Wednesday, August 15, 2018

September 2018 Free Lego Monthly Mini Build Registration

I think it really says something that I've been posting about this for years and the same employees are
there every single time we go. Lego is a great company!
wrote this FOREVER ago, it seems like, about the LEGO Store monthly mini build! Things have definitely changed. I used to have to wait in line for a long time with a couple of little ones but now they are older and easier!

After the crazy waiting-in-line like for a rock concert only with little kids fiasco month after month, Lego stores changed things up for at least 6 months and the employees would just hand you your mini build kit if you had gotten a card for the kit when you first got to the line.

HALLELUIA! The first time they did that I almost cried. We got our kit, grabbed ice cream and went home to build the kits, saving an hour (at least) of our lives!

The last year or so, however, they have changed it again. They don't do this to be a pain in your butt. They do it to try new things to make as many customers happy as possible because they are Lego and they rock like that. You are basically RESERVING your mini build.

So you have to mark your calendar or you'll forget to register like I do. For instance, today is July 15 and I need to register for the August mini build. You can now pick Tuesday times or Wednesday times.

Sign up HERE for the current mini build.

Sample calendar like they hand out at the build:


One August I was able to take my own kids plus my friend's kids for a total of 7 kids building :-)
You can only sign up 4 kids per session per VIP account email. You can sign up for a VIP account here (worth it ... VIP points add up and you get free Legos!). I am not messing with getting two VIP cards and we only need 4 kits anyway. Callie is not thrilled about building Legos and instead uses them as decorations (Heartlake Grand Hotel, anyone?). BUT ... the sweeties at Lego usually offer her one anyway. And we take it because they are cool!

TIP: Make sure when you do the final page of registering to CONFIRM that the top of your page does not say that you are confirming to be on the WAIT LIST or you do not have a spot! Go back in your web browser and get another spot FAST!

FINE PRINT: In order to participate, guests must be between the ages of 6-14. All guests will be expected to complete the build in the store. Registration on a first come first serve basis. Stores will no longer accept walk-ups on the night of the event.

Monday, August 13, 2018

5 Work At Home Jobs That You Can Do Part-Time



I firmly believe that everyone should have a side job. Let's face it, the majority of problems in this world require money to solve them. Sometimes your regular job just isn't enough to cover all those expenses that life continually throws at us. That is why everyone needs a second source of income. Think of it as a profitable hobby!

1. Crafting
This is a category with almost unlimited possibilities. Many people supplement their income by making various crafts in their home and selling them. There are some who make simple decorative crafts, and others who make useful items like tools and gadgets. If you can make anything of value, it can probably be sold. The only difficult part is finding a place to sell your goods. You can sell art and art supplies online at etsy.com and its various clones. Local events are also worth considering. If you happen to own a 3-D printer, your manufacturing ability becomes even greater.

2. Consulting
Consulting careers can be another way to make money on the side. A consultant is just someone who gets paid to give advice. Naturally, you need to have the experience and expertise to give valuable advice. But, as the saying goes, everyone is an expert on something. There are many types of consulting, so there is at least a decent chance that you will qualify for one of them. However, becoming a consultant is another story. Consulting careers tend to pay very well, so competition is fierce. Your best bet here is to start by finding out as much as you can about the different types of consulting so that you can concentrate your efforts where they are most likely to be fruitful.

3. Call Marketing
Ok, this one won't be popular with everyone. However, it is an option to be considered. You can make money from home in your spare time by doing telemarketing. I personally don't like this one because I am no good at it. However, you might find it to your liking. You can make pretty good money if you can actually talk people into buying what you're selling. Usually, you will make a certain amount of money per call with a commission added if you sell the product.

4. Tech Support
If you have the knowledge, this can be an excellent way to make a few extra bucks. Some companies will pay you for answering technical support calls. Most of the time, these positions involve giving advice on the proper use of computers or computerized devices. Therefore, those who do not have solid computer skills will not be able to do this. Another downside is that you will need to be on call for most of the day.

