Thursday, March 21, 2019

Tips For Teaching Leadership Skills To Elementary Students

Today I have a guest post for you from Emily at!  Enjoy!

Children in elementary education today will grow up to be global citizens, living in a world where leadership skills are valued and rewarded over and above many of the other outcomes of formal education. In order for students to grow into happy, productive and successful adults, they must be taught leadership skills from the very beginning of their school journey. But how do we as educators ensure that these skills are nurtured and developed, whilst maintaining a focus on necessary academic achievement? Here are some tips on teaching leadership skills to elementary students. 

Lead By Example

Quite literally, be the leader that you would like your students to be. Show them your process, let them see and hear how you lead them. It is helpful if you vocalize your thoughts and decision making, as this modelling of good practice allows students to see leadership in action. Children will naturally mimic behaviors, and your example will give less confident students a framework on which to hang their own ideas. 

Allow Students (And Yourself) To Make Mistakes

The most effective lessons are learned from failure, so in allowing mistakes to be made, you give children the opportunity to overcome them. This in turn builds resilience, one of the most effective and useful attributes we can teach our students. Resilient children take more risks, are less afraid of failure, and display more effective leadership skills. 

Nurture Self-Esteem And Self-Expression

Successful leaders believe in themselves and in their ability to lead. By building students' self-esteem and self-belief, we give them a sense of what is possible and what they can achieve. All skills are valuable, whether it be in the field of science, mathematics, art, physical or social literacy. Show them how proud you are of all your abilities. 

Expect More From Your Students

No child should be limited by low expectations, either from themselves or others. Give children the opportunity to lead, even if you know they will find it difficult. Support for reluctant leaders can come from their peers, who are often far more understanding than we expect them to be. 

Embrace Democracy In Your Classroom

Give students the opportunity to set up and run their own democracy, to see how democratic values work in real life. Decision making and leadership become much easier once children realize that all voices are important, not just the loud and confident ones. 

Give Honest Feedback

Feedback is a gift, which students can use to inform how they behave or perform in the future. Honest feedback builds resilience and trust between students and educators, allowing children to take real pride in an achievement that they worked hard for. 

Use Local Community Leaders In Your Setting

By involving local leaders from business, social organizations, charities etc., you will be bringing to life the lessons the students are learning. 

Above all, make effective and respectful leadership a part of your students' daily lives, giving them a shining example of what they can achieve!

Friday, March 15, 2019

Doing It Up For Date Night!

As my kids were growing up, my husband and I didn't get to have too many date nights. (Silly us, we were trying to save for the future so other things seemed less important). However, now that they are all grown up, one in college and one working and living with his wife and soon-to-be baby girl, we have been able to get out more than we ever have. Since our move to an entirely new town and state last summer, we have had a great time exploring as well as taking in all of the local culture. All of those sacrifices we made were definitely worth it!

The big news around town is a new restaurant opening and I wanted to check it out. It's just a bar and grill type place but around here where the nearest store is at least 20 minutes away, new businesses opening in town are exciting. That's been the biggest thing I've had to get used to since moving out to the middle of nowhere. When I say I live in rural North Carolina, I'm not kidding! I love it, though and definitely don't miss the city at all. Back home, a new restaurant opening happened just about every week and no one really noticed. Here, new businesses opening is all everyone can talk about. Definitely different for me. 

I've been experiencing all kinds of new stuff lately so I thought I'd continue the trend for date night! 

Kalaia asked me to review their skincare solutions line recently and I thought this would be the perfect time to try it out! A week ago, I started using the products and I love them!

You start with an online beauty consultation, where you tell your online consultant all of your skincare concerns and problems. I resisted wearing daily face moisturizer for far too long through my 20s and 30s because I could not find a moisturizer that didn't make my skin break out. I'm definitely paying for it now in my 40s, but I have found my new PERFECT skincare routine. FINALLY.

For the first step, I start with the Detox and Cleanse Bar. It's made with papaya and ginger extracts with activated charcoal that gently cleanses and detoxifies your skin.  I love that you can use it on your face and body! 

