental health absolutely needed during low points. Single motherhood is hard, single motherhood when dealing with mental health issues even harder, and single motherhood dealing with physical disabilities on top of the mental health struggles is harder yet. And I haven't even shared all the struggles which I can't share publicly which have made this even more challenging.

Teaching Kids Internet Responsibility

Once upon a time, to keep children safe, people kept them off the internet. The world has changed and the internet is becoming more and more of a necessity and younger and younger children are using the internet. This is why it is even more important than ever to teach our children internet safety, to know what is a problem and how to avoid it. Here are some ways that you can help teach your children to navigate the web safely.

The use of the internet has been democratized in such a way that many boys and girls use it both to study and for leisure. However, it is necessary to promote responsible use of the internet as a study and leisure tool to prevent it from harming our kids in various ways. In this post, we analyze what to do to avoid the dangers that internet use poses for our children.

Today, mostly all kids use the internet and this shows that we live in a fully connected society where the use of computers, mobile phones, and similar devices is widespread. However, this situation also poses a risk, so parents have to take measures to protect their offspring.

How To Plan For Becoming Debt-Free

Being in debt is no fun. But getting out of debt isn't this easy thing that you can just decide to do one day and the next day be done. It takes a plan. If you are trying to plan to get debt free, read on to see what a reader has to say.

Getting your finances in order and getting debt free is very liberating. So, here are some great tips to do so.

1. Assess Your Current Financial Situation

The first step of the thorny process of dealing with your debt is to understand where you stand. Put together a list of all your debts. Include credit card debt, store cards debt, loans, mortgages and overdrafts. The point of this exercise is to determine who much you owe on each of these items and how much you're paying on a monthly basis.

Yaki Onigiri Recipe -- Grilled Japanese Rice Balls -- Gluten Free, Vegan, Allergy Friendly, and Frugal

I posted about my recent dinner party that I hosted for a large crowd, where I served poke bowls, and mentioned that I cooked far too much food. (Hey, better too much food than too little?) What I didn't mention was just how much sushi rice I cooked. I cooked 6 kilograms of sushi rice. That was a huge amount. I severely severely overestimated how much we'd need.

Which meant that unless I wanted to throw out leftovers, I had to get creative with how I'd use up this sushi rice of mine. 

We did a few more meals of poke bowls but then that got to be too much. I made some stir fry using sushi rice.

But then I remembered onigiri. Onigiri are sushi rice balls, basically. Actually, they are generally made from sticky rice that hasn't been seasoned with the vinegar sugar mixture, but I had that anyhow, and often onigiri rice balls are filled with something salty and/or sour so it's a similar flavor, I guess. 

Anyhow, while onigiri is just "regular" rice balls, yaki onigiri is when they are grilled. Or, if you aren't making a barbecue, you can also toast these in a cast iron skillet or on a cast iron griddle. To do this, all you really need to do is make a tight ball of your sticky rice, and then grill it.

Thursday, March 24, 2022

What Are the Signs of Autism in Children?

As the parent of three autistic kids and likely autistic myself, this is a topic that is near and dear to me. Autism is often seen by mainstream society as something broken about a kid, needing a cure, but I know that there is nothing wrong with autistic kids, they don't need fixing; what they need is help figuring out what support systems they need growing up in and living in a world not geared towards autistic people. If you suspect one of your children may be autistic, read on to see what this reader has to share about that.

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), often shortened to autism, is something more and more recognized, with over a million autistic children worldwide. It is a neurological difference that affects social communication, certain behaviors, and causes people to have higher support needs.

How Many Radiators Does Your Home Need?

As a homeowner, especially in a place that doesn't already come with built in heating or cooling systems it can be hard to know how many HVAC units to install, especially when you need to pay for each one. I actually think we didn't put enough in the house we own. So how do you know how many radiators your home needs? Read more to see what this reader has to say.

One of the most common problems house owners face with their heating systems is not being able to keep the home warm enough. If the home is cold, there are two main places where heat is escaping from — the windows and air vents. Assuming that both sets of outlets are correctly sealed, you may well have too few radiators in your home.

Knowing how many radiators to install in your home or how much output is needed by a specific room will help you plan your home’s heating and cooling. It can also save money on energy costs as you’ll avoid having too many heating outlets.

