If there’s one thing everybody wants, it’s a long, happy, healthy life. This means you need to focus on making sure you have a good quality of life well into old age. The sooner you start, the better in all cases! Here are my tips, hope you enjoy:
The better you eat, the healthier you’ll keep your body. We can all get away with being a little lax with our diet while we’re young, but as we get older we need to watch what we’re putting into our bodies. I don’t just mean when we get old either; I’m talking mid twenties. We can begin to pile on weight, and as our metabolism slows down we develop a whole host of problems. Make sure you’re eating as well as you can so that you can keep your body healthy! You’ll look younger and feel better for longer too!
Exercise is a really important part of any healthy lifestyle. There are no rules to the kind of exercise you do, but strength training and cardio could be included to make sure you’re getting an all round effective workout. When we exercise, we keep our body running to the best of its ability and live longer. We are also more mobile into old age, and fight off disease!
Keep in Touch with Friends and Family
Make sure you don’t lose touch with friends and family. Having a support network is healthy, so you should have people you can talk to and catch up with from time to time. It can get difficult as everybody has their own lives and does their own thing, but you’ll have a much better sense of well being when you stay in touch with those you love.
Everybody needs hobbies. They help to keep us healthy and focused on things. They can stop us from stressing out and help us to develop skills. Make sure you do the things you love and you’ll love life!
Give Yourself Goals
Having goals gives us something to aim for. It can help to keep you focused on something, whether you want to enter a badminton tournament or do a marathon. Having healthy aims like this can never be a bad thing!
Think About What You’ll Do When You Retire
You need to have a retirement plan so you know where you’re going as you age. Will you be ok financially? Where will you live? Aged care homes can be a good choice for people who need care later on in life. It’s a good idea to make a plan so you have something to follow.
Step Out of Your Comfort Zone
They say that life starts just outside of your comfort zone, and it’s true. You should do more of what makes you nervous and uncomfortable. You’ll be happier and live a better life for it!
Ready to live a higher quality of life from now on, and stay that way as you age? Use these tips and you will!
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I know, right? What could be more fun, anyway, than reading, 'We're going on a Croc Hunt?' It's a great book and if you haven't yet read it to your grandkids, you're in for a treat.
It's a beautifully illustrated book.
It's a wonderful re-imagining of the well-known story, 'We're going on a bear hunt.' The illustrations are vibrant and fun... and the creatures are all Australian native animals. There is even a version that includes a CD sing-a-long with jazzy music.
For an added bit of fun, there is a crocodile hidden on each page that your kids can try and find. (Some of them are really tricky and you might have to give some hints..... if you can find them. :)
But don't stop there!
Make the story really 'live' for your kids. How about going on a croc hunt with your kids?
What will you need?
Well, a stick with a flag could be useful on your hunt. Your grandkids could draw a crocodile on a piece of calico. Then you can knot it to your stick. Perhaps make one for each child.
A headband with some leaves and feathers would certainly add some excitement. For some additional atmosphere, how about some face paint? Some of the characters in the story decorated their faces with stripes of muddy coloured war-paint.
When everyone is ready, tramp outside chanting, "We're going on a croc hunt. We're going to find a big one. I'm not afraid. We're as brave as brave can be."
Bring the excitement indoors
Create a nature tray for your indoors croc hunt. You'll need a large tray, of course.
Add a shallow bowl and some grass for the wet, reedy waterhole. Next, the intrepid croc hunters had to cross the hot, trickly sand so add some sand.
Rocks came next.. so include a handful of rocks to climb over. And then some spiky leaves and twigs for the spiky, brown scrub.
Give each child a plastic animal to take across this tray of varied environments while you read the story to them again.
Present a puppet show
Download and print these free images on light card. (Click on each to find the link)
Cut out each. Add a small loop of card to the back of each image so that your kids can slip their fingers inside the loop as a finger puppet.
Encourage them to tell the story with their finger puppets. You'll be surprised how creative they can be.
When you get to a certain age, you start to think about the big ‘R’ word. Yes, retirement is never far from people's minds as they enter their late fifties. Some people get excited by the thought of retiring; others wince and wish it wasn’t going to happen. But, retirement is going to happen whether you like it or not! It’s something you should prepare yourself for, to make sure you have a happy life moving forward. I find that there are three main questions you should ask yourself as you get ready to retire.
(Image from Flickr https://flic.kr/p/bH1jrv)
Do You Have Enough Money to Retire?
The main concern with retirement is how you will be able to afford it. Do you have the money to fund your retirement years? It’s important you’re thinking about this, years in advance. You want to have a pension set up, so you’re guaranteed to have some money built up over time. It would also be a good idea to start saving some of your own money too. It will be a bit of a shock to you when you retire and realise you won’t be earning money anymore. So, you have to have all your finances in check to ensure you have a healthy amount to live on.
Are You Ready For Retirement?
