The 3 primary emergency numbers to have on have in your household binder in the event of disaster or an emergency.
When disaster strikes, it is important that you know primary emergency numbers of who you can turn to for help. Though you might have a good idea of what you should do to start sorting things out, the trauma of a disaster can often lead you to make poor decisions or get pressured into the wrong choices.
Having someone you can trust on your side is always the best way to approach any situation and whether you need to go to court to battle for your rights or just need a place to stay the night in safety, there are some people who will always be there for you.
But also, it’s really important to have these primary numbers on hand and in your household binder to easily access.
Yes, they sound expensive and just the word ‘lawyer’ can put some people off. However, a lawyer is a vital of emergency numbers to have, and is always going to be the best person to represent you in court, no matter what the issue is. They can also offer your advice and legal counsel, even before you get to a situation where you have to go before a judge.
For example, insurance companies sometimes try to withhold monies from claimants, even when you are making a legitimate claim. An insurance claims attorneywould be able to make a representation on your behalf to get the money for you, without putting you under any more pressure to sort the situation out yourself.
911 – Police, Fire and Ambulance
Again, they might seem a bit scary but the police are there to keep the peace and to help you when you are most in need. If your security system is going off, they are the people to call if your home is burgled, if you feel threatened or if you need to report someone who is breaking the law. You also have a duty of care to call the fire department if a fire starts in your home. You might be able to put out a chip pan fire yourself. But they will be able to clear the smoke and ensure that there is no ongoing risk.
911 should also be used in a medical emergency to get an ambulance to you quickly. However, you should know when it is not appropriate to call as well as when it is. The best rule is this: If you think a condition is life-threatening such as severe chest pain, a stroke or a serious accident, you should call. Your regular doctor will be able to treat anything else.
Though you shouldn’t take calling 911 lightly, you shouldn’t put it off if you need help as soon as possible. So keep other law enforcement numbers on hand as well, like the Sheriff’s office.
Your friends and family may not be professionals when it comes to disasters. But they are the best people to talk through your decision-making process and to comfort you after an incident. A strong network of friends and family you can rely on isn’t just nice, it’s essential.
Do you have any other primary emergency numbers on hand? Let me know in the comments below!
Know someone that could use help with setting up primary emergency numbers for their household binder? Please SHARE this post!
5 insights into creating the home sweet home sensation for your family to feel at home.
There’s a huge difference between walking into a house and walking into a “home”. Indeed, we all want to create a feeling of home, for ourselves and our loved ones. But just because we buy a nice house doesn’t mean we will necessarily feel at home there.
See, our sense of home transcends the value of the bricks and mortar that make up your property; and goes beyond the aesthetic beauty of your interior design… it’s a feeling. Home is a feeling, and people have many different ways to feel at home. And one thing’s for sure if you don’t feel at home in your living environment: you’re going to feel drained, depleted, and maybe even depressed.
For some people, the sense of home comes from having a dog welcome you at the end of each day to welcome you home from work. For others it’s having freshly cut flowers in the property, cozy soft furnishings, a few bottles of nice wine lying around for a special night in, warm lighting, incense, or even watching a film by candlelight.
These are, however, merely triggers to associate the state of feeling at home. But if you don’t take care of certain things behind the scenes, such as keeping up with maintenance and repair tasks or simply paying the bills on time, the feeling of home seeps out our house like heat through a drafty window.
This article therefore looks at how to ensure a consistent feeling of “home sweet home” by taking care of some of the less glamorous aspects of creating a happy home life, beyond the standard interior design and self-care tips.
1.STAY ON TOP OF THE BILLS
Keeping up with household bills can be stressful if money is tight. With the increased energy consumption associated with extreme weather (i.e. the need for heat in winter and need for cold air in winter) comes a significant increase in your energy bill.
You may want to consider paying in equal monthly installments. This will cover the average energy consumption, throughout the year. This avoids a rather big hike in winter or summer as this is more manageable for most people.
The thing is, you want your home to be your castle not your prison; a sanctuary free from stress – not a situation where each time you go the mailbox, you dread seeing a bill, or even worse, living in fear of having debt collectors knocking on your door.
2. HOME MAINTENANCE
There’s nothing worse than having to face the horrors of a cold shower in winter or a baking hot house in the middle of summer, due to your air conditioning not working.