The Fresh Canvas Exfoliating Powder is next. I love this stuff! It is a powder scrub that combines Hibiscus, Neem Leaf Powder, Licorice Root, Kaolin Clay, Gotu Kola, Turmeric and Rose essential oil and....

...then transforms into a paste after adding a few drops of water to remove impurities, excess oil, and dead skin cells revealing soft glowing skin that is ready to absorb all of the good stuff in the next step!

The Keep Smooth - Day and Night Serum is my absolute favorite step in my new Kalaia skincare routine! This stuff is magic in a bottle! It is made from Indian Gentian Leaf extract, peptide molecules, and Kalaia's proprietary Bright & Blur Complex(which is amazing). It comes in a dropper bottle and you apply it all over your face. It *instantly* brightenened and improved the texture of my skin. I saw results after one use, especially under my eyes (my nemesis). My skin even felt firmer and after one week, I am so in love with all of these products. My skin feels so very soft and I have almost conquered those pesky under eye bags (thanks, insomnia)!

The last step is the Hold Tight - Overnight Moisturizer and that is definitely where all of that new firmness I feel is coming from! I was a little nervous at first because it is so thick and creamy, I thought for sure that it would break my skin out...but I was willing to make that sacrifice for beauty. You apply it to your face, neck, and decolletage and keep it on overnight. After a week, no new breakouts! It combines bamboo silica, pea extract and that magical Bright & Blur Complexto help blur fine lines and wrinkles and increase skin hydration for rejuvenated, (definitely) firmer looking and feeling skin.

So, now that I was feeling all glowy, I decided I was going to try something else new, false eyelashes.

I know. 

How did I make it to 42 whole years of age without wearing false eyelashes? 

Because I can't do it to save my life, that's how.

Private Label Mink Eyelashes wanted me to review their (GORGEOUS) mink false eyelashes and I was hesitant at first because of the aforementioned failure, but decided to give it a try!

They sent me their Chloe and Eden lashes to try.

They felt so soft! You can use these up to 20 times as well! My daughter is just about an expert at putting lashes on (how?!) but the ones she used seemed really stiff compared to these. They are ready to apply once you take them out of the package and so, I took a deep breath and began....


I tried.

Although I will say that after all of my attempts to get them just right, the glue stayed like the first application so that was good. Once I felt they were just right, we were on our way out the door!

I had a gloriously delicious burger and we sat and talked for awhile before hopping back into the truck and riding around. It was a lovely night and I had fun trying a bunch of new things!

What are you doing on your next date night? 

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Unique Tips That Will Help You Start Your Very Own Business

Starting a business is not easy to say the least, but with a bit of work and a lot of dedication, you can be sure to make the most out of your venture.


So many people dream of becoming an entrepreneur. They never do though because they are so burdened with the fear of failure. They feel as though they don’t have enough money, enough time or even too many responsibilities. You really can make a million excuses for not starting your own business because let’s face the facts, being your own boss is quite a scary thought. You also have a lot to lose as well, but at some point, you need to start working towards your dreams. Those fears are never going to go away, and the only way for you to deal with them would be for you to just go for it.

Absorb As Much As You Can

It’s so important that you listen to what other people have to say. This could include your friends, family or even other experts. When it comes to entrepreneurial goals, you have to be a sponge, and take in as much as you can. As you start to learn more and more, you can then begin to work out the idea in your head and you can also write things down as well. This will really help you when the time does come for you to start your own business plan. When you do make the decision to tell people about your plan, read any body language that they have. Do they like your idea? Or are they just being nice? Encourage those who are listening to you to be honest. When you do this, you can then feel confident knowing that they are being genuine, and it could even help you to smooth out any issues that you might face in the future.

Always Be A Solution

It’s way easier for you to gain a solid customer base when you try and solve a problem. Your start-up should try and fill a hole in the market, and it should also be a solution as well. If you are able to do this then you can easily gain a foothold in the industry and this can work wonders for your level of success.

Starting Your Company

Before you start your company you also need to think about the reason why you are doing it. What is your motivation? If your motivation is to earn a lot of money, then this isn’t good enough and it won’t keep you going if things start going downhill. Think about what you are passionate about, and use that as your drive. This will get you through those difficult times and it will also help you to really come to terms with any decisions you have to make.

