Now that the kids are back in school and the fall sports season has begun, many of us find ourselves wondering how we’re going to get everything done. It can be difficult to juggle daily tasks when we work two jobs – the one that pays the bills, and the one that we love (at least most of the time): raising our kids.
If you feel like you are running ragged trying to keep up, these tips can help you balance work and family life:
Get up before the rest of the family. Getting an extra 15 minutes of sleep is nothing compared to how relaxed you’ll feel if you get up and get ready before the craziness of the morning hits. Whether it’s your morning workout, taking a shower, or drinking that much needed cup of coffee, when your act is together it makes it easier to get their act together.
Prepare for the day ahead of time. From picking out their outfits for the next day or even week, to making lunches the night before, to keeping frozen meals at the ready for fast and easy dinners, taking a few minutes to prep ahead can make the day run smoothly.
Come up with a routine and stick to it. Having a set schedule for the day will ensure your kids know what to expect when, and what's expected of them. Schedule conflicts and melt-downs can be avoided when everyone knows the plan.
Stay involved in your kids’ day. Working during the day doesn't mean you can't be an active participant in your kids' daycare or school. Visiting on your lunch may not be an option for you, but you can always bring in an activity or a snack for the kids. You could also use your skills to help with a class project. You’ll feel more involved with your kids and they, as well as the school, will know you care.
Make time for some R&R. At the end of the day, make sure you plan some time for you and your partner to rest and recuperate together and just be adults. Try to plan a lunch date, dinner, or movie night once a week without the kids. Having a bit of “you” time in your schedule can help you manage the rest of the demands on your time.
We all have what it takes to keep going even when we feel there’s too much happening at once. Working even just one of these things into your daily or weekly routine can make a difference in your work/life balancing act.
A Brief History of Labor Day
Created during the height of the Industrial Revolution, Labor Day was meant to pay tribute to American workers. The holiday was first recognized on September 5, 1882 when 10,000 blue collar workers took unpaid time off to march from City Hall to Union Square in New York City in protest, creating the first Labor Day parade. This idea for a “workingman’s holiday” began to gain precedence in other states, being recognized each year on the first Monday of September. However, the congressional act that officially named Labor Day as a national holiday wasn’t passed until 1894. Now Labor Day is celebrated nationally, giving workers a well-deserved day to relax, and marking the end of summer for most children who are starting back at school.
Fun Things to do for Labor Day
The first Labor Day was celebrated much like it still is today, with a parade, picnics, and fireworks, but there are so many more options on how to spend the long weekend.
Host a Barbeque — Labor Day marks the end of summer, which doesn’t just mean it’s time to put away the white pants. Have a nice outdoor meal while the weather’s still agreeable and spend the day surrounded by good company and delicious food. Whether you invite some friends to join you or just stick together as a family, a barbeque is a great way to get together and enjoy some time in the yard before life gets out of hand.
Go Camping — Nature is calling! Go for a camping trip before it’s too cold and enjoy some time where you can see all the stars in the sky while telling stories around a campfire. Bring your family or a handful of friends and delight in some peace and quiet away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. You will create wonderful memories and hopefully brighten your mood towards the coming work week.
Go for a Hike — Don’t have the full weekend free? You can still spend a day appreciating nature while also getting a good amount of exercise. Hike a mountain or walk a park trail. Bring a picnic lunch and sit for a while in the great outdoors. Remember, never hike alone. It’s dangerous and not nearly as fun as when you bring along other people.
Shopping Spree! — It’s impossible not to notice the amount of sales happening for Labor Day weekend, and with back to school and the changing of the season, it’s a great time to take advantage of them. Change up your wardrobe, prepare the kids for the new school year, or even look into bigger purchases while prices are in your favor. Make a day of it, treat yourself a little, and get ready for the new season.
Take a Trip — It’s your last real vacation option until Columbus Day weekend, so take advantage of it. Visit a family member who lives out of town or just go to a small tourist location. You could go away for the weekend or just take a day trip or two. Find a beach and spend a day in the sand before summer officially ends. It’s a great time to explore somewhere new.
