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How To Throw A Terrific Summer Party

If you live in a major metropolis like Los Angeles or Seattle, you know that throwing a party can sometimes be challenging — considering the density of living in the city. Often, your yard space is small (if you’re lucky to have any outdoor space at all), and you’re surrounded on all sides by neighbours. But just because you have a smaller space to work in, doesn’t mean you can’t pull off a great time for friends and family.

Send the Invites Early

People — especially those in the Millennial or Gen Z cohort — are busy these days. Many people work in the creative or precarious sphere and have to ration out their time carefully. Make sure to send invites at least a month in advance and then send everyone a reminder a week beforehand. Facebook is often the go-to mode of communication, but for those who choose not to buy in, a simple email with a Google invite will do. This way your friends can simply add the event to their digital calendars.

Get Creative with Catering

We can all do better than chips and dip, so get creative. If you want to create a sense of sharing (and save money in the process) insist on a pot luck, where everyone brings a little bit to share. In the summertime, keep the fare light and cool. Summer salads (think mango and spinach, or a classic Cobb), cold sandwiches (cucumbers, anyone?), and chilled drinks like beer and wine are always a great bet. If you’re catering for friends who love trying something new and fun, consider Mochi ice cream from a vendor like MyMo Mochi, that offers delicious ice cream with delectable sticky rice-cake on the outside. As refreshing as ice cream, Mochi adds another layer with a crunchy and flavorful shell. To peruse the interesting and unique flavors available (such as Green Tea, Ripe Strawberry, or Mint Chocolate Chip) and to find MyMo Mochi Ice cream near you simply visit the link, or ask your local grocer for more information.

Games are In

If you want to get people moving but don’t feel comfortable blaring music over speakers, why not consider a fun, adult game to get people talking, laughing and moving. Games have come a long way since the days of Twister, and some can be downright hilarious. Whatever your age, so many party-goers are being swept up by games-mania, so there are plenty to choose from. If you have creative types, then a game like Scattergories or Balderdash. This will keep people thinking and working in teams. If you are catering to an older or more mature crowd, consider classics like charades, or even a game of Taboo and — maybe even design these as party games with prizes for the best performance.

So, if you’re planning on throwing a shindig for fun-loving party-goers of any age, remember that good company, food, and games make for a fun, exuberant, and memorable affair. Keep our tips in mind and enjoy your next event!

Stuck At Home as a New Mom

New moms live the most blessed and most cursed existences at this time in history. It’s such a beautiful time of your life, but one of the main drawbacks is that new moms tend to be stuck at home and if they’re not careful they can go a little stir-crazy. This is especially true for the mommies who were so used to being all over town, even during their pregnancy. It can be a massive adjustment.

Ideally, you will have your home prepared for this eventuality long in advance of the baby’s arrival.

The one thing you want to get for yourself is a top of the line screen to watch your movies on. Don’t scrimp on this; get something nice for yourself like a Panasonic HDR 4K TV. You’re going to be binge watching a lot of Netflix and other material, and you need the best tools to keep yourself comforted and immersed.

Another thing you are going to want to stock up on are ebooks, because you’re going to get tired of watching movies. Honestly, the whole experience is very different, because baby can and will interrupt you frequently, and this is where ebooks shine, because they are easy to put down and pick up on a dime like that.

It’s also a good idea to have Skype or Whatsapp or a similar app installed, perhaps even hooked up to the TV. Sometimes people can’t make it to your home, or you may have lots of friends and relatives out of town or even overseas, and being able to chat on video with them will be great for you. It’s very easy for a new mom to feel very alone, for hormonal reasons or otherwise. This is normal, but easily counteracted.

Lastly, make sure you do get those people you want to visit you. However, during the first couple of weeks it’s not a good idea, but after that you are going to crave it, and it is good and necessary. Surround yourself with people will help you feel more like a human being again and less of a zombie. And past the two week mark you are going to need external help, because frankly you will not have been sleeping properly at all!

Your new mom experience should be much more of a blessing than a curse, and with the proper planning it almost certainly will be.