Keep Things Simple

A lot of entrepreneurs get an idea and they run with it. This is great, but you don’t want to over complicate matters. You could end up with an elaborate product that people just don’t have an interest in, and this is the last thing that you need. As a new business owner, you need to narrow your focus as much as possible. You also need to learn how to test your idea on the market. A simple but high-quality service should help you to do this. For example, if you want to open up your very own cupcake store then don’t start out by offering endless flavors. Instead, keep it simple and start by offering 3 or less. This will make it easier for your customers to connect with you and it will also make it easier for them to make a purchase. Believe it or not, there is such a thing as having too much choice.


When you start to develop your very own business idea, you then need to try and add up how much it is going to cost you. You need to take into account every single business expense and you also need to think about how much it is going to cost you to operate in general. Some costs will include marketing, supplies, rent and even registration fees. When you think you have a solid number, you then need to add 50% on top of it. Most business expenses are unexpected, and there will be hidden costs behind every single corner. It is far better to be over prepared than under, and the sooner you understand this, the better business owner you will become. If you want to hire a team to work with your business then this is great, and there are ways that you can save money here. For example, instead of giving them an office device or phone so that they can stay in touch, encourage them to use their own. You can look into this link if you want to find out more about that:

Imagine Yourself Bankrupt

You need to imagine yourself having absolutely nothing. There is a chance that this will happen, and there is also a chance that you will become close to bankruptcy as well. Launching an idea that does not end up being successful is a reality, and over half of new businesses fail within their first five years. Think about it, how would you handle having absolutely no money? It is a good idea for you to come up with some kind of plan in case this does happen. You may end up needing to find a job quickly, and you may also need to move back in with your parents as well. The comforts that you are used to right now may end up going out the window, and if this happens, you need to be ready to accept it.

So, there are many ways that you can prepare yourself for starting a business, and by following the above tips, you can be sure to make the most out of your experience and your finances in general.

Do you have any tips to add?

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Best Music Directors Of All Time

Music directors are not always given the credit they deserve. This is because they tend to operate behind the scenes, whilst those who sing or play an instrument tend to be celebrated. However, with the booming of Bollywood and the new found love for musicals, music directors are rightly gaining more attention.

Nevertheless, the term “music director” does not merely relate to the world of film and theatre, it incorporates a wide scope of roles. It can be used to describe anything from the individual who directs an orchestra to the person who coordinates the songs at a school assembly.  They have the responsibility of making creative decisions and their input is integral. Therefore, in the celebration of their role, let’s take a look at the best seven music directors of all time.

A. R. Rahman

There is only one place to start and this is with the person described by Times as the most prominent and prolific film composer in the world; A. R Rahman. His unique and innovative style is widely appreciated as he incorporates contemporary electronic sounds with classical Eastern music. The talented Indian man has won Filmfare’s “Best Music Director” award a monumental ten times; more than anyone else. The most recent award came in 2012 for the film Rockstar, an Indian musical film centered on romance and drama. Nonetheless, he is recognized for more than just his musical direction in films. He has also directed many orchestrations and has even released his own original compositions too.

Michael “Shawn” Crahan

Whether you are a fan of Slipknot or not, you cannot deny that the unique band has had a monumental amount of success. A lot of this success has been credited to Michael “Shawn” Crahan. He is ‘number 6’ of the eight-piece band; however, his influence has been colossal. He is responsible for many creative decisions; regarding the music made, how they perform at events, and how they market themselves. His direction has been imperative.  

Ennio Morricone

Italian Ennio Morricone has achieved a lot in his 84 years. His musical talents have touched over 500 films and television programmes. Not only this, but he has received a monumental number of awards for his work in the industry, including Grammys, BAFTAs, and Golden Globe Awards.

Salil Chowdhury

Salil Chowdhury is a great music director who is unfortunately no longer with us. He was well-known for his talent for creating complicated compositions. His ability to arrange musical instruments impeccably meant that he certainly wasn’t bad when it came to taking control of an orchestra either! Chowdhury’s legacy will definitely live on for many years to come as he transcended borders by taking global influences and blending them together.


