How to Save Money for Retirement

Are you wondering how to save money for retirement? If so, there are some key things you must do to get started. When it comes to your future, you want to be financially secure. In order to make that happen, it requires discipline and foresight.

With that said, here are some ways to save money for retirement:

Start as Early as Possible

When you think about retirement, it may seem like it’s years and years away. While that might be true, you should start as soon as possible. The age of retirement will roll around quicker than you expect, so it’s best to be prepared. 

The more money you have, the better your retirement life will be. Things like senior home care and home health care services are costly. You shouldn’t have to forfeit the care you need because you don’t have sufficient funds for it.

Put Money in a 401k

Investing in a 401k is a great way to save money for retirement. A standard 401K plan allows you to put in pre-tax money towards retirement that accumulates over time. Even better, some employers match 401k contributions.

If yours does, make sure to take advantage of it. In most cases, employers are willing to match a percentage of an employee’s savings contribution towards their 401k.

For example, if you make $50,000 annually and put $3,000 into your retirement savings, then your employer will add another $1,500 into the account. Basically, it’s free money.

Create an Automatic Savings Plan

Saving money for retirement is not easy. As you know, there are always expenses that will come about and hinder you from putting money aside. However, by implementing an automatic savings plan, you can automatically put money aside without thinking.

Financial experts always say to pay yourself first. That means before you pay bills or spend money on recreation, put a percentage of your paycheck away.

If you get paid every two weeks and you automatically have $200 go into a savings account, that money will add up quickly. That’s $4,800 per year!

Live Below Your Means

When you get a raise or a better paying job, it’s tempting to spend more money. You may want to buy an expensive house with higher mortgage payments or get a new car. But if you’re trying to save money for retirement, your best option is to make more and spend less.

When you get an increase in income, pay your current car off and continue to drive it instead of buying a new one. If you continue to live as though you’re making $50,000 a year when you begin earning $75,000 a year, you can put a significant amount of money to the side.

Those funds will come in handy if you ever need senior home care or other services. Speaking of senior care, check out https://supportingseniors.ca to learn more about retirement services.

Put Away Extra Funds

In addition to living below your means, you should also put away extra cash whenever you can. After you’ve paid your bills for the month, if you have $800 left, try not to spend it. Even if you’ve already “paid yourself” for the month, it never hurts to put a little more to the side for your retirement.

So instead of buying a new big screen TV or that fancy pair of shoes, put it in savings instead. As previously stated, saving money for retirement isn’t easy. But it’ll be worth it in the end.

There’s nothing worse than not having enough money saved and having a very low income. Therefore, it’s best to think about your future self as you’re earning a regular salary.

Get Help With Your Retirement Savings

It’s hard to be disciplined when it comes to putting money aside for retirement. Not only that, but there may also be other aspects of retiring that you may not be aware of. For instance, there are often fees and taxes associated with withdrawing money from your 401k.

You need an expert to explain all of the ins and outs of retirement life. By hiring a professional who can prepare you for that time, you’ll know exactly what to do and how to prepare for life after employment.

Earn Extra Money

Restricting one’s self from buying things or living an enjoyable life isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. Obviously, preparing for the future is important. However, you also have to live in the moment.

If you’re someone who doesn’t want to significantly restrict your finances, consider making more money. There are tons of ways to earn passive income that will allow you to bring in more earnings while enjoying life and preparing for the future.

These days, it’s easy to start a home-based business or do real estate part-time to boost your current income.

Have a Financial Goal

Obviously, you can’t predict everything, but it’s a good idea to have a figure in mind of how much you want to save. Let’s say, the goal is $100,000. If you have 40 years before retirement, then you’ll know exactly what you need to do to get to that figure.

It’s also wise to use a retirement calculator to decide how many years you can survive off a certain amount of money.

Save Money for Retirement: Start Now!

It’s never too early to save money for retirement. Not only do you have future living expenses to think about, but if you ever require senior home care, you’ll want to make sure that you have the funds for that. Do yourself a favor and be as prepared as possible!

To read more articles like this, continue reading our website. We have tons of informative content for you to enjoy.

What Are the Health Benefits of Coloring?

We all remember the joys of coloring books when we were kids, and recently American adults have been rediscovering this pleasant and care-free activity.