Whilst many people try their hand at DIY, this often ends up in frustration and a lot of wasted time. Sometimes, it’s better to call in a professional company such as ABC Home & Commercial that can take care of such matters with ease and efficiency.
3. GARDEN MAINTENANCE
Coming home each day to an overgrown garden and paint peeling off fences may not seem like a big deal. But subconsciously your brain will notice, and it will niggle at you. For it creates a feeling of chaos and things being out of control.
A garden that feels “well kept” will help you feel calm and like your life is in order. This tip is very much aligned with the psychological phenomenon of tidy house tidy mind, and this certainly extends to our garden, in fact, our cars too.
No matter how hard you try, you’re not going to get on with everyone. However, you don’t need to become best friends with your neighbors. You can instead keep things at the level of socially polite. In doing so you’ll create a sense of warmth and community between you which will pay dividends in terms of facilitating the feeling of “home sweet home” you crave. This is particularly true when you consider the alternative, which is to bicker with your neighbors.
5. CLEAN & TIDY
Keeping your home clean and tidy sounds simple enough. But often, when you don’t get a hold on this it gets a hold on you. And an untidy house can snowball out of control when left for a few days, becoming such a chaotic mess, that you don’t know where to begin. It can feel so overwhelming that you never get started.
The trick here, is to either employ a cleaner that undertakes a moderately deep clean, each week, or for you to do it yourself… with the mantra of little and often.
I hope these tips help you to instill a deeper feeling of home for you and your family!
How do you instill that feeling of home? Let me know in the comments below!
Know someone that could use help with creating that feeling of home? Please SHARE this post!
4 smart places to spend money even when funds are tight in your budget or income.
Running a family is a tough job, especially when funds are tight. As you have the keys to the vault, it’s your job to spend yet to do it responsibly. It’s the equivalent of letting a teen get behind the wheel of a car and expecting them to drive slow. It’s pretty unrealistic. Still, the family depends on you and your partner to make the correct financial decisions, so you have to continue with semi-reckless abandon. Does the thought of this fill you with fear? It should because it’s not an easy balance to get right. Here’s how to validate spending when funds are tight.
A home is a castle. As such, it should never feel unsafe or intimidating. Tucked away from the outside world, everyone should trust they are secure. However, there are times when this isn’t the case. Take a broken door or window as an example. Cracks in the wood/glass or frame make it a prime target for burglars. Replacement windows and doors, then, are imperative to stop a break-in. To take it one step further, homeowners can invest in security gadgets such as cameras and apps. If crime is an issue in the neighborhood, there is no need to feel guilty about splashing the cash.
Aren’t they free? No, some are but others charge. And, as you can imagine, the ones that cost are expensive and effective. There is good news – an app may be able to save you money when funds are tight. Consider energy bills for a moment. Now that the summer is here, gas and electricity usage will be low, but suppliers still increase their rates. A mobile meter, one that syncs to a phone, allows the user to tweak the settings depending on the circumstances. For instance, the home is empty so you turn the electricity off completely. This is a massive money-saver.
Parents must set a positive food example for their kids. Otherwise, they’ll eat junk and grow up as a cautionary tale. The problem is that buying processed meat and microwavable meals are cheap and easy. All one has to do is throw it in the cart then transfer it to the microwave and press start. Moms should understand that splashing out a little more on healthy ingredients is an investment for the future, even when funds are tight. You’re banking on your kids learning about healthy eating and developing a hearty routine. Home cooked meals are well worth the expense in the short and long-term.
Healthy eating is also an important part of self care, and an excellent example to your kids to learn about staying healthy as a part of self care as well.
Everyone, including moms, need to relieve stress. Stress release is a super important part of self care. The kids have sports clubs, and the hubby has his man cave yet you have nothing. This has to change pronto for the sake of the family. Seriously, going for drinks with the girls seems indulgent but it’s the break you deserve. Without a way to detox, your mind will be cluttered and you’ll make bad financial decisions. Find a way to release the energy, Moms.
Where does the bulk of your budget go? Let me know in the comments below!
And don’t forget to snag your Household Budgeting Binder! (Click the image below!)