5. Pet Trade Breeding
There will always be a demand for pets. Although pets are technically a non-essential item, this industry is unlikely to go anywhere. There are several things to consider when deciding if this career is right for you. First, you need to look at your space. You will also need to look at what type of animals you wish to breed. Larger animals generally bring more money but require a lot more space. For instance, if you want to breed dogs, you had better have a large yard. You will need to set up large, secure kennels, and you will need enough of them to separate the males and females when you don't want them to breed. You will also be spending a lot more on food. Those without the space to breed dogs could do fish, frogs, lizards or even insects.

Author Bio: Adrian Rubin is a graphic designer and serial entrepreneur.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

4 Tips On Taking Great Kid Photos



Getting children to take pictures can be a daunting task. Especially, when there a few of them to deal with. From getting the right pose, to keeping their outfits intact, to breaking up quarrels. The challenge is to not seem like a dictator, but to be effective as well. We all must admit, that it's a thin line. Here are four tips to help you get to that perfect photo when dealing with children.

Containment
The first tip is to contain your kids physically in the frame. Try to put them in a closed location. Maybe a vehicle, decorated box, or something like a rectangular wagon. This is an great idea, because they don't have a lot of stimuli within their immediate surrounding areas. Energy flows where our attention goes. Kids are no different, when their energy is bounded or subdued, their more receptive to our instructions. The goal is to take as much pictures as possible, within that short-lived time period. Just be creative when trying to keep them close for a group photo. Make it fun and it'll be expressed within the shots.

Make It A Project
Make the photos session into a project that all of them, no matter the amount, can participate in. This will give them a sense of structure. They'll feel like they're part of something. Give each child a specific task to complete. This seems to work well with children under 5, they want their independence so bad, they'll obey your playful commands. At the end, they will get an opportunity to see their results. I would personally suggest doing a test run, so that they can see for themselves the whole magnitude of the photo taking process. Hopefully, this will inspire them to want to do more photos.

Persuasion
Another creative strategy is to persuade them. It could be with either a future gift, or an immediate gratification. This is probably the easiest way to motivate children (and some adults). The promise of a reward is always enticing. While taking the picture, a promise of maybe candy, or perhaps money is alluring to most kids. Keep them engaged and excited. Bribe your subjects not with just candy and sweets, but with opportunities. Things like, “Well, if you'll let me take a few more pictures of you, I'll let you wear my hat. Look right here for a couple seconds when I take your photo, then you can take my photo”. Drive them with things they get to do that empower them, make them feel excited. It's not a bad idea to buy a small bag of cheap toys. Remember, their attention span is very short. The photographer can't make them work for an hour before they get to grab something out of the bag. A few shots and a grab, and then they'll do a few more. They may look again, let them take it out of the bag. If they sit and do what you want them to do for a couple of seconds, reward them. Summit Shah has perfected this tactic of persuading, to get the perfect pictures.

Discipline
You can also promise them with a disciplinary tactic. Maybe something of theirs will be taken away or barred from. Discipline seems to be a great motivating factor for obedience. It's funny how we become conscious and obedient when we’re threatened. At least, that was my mother’s tactic. Let me be honest, personally in my case, it worked.

These are just a few tips to getting some quality pictures from your kids. It can be daunting and challenging, but it's well worth the effort. Children don't stay little forever. But your pictures can last a lifetime.

Author Bio: Adrian Rubin is a stay at home dad and graphic designer.

Thursday, August 9, 2018

3 Reasons Morning Routines Are Essential for Mom Entrepreneurs



The world sees popular entrepreneurs such as Beyonce, Victoria Beckham and Chrissy Weems as inspirations, but there are many levels behind their success. For the group of mom entrepreneurs or mompreneurs, processes and routines prove to be very important as they juggle multiple facets of life. One of the most important aspects mompreneurs need to achieve to succeed in family life and business is morning routines. From setting the overall tone for your day, keeping your ultimate vision alive and being productive to accomplish more, morning routines are an essential part of a mompreneur’s day.

Set the tone for the day
Whether jumping out of bed to screaming children and rushing through the morning or peacefully waking up to gulp a glass of water and exercise, individuals have morning routines. Your specific morning routine is key to achieving high levels of success integrity, vision and commitment. Developing an effective morning routine puts the individual in a more resourceful state of mind and aligns the day to properly handle whatever comes your way. Adopting a tranquil morning routine allows for mompreneurs to keep state of mind that remains calm when resolving family matters and systematic when with decisions pertaining to the business. For entrepreneurs, acquiring a morning routine that is effective yet peaceful increases the chances of gliding through your day peacefully, being more alert and making more efficient decisions.