Ilaiyaraaja is not one to shy away from taking a risk and being experimental. Yet many would agree that his risks are well worth taking as his input can now be found in over a colossal 950 films. In fact, he was even voted as the greatest Indian music composer of all time, with 49% of the votes in a poll recently carried out by CNN-IBN.

David Robert Pack

And last but not least, we have the former frontman of rock group Ambrosia; David Robert Pack. The Grammy Award Winning artist is now responsible for directing music events all over the world. One of his most notable achievements has to be acting as the music director for the inaugurations of former President Bill Clinton.

If this has got you in the mood for a bit of dancing, there are lots of great music concerts going on at this time of year. You can check out Top Country Concerts and sites like this, based on the genre you are interested in, and you should have no trouble finding tickets. Of course, you do not have to wait. With the music streaming sites and platforms available at the moment, you can start listening to some musical masterpieces right now!

So there you have it: some of the best music directors of all time. Do you have a favorite music director? Did you recognize everyone featured in this post?

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

The MicroGlo Solution

Where are my peoples who grew up when there was no chicken pox vaccine? Raise your hand!

When I was 12, I got a severe case of chicken pox. My little brother, who passed it on to me, only got about 6 on his cheek and was done. I, however, was COVERED from head to toe and like a dummy, I didn't believe that it would leave scars if I scratched.

I was very, very wrong.

And so, I have quite a few chicken pox scars on my face that unfortunately look like gigantic pores. The big ones that don't look that way I don't mind because most realize what they are, but the smaller ones absolutely look like huge, gaping pores.

It's a thing I've lived with since then that has been really hard to cover but believe me when I say, I have tried everything to do so. 

I am always looking for great deals on skincare on Dealspotr so when I came across MicroGlo, I was curious if it would work.

MicroGlo is a home microdermabraison kit. Microdermabrasion works by exfoliating your top layer of skin to reveal newer, healthier skin. It is 100% pain free and much simpler than I thought it would be. With this MicroGlo home treatment kit, they promise:

  • to rejuvenate your skin by removing your dead skin cells
  • to trigger collagen and elastin production, making your skin firm and radiant
  • to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles
  • to stimulate the growth of new skin cells

I had always heard that microdermabrasion was a good solution for acne scars and things of the like and had always wanted to try it. I wasn't sure how well it would work on chicken pox scars but I was so pleasantly surprised! I am at my sixth week of treatments (you should only use it once a week) and I am already seeing incredible results! The smaller chicken pox scars are much less noticeable and even the biggest one on my forehead is disappearing! I absolutely cannot wait to see what it looks like after the suggested 8 to 12 treatments! I'm also incredibly impressed at the price of the kit, which is less than even ONE microdermabrasion treatment in an aesthetician's office! Of course, that's my favorite part! I am so glad I looked around online before making an appointment. I saved myself so very much money and it actually works! 

Once a week, I use the MicroGlo after washing my face. It's super simple and takes less than five minutes! After the treatment, I use my regular moisturizer and because of the treatment, my moisturizer and other skincare products penetrate my skin so much better than without and I have really noticed the difference! My skin feels so soft and smooth and like I said, even my chicken pox scars are fading! Here is just how easy it is:

I am absolutely in love with my MicroGlo and am so glad I tried it. In just 6 weeks, I am seeing amazing results and am finally happy with my skin! Take THAT, chicken pox scars!

 Right now, all kits are 20% off on Dealspotr if you click here and enter my code: STEPHSTEB! I hope you will check it out as well and I'd love to hear your experience with it! 

Have you ever tried microdermabrasion?

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Five Unique Ways To Teach Your Children About Money

Today I have a guest post for you from Emily at Enjoy!

Kids don’t know much about money and how to spend it unless you teach them. Take time to walk your children through how to earn money, and show them how you can save for a rainy day. Let them know that you can invest and the money grows and allow them the satisfaction of rewarding themselves after completing a task. 