Know someone that could use help with budgeting? Please SHARE this post!
3 places to start to organize your money in your household finances to get the most impact.
Do you know how to organize your money in your household finances? Probably not. Organizing money is a tricky situation to deal with, and the more we try, the more we seem to fail. If you’re someone who does a week by week money plan, you’ll know how every week you throw it in the bin, and start all over again because you’ve got out of budget. One of the main reasons we seem to do this is because of the temptation we face. Not only that, but thinking of all the things that we need to spend money on during the month can sometimes be hard, especially when things just keep popping up left right and centre that we have to pay for. But enough is enough. We’re here to organize your finances for you, and finally try and put you in a good place with money.
Are You Clearing Debt
If the answer to this is no, then you’re going about things all wrong. Debt is one of the biggest worries and stress that a lot of people have in their lives. But what are they doing to actively clear it? Nothing. If anything, they’re just adding it whilst buying things that they really can’t afford.
Don’t let this be you. Get in touch with companies such as personalloan.co and see if you can get a debt consolidation loan to try and get your money more managed. You don’t need a good credit score with companies like this, which is really going to go in your favour. If you’re in debt, you’re most likely going to have a pretty much credit score due to all the under payments that you will have made, and the fact that you have so much money owed against your name. At least with debt consolidation, it’s all in one place for you to manage.
Are Your Prioritizing Things
If you aren’t prioritizing things right, then you’re going to get yourself in hot water pretty quick. First in the pecking order is definitely bills. You have to make sure you’ve got everything each month ready for when it comes out of your account. If you feel as though your bills are too high, see if you can keep home costs down. Then comes things like the money needed to run your car, and the money for expenses such as food. Next should come a little bit of money to put in your savings, something everyone seems to miss out. Then comes the things that you can treat yourself with. But don’t put too much aside for this. You want to try and leave some money spare, just in case something goes wrong and you need the extra money.
Do You Have Savings?
So, we’ve talked about putting money aside when prioritizing things, but how well do you actually do this? Some people have actually mastered the art, whereas other seem to struggle with keeping money in a savings fund. Go and visit your local bank (or look online) and see what savings accounts they have available. Some will give you a better interest rate, and some will keep it locked for you so you can’t get in and out of it.
Don’t forget to snag your Household Budgeting Binder to organize your money now! (Click the image below to grab it!)
Know someone that could use help with organizing money? Please SHARE this post!
The meal plan service I use to do meal planning with 16+ allergies and cook the same meal for 5 people, in any combination of dietary style.
Meal planning is known to be a super stressful thing for moms on a daily basis. I’ve been through the paper method of meal planning (which I revert back to periodically), and the electronic method (which I use when I feel like I already have enough recipes to suffice). But the meal plan service that I love more than any I’ve tried (and I’ve tried many) is called Real Plans.
Here’s the thing–this is a big deal. Because there are 3 of us in this household with food allergies. And it’s no easy feat to cook for everybody! Here’s our current list of allergies:
10YO: celiac (so no gluten, period), peanuts, (just now got out of corn allergy)
I’d feel faint just looking at this list knowing I had to cook for everybody, except that Real Plans is the meal plan service that has saved my life.
**AND JUST KNOW–this meal plan service would STILL be saving my life even if we didn’t have food allergies!! The customization in this program is amaze-balls!! Think: picky eaters. Yep.
And I’ve made a video to walk you through setting up an account. It shows how easy it is to navigate, make it personal, and use this service to make your life a million times easier at meal planning time, dinner-time, and shopping time!
Watch how easy it is to set this up the Real Plans meal plan service and use it for endless opportunities meal planning!
Don’t forget to snag your FREE Health Pantry Makeover Packet! (click the image below!)
Know someone that could use help with meal planning? Please SHARE this post!
4 unexpected home disasters, and how to plan for them.
There comes a time in home ownership where things will go wrong that you haven’t expected or planned for. It might be that you’ve taken out repairs on something but the job wasn’t good enough. It could be bad weather that causes unforeseen damage, someone taking advantage and destroying your home, a fire, a water leak, anything. The thing is, we have no idea when disaster will strike in our home. So I thought I would share some common scenarios with you and a few tips on planning for unexpected home disasters.
