Checklist For A Great Summer Road Trip

Checklist For A Great Summer Road Trip

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With summer upon us and the kids soon out of school, you might be wondering just what to do with them all summer long. It can be a daunting prospect of having them home all day, so why not consider taking a family vacation somewhere fun! Even if you can’t afford to jet off to a far flung locale for a beach escape, there are plenty of things you can do in and around your local area, such as going on road trips of varying durations. Road trips are a great way to spend some time with the family for a whole variety of reasons. But how can you get ready for a great road trip that the kids will be talking about for years? Here is a quick checklist you can use before any road trip to make sure it’s full of fun and enjoyable memories you will cherish forever.

Check Your Vehicle

Making sure your vehicle is ready to hit the road for a lengthy drive is one of the first things you should do before any road trip. After all, being stuck on the side of a motorway with cranky children is not anyone’s ideal plan when it comes to crafting great family memories. Visit your nearest Ford dealership to get your car looked at and serviced to make sure it’s running in top condition, and replace any potential problems that may need attention.

Buy Road Worthy Snacks

Snacks are a great way to keep the kids (and you!) happy on the road. It can be long stretches between stops and those roadside services can sometimes jack the prices up a bit, making it a costly adventure to buy a snack or two enroute. Stocking up on lots of healthy snacks will keep your  mind at ease as well, knowing that your kids are still getting essential vitamins and minerals even when on the road.

Pick A Great Route

Routes around the country can vary and you should pick a great route that fits well with your schedule as well as the interests of both you and the family. Perhaps going on a road trip to visit a relative in another county could be a great option for a summer road trip, or maybe you’ve always wanted to check out that one great location in the country but haven’t gotten there yet. Road trips to popular places include Cornwall, the Lake District, the Peak District and the Isle of Skye.

Be Flexible

Flexibility is always a great attitude to have on any family vacation and results in a lot of fun had by all. Being flexible includes being okay with stopping off for lunch, stopping to take pictures, maybe taking a small detour to check out a cool attraction or lookout point and of course, being okay with changing plans slightly on the fly if something happens like an attraction is closed. Being flexible will help everyone stay relaxed and enjoy the experience.

So if you’ve been wondering what to do with the kids this summer and you want to entertain the option of a road trip, hopefully this article has helped give you a bit of a starting point on how best to get road ready for this year’s great family getaway.

Show You Care With the Best Customized Gifts

Show You Care With the Best Customized Gifts

Don’t settle for the same old gift this year! Instead, show that you care with one of these awesome options from our list of the best customized gifts.

Imagine this scenario: It’s your significant other’s birthday or maybe Mother’s Day or Father’s Day.

You hand your loved one over an envelope. They smile graciously, peel open the seal, and take out a generic, store-bought greeting card.

A gift card for a coffee chain falls in their lap.

It’s $20. Who knows, maybe you splurged for $30 or $50.

They look at you, smile, and say, “Thank you,” but it’s that strained kind of smile. The kind of smile that secretly says, “Well . . . I guess this was a nice gesture.”

Come on! You can do better than that!

Personalized gifts mean a lot more than gift cards and store-bought items. They’re the best way to show you care and avoid that begrudging smile.

Let’s take a look at some of the best customized gifts and how they can wow your loved ones.

How the Best Personalized Gifts Show You Care

Studies show that (at least in the United States) many people love to give gifts. Personalized gifts are just the next step up.

So why would you consider a personalized gift in the first place?

I mean, you work hard for your money. Even if you just give them a gift card or anything bought in a mall, isn’t it the thought that counts?

Sure, but gift giving shouldn’t be a chore. It shouldn’t be one more checkmark on a to-do list. Simple, non-personalized gifts give off that vibe.

Things like customized birthday gifts may take a little more time and thought, but they definitely show that you care.

We’ll look a little closer at some more reasons how they show you care.

They’re Universally Appreciated

Something like a gift card or a store-bought item can be hit-or-miss with your loved ones.

Maybe they don’t like the coffee chain you bought that gift card from. Maybe your boyfriend or girlfriend doesn’t need that new knife block or won’t watch that new movie you bought them.

No matter what, though, if you get them a personalized gift, it will almost always be appreciated. Even if it’s still something they don’t need or necessarily want, the thought and care that went into choosing and personalizing that gift or coming up with that idea is worth the appreciation alone.

It’s not to say that even the best customized gifts will not be a “miss” sometimes, but at the very least the thought really does count.

They’re Perfect For Any Event

Personalized gifts can suit any occasion or event.

These days, there’s a perfectly customizable gift lying in wait for whatever you can think of.

Doesn’t matter if it’s a wedding, a baby shower, or a birthday, someone out there is providing customization for any event.

They Build Stronger Relationships

Whether you’re buying a gift for your spouse of 20 years, a family member, or someone who’s a relatively new friend, the best personalized gifts can only strengthen that relationship.

