March 2020


Thanks to the numerous and much needed campaigns against social stigma, the word “therapy” doesn’t hold the same negative connotations that it once did for people. In fact, caring for your mental health is considered as just an imperative of an approach as caring for your physical wellbeing.

When it comes to therapy, there are different branches of it to explore. Some turn to it for grief counseling, while others seek help due to anxiety and stress. For some it is the answer to behavioral changes, for others it is a moment of self-reflection. These days, one can also even go online to places like to get the help one needs.

Whatever the objective might be, it does help people in achieving their goals in all walks of life.

Even if the goals are to keep a family stay happy and healthy together.

What is Family Counseling?

As the name suggests, family counseling is targeted therapy that caters to issues which affect a family as a whole. Some of these issues include but are not limited to a family member’s addiction to substances; parents going through divorce; or a child/adolescent going through unruly behavior.

The conflicts and stressful situations that can result out of such an issue are often addressed through family counseling.

What Happens During Family Counseling?

In the typical model of therapy, individuals have to attend separate sessions to address their issues. But in family counseling, these sessions are usually held with all of the concerned family members being present in them.

For instance, if the issues are between partners or married couples, then only the two of them attend the session. If the issues have to be discussed between the whole family, then siblings or kids join the session along with their parents or other family members.

From there, a licensed therapist or qualified counselor takes the responsibility to lay out the issue at hand for everyone to discuss, and determine a resolution accordingly.

For instance, if an issue such as addiction involves one single person, then the family counseling is targeted at how the person feels and how other family members could support them. If the issue involves the whole family, such as the parents going through a divorce, then the problem is discussed in how the family could support each other and especially the children through the troubling time.

This same notion applies to matters of grief, bereavement, or other conflicts.

When to Seek Family Counseling?

Even with its clear approach, it could often be difficult to determine when and how you need family counseling. But by knowing the signs, you can seek help in a timely manner.

Typically, the first few signs of needing family counseling are:

  • When your family is going through constant conflict.
  • When your children are acting out for one reason or another.
  • When you and your partner are going through separation or divorce.
  • When your family go through the death of a family member, or has suffered a loss of any kind.
  • When a family member is going through addiction.
  • When a family member is having behavioral, physical, or mental health issues.

It is important to remember that while these are the most common signs to seek out help in the form of family counseling, they are not set in stone. If your family is going through any issues that you think may be resolved with qualified help, then reach out and seek professional help.

Remember, the harmful myths about therapy are just that, myths without any substantial proof. Therapy can actually help your family go through difficult issues in a healthy and safe manner.

The key is to shake off the stigma of therapy and seek help when you need it the most. It could save your family from falling apart, and have all of you come out at the other end stronger than ever.

Upcycling simply means converting useless or old materials or products into something new and of better quality. What you convert can come from anywhere–your home, your office, or even skip diving.

It’s easy to imagine that you don’t possess the skills to upcycle stuff. The truth, however, remains that upcycling isn’t as complicated as you think. Using Google search and YouTube, you can discover various homemade guides on upcycling one thing into another.

The big question is: How much can you save through upcycling? The answer to that is a lot. In fact, upcycling can be essentially beneficial to both low income earners who find it difficult to make ends meet and people that are business savvy but don’t have the resources to source raw materials.

Upcycling can thus become an alternative to a personal or small business loan or, perhaps, a means of earning extra cash or reducing expenses in order to meet up with loan repayment. This, however, doesn’t diminish the importance of loans. In fact, you can combine a small personal loan, with upcycling and a garage sale towards funding a holiday or your wedding. However, always make sure you understand your loan completely before going ahead with it.

This is not a joke. People have done similar things. In Oakland, America, for instance, an artist combines skip diving, upcycling, and funds from donations to cheaply build small shelters for the homeless in his community. If he can achieve so much through upcycling, then you shouldn’t find it difficult to either save some money by upcycling your old items or make extra cash by combining skip diving, upcycling, and a garage sale.

Let’s look at ways you can save by upcycling stuff

With upcycling, you can turn just about anything into something else or something new. Below are some great examples.

  • Instead of buying new shoes, you can dye your old ones to bring out their appeal and sheen.
  • Convert a groundnut butter jar into a piggy bank.
  • Cut and sew old jeans into shopping bags.
  • Using sandpaper and stain, you can sand and re-stain your old furniture to bring out its beauty.
  • Don’t throw away your old clothes and towels. Neither should you waste money buying cleaning cloths. You can turn the former into the latter. Cut out any buttons, zips, waistbands… and you are good to go.
  • Build your dog a kennel using wood from your old furniture. You can also make a bed for the dog using fabric and padding from your old cushion.

Your upcycling options are limitless. It doesn’t mater if you don’t have the skill required to pull off a particular upcycling idea. There’s always the internet and the wealth of free information it contains. Always remember, it’s wasteful to spend on new products or items when you have the means to upcycle and save money.

Taking care of your kids could be a wonderful experience that remains unmatched by other feelings.