Issues with ongoing repairs
One of the first things you may find that you have to deal with is issues with ongoing repairs. Maybe you had something that needed to be fixed already, such as a roof after damage had been caused. You organised for it to be fixed and then it became apparent that it wasn’t fixed as well as it should have been. This is when you may need to think about a how to correctly file a roof replacement insurance claim to ensure you get some compensation and that the job can finally be done correctly. A damaged roof can cause other issues in your home. It might have been other things such as damaged walls, problems with heating systems, etc. But if they are not fixed right first time you don’t need to accept what has happened.
Bad weather causing damage
There is also the possibility of the damage occurring in the first place and this can be quite an issue to overcome. Bad weather especially can be a huge problem to your home. A lot of rainfall, storms, even more horrendous natural disasters like tornadoes or hurricanes can all cause severe damage to our homes and cause us to need emergency repairs to put them right. Weather disasters can also strike when we are not expecting it, or with very little warning to try and protect our homes as best we can. If you live in an area that is prone to certain types of weather it may be advisable to invest in some sort of weather proofing as an added extra measure.
It can be quite devastating to come home to find that someone else has been in it, damaged the place and stolen some of your loved belongings. It really isn’t a nice experience to ever have to go through. Damage can be caused to all aspects of your home including doors, windows being smashed, and damage to the inside. While you can never predict this disaster striking, you can do what you can to better secure your home. That might be a new alarm system, fitted security cameras and ensuring that the boundaries and gates are in good condition.
Pests taking over your home
Finally, pests can be a real pain if not dealt with quickly. Rats, mice, cockroaches and termites, to name a few, can take over your home and can even cause damage. If you think there is an infestation in your home, act fast. The sooner you get professionals to handle it, the better. They will then seal up any entry point to help avoid it happening again.
I hope that these tips help you overcome issues if disaster strikes in your home.
Know someone that could use help with planning for home disasters? Please SHARE this post!
5 effective ways to do me-time self care with limited finances.
When we think about self-care, we tend to think about meditating, practicing yoga or otherwise relaxing and doing something nice for ourselves – rarely if ever do we think about our finances, but we should! Money is one of the biggest causes of stress and negativity that there is and as such it is important that we all take good care of ourselves in relation to our finances, especially when we are having difficulties. Here’s how to practice me time self care with limited finances.
It’s so easy to beat yourself up when you’ve gotten in over your head in debt or you’ve overspent on your budget for the month, but where does that really get you? It gets you nothing more than stress, negativity, and worry. You need to remind yourself that your money worries will not vanish overnight. And as long as you are working towards your goals, it will all work out in the end. A little compassion can go such a long way!
Talk to Someone
Whether you talk to a trusted friend, call up a debt counselor or speak to one of the excellent credit repair companies that you’ll find at http://repair.credit/best-credit-repair-companies/, getting your worries out there and having some friendly advice sent your way can work wonders. So, don’t bottle up your money issues out of shame or, find the right person and let them help you – it’s so much healthier – and it will be a weight off your mind.
Practice Inexpensive Hobbies
When you’re dealing with financial issues, it’s so easy to spend every waking moment focusing on them and that can lead to major stress and depression. By taking on a new hobby (or even an old one) which requires your focus, whether that be knitting, drawing, yoga, or gardening, you’ll take your thoughts away from the money problem and allow yourself to have some fun. If the hobby is fairly inexpensive, then you won’t beat yourself up about having a good time when your finances aren’t exactly in the best shape.
You might be having money difficulties right now, but if you have a roof over your head and food in your belly, that is really something special and you are doing so much better than a lot of poor people who’ve found themselves in even worse circumstances. So, why not give back by volunteering at a homeless shelter, caring for abandoned pets, or giving your time to the food bank. It will put things into perspective, keep you busy, and help you to realize exactly what you do have.
In a similar vein to the above, why not practice gratitude. Get yourself a nice inexpensive notebook, or visit https://gratefulness.org/practice/private-gratitude-journal/ for a free online gratitude journal and start writing. Aim to list at least three things you’re grateful for every day and things won’t seem quite so bad once you realize how rich you are, maybe not in monetary terms, but by many other standards.
