Monday, 15 January 2018

Thinking of Starting a Business as a Mum? Do It!

If you’re a mum, the world of work can be difficult to navigate, what with little things like, oh looking after your child to think about. More and more, employees simply aren't able to offer the kind of flexibility that the average mum needs and that is why more mothers are looking towards freelance careers, work from home jobs and even setting up their own businesses so that they can have a better work-life balance.

If you’re a mum and you’re interested in starting your own business, but you’re afraid to take that leap, here are a few things that might just change your mind:

Passion Can be Better than Expertise

A lot of mums worry about starting a business because they don’t come from a corporate business background. That isn’t necessarily a problem. In fact, some of the most successful small businesses are the ones that have a passionate entrepreneur who really cares about what they are doing at the head. If you have a passion for writing, accounting, baking cakes...whatever, then you’re already halfway there.

There is Lots of Help for Women

As more women look at starting their own businesses as a viable option, there has been an increase in help available to women. And especially mums who want to go down this route. For example, women owned business loans are more prominent, the government offer start-up loans and there are some excellent grants to be had. So, even if you have bad credit or you aren’t sure the bank would want to deal with you, you can still do it.

You Can Set Your Own Hours

A lot of mums think that, if they start their own business they’ll have to work the standard 9-5 hours. This might be true if you opt to open a shop on the high street, for example, but if you decide to sell your products or services online, then you really can fit your work around your kids and create the kind of balance you could only ever dream of as an employee. You just need to think very carefully what you want to do and whether it really will make life better for you.

You Can Dip Your Toes In

Leaving your job and taking out a loan to start a business can be pretty daunting at the best of times, but when you have a family to think about, well it can be even more terrifying. But, you shouldn’t let that put you off because, if you choose the right kind of business, you can start slowly, doing it part-time while you hold down your existing job until you feel confident enough to do it full-time. Obviously, this might mean a small step back in terms of your work-life balance for a little while, but if it pays off in terms of a successful business that you can work around your family for as long as you have your kids (and beyond) it has to be worth it!

Time to do what mum’s do; get on with it and make things happen!

*collaborative post

Stop Your Debts from Spiralling

There are few feelings worse than the feeling you get when things keep going wrong, and you keep having to spend more on the credit card or take out loans to put it right. It only takes one financial emergency to send you spiralling out of debt and struggling to stay afloat, as many of you will know.

The good news is that, no matter how deep in debt you are, it is possible to escape the debt spiral and start living a more financially sound life once again. Of course, it is much easier to get into debt than out of it, most of the time anyway, but the following should help you to get it right:

Cease Spending

Obviously, you’ll still need to feed and clothe your family and keep a roof over their heads, but if it isn’t essential, stop spending now! It sounds obvious, but so many people fail to take this very simple first step, thinking they’re already so far in debt that a little more won’t matter, that it's worth stating. I mean, obviously those people are wrong and the more you spend the worst things will get, so give up the credit and only spend your own money on the essentials right now.

Target Your Most Expensive Debt

If you want to end this spiral, you need to be smart about paying off your debts, and that means tackling the debt that’s costing you the most, in terms of interest, first. Pay more than the minimum off this debt, even if it means you can only pay the minimum on cheaper debts and you’ll find that you clear them all faster, and at a lower cost to you, anyway.

Consider Consolidation

If you have a lot of expensive debts and they’re getting difficult to manage, can help you to consolidate your debts into one much more manageable payment. This should help to relieve some of the stress you’re feeling right now.

Cut Down on Regular Expenses

Whether it’s your Sky TV bill, the cost of running your smartphone or even a magazine subscription like the ones at, that you could do without, although the amount it’s costing you might not seem like it’ll even make a dent in your current debts, think long-term. If you cut that £60 Sky bill that’s £720 a year you’ve saved - that’s a lot! So, cut out all of those unnecessary recurring expenses and use them to pay down your debt. It’ll happen faster than you might think.

Change Your Lifestyle

If your life has spiralled into debt, then it is almost certainly worth examining the way you and your family live and looking at any lifestyle changes that might benefit you. Are you a two-car family? Could You do with one? Do you shop for fun? Could You take the kids to the park instead? There are literally dozens of changes, big and small; the average family could make to their lifestyle to save money, pay down debt and still have a fun-filled, happy life - you need to determine what yours are.

If you take these steps and you keep on keeping on, eventually (much sooner than you think), your debts will be under control, and you won’t have to worry again.

*collaborative post

Friday, 12 January 2018

Not Over Yet! Making The Most Of The Rest Of Winter

In many parts of the world, it can often feel like the winter months will draw on forever. With summer going by in a flash, the colder months seem to start earlier each year. Of course, though, this isn’t all bad, and it gives even the busiest of people the chance to let their hair down and make the most of this time of year. With a good couple of months left, this season still has loads of potential, and this post will be exploring some of the best ways to use it.

A wooden sled on a snowy hill

Sledging: Speeding down a hill with nothing but a small plastic sledge beneath you can be incredibly thrilling. With a snowy hill, some safety gear, and some warm clothing, you’ll have everything you need to take part in this sort of activity. To find somewhere to go, a lot of people use social media to scout the best spots. Of course, though, if you’re local to your home, you’ll probably know of a couple of places which could be excellent candidates.