With many people stuck in there homes for the year of 2020, the adult coloring book world saw quite the boom. Providing fun indoor activities that were also stress-relieving, it’s no wonder that many people found this to be a suitable and enjoyable exercise not just for their kids, but for themselves, too.

Coloring isn’t just fun and nostalgic, it actually has some real health benefits.

Let’s take a look at the benefits of coloring for both kids and adults. Few things are so fun and so good for you!

Benefits of Coloring For Kids

There are a lot of physical and psychological health benefits of coloring for children. Not only does coloring act as a relaxing and creative activity for children, but it can help them to develop skills that will help them support their overall well-being as they grow up.

Enhances Fine Motor Development

Coloring is a great way for children to build the necessary muscles with which they can handle and manipulate small objects. Fine motor skills are necessary for a lot of different aspects of self-care as a child, including things like cleaning their own teeth, feeding themselves, and putting on shoes.

Are you looking for coloring pages for your kids? Check out these triceratops coloring pages!

Improves Hand-Eye Coordination

When kids color, it’s an opportunity for them to improve their hand-eye coordination. Many activities that your child will want to participate in during their lives benefit from good hand-eye coordination, including catching and throwing balls, grasping objects, playing video games, and reading music and playing an instrument at the same time.

Develops Spatial Awareness

Spatial awareness is an important skill that all young children have to learn. Because of the way that coloring can help children develop the awareness of the position of their hand and the edge of the page it can help to build spatial awareness.

Builds Focus and Concentration

It’s easy to forget as an adult, but there was a time for all of us when it was difficult to color in between the lines. Doing so can take quite a bit of concentration and focus, which can help them learn how to be focused in other areas as they grow up.

Promotes Self-Expression and Creativity

You might think that coloring a pre-drawn picture doesn’t leave much room for creativity, but that couldn’t be farther from the truth. Coloring lets children make decisions about colors, the amount of pressure they apply, and whether they color tightly or loosely.

Teaches Shape Recognition and Colors

Using coloring books is a great way for kids to learn about the different colors as well as color combinations. It’s also an opportunity to learn to recognize different shapes and forms.

Helps Kids Relax Release Emotions

Since coloring can take quite a bit of concentration, it can have a profoundly calming and therapeutic effect on them. During this time, children are participating in a peaceful activity that allows them time to process their emotions.

Benefits of Coloring For Adults

Maybe you’ve largely thought of coloring as something that kids do, but there are actually a lot of health benefits of coloring for adults, too. This can be a great pastime to pick up if you’re looking for an affordable and accessible self-help tool.

Coloring For Adults Is an Accessible Self-Help Tool

There has been some preliminary research done that suggests that coloring can help to lower anxiety and depressive symptoms. This is an affordable and accessible way for adults to help improve their own psychological health while doing a relaxing and enjoyable activity.

Helps Maintain Focus

Coloring doesn’t just help kids focus. By opening up your frontal lobe, which is the part of your brain that deals with problem solving and organizing, coloring helps you to focus on the present moment.

Helps You Sleep

Coloring before you go to sleep is a great alternative to using electronic devices. As you know, using electronic devices with screens before bed can interrupt your body’s production of melatonin, the sleep hormone. Finding a suitable and enjoyable activity to do before bed that doesn’t involve a screen can help you get the best possible night sleep, every night.

A Great Alternative to Meditation or Yoga

If you’ve ever looked online for ideas about how to decrease stress and become more mindful, you’ve likely run into the suggestions of meditating, practicing yoga, or doing breathing exercises. While these exercises are great and can certainly help people maintain psychological and physical well-being, they aren’t for everybody.

If these traditional techniques just don’t work for you, you might consider trying coloring. It is a wonderful opportunity for you to work on being in the present, relaxing, and enjoying an activity. It can also relieve you of pressure, accountability, and responsibility.

In our modern world, it’s easy to stay in a nearly constant state of stress. This is unhealthy for both your body and your mind, and over time can lead to serious health issues. Picking up a creative and mindful activity such as coloring can help you to manage your stress levels and live the healthiest life you can.

The Practice of Coloring Can Benefit Your Whole Family!

As an adult, it might feel silly at first to pick up a coloring book to use on your own. However, there are so many health benefits of coloring for both adults and children you’ll get over that feeling of silliness quickly!