Money problems suck, but they are not insurmountable and there’s no point working yourself up into an awful state about them when that will only make things worse. So, do as many of the above as you can, stay calm and take care of yourself – it’ll all work out in the end.
Grab your FREE Self Care Starter Kit here! (click the image below!)
Know someone that could use help with me-time self care with limited finances? Please SHARE this post!
The cost of owning and running a home seems to just get more and more each year. Not to mention when the demands on your family change and more costs are needed than others. And while we do all need somewhere to live and do need to get certain things, being able to reduce how much we are spending can only be a good thing, especially if wages aren’t quite changing in the way that the cost of living is. So here are some ways to help keep home costs down, including bills.
You rent or mortgage is going to be one of the biggest costs that you have each month. So you need to check that you are getting the best deal on your mortgages, in order to be spending as little as possible. As a rule, they are a pretty low-interest loan, though they are for a high amount. But the interest rates do vary. So shop around as much as you can to get the lowest interest rate; some are as low as 1.4%. This is probably the biggest way to keep home costs down.
Next to your mortgage, one of the things that you’ll spend a lot of money on is your energy bills. I mean, even when it is warm and sunny outside, you may not use your dryer or heating, but things like air conditioning, and cooking are still going to be happening. So there is no getting away from it. You can reduce how much energy you use, though, as well as looking to switch your energy provider for lower rates. Loyalty doesn’t get you anywhere as far as this is concerned, so again, shop around and switch for a better deal.
We all need to buy foods, and all need to do so with a budget that will suit us. So if you think you’re spending on groceries is getting a little out of control, then how about meal planning to start with? It means you just get what you need to work around what is already in the house. Second of all, you could bulk buy for certain items at places like Costco, so that you have plenty in the house. Then it could just mean buying fresh things to go with what is already there, each week. Using coupons and making a lot of your own food from scratch is also a sure-fire way to make your money go further and keep home costs down.
Repairs in the home can cost you a couple of hundred dollars a year, depending on the size and age of your home. But if you look to do the repairs yourself, then it can be much cheaper. If you don’t trust yourself, the do you have a partner, parent, or friend that has the skills to help? When you hire someone external for repairs, you are mostly paying for their time, rather than paying for their equipment or supplies.
Have you got any tried and tested ways that you keep your household bills and home costs down?
Grab your household budgeting binder here! (Click the image)
Know someone that could use help with keeping their home costs down? Please SHARE this post!
6 Things to Know In Putting Together a Home Security Plan.
When you own a home you gain a sense of freedom, privacy and control over your life. You finally have a place to bring your family up, grow and develop as individuals. However, when you move into a home there will always be a risk of robbery. If you want to protect your belongings, your family and your home this year, here are some things you will need to do in putting together a home security plan.
Get an alarm system
The easiest thing you can do to for home security for you and your children is to invest in an alarm system such as this homesecuritysystem.co. By spending money on an alarm system you will be able to make your perimeter safe, have an alarm when you go to bed at night and when you leave the house. Even the sight of a camera can deter a robber from pursuing your home.
Plant thorny bushes
If you want to stop robbers from easily getting in through your windows, you can plant thorny bushes like bramble or holly underneath your windows to make them unable to get in without a fight. This makes your likelihood of a break-in much less.
Hang a bell on your doors
The easiest way for a robber to get into your home is by going to the front or back door. This is why we often won’t hear the robbery until it triggers an alarm or there is a crashing sound downstairs. To deter robbers from even entering the threshold you can hang a bell just above your door which will be triggered every time the door opens. It should scare most criminals off instantly.
If you have dog/s, just the sound of the bell will alert the dog that the door is opening during a time of day when it shouldn’t be.
Have a safe room
If you have a spare room in the home which you never use, it may be a good idea to turn it into a safe room. You can have food, water, and supplies in this room and secure locks on the inside of the doors to stop robbers being able to enter the space. This means that if you do hear sounds in your home, you have somewhere safe to go as you call the police and wait for them to arrive.
Store a bat under your bed
If you are worried about someone getting upstairs and trying to steal things from your room, get yourself a bat and keep it under your bed. Legally if a robber comes upstairs in your home you can react out of Self Defense. It will give you a sense of safety even if you never use the weapon in practice.
