The 4th of July is often an exciting day of summer that involves friends and family coming together for delicious food, fun outdoor activities and to celebrate America's independence. But this year, due to COVID-19 and social distancing, your 4th of July probably won't look like it has in years past. But that's no reason to cancel your celebration; there are still plenty of fun 4th of July activities that you can do and still safely practice social distancing. If you want to stay at home, you can plan something as inexpensive as firing up the grill and baking patriotic desserts; or you can go all-out and plan a big barbecue for your quarantine pod. If you'd rather enjoy the warm summer weather and your day off work, you can get out of town and see something new or even explore your hometown with the lens of a tourist. Whether you want something relaxed or adventurous, this list will give you plenty of ideas for some fun 4th of July activities.
Make homemade popsicles. The 4th of July is typically a very hot holiday, so cool off by creating homemade popsicles. Try these yogurt swirl pops, or one of these other favorite popsicle recipes.
Create a waterpark at home. Between sprinklers and a fun hose extension, you can create a waterpark in your own backyard. The kids will be entertained for hours (and cooled off) by playing fun water games.
Read a book about American history. If you've got a little one who doesn't quite know what the 4th of July is about, use the holiday as a chance to teach them more about American history. There are so many great kids' books about history and historical figures, like I Am Rosa Parks by Brad Meltzer and Two Friends by Dean Robbins.
Have a hot dog eating contest. If there's one food that represents the 4th of July, it's hot dogs. If you're feeling adventurous, recreate Nathan's Famous Hot Dog Eating Competition, or if you want something a little more tame (and easier to stomach) try a hot dog taste test where you can try out various relishes and mustards.
Rehearse and perform famous American speeches. Think of this as an Independence-Day-themed talent show. Parents and kids alike can learn and perform famous speeches by great Americans such as the "I Have a Dream" speech by Martin Luther King or Abe Lincoln's "Gettysburg Address."
Pack a picnic. Take all of those adorable red, white, and blue recipes you made and celebrate with a picnic in the park.
Go for a bike ride. Get active on your day off and go for a bike ride before all the eating and partying begins.
Celebrate on the beach. If you're lucky enough to live within driving distance of a beach, pack up for a fun day in the sun. If you stay until the evening, expect to see fireworks. Just check with the local authorities first, to make sure the beach is open.
Head to the ballpark. Sure, professional baseball might still be cancelled due to coronavirus, but that doesn't mean you and your family can't partake in the all-American sport. Take your family out to the neighborhood park for some friendly competition.
Make a festive craft. Plan a holiday-themed DIY project with the kids to deck out your home in red, white, and blue, like one of these cute wreath projects.
Do you dream of a closet where clothes have room to breathe and hang neatly and organized? Instead, the reality is our closets are stuffed full of shirts, pants, shoes, belts and jackets. Most of these items don't even get worn. We run out of hangers or shelf space, and then we shop for storage solutions to store the over-flow of clothes. Paring down your wardrobe will reduce stress and save you money. Plus there's a special pleasure for those who look in their closet and love everything they see. Here's 9 simple tips to get you started:
Start easy. Begin by removing the clothes that are stained, ripped, or faded beyond recognition. Items that are no longer in wearable condition can still be donated.
Remove seasonal items. Remove off-season clothing from your closet to free up some needed space. If you didn’t wear an item at all last year, get rid of it. Then, store the remaining pieces in a separate closet where they will not be in your way cluttering up your closet.
Get rid of clothes that don’t fit once and for all. If you’re in-between sizes, certainly keep some clothing from both. But if you haven’t cleaned out your closet for quite some time, there are likely a number of ill-fitting items that can be removed entirely—whether you changed sizes, the item shrunk or stretched, or it never did fit quite right. Those ill-fitting items are weighing you down physically, mentally, and emotionally. Pass them on to someone who can use them.
Reduce your need for additional accessories. If you’re holding on to something until you find the “perfect accessory,” let it go. Clothes often multiply in our closets (one purchase leads to another, which leads to another). In the future, look for pieces that compliment your existing accessory pile. After all, if you’re constantly adding things to your closet, you’ll never get ahead (not in your closet and not in your checkbook).
Consider the idea of one. If one can be enough, embrace it. Rather than owning an entire assortment, try owning just your favorite black dress, belt, handbag, or jacket (just to name a few ideas). A closet filled with only things you love and use will be a closet that you love to use.
Reassess current trend purchases. The fashion industry gets rich on one principle: constantly changing fashion trends. You see, the fashion industry cannot survive on people buying only the clothes they need. So the industry invents false need by boldly declaring new fashion trends and colors for every changing season. But you don’t to have fall for their tricks. Find your favorite timeless fashion and start playing by your own rules.
Physically handle every item. If you want to make significant progress thinning out your closet, remove every item entirely from the closet. Return only the pieces you truly love. If that task seems too overwhelming, complete the process in sections (i.e. shoes today, shirts tomorrow). However you seek to accomplish this project, it is important that you physically handle each item at some point. The physical touch forces decisions.
If all else fails, pick a number. To start, choose 10. Thumb through the clothes in your closet and remove 10 items—any 10 you want. Put them in a bag and drop off at your nearest donation center. Likely, you will find the task was not that difficult. In fact, once you get started, you may find 15 or 20 things to remove without even breaking a sweat.
Experiment with less. Test your assumptions about the optimal amount of clothing with a few, simple experiments. Try placing half of your clothing in a different room for two weeks. You will be surprised how much easier is to function and get ready with fewer clothes in your closet. Most of us wear 20% of our clothing 80% of the time and would live much happier with fewer wardrobe choices than we have now. But you’ll never realize that until you test it out. Less is more!
Practice maintenance. Keep everything organized. When you can see and access what you already own, you’re less likely to acquire more of the same. Hang things back up, fold them lovingly, and treat them well.
Over the past few years, walking and staying active have become trendy. Hitting a certain number of steps for the day and walking challenges have helped to improve daily physical activity. If you are trying to manage your weight, walking can be a useful weight management tool. Here's 8 tips for maximizing your stride.
Houseplants bring a refreshing touch of nature inside. To eliminate crowded shelves and tabletops, try hanging your houseplants. These indoor hanging plants range from varieties with leggy, trailing vines to picks with thick and rubbery foliage. Find which indoor hanging plant is best for your space.
Where can I find a great cup of tea (or a cuppa as the Brits say) you ask? Look no further than our suggestions below. Oh and feel free to "spill the tea" about this to your friends!
E-readers are perfect for bookworms who are blowing through paperbacks and need a more convenient way to easily get new reads. But like everything else you buy, you'll need to look at all of the item's features when deciding on the best e-reader for you. It's good to consider ease of operation, ease of reading in bright or dark lit rooms, size, battery life, storage capacity, speed while using (turning on, downloading books, and page turns), and resistance to fingerprints. Before you dive into the picks for the best e-readers of 2020, remember these tips below when selecting your digital reader.
How to buy an e-reader:
We’ve all had days where nothing seems to go our way. All you want to do is relax and unwind to forget about the stresses of the day. Here are some easy ways to regroup, that will leave you feeling refreshed, relaxed, and ready to take on the rest of the week.
Staying at home has become a way of life for many of us amid the COVID-19 pandemic, leading us to indulge in endless snacks from the pantry. Here's some help to not fall victim to the so-called "Quarantine 15" and ensure your pants still fit once we're out of the woods. Check out these easy and healthy snack ideas for you and your family.