There are few practices in life that are so enjoyable and so good for your overall well-being at the same time. If your kids are spending the afternoon coloring, why not join them?

Did you find this article about the benefits of coloring interesting? If so, be sure to check out the rest of our blog for more fun and informative articles!

What Are the Benefits of Breast Milk? The Complete Guide

Want to know if you should breastfeed your baby?

If you have a newborn baby, some people may advise you to use formula instead of breastfeeding. For some families, baby formula is crucial to a baby’s survival. However, breastfeeding can be more effective in your child’s growth.

The CDC says that in the US, 84.1% of infants get breastfed. For many, it’s a natural solution to caring for babies. In this guide, we’ll answer the question of why or what are the benefits of breast milk.

Breast Milk Is a Nutritional Source

Breast milk has everything your baby needs to survive his or her firsts. Be it the first day, first month, or six months, your baby can get all his nutritional needs from breast milk. If you’re curious, breast milk has:

  • High protein
  • Low sugar
  • Antibodies and white blood cells
  • Probiotics
  • Antibacterial properties
  • Growth factors
  • Hormones
  • Polyunsaturated fatty acids

Those are only a few nutrients and other elements found in breast milk. The interesting part is that these elements come in all the right proportions for your baby. As time goes on, these nutrients also change and adapt to your baby’s needs.

If there is one thing that breast milk doesn’t have, it’s vitamin D only. This means you still have to expose your infant to healthy morning sunlight. If your newborn has jaundice, sunlight exposure is crucial to their health.

Your Baby Becomes Stronger and Healthier

Because your baby gets all the nutrients he needs from breast milk; it’s easier for him to grow well. He also stays within the healthy weight range of a newborn infant. He has protection against infections and diseases from the antibodies in breast milk.

These illnesses and diseases include:

  • Middle ear infection
  • Respiratory tract infection
  • Colds and related infections
  • Gut infections
  • Allergic diseases
  • Intestinal tissue damage
  • Bowel diseases

Your breast milk gives your baby everything they need to keep these infections out of his/her system. Breastfeeding is one step to ensure your baby doesn’t become sickly. Not only that, when you breastfeed your baby, you’re ensuring he or she becomes strong and healthy.

You Feel a Stronger Connection With Your Baby

Breastmilk is the one thing that a mother can give that a father could not. This unique ability also helps you create a unique bond with your baby.

Nursing is a great way to build a physical and emotional connection with your child. You get to hold, caress, and kiss your child as you breastfeed him or her. You’ll get this feeling of the miracle that is your infant as you stare at him while he breastfeeds.

That isn’t to say that mothers who bottle-feed their babies won’t feel the same way. They’ll still feel these emotions. However, it’s quite different when you’re feeding your infant straight from your breast.

Avoid Sudden Infant Death Syndrome

SIDS or sudden infant death syndrome is an unexplainable death during sleep. Any baby that is less than a year old, healthy or not, is prone to SIDS. When you breastfeed your baby for at least two months, you cut the risk of SIDS by almost 50 percent.

It’s one of the most vital breast milk benefits for babies. There may be no direct explanation for SIDS.

However, the theory is that breastfed babies rouse from sleep with more ease. The immune protection of breast milk may aid in avoiding SIDS.

When Breastfed, Your Baby Gets Smarter

Studies show that breastfed babies have a larger brain size than formula-fed babies. Breastfed babies also have a somewhat higher IQ than infants who had formula. Again, this goes back to the key nutrients in breast milk that help brain development.

The skin-to-skin contact also adds to the intellectual development of babies. When they have this skin-to-skin contact, infants feel safe and nurtured. Parents who want to bottle-feed their baby can also provide this skin-to-skin contact.

Are you looking to save some of your breast milk for later? A breast pump can also help nursing mothers who are struggling to produce breastmilk. Learn what to look for in a breast pump now.

Avoid Health Risks in Mothers

What are the benefits of breast milk for mommies? Nursing doesn’t only benefit your infant. It also benefits the mother in many ways. First, you burn 300-500 calories each day you nurse your baby.

If you’re experiencing postpartum stress, nursing promotes postpartum recovery. When a baby suckles on your breast, your body releases oxytocin. This encourages your uterus to shrink down to its pre-pregnancy size.