Many people struggle with retirement because they don’t feel as though they’re ready for it. They don’t want to stop working; they enjoy what they do. I’ve got two bits of advice for you here. One, you don’t have to fully retire. You can always be self-employed for a while if you still want to work. Two, don’t feel as though retirement is the end of the world. Look at all the positives that come with it. You’ve spent your whole life at work; now you can kick back and relax. You’ll be able to spend more time with the people that matter. You can see your kids and grandkids more, become a lot more involved in their lives. Thinking about the positives can get you prepared and ready for retirement.
Where Will You Live?
For a lot of people approaching retirement, there’s a big question of where they’ll live. Some people prefer to sell their home and look for a retirement village that offers independent living. When you’re retired, it can be a lot better if you live amongst other retirees. You’ll be living in a community that understands you and can relate to a lot you’ve been through. Plus, it can be better for your health and give you a chance at a more relaxing life. Don’t think that it’s the same as a retirement home, because it’s not. A retirement village lets you have your own house and live as independently as you want. Plus, a lot of them are in nice places with nice weather and a scenic backdrop. It’s a good option to consider, and will offer your grandkids some new scenery when they come and visit!
Don’t be put off by the thought of retirement; it can be a real blessing! Make sure you’re fully prepared so that, when the time comes, you’re ready to retire with minimal fuss.
'Stay in bed until you see the sun.'
There's a well-known quote: 'People who say that they sleep like a baby don't have one.' And, though we smile, it's because it's so painfully true. Babies and little ones are synonymous with sleep deprivation.
Yes.. occasionally, you'll discover parents who seem to have a dream child who goes to sleep without any problem and sleeps through the night. But most parents struggle with settling their little ones into bed: or they endure a restless night because their little ones wake during the night and come into bed with them.
The Gro Company
It's something that Gro Australia have realised and have worked to create some helpful products for parents. You may be familiar with their renowned Gro-bag, the newborn safer sleep essential. But the Gro Store offers a full range of beautifully designed, innovative sleep solution for babies and infants.
One of these helpful products is the Gro Clock.
I've been using this with my grandkids and the concept is simple. Set your times for sleep and waking. (You can set these for naptime during the day, too.) The lovely little clock face displays subdued lighting with stars to indicate sleep time. The stars gradually disappear as wake-up time draws near.
Then the sun shines when it's time to get up. I found that my grandchildren were very intrigued with the clock and they didn't take long to understand just how it worked.
There are 3 steps to setting up the Gro Clock system and it's very simple.
3 simple steps
1. Set your bedtime and wake-up time on the clock.
2. Read the bedtime story book that accompanies the Gro Clock. This little picture storybook is a great little starting point for the children to understand the importance of a good night sleep.
3. Remind your little ones to stay in bed while the stars are still in the sky. Once the sun is up on the clock, it's time to get up.
A simple overview clip is provided by the Gro Company to explain the Gro Clock's setup and functions and you can find it below:
There are a couple of other helpful features....
a)The Gro Clock operates on mains supply so you don't have to worry about batteries going flat.
b) The clock also works as a night-light and you can alter the intensity of the light on the clock face.
c) Kids don't take long to pick up on how things work so there is also a tamper-proof lock.. I really needed that with a grandson who likes to fiddle with buttons, switches and any type of technology.
d) You can also set the clock so that a sound accompanies the wake-up time.
e) For those children who are starting to learn about clock times, you can set it up to display the digital time as well.
A wonderful training tool
Now... just a quick note in closing... This isn't going to be an instant fix (although I have heard of parents to report that this was the case for them.) If it works that quickly for you- great!
But, I've found that it works well as a consistent process to train your little ones about a regular bedtime and wake up time. It also encourages them to stay in bed if they do wake during the night.
If you're struggling with sleep issues with your child, I really think it's worth checking out.
The Gro Store also stocks other quality products from height charts to baby calmers, chair harnesses and portable blinds and you can find all these on their Australian online store. I'm going to check out their bedding, too. It's very attractive but comes with attached pillow and zippered sides- helpful for keeping little ones in bed, too. Check our their range.
When you have to take care of the grandchildren but the rain is pouring outside, it can leave you in a tricky situation. Here are some top ideas to help you keep them entertained.
Build a Fort
This is a classic option for a fun-packed rainy day. The best thing about it is that you can simply sit back while the kids do all the work. All you have to do is provide them with a pile of pillow and blankets to play about with. They’ll be able to come up with something that’s fun for them to mess around with.
If you’re lucky, the task might even tire them out after a while. If they really throw themselves into it and get lost in the task of creating a fort, they should be occupied for hours before falling asleep inside it! Alternatively, you could create a game inside the fort or read stories to them in it. It’ll be like indoor camping.
Visit a Museum
If you want to get out of the house on a rainy day without getting soaked, you should find a great museum. There’s nothing better on a Sunday afternoon than spending time in a good museum with the grandchildren. You’ll need to see what you can find near your home. Ideally, the museum should cater for children.