No matter where your relationship is at, a personalized gift really shows that you care and have put thought and time into who that loved one is to you.

Those are the key questions: who is this person? What do they mean to you? What do they like and dislike? Can you guess what might pique their interest in the future?

The best customized gifts will show that special person that you’re not giving them a gift out of obligation. You’re taking the time to understand them and find out more about what they like and who they are.

In some cases, you’re making a statement that maybe you know them even better than they know themselves.

You’re making an effort to build your relationship up rather than making a lateral move.

Ideas For the Best Customized Gifts

Now that we’ve established how special a customized or personalized gift can be, we want to talk about specific ideas.

There are a lot of companies and individuals out there who make a some of the best personalized gifts. Websites, such as Etsy, are your friend.

In some cases, though, you may want to take matters into your own hands with a little DIY magic.

Here are a few useful tips about personalized gifts from DIY to unique companies:

1. Print and Frame a Photo

In this day and age, it’s a little more uncommon to have a physical printed photo.

Most people’s photos are locked away in the cloud on social media like Facebook or devices like digital cameras and smartphones.

So consider taking a photo that you know is very precious to your loved one from the digital stratosphere, and then have it printed and frame it yourself. It may be a photo they already have, but that physical version of it adds an extra personal touch.

You can get even more DIY with the frame by adding a personal touch with arts and crafts as well.

2. Create a Personalized Gift With Photo

So you can print and frame a photo yourself, or you could take a photo you own and have someone make it into a pop art centerpiece.

This website makes it simple with only a few steps. You provide the photo with any comments or suggestions, they morph it into a pop art-styled version, you approve, and they affix it to whatever you want.

You could have a pop art-style shower curtain of you and your family at Disney World, or you could get a tote bag of your loved one’s precious chihuahua in all of its Andy Warhol-like glory.

3. Custom Children’s Books

Some companies create children’s books that are customized to the child themselves. Reading books is scientifically proven to help a child’s development and growth, and what child wouldn’t want to see himself or herself in the story they’re reading?

Certain companies, such as Wonderbly, do just that. Their flagship book The Little Boy Who Lost His Name or The Little Girl Who Lost Her Name takes the name of the child it’s meant for and uses each letter of their name to tell a personalized story.

This idea may not exactly have been written and illustrated by yourself, but if you’re looking for a personalized gift for your own child or your niece or nephew, it’s a really caring gesture for the child and parent.

4. Homemade Massage Coupons

Here’s another DIY option.

Especially if you’re talking about a significant other, why not give them coupons for a full-body massage?

Whether you were willing to give them a massage or not, make it more fun by creating your own coupons with your own specific design.

Turn down the lights, break out the lavender candles, crank your favorite Enya tunes, and show your loved one you care.

5. Fancy Homemade Dinner

We’re on a roll with the DIY, so let’s just keep it going.

This is going to be especially impressive if you’re not much of a cook.

Consider making a homemade dinner for your loved one.

If you’re going to go this route, though, you need to go all out. Think Lumiere’s “Be Our Guest.” Tall candles, your best bone china dinnerware, and a gourmet recipe that you follow to an absolute perfect ten.

6. Personalized Engraved Gifts

Engraving is a good way to show you’re going the extra mile.

There are plenty of people and companies out there who offer engraving services. Some allow you to send in your own item for engraving, others sell items that you can buy and have engraved, and some offer both.

You’d have to be stealthy if you want to have an item that your loved one already owns engraved, but that stealthiness can go a long way.

7. Plan a Vacation

Pretty much everyone in the world needs a vacation at one point or another.

Rather than buying a simple store-bought gift for your loved one, you could plan a vacation for them.

Again, though, you need to go as far with this idea as you can.

This gift needs to be more than just, “Hey, babe, maybe we should go on a vacation later this year.”

Sure, the suggestion sounds nice, but what are you really giving them?

Take time to figure out where your loved one would like to vacation. Plan ahead by asking them where some of their favorite places in the world are.

If you can afford it, go all out and buy the tickets yourself. Make the itinerary, plan it from start to finish, and go! Unless, of course, your loved one is the planning sort who actually enjoys that aspect of a vacation.

If you can’t afford the tickets, consider other aspects of a vacation. A travel journal is a nice idea, and if the destination is international, consider getting your loved one started on acquiring their passport if they don’t already have it.

Even just the idea of getting a vacation started can be so thoughtful as a personalized gift.

More Tips on Improving Your Life

Finding the best customized gifts is not only a good way to improve your loved one’s life but even your own. Hopefully, this guide gave you some good ideas.

If you want to see more of what we’re about at NonSociety and to see what other tips we can offer about helping to make you the best version of you, check us out and feel free to chat!