Breastfeeding is Convenient

While breastfeeding is essential to the early development of babies, many mothers find it difficult to do. Often, the reasons include that the baby can’t latch on or they lack support at home. In other cases, they have to get back to work right away and/or have a work schedule that doesn’t allow time for pumping.

Let’s not forget that 57% of American mothers feel uncomfortable about public breastfeeding. This public disapproval gets mothers kicked out of establishments or hear rude comments. It’s an unnatural public response to a natural part of being a mother.

Still, why should babies drink breast milk? The final entry to this list is that it’s convenient. Whenever your baby feels hungry and starts giving you the signs, it’s quick and easy to feed him.

What Are the Benefits of Breast Milk?

That ends our guide to the question of what are the benefits of breast milk. We hope you found this short guide on breastfeeding educational and useful. Now, you know how breastfeeding can benefit you and your baby.

Did you like what you read on the benefits of breastfeeding? Do you want to see more educational guides on caring for your baby? Check out our other posts now for more content on baby care.

Gifts for People Who Love to Travel: Thoughtful and Unique Ideas

According to research, spending money on experiences rather than on physical items makes us happier. And that’s why many people say traveling is the key to happiness.

You’re bound to know at least one person in your life who’s a huge travel buff, and getting them some unique travel gifts is a surefire way to put a smile on their face and help ensure their trip runs smoothly.

Here are some gifts for people who love to travel that are so convenient, you may find yourself purchasing two of each of them so you’re prepared for your next trip as well!

Passport Wallet

People lose or get their passports stolen all the time. But a passport holder that doubles as a wallet can give a travel lover one less thing to look after. 

Plus, they have a new thing now where they create passport wallets with RFID blocking technology inside. This technology secures all the important information in your passport and any credit cards you also keep in the wallet from thieves and hackers.

Travel Scratch Off Map

A travel scratch off map is great for those who thrive off of aesthetics, as it’s a map that hangs on the wall. Once you visit a new destination, you scratch off that place on the map to reveal a different color or pattern. 

This is great for visual people, as it’s an easy way to see what places you’ve already been to. And it also serves as encouragement to continue exploring the world! Plus, it’s way cooler than just having a list written down of all the places you’ve visited.

Luggage Lock

In 2018, $1.25 billion worth of luggage was lost or stolen. Imagine traveling somewhere and waiting in baggage claim for luggage that never shows up. Or your luggage does show up, just to be missing all its contents.

A luggage lock is a simple way to ensure all the contents in your bags stay safe. Because no one wants to get stuck in a foreign country with only the clothes on their backs.

Plug Adapter

Nothing is worse than arriving in a foreign country with a dying or dead phone, only to realize your charger doesn’t even fit into the outlets.

They make tons of plug adapters to fit any outlet you can imagine, and they’re not all that expensive either. Plus they’re small, lightweight, and won’t take up a ton of room in your luggage.

Travel Books

Traveling to a place you’ve never been before can be a bit intimidating, especially if you know you’re about to experience some culture shock.

Travel books are a great gift for someone who isn’t entirely sure of what to do once their plane lands. From places to eat to things to see, a travel book is great to make your travel-loving friend feel more comfortable. Plus, it’s a great way to pass time on the plane.

Get These Gifts for People Who Love to Travel

There are tons of good gifts for travelers out there on the market, and many of them are things you never even thought of, but make a ton of sense when you really think about it.

Now that you’ve seen some different gifts for people who love to travel, it’s time to get your hands on one or all of them. The travel-lover in your life will appreciate them so much they may just take you with them!

If you enjoyed this article on gifts for world travelers, then browse the rest of our blog now.

5 Positive Ways to Support and Help Friends

Everyone wants their best friends to be happy, so it’s difficult to see them hurting. But how do you help friends overcome their problems? 

There’s no perfect answer, but there are a few things you can do to show them you care. Keep reading to learn the 5 best ways to help and support a friend in need. 

1. Listen Without Judgment 

Friendly advice can be great, but listening is often more powerful.

A lot of times, people bottle up feelings that they just need to say aloud. So if you listen without interjecting your opinion, it could be exactly what they need. To show them you are really listening, make eye contact, and put away distractions.  

If they end the conversation by asking for your advice, that’s a good time to give it. But if not, just be a steady rock for them. 

