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When a person finally reaches the point at which he or she retires, it really is a milestone. If you have someone in your life that is getting ready to retire, you likely are wondering what type of gift to give. There are seven categories from which an ideal retirement gift can be drawn.

Years of Service Gift

For generations, the most common type of retirement gift was one focused on years of service. This type of gift oftentimes was given by an employer. However, that was during a time period when most people spent the greater part of their working lives in one, or perhaps two, jobs.

With that noted, a years of service gift is still a solid choice, even if it doesn’t officially or formally come from an employer. This type of gift could come from family, friends, or colleagues and will still have a nice impact.

Examples of years of services gifts include things like a watch or some type of jewelry. Silver is a solid choice when it comes to this type of years of service gift.

Hobby Gift

If the new retiree enjoys some type of hobby, a gift related to that endeavor is wise choice. People have a wide range of hobbies in this day and age, some of which are easier to find an appropriate gift. For example, if a person is a wine connoisseur, you will likely be able to come up with some obvious options.

If your associate has a hobby you are not particularly familiar with, reach out to that person. Ask him or her what type of item would be highly useful in the pursuit of that hobby.

Travel Gift

If the retiree is fond of travel, or has indicated a desire to spend time traveling once retired, considering giving the individual some type of travel gift. Examples of these types of gifts include luggage, passport holder, or personalized luggage tags. Books about possible travel destinations are solid ideas.

Depending on your relationship with the retiree, and your own budgetary considerations, giving a trip is a wonderful gift for a retiree. If the cost of a trip is beyond your own budget, odds are you will be able to organize people to collectively buy this type of gift for a retiree.

Experiences Gift

By the time many people reach retirement age, they have accumulated a good deal of “stuff.” Another idea for a perfect retirement gift is something from the experiences category.

Examples of what you can consider giving from the experiences category includes tickers to a concert, theatre, or sporting event. A gift certificate to a nice restaurant is another idea.

You can take one of two approaches when you give an experience gift. First, you can take the retiree and his or her significant other, if there is one, to the experience. Second, you can purchase tickets and let the retiree plan the specifics with whoever he or she would like to take.

Industry Gift

Another category of retirement recognition is the industry gift. As the name suggests, this type of gift is something associated with the industry or profession in which the person worked. This type of gift does hearken back to days gone by when an industry gift was more commonplace. As with a years of service gift, some years ago, this type of gift was quite commonly given by an employer as a means of commemorating the work of a retiree.

Charitable Contribution Gift

Many people heading into retirement have spent at least part of their working career in support of some type of charitable organization, at least in some manner. In other words, there is a strong possibility that the retiree has what is best described as a favorite charity.

If that is the case, you might want to consider making a contribution to a particular charity on behalf of the retiree. If the retiree doesn’t seem to have a favorite charity, you could ask the individual if there is one he or she would like to see a donation go.

Social Gift

This is something of a derivation of the experience gift. A social gift oftentimes is something added to another type of gift.

In basic terms, a social gift is one in which you invite the retiree to join you for something like lunch or dinner at some point in the future. You could be creative and make a coupon which the retiree can redeem at some point in the future for a social connection of some sort.

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Jessica Kane is a writer for Silver Superstore, home of the internet’s best flatware.

How One Powerful Tool Can Help You Simplify Everything from Birthday Invites to Marketing Emails

To quote a wise man named Ferris Bueller: life moves pretty fast. Whether you’re a stay-at-home mama, an entrepreneur, or are climbing the corporate ladder, sometimes there just aren’t enough hours in the day. With so many things demanding our attention all the time– from families and friends to emails to trying to squeeze in a bit of personal time– finding little ways to simplify your life is incredibly valuable.

This short, sweet little guide will give you all of the tools you need to streamline your life with mail merge:

  • What mail merge is + our favorite mail merge tool
  • Professional applications for mail merge
  • How to use mail merge to make mommy tasks easier

Life is too jam-packed to waste time on tasks that can easily be automated. Mail merge makes sending emails simple and painless, whether they’re going to coworkers, potential customers, or your family and friends.

Mail Merge is a Tool that Makes Sending Mass Emails Simple

Whether you love it or hate it, email is pretty much the bread and butter of digital communication. Even though it’s an essential tool, it can be a pain sometimes. For example, sending the same email to lots of different people (with minor tweaks, of course) is time-consuming, not to mention boring. There has to be a better way, right?

Right! That’s mail merge. Mail merge allows you to use information from a database (don’t worry– your mail merge database can be as simple as an Excel sheet) to fill in the blanks in a template email you create. It’s like mad libs, but instead of ending up with a crazy story it just saves you from copying and pasting the same email message to Aunt Susie, and Aunt Cathy, and Aunt Jen, and Aunt…

There are plenty of inexpensive mail merge tools out there. For example, the mail merge tool Gmass integrates with Google Chrome and Gmail, which billions of people rely upon to communicate every day.

Mail merge is a favorite of email marketers everywhere because it allows them to quickly and easily reach as many people as they need to. Gmass simplifies the process even further by integrating with your favorite email platform– Gmail.

Using Mail Merge in the Professional World

It’s a fact of life that– whether you work for a large corporation, a small business, or even for yourself– there comes a time in every professional’s life that sending lots of emails at once becomes a necessity. Mail merge is used widely in email marketing because it allows marketers to quickly send personalized messages to their entire mailing list.

