Category - how-to

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Holiday Gift Hiding Hack
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Host An Easy Puppy Party
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The Simple Plan That Helps Me Deal With Donation Requests
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Halloween Treats For Baking Cheats
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When We Worry Too Much And What To Do About It

Holiday Gift Hiding Hack

I figured out the trick to hiding Christmas gifts so my kids won’t find them AND I won’t forget where I hid them—a holiday hack made necessary due to my chronic history of misplacing things.  I tend to Christmas shop early, frugally snapping up stocking stuffers and gifts when I see them on sale. I sneak them into the house and hide them—usually hurriedly flung to the back of a closet.  But, when Christmas nears and I need to take stock, I can’t always remember where I hid everything or even recall what I bought in the first place. One Christmas Eve a few years ago I found myself alone in the basement shouting, “Holy Christ!!” but not in a Christmassy way. No, it was decidedly more, “I bought our son a laptop in November and now I can’t remember where I hid the thing!!” Here’s the ridiculous story about that loser move This year I finally came up with a gift hiding hack to: a) Stop misplacing gifts b) Alleviate the stress of misplacing gifts c) Save time and energy by not misplacing or forgetting about gifts  The Holiday Gift Hiding Hack To Save Our Seasonal Sanity: Empty a storage bin (more if needed)[…]

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Host An Easy Puppy Party

We hosted a puppy birthday party today and it was off the chain. Literally. There were dogs running free all over the yard and in my kitchen. When I was a regular contributer for a popular website called The Yummy Mummy Club (now, “YMC”) I went by the handle “Party Mummy.” My beat was all things entertainment. I wrote about pet parties (why yes, we did throw a full-on dog wedding), kids’ parties, adult parties—some reeeeeally adult ones like a passion party, an unforgettable (for my husband at least) vasectomy dinner, various mom pub crawls—plus a vast array of “let your hair down for some serious fun” parties.  At one point I was attending or hosting some kind of festivity at least once a week. Lately however, I’ve been about as social as an incarcerated nun librarian mime in solitary confinement. It’s a temporary lull. Life just got busy and a little too serious. However, when your daughter’s dog turns one year old you simply MUST throw a puppy party no matter what else you have going on. Even if the date falls on Thanksgiving weekend.  So today we somewhat hurriedly but happily hosted Ruby’s “ONE Year Birthday Party.” Puppy pants, optional.[…]

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The Simple Plan That Helps Me Deal With Donation Requests

Do you donate? If not, why not? This was a recent topic of conversation on CBC radio’s Ontario Today. Nobody wants to admit that they aren’t givers. However, research shows that charities are relying on a shrinking pool of donators. Seventy-five per cent of donations come from people 50 years+.  Younger generations aren’t as likely as their predecessors to part with their charitable cash. Radio host Rita Celli posed the question, “Why are younger generations less likely to donate than older generations?” If you don’t sit around sipping tea, listening to talk radio like I do all day, here’s the gist: We’ve been duped and scammed and lied to by so many deceitful charlatans that we don’t know who to trust anymore. We’re jaded. So when asked to part with our hard-earned dollars to support whatever fundraising campaign, most of us respond with a suspicious, “not this time.”  Most of the callers who weighed-in on the topic said they don’t feel comfortable not knowing for certain where their money is going.  I totally get that. I participated in a charity walk a few years ago and raised thousands of dollars. We later found out that only a small percentage of the money[…]

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Halloween Treats For Baking Cheats

It’s not that I can’t bake. It’s just with all the precise measuring and following of directions I’d rather not. I’m more of a culinary free spirit.  But, when my daughter decided to throw a ‘Haunted Halloween Hip Hop Dance Party,” I knew we’d need wicked good (possibly baked) treats. I let my little party animal choose a few treats from Pinterest. Then I adapted them to make them as easy and baking-free as possible. I’m a witch like that. Here’s what I whipped up in my cauldron (aka double boiler which I haven’t used in a bat’s age):    Chocolate Bar Mummies: Unwrap mini chocolate bars (I used Coffee Crisps) and eat at least four.  Melt white chocolate or white candy melts (also called moulding wafers) in a double boiler. Do not look at the ingredients in candy melts. The horror…  Drag the melted candy over each chocolate with a fork (the tines make nice mummy wrapping lines) or drizzle.  Add two chocolate chip eyes.  Rice Crispy Monsters: Buy a box of rice crispy squares from Costco.  Eat as many free samples as you can before you check out.  Unwrap a dozen or so rice crispy squares and set aside. You[…]

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When We Worry Too Much And What To Do About It

I understand the parameters of reality, so why do I worry so much? It’s pointless and I know that worrying is harmful, so why do I keep doing it? I think I have an answer. The first time I recall being really worried was when I was seven years old. My dad traveled a lot and one night his plane was late. I was convinced he had crashed and I worried myself sick. Of course he was fine. I had worried myself sick for nothing.   Over the years I continued to worry about a variety of things from A to Z — some realistic, some ridiculous.  They say only eight per cent of our worries are realistic. And of those, we can actually only do something about half. This means ninety-six per cent of the things we worry about are a useless waste of time. Why do some people worry more than others?   I have a theory that we worriers have three things in common:   1. WE NEED TO BE IN CONTROL We dictate and delegate, but then end up doing everything ourselves because everyone else does it wrong. We like to organize and compartmentalize and strategize and basically orchestrate the outcome[…]

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