Keep the vision alive
All can agree that success in a continuous journey through life and that doesn’t just happen by chance. The human brain is constantly trying to retain energy, which means that the more automation, the more effective. Learning to take on daily tasks as subconscious default routines help our minds stay on track to our ultimate goal. Successful mompreneurs, like Chrissy Weems, have learned how conditioning the mind to run and conquer the day is important or else the day will conquer you. There is more on the line if mompreneurs don’t learn to conquer or “run their day.” Staying involved and present in family matters and staying on track in business goals is at stake if the mind isn't properly conditioned. Taking on as much default mode and routines through the day is best to being effective in other areas that require total attention.

Achieving productivity through the day
Mothers have mastered the art of doing what it takes to be more productive and present with family. This same concept is intensified with mompreneurs in achieving everyday successes and productivity. Productivity is a high necessity for mompreneurs because they continuously balance business and family life and are expected to perfect both. Morning routines are an essential part of the day to set the tone for a more productive day in succeeding without compromising the mental capacity and really just losing. During early morning routines, connect with your vision and understand the levels of energy required to be content in business and home. Ability to achieve daily productivity decides overall success in business and matters relating to family.

Without a doubt, mompreneurs everywhere are our heroes, but we don’t always consider the many steps they climb to achieve their success. A critical aspect of a mompreneurs success is perfecting the most efficient morning routine. Morning routines are essential to all forms of entrepreneurs who wish set the tone for their day, keep their vision in line and heighten productivity. Everyday, mothers are killing it as they transition back and forth from family to entrepreneurs and do so seamlessly. More than anything, mompreneurs inspire us to best our best.

Author Bio: Adrian Rubin is a freelance writer and graphic designer.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Why TV Is Surprisingly Good for You

Many people in the world think that television is something that you should avoid. They say that it
rots your brain, makes you lazy and there’s even the stereotype that if you watch too much television,
you turn a into bit of a couch potato that doesn’t do much except laze around at home. Of course,
those stereotypes are a bit exaggerated, but is there any truth to the idea that watching too much
television is considered bad for you?


There are, of course, always going to be a few concerns. Too much of anything is going to be bad for
you, but you’d be surprised at how much you could actually benefit from watching more TV on a
regular basis. In this post, we’ll be taking a look at a few reasons why TV is actually surprisingly good
for you.


Source: Pexels


1. It helps to reduce your stress


TV is one of the best forms of entertainment for releasing stress. According to studies, media
consumption can actually help to lower your cortisol levels under certain conditions. Cortisol is
essentially our “fight-or-flight” hormone, meaning that it raises our stress and controls parts of the
brain that deal with our mood, motivation or fear. It’s essentially a stress hormone, and watching
TV actually helps to reduce it. While many other passive activities can help to reduce our stress,
TV is particularly good because of the types of entertainment we can get from it. From learning with
a documentary to just having a good laugh with a comedy show, TV has a variety of different ways
to help us reduce stress.


2. It’s inexpensive entertainment


TV is surprisingly inexpensive nowadays thanks to things like on-demand video services. Whether
it’s Amazon or Netflix, there are plenty of cheap ways to extend the number of programs available
and you get an almost unlimited choice. Get yourself something like a small smart TV device and
you can even extend your TV’s functionality to include YouTube and other web services. Even better,
if you look at services like NordVPN free, you can even remove the region block on things like Netflix
so you can watch all the of the shows it has to offer, including ones that are only available in different
regions! That’s plenty of cheap entertainment and is far less expensive than heading out for a movie
or something similar.


3. It helps educate you

Be it the news, documentaries or educational programmes, there are plenty of ways to learn and be
inspired when it comes to TV. It’s a surprisingly effective learning tool because we can watch and
listen to TV generally anywhere. We can record shows with the right equipment and even dramas and
films can help you teach you new things, uncover new passions or even inspire you to do something.
It’s a surprisingly underrated benefit that few people seem to understand, but it’s certainly an effect we
feel whenever we watch a show that is interesting to us and shakes up our brain a little.

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