2. Be Trustworthy 

Nothing’s worse than having your secrets spilled. So don’t do it to others. 

If your friend confides in you, it means they trust you. And if they feel betrayed, they may not want to share their problems with you again. However, if you feel that what they’ve shared could lead to self-harm or suicide, you should tell another trusted person. 

3. Validate Their Feelings 

After listening to your friend, you want to show them that you’ve heard what they had to say. Responding with “I’m sorry to hear that” or “that sounds very difficult” is a great way to do this. 

And if it feels right, you can share an experience of your own akin to their situation. Don’t steal the spotlight, but make them know that they’re not alone in their thoughts and feelings. 

4. Meaningful Gestures 

Letting your friend know you’re thinking about them is always a great way to show you care. 

A meaningful gesture could be as simple as sending a text or elaborate as inviting them to a night out. Going out with them could be especially beneficial if they live alone, or don’t see others. It will likely get them to have some fun and ease their mind for a few hours. 

5. Suggest Professional Support 

This one only applies if your friend is considering getting help. It is never a good idea to force it upon someone. 

But if you feel your friend needs a slight push to make the call, suggest they give professional help a try. You could even attend the first meeting with them for extra support. 

And if your friend wants help without committing to full-time therapy, suggest a retreat. This service is a great example of a way to get counseling in a supportive environment without seeing a professional once a week. 

Now You Know How To Support and Help Friends 

Give these tips a try to help friends out with their problems. It’s never an easy journey, but they will definitely appreciate the effort you’re putting into their wellbeing.  

If you enjoyed this article, check out more of our ‘Good Talks’ content! 

Is It Normal for Children to Complain of Back Pain?

If someone tells you they’ve got a backache, you wouldn’t be surprised as it’s so common. There seem to be so many causes of this complaint. Hard physical work or a sedentary lifestyle are likely to cause problems.

It seems that just living life is enough to upset your back at times. What if it’s a child complaining of back pain? Surely that’s not normal.

You may be surprised to know that the prevalence of back pain in children can be as high as 24 percent; that’ nearly 1 in 4 children. In this article, we’re going to give you the information you need so that you can understand the difference between what’s normal for children to experience, and what could be something serious that needs proper investigation. 

Common Causes of Back Pain

From the statistic above, you can see that back pain is quite common in children. Acute periods of pain can even be expected as children grow up and get involved in various sports and other demanding physical activities that put a strain on the back muscles. Pain associated with muscle strain or fatigue will pass, so if the pain persists then this could be a warning sign of something more serious.

Apart from muscle-related pain, sometimes children experience a dull aching pain in their back as a result of constipation. As fecal matter builds up within the intestine, there is a physical expansion that’s quite close to the back, which can cause dull pain and significant discomfort. As the constipation is relieved so will the back pain.

Another cause of back pain worth mentioning is the use of a backpack that is too heavy for the child. As a rough guide, the backpack should not be heavier than 10 to 15 percent of the child’s body weight. If you do the math, you will realize that’s not very heavy at all; so before you rush to the doctors, weigh your child’s backpack. 

Back Problems in Children

Most of the problems mentioned above are all self-inflicted to some degree. That means they can often go away with some practical adjustments. However, some problems affect the structure of the spine itself, which can give rise to pain. Here are a few you should know about.

Spondylolysis

This isn’t to be confused with Spondylosis, which is an age-related degenerative condition of the spine. Spondylolysis, however, is a sort of stress fracture on the spine as a result of trauma. Children that develop this type of problem tend to be involved in demanding sports like football or gymnastics etc. 

Children can be vulnerable to this condition because they’re still growing and so their spine is not as solidly formed as an adult. The pain that ensues tends to be in the lower back region and can affect the buttocks and legs.

Scoliosis

This is an abnormal curvature of the spine. There are several causes, one of which is thought to be genetic as it can run in families. Sometimes, there is no known cause. 

This condition doesn’t always cause pain but back pain certainly can be present. It stands to reason the more severe the spinal curvature, the more discomfort and impact it can have on someone’s life. Generally, when the growing process has finished, the spine will not increase its curvature.

Herniated Disc

The normal spine is structured so that between each disc there’s a sort of cushion-like material that buffers the impact and stress between the discs. This cushion can become ruptured so that it’s displaced to some degree and then affects the spinal cord or sensitive nerves close by.