Wednesday, March 23, 2022

A New School... For Now

I mentioned recently that my daughter Anneliese got diagnosed with Autism. As I wrote in the other post, it was part of a process entailing my doing what I could to get her in a class that would be able to help her the most. Already a few months ago we realized that the school situation she was in wasn't working for her, and she couldn't go to that school anymore. I looked into the process of switching her to a class that would allow her to get help for her challenges, and I was told that these placements are only made before the following school year, and the only way to get a placement mid year is to have an emergency committee meeting (this committee decides eligibility and rights for special services). I was told by the woman in charge of special ed for my area that to get this emergency meeting a child needs to either have been hospitalized or the truant officer needs to be involved, so I immediately contacted the truant officer.

Monday, March 21, 2022

What Appliances Are Best for an Outdoor Kitchen?

If you like to entertain guests with barbecues, you might have thought of putting together an outdoor eating area or even more, an outdoor kitchen. This might get a bit pricey, but if this is something important for you and you know it'll bring you joy, then make a budget for it and shop sales to keep the costs manageable. Here are some things you might want to include in yours.

Spring is here, and that has everyone thinking about spending time outdoors. Whether it is entertaining for a group or spending time with your family, food is probably involved. Outdoor kitchens are becoming increasingly popular as homeowners look for ways to spend more time outside and save money by cooking at home. To make an outdoor kitchen functional, it must have the right appliances. Keep reading for some great tips on appliances to consider.

Sunday, March 20, 2022

How To Ensure You Get Enough Nutrients When You’re Pregnant

When pregnant, you're eating for two. Good nutrition is even more important than it is the rest of the time becasue anything you eat, the nutrients need to go to your baby and then to yourself and if you don't have enough, usually your baby will be fine, but you can be causing long term health problems for yourself. Here are some was to make sure you get enough nutrition while you're expecting.

The human body needs a lot of help to perform its many duties. Normally, this help comes in the form of the nutrients that we consume. Each nutrient affects a different bodily function and they are obtained in a variety of ways.

When you are pregnant, your hormones fluctuate to prepare your body to house another life. This can put a lot of strain on your regular bodily functions, which means that you are going to need to consume more nutrients. It isn’t hard to get the right amount of nutrients, just follow the advice below to remain as healthy as you can while pregnant.

Friday, March 18, 2022

Making and Hosting a Large Dinner Party on a Budget

I recently threw a dinner party for a bunch of guests. 25 people specifically, a mix of kids and adults. Originally we were going to have another 7, so I prepared food as if there were going to be 32 people. And while I wouldn't say the entire meal was cheap, per se, once you divide it by how many people came, it actually was quite the frugal meal. I spent $182 for everything for the meal, but I also really over cooked, and had enough for two other meals for my family with the same food, which brings down the cost per person even more.

The cost breakdown was $114 for the food, $45 for the disposables, and $22 for the wine. I didn't include the cost of some vodka we used for cocktails that I already had at home. I decided to use nice disposables instead of cheapo stuff, so this cost more money. I didn't use super high end disposables either (that look like real dishes), I went middle of the line with this. For the wine, I bought wine on sale, which cost between $4.25 and $5.60. Guests also contributed a few bottles to the meal. 

On the menu was miso soup, poke bowls, cocktails, and wine.

I'm going to do the easiest to the hardest.

Wednesday, March 16, 2022

Penniless Parenting: Tips and Tricks

Parenting can be quite expensive. And while we'd love to be able to spend anything we want on our children, our budgets don't allow this. Here are a few ideas on how you can save money as a parent.

When you're a penniless parent you want to be frugal, economical, and exercise careful use of resources. Parenting is stacked up with lots of responsibilities that requires one to be very cautious on fund allocation. Resources are very scarce, necessitating the demand for a good budget in every undertaking. Parenting becomes even harder for single parents.

Singlehood means that for all the resources you make, you dedicate them fully to daily basic needs without a helping hand. Budgets in single homes are always a big deal and have to be outlined clearly to survive through the month. Smart financial choices are boiled up by carefully drafted budgets. And when you have that extra wiggle room in your budget from being frugal, you can decide to have some fun and try out Yukon casino

Listed below are some secrets one can use to ensure that every penny is saved.

Tuesday, March 15, 2022

How to Keep Your Finances Afloat During Emergencies

If only no one needed to deal with emergencies that would be nice. But we live in the real world and not in a utopia and there are emergencies and when they come up, our finances can be really messed over. Here are some tips from a reader on how to manage financially (or at least attempt to) during an emergency.

Is money tight right now? Are you encountering difficulty paying your bills on time because of an emergency? Everyone deals with different kinds of financial uncertainty at some point in their lives. Some find themselves in an urgent situation where they need access to fast cash. This can include losing their jobs, becoming too ill to work, or covering a significant home repair.