Know the law
It will be worth you knowing your local state laws for robbery and defense before you prepare your home and yourself. Most places have similar rules, but of course, these can vary slightly spending on where you live,so it is worth checking. If you know the law, you can be safe in the knowledge that you can protect yourself and your children if you need to.
Know someone that could use help with putting together a home security plan? Please SHARE this post!
As a crazy busy mom, part of our Self Care has to include things like time savers to keep our sanity intact. I can’t tell you how much time I’ve wasted in my life on things that can now–thanks to technology–be done with an app or on a website. Here are my top 8 household chores on autopilot to save you loads of time each week and month!
Oh…the dreaded mealtime conundrum. Listen, I’ve been through every type of meal planning you can think of. And one thing I’ve learned is that when you find a system that works–stick with it! The most important of the household chores on autopilot is dinners for us. That’s why on a normal basis I now use Real Plans for my dinners. It accommodates for all our food allergies–which I can change anytime in my account–and then gives me an organized shopping list. It also allows for specific dietary types–so no thinking about whether or not that recipe that looks amazing on Pinterest is Paleo or not. Just use the Paleo option in your settings.
Or, if you’re not into even dealing with the meal planning part, opt instead of meal delivery services like Home Chef. All the ingredients are delivered with the recipes ready for you to cook on a weekly basis (or however you set it up in your account!)
aw, girl! The best thing since sliced bread really is here, and it’s CURB-SIDE Pickup!!! Yes–some stores do charge around $5 for this, but I can tell you, it saves me a minimum of an hour and a half by using this service! And money, too! Have you heard how you save money by meal planning and then buying only from your list? Yeah, well, I still end up grabbing tons of things that weren’t on the list. With curbside pickup, you get what you ordered. Period. This method of household chores on autopilot still involves driving to the store–but you don’t actually have to roam the aisles.
If you’re using a meal planning service, like Real Plans, just use their shopping list to order your items.
3. Ordering staples
Dear God, if I could vocalize how much I used to haaaaaaate buying ginormous boxes of diapers and TP and…well, any basic household paper goods, etc. No more, I tell ya! I did really love ordering from Amazon for this type of thing, but Target’s subscription service has proven to be more valuable to me since you can order the Target brand paper goods (cheaper), and also–it’s guaranteed to be in stock and the same price! (Which is the problem I frequently run into with Amazon.)
4. House cleaning
I used to think that Moms with a home cleaning service were uppity and maybe a bit lazy. That was before I had kids. Obviously. I now forego a few eating out trips a month to be able to afford a house cleaner every two weeks. She texts me to confirm the day before, shows up, and cleans like clockwork!
5. Touch up cleanings
These are cleanings in between the cleaning service. Especially during the summer, my kids track in so much grass and dirt it’s ridiculous. Plus bathrooms get pretty grimy in between. So I do one of two things:
1-Use the Roomba (this thing can be set to automatically vacuum on specific days/times, or I just place it in the room that needs cleaning)
2-Hire a kid to do it. Because they’re now relegated to buying their own useless toys if they want them. So they always ask for money. And I always ask for cleaning. It’s a win-win. (As long as they clean it worth a darn.) Because they’re learning 2 life-skills (money management/saving through work + how to clean whatever they’re cleaning)!
If you’re not one for laundry service, you might try paying a little extra for your cleaning service to do a few loads of laundry while they’re there. Otherwise, I enlist my kids to help with laundry (they don’t get paid for this–this is a required chore.)
And the loads I still do myself, I use the tech that comes with the washer/dryer to my advantage: Washer has a timer up to 13 hours, so I can set a load at night to go off first thing in the morning!
If you regularly give standard gifts like gift cards or flowers, check out services that just import your birthdays, holidays, and addresses and do it for you. If you’d still like to manage it, seriously, just use Amazon and have it shipped!! They’ll even gift-wrap it, include a message, and eliminate the receipt!
8. Subscription boxes
I already mentioned the food box subscription, but there are LOADS of subscription boxes available for everything under the sun these days. I’ll do a recommendation post listing as many as I can one of these days. But for now, know that you can order your date nights in a box, self care, even activities to keep kids busy (and they’re educational!)
What household chores on autopilot do you have to save time?
Know someone that could use help with saving time by putting some household chores on autopilot? Please SHARE this post!