Skiing: Skiing is much like sledging, only you tend to go quite a lot faster. Relying on mountains instead of hills, this sort of sport is as much an endurance challenge as it is fun. You can find ski holidays to Andorra, France, Spain, and loads of other places with a couple of quick searches. It’s always worth taking the time to do some research when you’re going to be doing something as dangerous as skiing, as this will make things a lot safer.

Skating: When the winter months roll around, a lot of businesses like to take advantage through the use of temporary skating rings. Being made from actual ice, this sort of venue gives you the chance to try a sport which very few ever have the opportunity to enjoy. This is much safer than skiing, but won’t provide the same level of thrill, making it perfect for couples or families looking for a bit of winter fun.

Sightseeing: It only takes a camera, some binoculars, and some warm clothing to be able to enjoy the sights mother nature creates during winter. Even if it doesn’t snow, you will still find loads of stunning landscapes to enjoy on a hike at this time of year. Whether you find fog in the city or frost in the country, there are loads of different ways to enjoy the sights winter has on offer. When you’re going on a break with something like this in mind, it is always worthwhile to make a plan to ensure that you can see everything.

A lake with snowy wooded shores in fog

Hopefully, this post will inspire you to start thinking of ways to make the most of the tail end of winter. A lot of people dislike this time of year, choosing to spend much of it stuck inside. Of course, though, the world has loads of ways of surprising you, and you may be able to find something you really enjoy. Not only will this give you more to do, but it could also help you to bring your family closer together.

*collaborative post

Thursday, 11 January 2018

Planning A Perfect Kid's Birthday Party

Planning your child’s birthday party can be a lot of fun, but it can also be a huge amount of work. When your child is young they will likely want a party for their birthday to spend time with their friends and have fun, and you can make this happen at your house if you don’t want to book somewhere.

If you see yourself as the hostess with the mostest, then you will love the challenge of designing your kids birthday party and making the whole house look as fun as possible for the big day.

The good thing is that kids are fairly easy to please most of the time. You will likely be able to get away with any theme you like and your child will love it regardless of what it is. You can really let your creative juices flow here and have some fun with it all!

Who’s coming?

The first thing you will want to find out from your child is who is going to be coming to the party. Because this is their party, you can let them choose who they want to invite and you could always speak to their parents to sort out the arrangements with them. Some of the parents might even come along too depending on the type of party you want to throw and the age of the children.

Make sure that you plan a beginning and end time for the party, this way you will have less stress to deal with and everyone knows where they stand. Usually a good time to start a children’s party is early afternoon, so 1 pm and then finishing at 5 pm. You can even let your child decorate the invitations themselves for a bit of fun.


If you are hosting a party in the summer, it might be a fun idea to host a barbecue as part of the party. Invite some of the parents over to eat while the kids enjoy their party games and entertainment. If you don’t have enough chairs in your garden to accommodate everyone, make a ‘bring a chair’ policy so everyone can bring a chair for themselves to make things easier!


There will always be a time during the birthday party where you child will want to open their presents. Try your best to make this into a special moment but to not dwell on this part of the day too much, if your child seems to be milking it for a long time, maybe distract them with the promise of cake.


Speaking of cake, you can do a few different things here. You can either hire someone to make a cake for your child specially, buy one from a store like Costco and have it decorated, or make one yourself. A few looks on Pinterest should give you plenty of inspiration! Make sure to stock up on lots of simple snack like crisps and biscuits, but also put out some fresh fruit on the off chance that a child will pick fruit over sweets.

Goody Bags

Goody bags are a fun idea when you host a party, and you can use a stand up pouch to let you have them on display with each child’s name on to take home at the end of the party. Usually goody bags will consist of a slice of cake from earlier in the day, some small toys like bouncy balls or yo-yos, and some lollipops or sweets. They don’t have to be expensive or have lots of stuff in them, they are simply a nice gesture to thank the kids for coming to celebrate with you for the day.

*collaborative post

How Can You Apply For Credit?

Contrary to popular belief, there is no universal credit rating which seals your fate when it comes to finding lenders. There is no such thing as a blacklist, and every lender assesses you differently. What this means is that just because you have been rejected by one lender, it does not mean that you will be rejected by every lender out there.

Of course, if you have a poor credit rating then you will face problems wherever you go, however the fact is that there is always a chance that someone will accept you for a loan if you need it.

The reason that people won’t lend money to those who have a bad credit rating is because there is no guarantee that they will get the money paid back. And if you have a history of not repeating your debts, no one will want to touch you. That’s why it is so important to learn how you can make the most of your credit rating and increase it to help you have a better chance of success.

What do lenders know about you?

It is incredibly important that you understand exactly what the lender knows about you before you apply so that you are able to present yourself in the best way. Check on your credit report for what is on there and then credit repair company reviews to find a credit repair company to help you sift through the information to make sure everything is in order before you apply.

During the application process your lender will receive your address, job, earnings, family size, reason of your loan and whether or not you own the home you live in. All of these things can give them an idea of whether they want to lend to you or not.