However, there are plenty of other professional applications of mail merge as well:

  • Sending resumes to prospective employers
  • Distributing personalized instructions to different members of a team
  • Following up with potential customers at all phases of the conversion funnel
  • Getting quotes on products or services from different vendors
  • Etc.

Instead of spending all of your time copying and pasting party details to everyone on your guest list, you can simplify the process with mail merge. That allows you to spend less time emailing and more time planning your party!

Using Mail Merge to Streamline Your Personal Life

Today, mail merge is such an affordable and accessible tool that it’s a great option for organizing your personal life as well as your professional life. Just a few ideas:

  • Sending invitations for a child’s birthday party
  • Sending thank-you messages after the holidays
  • Staying in touch with friends and loved ones
  • Etc.

Time is valuable, and mail merge is a simple but powerful tool that can help you get more out of yours.

No matter who you are, finding ways to streamline the boring and tedious tasks in your life is extremely valuable. When it comes to email, there’s no reason to waste time copying and pasting the same message over and over if you only have to make minor tweaks to it. Mail merge saves busy ladies time and energy by automating the process.

What do you think about mail merge? Have you ever taken advantage of this personal and professional tool to tackle a big project? Share your story in the comments below!

For those of you reading who were teachers before or are teachers now, the thought of going into a classroom full of kids was frightening to say the least. You didn’t have any class management experience and although you were taught many strategies, by the time you got to the door of the room, you had forgotten them all. Parents have the same issues when trying to control their kids and there are times when you are not sure what is appropriate and what is not.

Most of us learned how to manage the class as we went along, but those first few months were a nightmare. Thankfully, it doesn’t have to be like that anymore and if it is your intention to get yourself involved in child care in Canberra then you should read on, to get some invaluable tips on how to instill discipline when you are dealing with sensitive children.

Try To Use Your Normal Voice

This is easier said than done, as we need to raise our voices to get above the din that is children screaming and running around the classroom. At some point, we will lose our voices due to this and it isn’t the best way to get your student’s attention. If you want your student to talk in low, soft tones, then you, too, need to talk like that. You should use different tones when you are asking about different things. If you want the students to put away their toys and return to the mat, then use a matter of fact tone. If you want to ask them questions and would like responses, then use an inviting tone. Check out more articles for tips on how to adjust your voice in the classroom.

 Only Talk When The Students Are Quiet

It’s difficult and you have to fight the real temptation to talk. After all, you are there to educate and to impart knowledge and you should be talking, but only when they are quiet and they are listening to you. Wait for them to be quiet and if they aren’t, then wait a little longer. After a while, the students will notice and will tell the others to be quiet also. Just be patient and the kids will eventually stop talking and begin to listen. 

Use Body Language And Hand Signals

Little things like raising your hand and establishing eye contact with your students helps to calm down a rowdy classroom and it may take a while for them to catch on to this, but it will happen. Turning the lights on and off is a sure way to get their attention and it can also be used as a countdown to the end of a test or an assignment. Clapping your hands also works.

More importantly, make sure that your lesson is planned and is fun. There is nothing worse than a bored student and having thirty of them in one place is even harder to handle. Talk less and allow your students to talk more.

When you become a parent, suddenly the idea of flying becomes a lot more stressful. Not only do you have to worry about getting to your gate on time, you also have to worry about getting there with your kids in tow. Booking business class flights can take away some of the stress since you have more space to move around, but it also means that you have to worry about annoying your fellow passengers, who have paid thousands of dollars to enjoy the privilege of travelling in peace and quiet.

If you’re planning to book a premium ticket for your family, here are some tips for flying business class with a toddler.

Bring things to do

You’ll want to keep them occupied as much as possible, so pack a holdall with colouring books, puzzles and a tablet loaded with movies and TV shows they like. Yes there are 20” entertainment screens with noise cancelling headsets, but perhaps the selection of kids movies onboard might not be very extensive.

Take advantage of the business class perks

Flying business class means you’ll have a larger baggage allowance, which means you can bring as much stuff as you need for the kids. You’ll also benefit from dedicated check-in desks and priority lanes, make the whole airport experience a little more relaxed. Your airline may even provide you with a chauffeur driven car to the airport, so take advantage of this if you can.

Arrive to the airport early

Give yourself plenty of time at the airport so you’re not rushing through the airport like the McAllisters in Home Alone! By arriving early you’ll be more relaxed, which means they’ll be more relaxed too. You’ll usually have access to the business class lounges, which sometimes have kids facilities to keep your toddler entertained.

Check if you can pre-order kids meals

Some airlines will provide special kids meals in business class, while others have a more limited selection. You can call up the airline before your flight to check, but it may also be worth bringing some snacks just in case they’re not so sure of the food.

Choose two seats together

Often business class is organised in a 1-2-1 layout, which means there are two seats together in the middle, and single seats next to the windows. If you wish to be seated near your child then you’ll want to choose the middle seats – the privacy divider will come down so you can easily pass things over to them. Of course one of the brilliant things about business class is the seats are incredibly roomy, so you don’t have to worry about them kicking the seats in front. The seats also convert into fully flat beds, so you can change them into pyjamas and put them down to sleep. You’ll usually be given an amenity kit with perfumes and skincare products, but sometimes airlines also provide special kits and toys for the children too.

Flying business class with a toddler isn’t easy – the last thing you want is them running around the cabin during the flight. Some parents may gasp in horror at the thought of traveling with kids in the front end of the plane, but if you know they can be well behaved then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t fly business class on your next family vacation. With plenty of space, noise cancelling headsets and a catalogue of entertainment, your kids will soon settle down and enjoy the flight.