Festival Fever — Just because it’s suddenly September doesn’t mean it’s the end of fair and festival season. Yes, many fairs will be reaching their last weekend, but many will still be open through the holiday, and others might just be starting. There are sure to be events filled with carnival rides, games, crafts, music, or bizarre and definitely fried foods. What reason is there not to go?
Relax — Most people have a day off, so why not just treat it as such? Try to have a you day. Read a book, watch a movie with your family, maybe play a board game or two, and just chill. Soon there’ll be projects and sports practices and holidays to prepare for, so why not take this time to breathe and rest easy before the busy insanity of life comes to knock on your door.
However you choose to spend your day, have fun, be safe, and remember that the holiday exists to appreciate a year of hard work and to pay tribute toward the laborers who built America up to what it is today.
You’re about to close on your new home. You’ve followed the wiring instructions that were in the email your Realtor sent you. You check to make sure the funds were withdrawn, but see that your account is completely empty…
This is the result of one of the newest online scams: taking advantage of home buyers who are excited about closing on their new home. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the National Association of Realtors have issued a warning about a new phishing scheme that has left many people with no money in the bank.
Hackers have figured out a way to access clients’ and Realtors’ email accounts. The hackers are then able to get information about the upcoming closing. With the closing date in hand, the hacker will send an email to the buyer pretending to be a Realtor or Title Company employee. The fake email claims that there has been a last-minute change in the wiring instructions, and includes different bank account information that the buyer should wire funds to the new account. In reality, the new account belongs to the hacker. Before anyone realizes what has happened, the money is gone from the account.
How to Avoid It
- Contact your Real Estate Professional or Title Company to see if they actually sent you the email about the change.
- Do not send financial information via email. It is not secure and can be easily accessed by hackers.
- Make sure any websites you transmit financial information through are secure. You can tell by looking at the URL at the top of the screen. If it is https instead of http, that means it is a secure site.
- Access websites by manually typing in the page information instead of clicking on links you receive in emails.
- Consistently update your computer security and anti-virus programs.
- If something feels suspicious, trust your gut.
At McGlone Mortgage Group, we take our clients’ privacy very seriously. We have several measures in place that help protect your personal information. If you believe you may be the victim of a financial scam, please report it to the FTC as soon as possible at https://www.ftccomplaintassistant.gov.
Have you ever considered purchasing a second home? Maybe you’ve been on the fence about whether a second or vacation home would fit into your lifestyle. Here are a few reasons why owning a second home could enhance your life!
- Spending quality time with family and friends – a second home offers an opportunity to share experiences and make memories in a new environment. A second or vacation home can provide a great place for the people in your life to gather and enjoy time together. From family reunions to annual vacations, there lots of reasons to have those you care about come for a visit!
- A place to escape to – many people purchase a second home to be near their favorite ski slope, to have a place to enjoy the warmth during the winter, or to be by a beautiful beach to walk along. Wherever you want to spend your free time, a second home can provide a much needed place to decompress and relax. It can even be a home to retire in.
- A chance to invest – owning a second home offers an opportunity to rent either your original home or your vacation property. It’s possible to use rental income to improve your finances. It’s also a possibility that the second property will increase in value, which could increase your assets.
If you or someone you know has been thinking of owning a home away from home, we can help!
August can be one of the hottest months of the year, and many people cool off by going to beaches, pools, and lakes. While this can be a nice break from the heat, it’s important to remember to protect your skin from the sun’s rays. Here are some helpful pointers on how to enjoy the outdoors while keeping your skin happy.
Use sunscreen – apply sunscreen before heading outside. Use sunscreen that has an SPF level of at least 15. For more protection, choose a higher number. Make sure to reapply anytime you swim or sweat or if you’ve been in the sun for more than two hours. If you’ve had the same sunscreen for a while, check the expiration date and replace it if it is expired.
Wear a hat and protective clothing – clothing provides some degree of protection from the sun. There are even clothes available that are certified as having UV protection. Try to wear hats that have a brim all the way around. This helps shade the back of your neck, as well as your face and ears. If you’re wearing a baseball cap, remember to use sunscreen on the areas not covered by your hat.
Find some shade – staying in the shade is the easiest way to avoid being overexposed. By staying under a tree or umbrella, you can reduce the amount of sun you’re exposed to. It’s also a good idea to stay out of the sun during peak hours (generally from 10am to 2pm).