But all of us need to take care of ourselves as well. Whether it is through a self-care routine, a short walk at the mall, or a small get-together with friends; we need to take a few steps here and there to unwind and refresh our minds.

It doesn’t make us any less of a parent; in fact, it only makes us better at what we do. This is because maintaining a balance between your children and your own interests is what leads to a healthy mind and life. And only with a healthy mind could you take care of your family like they deserve to be taken care of.

That is why small parties where you could get your friends together are considered a staple in a modern mom’s life.

And if you are about to host such a get together soon, then you could spruce it up by hosting a card party.

Hosting a Card Party is Easy

You don’t have to be a modern socialite to enjoy the thrill of playing cards with some Game Cigarillos to boot. Thanks to card parties, you can do that in the comfort of your own home. All that you need is a table, a deck of cards, some friends, and some snacks. Those essentials put you on the path for a great card party.

It’s Simple Fun for Everyone

Full of snacks, drinks and one-liners, a card party is considered a classic way of getting friends together and enjoying some recreational time on your own. From poker to rummy, and from bridge to solitaire, you could enjoy a host of card games without ever setting foot outside your home.  

Be Free to Set the Theme

Perhaps the best part of card parties is their adaptable nature. You could make them as fancy or as cozy as you want. With themes such as the 1920s, 1940s, and Vegas casino at your disposal, you could even have an evening of themed dress up to enhance your experience.

All in all, throwing a card party wouldn’t only be a fun experience, but an easy one to pull off if you know what you are doing. Gather your fellow moms and start the party invites. Just make sure it falls on a day where you have plenty of time, so all of you could enjoy it to the fullest.

As we enter into 2018, as is the case at the beginning of any year, attention is being paid to the video games that have been slated for release during the coming 12-month time period. The reality is that, as is the case in any year, some of the games that have been scheduled for release in 2018, on already announced dates, may see their release dates pushed back.

If you are an experienced gamer, you undoubtedly have experienced a game you’ve been waiting for have its originally scheduled release date pushed back a month or two. Indeed, there are plenty of examples of games that have launched much further away from their initially planned release dates than a couple of months. In the end, that simply is a reality associated with new game design.

There are a number of games that have been set for specific release dates in 2018. Eight of these selections very well may see their release dates pushed back.

God of War

Sony’s sequel or reboot to God of War currently is scheduled for a Spring 2018 release. As we cross into 2018, the Spring release date for God of War seems unlikely for a number of reasons.

One sign that God of War will not be positioned for a Spring 2018 release is the press, who is already highly interested in this game, hasn’t had any “hands-on” time with it as of yet. That typically is a sign that a release date delay is in the offing.

The best bet at this time as to when you realistically might expect to see the release of God of War is sometime during the third quarter of 2018. Anticipate a tweet or some other type of social media announcement about the delay before the Spring.

Red Dead Redemption II

Red Dead Redemption II has been eagerly awaited. Red Dead Redemption II is the prequel to a highly popular open-world Western from Rockstar that released in 2010.

Red Dead Redemption II has already seen a delay in 2017. During that year, the release was pushed back to the Spring of 2018. Even with this delay, very little of the game has been shown in any manner to the public.

At this juncture, do not expect to see Red Dead Redemption II launched in the Spring of 2018. Expect another push back, likely to the holiday season this year. Indeed, you might even expect the release of Red Dead Redemption II to be delayed into 2019.


Anthem has been in development and construction for years. This is a game that is said to have a massive scope. The stark reality is that massive games like Anthem do not come quickly — ever.

The powers that be behind Anthem have said throughout 2017 that the game would launch in 2018. The window as to when in 2018 the game will be available has been left wide open.

With that said, with the small amount of the game that has been shared with the public, there is a growing consensus among industry watchers that a 2018 launch probably is not in the cards. 2019? Possibly, but not guaranteed.

Crackdown 3

Over the course of the past three years, Crackdown 3 has been under construction. The media finally got a look at the game at E3 2017. The response included some pretty significant criticism. This was particularly targeted at the all-important visuals. In the aftermath of that, the release date was pushed back to 2018.

At this juncture, no specific date has been provided for the launch of Crackdown 3 during 2018. There has been no additional push back in regard to the release date. However, with the significant nature of the items criticized when the game got a media and public look in 2017, a further delay sometime into 2019 certainly is not beyond the realm of possibility.

Days Gone

Bend Studio has had Days Gone in development and construction for more than a couple of years. Days Gone is a PlayStation 4 exclusive. Indeed, the game received positive reception at E3 2016 and E3 2017.

In 2017, Sony Interactive Entertainment Worldwide President Shuhei Yoshida announced that the game would launch in 2018. However, the announcement was made with very little fanfare, far less than what was expected.

At this point, no specific time has been indicated for a release in 2018. Days Gone may in fact launch this year, but look for it towards the latter part rather than the beginning of 2018.

Jessica Kane is a writer for SoundStage Direct, the number one online source for the best vinyl records and turntables.