Dealing with these unexpected financial setbacks can catch anyone off guard. This is true if you don't have enough savings or emergency funds to buffer them. A survey showed that the cost of sudden financial crises could be hefty, ranging from $3,000 to $4,000 on average.

If this resonates with your situation, you've come to the right place. Below we'll discuss some practical tips to help you keep your finances afloat during emergencies.

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Latest Frugal Accomplishments

Homemade gluten burger buns

It's been some time since I did one of these posts, and these types of posts are always fun. Here is a list of the frugal activities I've gotten up to lately. It is a long list and it makes me proud, because I've been pretty low energy lately, and if I can be doing this many frugal things when I feel yucky, then I am kicking butt.

Thursday, March 10, 2022

5 Steps to Planning and Recovering From a Splurge

Even when you're on a tighter budget, you need to allow yourself some little or occasional splurges (like I did for my birthday), because without these splurges you're going to start feeling burnt out and not be able to keep at your frugal lives. For some ideas about how to work a splurge into your budget, read on.

So many times, you forgo what you really want to keep spending to a minimum. 

This week, you’ve got a little extra money in your pocket. Time to do something you almost never do- have a treat. Maybe you want to add some zest to dinner tonight.  

Everyone needs a splurge sometimes. Your happiness matters, and it’s demoralizing to never have anything special. This treat can boost the energy you need to tackle your daily life. 

However, you need to plan this out meticulously, and today we're going to show you how.   

Wednesday, March 9, 2022

Finding the Best Childcare Facility for Your Kid: 5 Things to Have in Mind

When you need to put your children under the care of someone else, it is very hard to know how to pick and what is important. Here are some thoughts on things you should consider when picking a childcare facility.

Once the time comes for parents to choose the best childcare facility for their kids, it may feel daunting and overwhelming. Knowing that they’ll be leaving their kid under the care of other people, and sending them off to learn and discover the world is enough to make them feel anxious. But don’t panic. Below, we list the best tips on finding the best childcare facility that will provide a safe, engaging, and friendly environment for your child and help you make the best choice for yours and their needs.

Monday, March 7, 2022

My Recent Scratch and Dent Store Shopping Trip

Yesterday I was in a part of the city where I don't usually go, and knowing that there is a scratch and dent store I debated bringing my collapsable wagon with me, so that I'd be able to carry shopping back. However, I was heading to a meeting and felt weird about bringing the wagon with me, and so just brought a backpack.

Since I only had that, when I was at the scratch and dent store, I decided to look for the most worthwhile things, things that I didn't already have at home, even if they were good prices, or things that I absolutely needed.

7 Best Frugal Living Guide for Household Shoppers

When people ask me for ways to save money, I always tell people that they should first work on lowering their grocery bills, since it's one of the easiest ways to make a change quickly. Here are some ways to lower your grocery bills.

Grocery shopping for your household can be challenging because you need to ensure that every family member is well-fed while sticking to your budget. This task can be difficult, especially for shoppers who belong to a huge household but only have a limited budget.

Fortunately, there are many hacks to help you live frugally without compromising your grocery shopping. Sounds too good to be true, right? Continue reading this article to learn how you can save money when shopping for groceries for your household.

Tips to Keep Your Kids Under Control and Happy While on a Cruise

I've never been on a cruise, and to be honest, I have no plans on going on one. But I know many people who find this to be a great way to spend a vacation, often with family get togethers as part of a cruise. But once you add kids to the mix things get complicated, as they do on any family vacation (as I discovered on my trip to Bulgaria). Here's how you can help things go as smoothly as possible with kids on a cruise.

If you have ever booked a family-friendly cruise, you have likely seen a few frustrating situations. This includes things like stampedes of children going down the halls, splashes at overfilled pools, dropped snacks everywhere, and bad behavior in the buffet line.

Sunday, March 6, 2022

Another Autism Diagnosis in the Family

My third kid was just diagnosed with autism on Sunday. Current count- three out of my four kids.

I shared before about my stories getting my son Ike and daughter Rose diagnosed with autism, and what a ride it's been (specifically with Rose and getting reported to CPS for getting her evaluated). So you probably aren't too surprised that another kid of mine is also autistic, since these things are genetic, after all.

However, it took until now for us to pursue a diagnosis.

When I got Rose diagnosed at the age of 4, I had already suspected for a while that she was autistic, but I knew she wasn't the stereotypical autistic kid, since the stereotypical autistic kid is based on how white male children generally present, and girls often present very differently with autism. 

Saturday, March 5, 2022

Critical Illness Policy: Is It Right For Your Family?