Use a piggy bank 

Teach your kids the art of saving from a young age and let them know how important it is to set some money aside. Get them a jar or a piggy bank and encourage them to drop a few coins inside daily to get to the desired goal. It is important to introduce to them saving at an early age and explain to them why having savings is a good thing. After their savings have grown, allow them to buy whatever they have been asking for with their own money as this will give them satisfaction.

 Give them an allowance after a job 

Make them understand that money is not given for free and you have to work and earn it. This will make sure that they always respect the amount of money they get and be able to manage it wisely. Give them house chores, and once they have completed them, you can reward them by paying them. This will allow them to learn that hard work pays. Furthermore, when you teach them on how to work for everything they have, they will grow to be great adults in the future.

Take your kids to the grocery store 

Bring your kids the next time you are going to the grocery store as this will give them an opportunity to see the exchange and transactions world first hand. Let them help you to choose the grocery you want and show them how you can save money in a grocery store. This is done by giving them an opportunity to choose groceries and compare the prices of different brands. As they do this, they will learn how to make choices in life and survival tactics. After a trip to the store calculate with them the amount of money that they have helped you save. You can use the money to give to charity or treat yourself to ice cream; they will learn the art of charity and sharing as well as saving.

Use games and puzzles to teach them about money 

You can introduce your kids to games and puzzles and give them an opportunity to complete the task. Once they have done, you can reward them with a prize; this will show them that after completion of a task you always get a reward. Additionally, you can play games such as Monopoly which requires kids to make financial decisions to win the game.

Encourage your kids to start a business 

Teach your kids the art of investing in a business, let them learn that when you invest in something your income doubles. Help them open up a lemonade stand with their allowance money and let them learn about making profits in a business. This will open up their minds, and they will understand how money works in the world. Additionally, this will discourage them from being lazy when they become adults.

In conclusion, show your kids the art of spending money, saving, and investing as this will ensure that they learn some valuable skills for life in the real world. You can read more on Star Walk Kids, and you can also find games and toys here which will help your child learn to manage their money from an early age. 

Monday, February 4, 2019

Date Night Ideas On A Budget

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, you might be thinking of the perfect date night to show that special someone how much they mean to you.  One common misconception is that going on a date has to be an expensive and elaborate display of affection, but there are tons of ways you can have a great time without breaking the bank.  Here are some out-of-the-box cheap date night ideas you and your significant other will love! 

Image Credit:

Cook dinner together 

Why go out to an expensive restaurant when you can cook a delicious meal for two at home?  Cooking at home is a great way to save money and also experiment with new recipes you’ve never tried before.  To make the evening even more romantic, put a picnic blanket on the living room floor, light some candles, and put on a playlist of songs that remind you of each other.  To top it off, treat yourselves to some chocolate-covered strawberries for dessert and enjoy the quality time you’re spending together! 

Play dress-up

Tap into your youthful side and spend the day playing dress-up with your partner!  Head to your local car dealership and ask to take your favorite car for a test drive, just make sure you don’t buy it!  Another fun idea is to scope out Columbus real estate and go on tours of homes you like.  To make it even more fun, you can dress up in your fanciest clothes and pretend you’re a wealthy couple looking to buy a new home.  You and your significant other will be in stitches by the end of the night, and you’ll look back on that memory for years to come.

Lend a helping hand

Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community and also spend quality time together as a couple.  Look online for animal shelters, soup kitchens or children’s hospitals near you and spend the day helping those in need.  If you’ve never volunteered and aren’t sure where to start, don’t worry- most nonprofit organizations are more than happy to have volunteers come in and help out.  You’ll be doing a good deed, and you’ll feel good giving back to someone less fortunate. 

Break a sweat 

When you workout, your body releases feel-good endorphins, so why not incorporate exercise into your next date?  If the weather permits, go on a bike ride through your local park or bike trail.  If you and your partner are up for it, you could go for an early-morning run and reward yourselves with a big breakfast afterward.  For a less intense workout, go for a long walk around the neighborhood and spend time talking and catching up.  Physical activity of any kind is a great way to bond with your significant other while also getting in a workout, and it’s something you can do a couple times a week without getting bored! 

What are your best budget date night ideas?