Similar to Spondylolysis, this can be the result of trauma to the spine. The resulting pain can affect wherever the herniation has occurred and also the legs. Other associated symptoms are numbness and tingling sensations in the limbs.

Abscess or Tumor

A spinal abscess can form following an infection in the spine. As the body fights off that infection, a swollen mass made up of pus can form. This causes sharp pain in the back that radiates to the limbs. 

On the other hand, a tumor is not the direct result of an infection but it’s the accumulation of cells as they multiply without any real purpose. This forms a mass that can impinge on other sensitive structures within the spine.   

Common Investigations and Treatments

Investigation begins with gathering a very careful medical history. This is very useful in the case of traumatic causes of injury to the spine. Besides this, there will be many different forms of imaging studies such as CT, MRI, DEXA, Ultrasound, and blood tests. 

Blood tests will help identify if there’s an infection in the body, which can also inform possible treatment using antibiotics. If the cause is the result of trauma, then rest is a major part of the care. Surgical intervention may be advisable to relieve pressure or remove an unwanted mass from the spine. 

Less invasive treatment is based on therapeutic approaches to correcting the function and form of the spine. Hildebrand Chiropractic clinic is another example of the type of therapy that can ease pain and improve function.

Don’t Ignore a Child Complaining of Back Pain

In this article, you’ve read about various causes of back pain in children. A child complaining of back pain is not a medical emergency in itself but it must never be ignored. The warning signs to keep in mind are constant pain, general signs of illness like fever, pain, numbness, or weakness in the extremities. 

Keep this article as a quick reference, so that if your child experiences back pain you will be able to discern if it’s just part of the bumps in life or if it needs the attention of the doctor. Check out other super helpful articles on the website that will help you with family life.

 

My Toddler Won’t Eat or Drink: How to Deal With a Picky Eater

If you have kids that are in a picky eater phase, know that you are not alone in your struggle to get your kids the nutrients they need.

Don’t worry too much, because you can figure out what kind of picky eater your kid is. From there, you can determine what needs to happen for them to eat, and even enjoy, their food.

Plus, as your child grows from a baby into a toddler, they may not be as hungry as their rapid growth slows down.

If your toddler won’t eat and you’re worried it could be indicative of a bigger problem, check out these tips first. These are a few ways you can be patient with your kid as they test their boundaries with food and listen to their changing hunger levels.

Start Small

You want to avoid as much food waste as possible, but it’s difficult to do when you give your child a plate full of food and they only munch on two bites.

As your toddler grows and develops, their hunger and nutrient needs may also change. Instead of presenting them with a heaping plate of food, start by giving them smaller portions.

If they finish their serving and want more, that’s great. But if they only eat some of their food and decide that’s enough, then you won’t have to throw out as much.

Trying New Foods

Introducing new foods for your kids to try can add a lot of pressure to the dinner table. If they don’t like it and that’s the main focus of the meal, then you might be out of luck.

To make introducing new food easier, consider trying it at snack time. Then, if your picky toddler doesn’t like or refuses to try it, you can more easily switch to something else.

Playing With Food

While you may not enjoy the mess or the distraction that kids playing with their food causes, it can actually be good for them.

Playing with food helps kids explore and experiment with what they’re eating. They become more familiar with the feel and look of a piece of food, and it becomes less of a mystery. Then, they’ll feel more comfortable trying to consume it.

Snacks and Drinks

For a growing toddler, eating snacks and drinking juice or milk may fill them up so much that they’re not hungry at mealtimes.

If you’re concerned about your child getting more nutrient-rich foods at significant mealtimes like dinner, consider pulling back on how much they’re eating and drinking for snacks.

However, some young toddlers may still receive the majority of their nutrients from drinking milk. Before a child starts eating solid foods regularly, drinking their milk is an important factor in their growth and development.

If your toddler won’t drink milk and you don’t know why, here’s what you can do.

When Your Toddler Won’t Eat

It’s crucial to remember that toddlers will not eat the same amount or in the same way we do.

Let them get acquainted with their food. Most of all, be patient with them as they learn about the foods they do and don’t like. In all likelihood, the fact that your toddler won’t eat is a phase that will pass.

For more incredible parenting tips and some great hacks for your hectic life, check out our website.