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The Secret to Raising Happy Kids

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The Secret to Raising Happy Kids

    If you were to make a list of all the things you’d love to provide for your children, what would your list look like? Many people spend every waking hour stressing and worrying about how they can provide this and that for their children, but I want to propose that the BEST gift you can give your child is the ability to be happy and enjoy life.

    Most of you reading this are probably thinking, “Yes, absolutely. That would be my greatest wish for my child – for them to be happy and to enjoy life fully everyday.” What goes wrong then between what we genuinely want to give our children and the actual reality of what they get from us?

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    Statistics show that more and more adults and young adults are popping some type of drug in order to make it through the day. Approximately 100 million prescriptions for Valium and Librium are filled annually in the United States alone!

    The plain fact is that most of us do not know how to help our children learn how to enjoy life because we have not learned that simple secret ourselves! We can’t teach what we don’t know.

    Here enlies the problem; in order to provide our children with our greatest wish we must be able to model what we are attempting to teach.

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    It is essential to show our children a portrait of a person who appreciates the small things, the magnificence of nature and the beauty of being quiet with ourselves. It is also essential to show our children a portrait of a happy, loving, communicative relationship, not only with our child’s mother or father, but with ourselves.

    Pretend you had a video camera following you around all day. What would that video look like? Would it show you:

    * rushing around from one activity to another?
    * barking commands?
    * constantly talking or having noise around like the radio or TV?
    * speaking quickly, in a hurried, worried, stressed or anxious tone?
    * constantly providing or being the entertainment for your child?

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    OR

    * living life slowly?
    * Laughing and smiling a lot?
    * Enjoying moments of silence, not feeling the need to say anything or ask any questions?
    * Enjoying alone time while your child enjoys their own?
    * Doing an activity with your child that you BOTH enjoy?

    Maybe you feel quite good about how your daily life is being lived but recognize that the words or phrases you use could be more positive. For example, you may use the word “Naughty” or phrases like, “Oh, come on!” when something isn’t working as you’d like it to, or “Things never seem to go right!”. These phrases can definitely be picked up on by our children and eventually, become their beliefs to live by.

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    If we TRULY want to raise happy kids who enjoy life to the fullest, then the first place to start in teaching this is with ourselves.

    Right now, take stock of life and think about the speed at which you live, the tone that exists in your home and the messages that are being shared. Once you have a clear view, pat yourself on the back for all the amazing, loving things you do and then make it a priority to work on the things you feel need changing – it will make all the difference to not only your life but your child’s life as well.

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    Last Updated on January 13, 2022

    10 Cheap And Amazing Honeymoon Ideas

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    10 Cheap And Amazing Honeymoon Ideas

    A honeymoon is important.  The wedding is over.  The months, or even years, of stress and planning are finally over.  It’s time for the two of you to relax, settle in, and start enjoying your time together as you embark on your first journey as a family.

    To make the most of this time for the least amount of money, it’s important to focus on what you want out of a honeymoon.  This isn’t your typical list of touristy honeymoon locations everyone goes to.  Rather, it’s a list of cheap honeymoon experiences a couple can enjoy together, regardless of where it’s at.

    1. Camping

    A week long camping trip is a fantastic way to see how you mesh together as a couple.  You’re put in a low impact “survival” situation where it’s just the 2 of you and nature.  You have a chance to see how your new spouse handles themselves when left with the basics of life.  There are amazing national parks all over the United States where you can camp for a week for $20-30, disconnect from technology, and enjoy some of the natural wonders our nation has to offer.

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    2. Staycation

    You don’t have to go anywhere for a honeymoon.  In fact, the tradition of taking a honeymoon vacation is a relatively new one.  Prior to the 19th century, a honeymoon involved staying home together for a month to get to know each other physically.  Think of how blissful it could be to take a full month off work, disconnect from the outside world, and focus entirely on projects together.  You may not be wowing your friends and family with pictures of some exotic location, but they’ll be envious of your escape from the rat race nonetheless.

    3. Island Getaway

    People tend to overspend on their honeymoon vacations to Hawaii, Tahiti, etc.  Going to these places doesn’t have to be expensive.  You don’t need to stay in a 5 star resort when you’re on a Best Western budget.  You’re there to be in the atmosphere of the island, not a hotel room. Book a cheap flight and sleep in a hotel alternative, on the beach or in your car.  It’s the view in paradise that really matters.

    4. Fancy Resort

    Book an expensive resort, spa, or retreat in the city you live in.  While this may seem counterintuitive as a cheap destination, when you consider your savings on airfare and other travel costs, you can afford to be treated like royalty within your own city limits.  If you book a honeymoon package, you’ll end up with a lot of free amenities and extra attention.  There’s no need to fly halfway across the world to live the good life.

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    5. Road Trip

    The journey is often more fulfilling than the actual destination.  If you fly out to some exotic locale, you’ll be stuck on a plane for 8-30 hours.  Rent a luxury car, pick a handful of places you each have always wanted to visit, and go on an adventure.  You can keep food costs down by packing your own snacks, but it’s always a good idea to sample the local delicacies wherever you go, even if it’s only a few states over.

    6. Charter a Boat

    If the ocean is your thing, a week-long cruise can cost you $1500-$3000 per person, depending on the destination.  You also have to factor in travel costs to and from the cruise, alcohol, souvenirs, and on-shore excursions.  You’ll also be surrounded by people.  For the same price (and often much cheaper), you can charter your own boat and enjoy the experience in private.

    7. Las Vegas/Atlantic City

    If gambling is your thing, these are the places to do it.  Which one you choose depends on your preference, budget, and proximity.  The way to make this vacation cheaper is to gamble smart.  Stay away from low odd tables (i.e craps, roulette) and read up on the MIT blackjack strategies to beat the house.  If you do it right, you can win enough for a free trip (and gain a valuable team skill in the process).

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    8. Themed Retreats

    There are weeklong retreats all over the world where you can fully immerse yourselves as a couple into a hobby you’re both passionate about.  Go on a yoga/meditation retreat, a ranch, a vineyard/farm, a backpacking adventure, treasure hunt, or whatever you’re into.

    9. Working Honeymoon

    Your honeymoon doesn’t have to be a vacation.  For a truly memorable experience, dedicate a week to a charity or volunteer organization.  You can drive out to a campground to help restore it in the offseason.  Maybe you’ve always wanted to volunteer to help out your local animal shelter, plant trees, help the homeless, etc.  Use the time to do something together as a couple that will fulfill you spiritually while contributing to the community.  Just because you’re on a honeymoon doesn’t mean you can’t be productive.

    10. Festivals, Fairs & Special Events

    Every city, state, and country has festivals, fairs, and special events.  Find one you’re interested in.  If you time your wedding right, your honeymoon can be a trip to one of these festivals.  Burning Man, SXSW, Bonnaroo, the Renaissance Fair, regional harvest festivals, Mardi Gras, New Years Eve in Times Square, a movie premiere, or whatever you’re into.  If you plan your honeymoon at the right time in the right place, the possibilities are endless.

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    Featured photo credit: Josue Michel via unsplash.com

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