Insurance is definitely stressful. Some insurance is an automatic necessity, even if really tough financially (car and medical) and others are a really good idea, and some others are seemingly "extras" that get put off. And sometimes by putting it off you end up hurting yourself in the long run. When I was looking into life insurance lately, because of all my pre-existing medical conditions, I couldn't get a single bit of life insurance from the company I spoke to (even though none of my conditions are remotely life threatening) but I was offered a critical illness policy. If you want to know more about these and whether it is something you should get, read on.

The overbearing cost of having to manage an illness such as cancer, heart attack, or stroke out of pocket can have a lasting effect on the financial stability of an individual or a family.

Many people think the standard health insurance plan or life insurance plan is enough to address any eventualities in life. However, the humongous costs associated with life-threatening diseases may be too much to be covered by either policy.

This is where a critical illness policy comes in – a cover that pays out a lump sum amount in the event one gets diagnosed with an illness or injury listed in the policy.

Friday, March 4, 2022

Is Your Kid Hiding Something? Here Is How You Can Find Out

Children sometimes keep secrets from parents, and while privacy is great and should be respected, sometimes these secrets can hurt people, and the child keeping the secret is the most in danger. This often happens because of predators. Here are some ways that you can find out if your child is keeping a secret, so you can keep them safe.

Children often hide things from their parents for many reasons. Some kids like to keep secrets. They believe it is theirs to keep, and no one else, not even their parents, should know about them. Some hide things because they are ashamed of it. It does not occur to them that they are just kids. They will hide it if they think whatever they did was shameful.

Many kids hide things because they are unsure how their parents will react. The parents might not be supportive. Or it could even be that the parents will force them to do something they do not want to. Fear of punishment is another reason many kids hide stuff from their parents.

However, these secrets and the lengths kids go to in order to hide them can be bad for them. Who knows what they are hiding, or what they might do to protect their little secrets. It is a risky situation, and as parents, you need to get to the bottom of these secrets.

So how can you do so? Keep reading to find out.

Sweet and Sour Tongue Recipe -- Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Allergy Friendly

Growing up, my mother would occasionally make cow tongue. It was so delicious, succulent, and soft. As an adult, I tried to make tongue one time, but it didn't come out as special as I remembered. Once I peeled off the taste buds, it just ended up pulling apart like well cooked beef, and while it was moist, it wasn't anything to write home about.

But then a local store had a sale. They were selling cow tongue for $2.59 a pound, when the cheapest I can ever get a hunk of meat for (and that is not high-quality meat whatsoever) is $3.89. So I bought 10 tongues because that was all I could fit into my freezer and spare freezer, and even if I couldn't get it to be the "special tongue" growing up, it is still delicious beef and at an amazing price.

Since I had tongue on hand, I decided to see if I could actually make tongue from my childhood, and upon searching for recipes, I remembered that the tongue I wanted to make was sweet and sour, and then found some sweet and sour tongue recipes using tomato sauce as the base.

I played around with ingredients, and came up with this final recipe. It is just as delicious as what I grew up with. It still isn't what I remember, but since I don't talk to my mother I can't find out more, but if this is all the tongue I can eat for the rest of my life, I would still be a happy girl, since it is some of the best meat out there.

Sweet and Sour Tongue Recipe -- Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Allergy Friendly

Thursday, March 3, 2022

Ways To Avoid Spending Too Much On Car Ownership

Because of my chronic pain issues, I've considered whether or not I should buy a car. Or rather, I'd love to, but I need to not just consider the purchase price, but also the expenses that occur after that. These ideas from a reader on how to save money on car ownership was therefore a great read and things I need to consider.

Needless to say, a lot of us have gotten used to having to set aside a significant part of the household portion to help pay for the costs of the car. There are some who go as frugal as they can, going without a car. However, that’s not an option for everyone. As such, here we’re going to look at ways that you can make sure that you’re not spending more than you should, either when you buy the car or in your day-to-day with it.

Tuesday, March 1, 2022

Budgeting Tips for Single Moms

Being a single mom isn't easy. Making and sticking to a budget isn't easy. But when you're a single mom a budget is especially necessary since you don't have a husband to fall back on financially. Here are some budgeting tips for single moms.

As a single mom, it can be tough to make ends meet. But with a little organization and planning, you can create a budget that works for you and your family. When it comes to budgeting, every family is different. But for single moms, the task can be especially daunting.

The below tips are provided by Debt Relief Canada from A. Fisher & Associates, financial advice experts helping individuals get out of debt (Find Out More HERE). Not only do they provide the latest debt solutions, but they also offer advice on budgeting, savings and other money topics.

Here are their tips that can help you get started.