Nowadays, most museums are family-oriented, so you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding one that fits your needs and requirements. The big natural history museums and science museums are especially good for capturing the imaginations of young children. You could do some research, come up with some options and then ask the kids which one they want to visit.
Make a Home Movie
With all the gadgets and modern technology at our fingertips these days it’s easy to make a home movie with the children. All you need is a video camera or even a smartphone with a camera on it. We all have these items, and if you don’t, then your grandchildren probably will. But most of the time we don’t think about how these items can be used to get creative.
Many of the great film-makers working today started out by making movies at home, so give it a go. If nothing else, it will be fun and keep the kids entertained. Start out by producing a mini script with the help of the children and then act out the scenes in front of the camera. You can use clothes and costumes to make it even more fun. Once that’s done, you can watch the movie together.
Play a Game
Board games might be seen as dull by a lot of children these days. But if you actually sat down with them and played a good board game with them, I bet their opinion would quickly change. There are lots of great board games, and once kids get caught up in the competitiveness of the game, they’ll start to enjoy themselves.
If you want to find out what the best board games are right now, you should visit TopRateTen. You’ll probably be surprised at the variation of games out there at the moment. And if the board games fail, you can always let them keep themselves entertained by playing video games.
Organise Your Own Film Festival
Sometimes, sitting in front of the TV and watching a movie is the best thing to do on a dull and rainy day. You can make a whole day of it if you have some good DVDs to keep the kids entertained for hours on end. You can even create your own film festival by compiling some of their favourite films.
All you need is a comfortable sofa to relax on and a selection of films. Make sure they help to choose them though. Otherwise, they might get bored. Don’t choose the films you like, let them have the final say. And finally, you’ll need a steady supply of popcorn in a big bowl that can be passed around.
Another option is to make food. This can be a messy option, but it can also be a lot of fun if you choose the right recipes. It’s usually best to make the kind of food that the kids will enjoy eating afterwards. This means you’ll probably making sweet things like cakes and cookies. But you can balance this out with some healthy options too.
Make a deal with them. They can have the cakes if they eat something a little more health for their dinner before hand. So, what are the best healthy recipes to make? I’d recommend something simple like a vegetable pizza. It’s pretty easy to make pizza. You just need a base, some cheese, tomato puree and some vegetables for the topping.
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If you’re a grandmother, you know that a lot of responsibility falls on your shoulders around Christmas time. With your kids working, you’re left to look after their children a lot during the holidays. I know it’s not for a few months, but preparation is key! So, I have some ideas on how you can make the perfect Christmas home for when your grandkids come to visit.
In my opinion, the perfect Christmas themed home revolves around three key things. The sights, the smells, and the sounds. So, I’ll take you through how you can make all of these standout.
(Image via PublicDomainPictures https://goo.gl/sELzUk)
Obviously, the main thing to consider is your Christmas decorations. If I were you, I’d be heading out now and getting them all bought and ready for a few months time. The earlier you buy them, the cheaper they’ll be!
Think about the outside of your house first, are you able to put up any decorations there? Lots of people like to go for lights on the exterior or even a Christmas light projector. It’s also a good idea to have a little feature in your front garden, if you can. Think about a big Santa figure, or maybe build a snowman if the weather permits!
Then, go indoors and focus on decorating your house. You want a combination of red and green; these are the two main Christmas colours for me. Have tinsel around your pictures and paintings, lights across the fireplace. Of course, the main event is the tree, my advice would be to let your grandkids help decorate this, it will be fun!
(Image from: https://goo.gl/FtcOjE)
There’s a definite Christmassy smell in the air around winter time. It’s like spiced apples and gingerbread. I’d suggest you get some automatic air fresheners that give off a Christmassy smell. You can easily find some in the shops if you look.
Then, turn your attention to the kitchen, where you can create amazing smells. Think about baking gingerbread men for your grandkids and filling your house with that lovely scent. Seriously, they’ll never want to leave Grandma’s house once they’ve had a whiff of your gingerbread men!
Nothing gets people in the Christmas spirit like hearing Christmas songs. The moment you hear them on the radio, that’s when Christmas begins! But, how can you take this and apply it to your home? Well, it’s simple, you get a load of Christmas CD’s and play them through a HiFi or sound system in your home. Don’t have them on too loudly, just quietly in the background to set the mood.
It’s the perfect backdrop for your kids to play in your house and be in the spirit! It will really get them excited this holiday season and secure your place as number-one Nan.
There you have it! This is how you can create the perfect Christmas home for your grandkids to enjoy. I bet they’ll never want to leave once they’ve spent a day with Grandma. That’s a fun part of a family Christmas: making children happy.
Life as a grandma.. it's no 'quiet, restful days in the rocking-chair'. It's filled with activity, excitement and lots of family fun. Please share it with me.