Letters To No One

Letters to no one
and letters to nowhere

screaming into the void

Is anyone there?

words and letters
sounds and silence

living amongst


wash over me
wash all of my sins away
the heat of the water

reminds me 
to breathe




as my sins
swirl around 
the drain
and fall into 

I feel the void
pressing in
reaching out to me
because of

my letters to no one
that finally reached

Saturday, February 2, 2019

My Favorite Florist Is Ready For You This Valentine's Day!

I love Valentine's day. It's the only holiday that I love more than Halloween! It could be the love in the air, the scrumptious chocolate goodies, or the gorgeous floral displays...or it could be that I am just in love with L O V E.

Just like my favorite holiday, Halloween, I go all out with decorations and fun foods and activities. My husband and I have a sort of unspoken contest going on between us as to who can get the other the best gifts. He's won quite a few times (yes, he's that good), but I think I'm going to finally win this year!

When we first moved in, I hadn't started my garden yet so fresh cut flowers were out of the question. I do like to keep them around, especially sunflowers, as they brighten my day. To remedy this, I decided to take a visit over to Summerfield, NC and see what lovely floral design displays I could find.

I happened across Daly Floral Designs and completely fell in love! Her designs are absolutely astonishing! 

Susan Daly is a one woman small business owner who has been around flowers her entire life. She grew up on a farm in upstate NY and began her career by selling her beautiful flowers that she grew herself at her parent's vegetable stand. As she grew, she knew that all she wanted to do was become a florist. Believe me when I say she is definitely doing what she is born to do! Her designs are so creative and gorgeous, I picked up 2 designs while I was there and I am planning on making my own custom design for Valentine's day! By growing most of the flowers herself, she keeps costs down for her customers and every penny I spent was worth it! These designs all have a little piece of her love in there and you can definitely tell! Just check out her Instagram or Facebook page to see more of her incredible floral arrangements!

So, I think I'm going to win the best gift contest-not-contest this year. Hubs already won Christmas, so for this holiday, I am serious business! Either way, I've already won by having another lovely floral arrangement by Daly Floral Designs to fawn over!

What are your plans for Valentine's day?

Friday, February 1, 2019

Are You Promoting Your Business Properly?

There's nothing like that rush you get when you first set up your own business. You've come up with an amazing idea and you're ready to start putting into practice. You're committed to all of the hard work to come and you're ready to make something amazing. And then, you suddenly realize that no one is paying your new business any attention whatsoever.

This is one of the most common issues in the early days of a business's life but it can be pretty scary. However, it's definitely something that you can get past, you just need to know how. With that in mind, here are some things that you can do to better reach out to customers and promote your business more effectively.

Know your customers

One of the most important marketing details that a lot of businesses tend to forget is that you need to know exactly who your customers are if you want to be able to connect with them as effectively as possible. After all, different marketing methods are more effective on different people and knowing who your demographic is means that you're going to be much better equipped to build your marketing around them and their preferences. A clear profile of your ideal customers is one of the most important things that your business can have.

Embrace modern methods

We live in an incredibly fast-paced, technology dominated world and that means that if you're not willing to keep up with the changes that it brings, your business is going to end up falling behind. One of the best modern marketing methods is video content. Being able to create interesting and engaging video content is one of the best ways to connect with customers. It's actually a lot less of a challenge to do so than you might think. You just need to find some good ideas and find someone who can be engaging on camera. You can check out places like this website for royalty free music. Plus there are plenty of editing tutorials online that you can use to make your videos look more professional.

Don't leave it as an afterthought

You might not think that this would be such a common issue but it befalls a lot of small businesses more often than you would think. Far too often businesses leave their marketing as an afterthought and don't put nearly enough effort into it. There are so many things that go into a business that it's all too easy to let your marketing fall by the wayside but the truth is that if you want to promote your business properly, you have to be willing to put the time and effort in.

Of course, an important thing to remember is that you don't want to fall into the trap of paying so much attention to your marketing that you ignore every other important aspect of your business. One of the first things that you need to learn when you set up any kind of business is that it's a near constant balancing act. You need to keep all of those plates spinning at once because if one falls, they could all come crashing down very easily.

How do you promote your business?