Your childs first dentist visit how to make it as smooth as possible

Your childs first dentist visit how to make it as smooth as possible

Let’s be honest: going to the dentist is tough enough for adults, so it isn’t surprising kids are similarly uneasy with the whole exercise as well.

While part of this is due to us projecting our insecurities onto our children, dentist offices are sterile environments filled with the uncomfortable whines of drills, so even the most comfortable parents will have issues introducing their kids to this place.

If you neglect to prepare them and they have a bad time the first time they go, future trips will be as fun as ripping a hang nail from your index finger.

Thanks to dentists such as Dr. Kami Hoss, though, there are dentist practices kids actively look forward to visiting.

As SoCal’s most popular family dental clinic, The Super Dentists managed to marry fun interior design, explanatory comics in reception, and specially trained staff together to create an environment where kids are instantly comfortable.

If you aren’t lucky enough to be close to this facility, there are several things you can do to make your child’s first dentist trip a positive one.

In this post, we’ll run down how to ensure this landmark visit goes as smoothly as possible.

1) Get it over with as soon as possible

The sooner a child is introduced to something, the quicker they will be able to normalize it as part of their routine. The same goes for going to the dentist, as unlikely as that sounds.

If you wait until they are older, they are more likely to go into the situation with fear in their hearts, as their mind will have developed enough to do that.

Soon after they blow out the candle on their first birthday cake or once they have their first tooth, take them in for their inaugural appointment.

2) Watch what you say beforehand

When your kids are little, anything you say can be taken quite literally. Accordingly, the words you use prior to their first appointment will shape whether they get through it fine or end up breaking out in tears.

Instead of being brutally honest as some parents are wont to do, describe the work dentists do in cartoonish detail. Some paint them as sugar bug hunters, so go with that if you are creatively challenged.

Avoid any words associated with pain, as many children make the connection between pain they feel and the words that describe them early in life. As such, using them will make a dentist appointment more difficult, not easier.

3) Schedule a pre-appointment meet and greet with the dentist

Before your kid goes in for their first dentist appointment, arrange a meeting between them and the professionals that will work on their teeth.

Doing this will humanize them, allowing a bond of trust to be forged between them and your child. If this can be achieved, any procedures done will go more smoothly as a result of this step.

By discussing what they do in terms understandable and relatable to children, this tip is one every parent should act upon before putting their kid in a dentist’s chair for the first time.

Don’t Let Divorce Get You Down – Deal With It The Right Way

Don’t Let Divorce Get You Down – Deal With It The Right Way

With something so life changing, that’s accompanied with a world wind of events, it’s  easy to come into contact with emotions of stress, anxiety, depression and more. A divorce might be the end of something you and your ex had, but it doesn’t have to be the end of you. Here are some helpful tips on how you can deal with divorce, not in a destructive, but in a more uplifting way. 

Agree To Disagree

Coming to a mutual agreement with your ex in regards to who gets the kids, coming to a settled agreement on things like property ownership and other things such as that, is essential. It can be so easy to act compulsively based on emotions and not on what’s best. Family mediation is a way of going about things fairly and legally, family lawyers Parramatta is a good option for those based in this area of Australia. Having this in place will ensure the best possible outcome for both parties is achieved and once things are settled you can get on with your life.

Get Support

Having an appropriate and reassuring support network is always something that is completely necessary when faced with divorce. Have those family and friends that have your best interest at heart come and reach out to you, show you that it may be hard but you can get through it. Sometimes you just need that friend with their quirky sense of humor and high spirits to take you out and show you that there is still so much more to life, show you that you can, no matter how difficult, still enjoy yourself. When loneliness tries to creep in, you can regain that sense of companionship from the kind-hearted and compassionate network around you.

Take Things Easy

Don’t over do it. Sometimes it’s so easy to try and keep everything to a ‘T’: House spotless, kids in order, work errands completed and before you know it you’re burnt out and depressed all over again when tasks become unbearable. Take it easy and take a break. You don’t have to let things get out of hand, you can still have your routine, but you also don’t have to be like a mouse on a running wheel trying to get everything done at once. Doing this will only make the already very burdensome situation even more of a burden. Maybe you could consider a holiday, somewhere you can put your feet up, enjoy a luxurious spa and let ‘stressed’ be the last verb that describes you. It’s so important for you take time to heal.

Stay Positive

Have a positive outlook on the future. With life looking bleak in the present divorce situation, it’s easy to view the future as bleak and to have low expectations of things ever looking up. Hold on to hope and take active procedures to change your outlook. Create action plans to build on your self-esteem and to manage your ‘fed up’ sort of feelings. Throw away the checklist of your ex-partner’s flaws and make a list of things you want to accomplish in the future. Pick up a hobby that helps you to invest more into yourself, or pick up something fulfilling like working for a charity or doing general volunteer work. It all helps to take your mind off the devastation of divorce and turn your eyes to the fascinations of the future.