Throwing the Perfect Baby Shower

You’re probably reading this because you have a little one on the way and you know you have to plan a baby shower and maybe are even dreading it! Honestly, most baby showers could be done better, WAY better, so your sentiments of creeping doom are understandable.

Perhaps part of the problem is that they are things people think you have to do, and they do them out of obligation instead of by choice. But if you think about it honestly, would you want to live in a world where there is nothing in place of a baby shower? The first order of business if you want to have an awesome baby shower instead of just another mediocre one is to have the right attitude about it. Realize that it’s not going to be mediocre by default, but that you can and will make it better.

The first thing is, make sure you have good invitations. Baby shower invitations are a call to action, and they set the tone for the actual event to follow. The perfect invitation for a baby shower should be elegant without going overboard and getting all the way to pretentious. Check and double-check the grammar and the spelling, because once they go out, it’s too late. Also, please forego the traditional paper invites; they are no longer necessary in 2017. Even if you’re having a huge event, people can bring the image of the invite in their phones and we can all save a few trees.

Now, once people come, really the thing to concentrate on are the games. Don’t make these kind of mistakes, for starters. Definitely plan several diverse games, but for Pete’s sake keep your guest list in front of you the whole time you are doing it. This alone will save you the kind of potential embarrassment that we all definitely want to avoid!

Keep in mind these days that there are cultural differences to take into account. For example, in many parts of North America, baby showers are WOMEN ONLY! In other parts, it’s considered offensive for the men NOT to show up. So make sure that all your guests understand what kind of a party you are throwing. Especially if you’re planning on a women-only affair, make sure everybody knows to avoid a situation where only one woman brings her SO. Please note that, for example, in Latin America baby showers are almost always co-ed.

You see, it’s actually not that complicated. Follow this simple advice and your baby shower will stand out famously among all the other cringe-worthy ones.

Clever Budgeting Tips for New Mothers

When you become a mother for the first time, there is a lot to adapt to in your life.  Primarily, there’s the baby and his or her demands and requirements.  There’s your own physical state which is often affected by a lack of sleep and other side-effects from the pregnancy.  But on top of all of this, life must go on and often, this means getting a handle on the household budget to incorporate the new arrival.  So, what tips do new moms offer?

Benefits of budgeting

While budgeting might not sound fun, there are a lot of benefits to it, especially if you start doing it while your child is just a newborn.  Take the time while he or she is asleep to do a little budgeting, set up a routine and stick to it.

Most mothers use a rough 50-20-30 rule when they are looking at their household budget:

  • 50% goes on living costs and essentials such as food, utilities and the mortgage or rent
  • 20% goes into savings
  • 30% goes on spending which covers anything from mobile phone bills to gym membership to new clothes

To calculate the exact figure for your home, you need to look at your living costs, household bills, financial products such as home insurance and other expenses.  Remember to leave an allowance for vehicles in the house so if the car needs new tires or you need motorcycle parts for your husband’s bike he uses for work, you have some money set aside for these.  Then leave some money where possible for time with friends and leisure activities.

Top tips for clever budgeting

Then there are all the little tips that other moms have offered that can help you make the most of your budget and be as organized as possible.

Have a food inventory

With a baby in the house, you might not want to buy two or three of everything when it is on offer as you don’t have the spare cash.  So, keep an inventory of the food in the house so you know what’s available for meals and what you need to replace.

Watch for coupons

Another job to do when baby is asleep is hunt around for coupons for the things you buy.  This can be anything from nappies to baby food, tinned goods and even pet food – there are loads of coupon sites out there to help.

Shop around

When you look at utility bills, cell phone costs or how much you pay for your internet connection, always shop around to see if you can get a better deal.  It might take a little time to put all the details into comparison sites but it can be worth it for your budget in the long run.

Conclusion

Budgeting isn’t exciting but by having a clear picture of what your living expenses are and what you need to spend on essentials, you will feel more in control.  And as your baby comes to take up more time, you will have this crucial area organized.