Always make sure that you take the time to fill in the form and be accurate about every single answer you give, because the slightest slip up could cost you your chance at being accepted for a loan.

Past dealings

If you have had any dealings with your lender in the past, they will use this information to help them ascertain whether or not to lend. This is why you will find that lending from your bank should be a little easier because you already know them and they know you.

Electoral roll

Believe it or not, the chances of you being accepted for a loan will increase if fly are registered to vote. As long as you are on the electoral role, the lender will have a verification of who you are so the process will go more smoothly and you are more likely to be accepted quickly.

Court records

If you have had any dealings in court such as bankruptcy, this information will go on your record and may count against you being accepted for a loan. This means that you may have to shop around before you find a lender who is prepared to take the risk with you.

*collaborative post

Tuesday, 9 January 2018

Year Of The Dog: Resolution Ideas For Your Pampered Pooch

2018 is the Year of the Dog in the Chinese calendars. So, while you are working through your own new year resolutions, maybe it’s time to consider your dog? While you can probably think of a few resolutions to give them - stop barking at the mailman - be nicer to the local cat - there are some that are more practical. In fact, they are not too different from the resolutions you possibly have for your own life. Here are a few ideas to change your dog’s life for the better this year.

Eat a healthier diet

We aren’t saying you give your dog anything unhealthy to eat - they can do that without your assistance - but you should focus on their eating habits all the same. For starters, stop overfeeding your dog, no matter how persistent they are before mealtimes. Then cut down on the number of treats you give them, focussing only on those of nutritional value, such as Betsy Farms duck jerky, rather than something that could potentially affect your dog’s health. Stop feeding them scraps from your plate too. No matter how much begging your dog does, you need to harden up and say ‘no,’ for their sake.

Exercise more

We don’t need to tell you about the importance of exercise, but we can still be a little lazy sometimes. Especially at the start of the new year, our good intentions go out of the window at the first sign of rain. Your dog will be less than enthusiastic, too. Still, you can make exercise enjoyable for you and your pooch. Head out into the countryside where you can both smell the flowers and gaze at the beautiful scenery around you, or spend more time in the local park. Make exercise fun, and you will both benefit from the results. Otherwise, you will both become couch potatoes, and that won’t help either of you.

Try something new

Don’t let your dog get bored with the same routine. Mix up their life a little bit and give them some variety. This may be a new route on your daily walk, a few new toys for them to play with, or something different for them to try at mealtimes. We all benefit from new experiences, and your dog is no different. Variety is the spice of life, as they say, so give your dog something more exciting to look forward to in his daily life this year.

Get a health check up

Let’s be honest; you should be taking your dog to the vet anyway. Still, if you are as adverse to your dog’s vet as a trip to your local dentist - probably because of the expense - you are making more trouble for yourself and your dog if you don’t book that appointment. For starters, you will only end up with a bigger vet’s bill if your dog does get ill in the future. Any health condition risks can be alleviated if found early, and even if your dog is perfectly fine, you will still have the peace of mind that everything is okay.


While we can’t do anything about the neighbour’s cat or the mailman, we hope the above resolution ideas were helpful. We hope this year is wonderful, for both you and your canine friend.

Friday, 5 January 2018

The Role Of An Adult Parent

Mother, son, and father in casual shot smiling outdoors
(Image Source)

As most parents will tell you, time flies when you have kids, and the little ones you cherish so dearly will be all grown up in what feels like days. Throughout this time, you will have loads of work to do to make sure they’re happy, well-educated, and are living a healthy lifestyle, with hundreds of little jobs to do along the way. Of course, though, there are plenty of resources out there to help you through your child’s life. So, instead, this post will be looking at their adult life, and what you can do to help them through this time.

The Support You Can Give: There are loads of different areas which a parent can impact when they have adult children. Below, you can find some examples of these areas, along with some of the tools you can use to help you along the way.

Finances: Money is one of the biggest areas people tend to struggle with in life. Without the right knowledge, comparing options like unsecured credit cards for poor credit with traditional loans will be very difficult for someone without the experience you have. As their parent, you need to be there with them to make choices like these. Even if you’re using resources to guide you, it’s very important to make sure that the choices they make are the right ones.

Social/Relationships: Along with finances, maintaining a good social life and relationships can be very hard when you’re getting into adulthood. With very little time for things other than work, it will be hard for them to balance this part of their life, and they may need you to push them in the right direction. 

The Way You Give It: Even though they may need your help sometimes, you have to remember that an adult child is exactly that; an adult. You can’t take the same approach that you used to with someone in this position. Instead of telling them what to do, you should offer advice and support, giving them the chance to use the information if they choose to. It won’t take long for them to realize that the council you give is well worth their time, and you’ll soon find yourself struggling to keep up with the questions they ask. Becoming an adult is hard, leaving most people struggling with more than just money.

Hopefully, this post will inspire you to start working harder on the time you put into helping your kids once they’ve left home. A lot of parents struggle to know how much they need to give at this point, as your children will be very independent. To make this easier for you, making it known that you’re willing to help wherever you can will make a huge difference to your relationship as your child grows.

*collaborative post