One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson & The Most Beautiful Bucket List Ever. Louis Tomlinson from the band One Direction has been in mourning since losing his mother and sister this year- until he met an elderly gentleman mourning his wife. You’ll melt when you see how they’ve healed each other. You can see the video sparked from One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson & The Most Beautiful Bucket List Ever here.
Win An Epic Mother’s Day Giveaway From The Gateway!
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$100 gift card from California Pizza Kitchen
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Remember Elle King, “Ex’s and Oh’s?”
April Fools! 5 Awesome Kid Pranks
1. Baby Monitor Spies: take one of the monitors and set up the other near your parents. When they least expect it, shriek “someone’s watching!” Watch them jump!
2. Tape the light switch: Mom or Dad will groggily try to turn on the light switch and keep pawing at it, wondering why they can’t flip the switch. Laugh when they finally figure it out.
3. Take the toilet paper off the holder and leave a funny note instead: (PS: you might want to leave the roll close by where Mom and Dad can find it.)
4. Paint a wedge of sponge to look like a slice of cake: this would totally work in my house on ME. Leave the slice of “cake” out on the counter and laugh yourself silly when Mom or Dad takes the first bite.
5. Short-sheet their bed: an oldie but a goodie. When the ‘rents try to climb into bed, they’ll find it impossible. Here’s some directions on how to short-sheet a bed in case you’re not in the loop.
What about your kiddos? What pranks have they played on you that TOTALLY worked? Share with the class…
Teaching Kids To Love Reading. One of our family’s New Year’s Resolutions was reading. I was the kid who got in trouble for hiding under my blanket with a flashlight and reading until a ridiculous hour. So I was shocked when our kiddos did not take to reading as enthusiastically as I did. But here’s what I’ve learned: every kiddo has their own way. So it’s my job to find the path that gets each of my Littles enthusiastic about books. So, here’s some different thoughts on amazing books and how to invest your little people.
Teaching Kids To Love Reading
- What are they interested in? So, my 7 year old Zoe is crazed about Minecraft. I immediately ordered 3-4 books about Minecraft on Amazon.com. I didn’t pay attention: the fonts in the boks varied, they were oddly styled and hard to read. They just made her more frustrated. So we started with some of the “New World” instructions on her iPad. We read about diamond armor and th Ender Dragon. Then, we graduated into Minecraft technique posts. I read a paragraph, she read a paragraph. We were reading together… and yeah, now she’s into the “Friendly Creeper Diaries.
- You Read To Me, I’ll Read To You: It’s actually the name of a book series, but it was an “Oh, duh!” moment for me. We always read together when Zoe was little, but now that she’s in second grade, I’d just intended to check off the books she’d read on her homework list. What is wrong with me? This is an age where she actually wants to hang with me. And it’s not even just her reading to me- it’s reading back and forth, asking questions about the story and laughing at silly things.
- Make It Fun: Once again, this one took me by surprise. What do you mean, reading isn’t fun? So we came up with some ideas. During the summer, we read in our trampoline tent dome (Editor’s note: you can find an easy DIY video for this epic little creation here.) We acted out all the dialogue in different accents. (Zoe is very proud of her Cockney accent.) We’ve listened to audio books together to get her excited, then re-read the book together. We’ve created her own books- writing out different stories with her clever illustrations. There’s easy ready-made books here to use to create your own classics.
Here’s one of my favorite graphic novel kits. One of my favorite experiences with the twin’s 7th grade class was creating their own graphic novels. It’s not particularly expensive and the fun of watching these kids collaborate and create together is one of my most tender memories. They created a super-hero with autism, who could move back and forth in time to solve crimes because “For kids with autism,” said their classmate Jerry, “it’s hard for us to understand time anyway.”
What has worked with your kiddos? What made them finally want to learn to love reading? Share! Discuss! We all need new tips and tricks.
Gentle Ways To Care For Yourself During Busy Times. Busy times… hah! That’s every freaking day. For all of us. Especially now that we’re launching into the madness of 2019- more expectations, more requirements, more time and money spent.
But it’s true that if you don’t care for yourself, no one else will. Then we either crash from exhaustion and stress or feel bitterly resentful that “we do everything!” Here’s some simple principles to keep while battling a million different challenges.
Gentle Ways To Care For Yourself During Busy Times
Say no to anything that is not important to you
Laundry, phone calls with your mom, demanding girlfriends – this is not the time to be nice and “responsible.” Give yourself the permission to focus on what’s important. Getting the unessential responsibilities off your schedule will not only create some extra time and space, it will also lighten the burden you’re feeling to keep up with it.
Listen to your favorite music
I’m a little biased here, based on my career, but music can lift the spirit, calm the soul and cleanse anxiety. Don’t underestimate the value of the right music to guide you through your day.
Ask for help
There’s nothing wrong with asking for help, and you’ll quickly learn that most people around you actually love to be asked! It makes them feel useful and important. What usually helps the most is to get help to do the normal things; cooking, shopping and regular every-day tasks. However, don’t underestimate how important the people in your life can be when it comes to feedback, motivation and supporting your self-confidence regarding the important work you’re doing.
Get enough sleep
I know you hear this so much that it’s likely really annoying at this point. But this old advice is not only essential when it comes to self-care, it is also absolutely essential when it comes to being able to do your best. Particularly important when it comes to exam periods and work stress. It’s easy to think that a few extra hours of work will do you more good, but it won’t. Sleep will.
Make a plan of everything that needs to be done
Instead of juggling all your to-do’s and must-remember’s, write them down on a piece of paper. Then make a plan of how you are going to manage everything before your deadline. Tackle the most stressful ones first. For me, that’s calling clients. I don’t know why, but I’ll avoid this extremely important element for as long as possible- while stressing about it the whole time. You may have to schedule a lot of tasks on certain days, and it may seem like too much to do, but at least you’ll know that everything will get done. Make sure you stick to the plan, every single day. Don’t fall for the temptation to start on tomorrow’s tasks today, trust that the plan will take you there, and enjoy some free time on the days when you finish your tasks early.
Write things down
I am of the belief that as adults, our brains fill up right to the top and stuff starts spilling over. This is why I can’t tie my shoelaces or remember how to work a doorbell. So I write everything down. On my phone, the back of my hand, it doesn’t matter. This way, I don’t have to carry the additional stress of remembering everything I need to remember.
You might be busy and think that every minute is valuable time to put into your work, but some extra minutes of walking might be a better way to spend some time. If you live close to where you’re going, it’s better to walk than to use public transport (or your car). Not only will you enjoy a nice endorphin rush and the self-satisfaction of being all healthy, you also get some important fresh air and daylight. If you have to commute, get off public transport one or two stops too early, or park your car further away than usual. The extra minutes of fresh air will save you lots of time when you start working and feel more focused. I have a few loops along the Bonneville Shoreline Trail (a wonderful series of trails and switchbacks only 10 minutes out of the city) that I plod along like a draft horse. I get so much thinking done!
Make sure you keep in touch with your friends
Just a few text messages, tweets or the occasional coffee will make sure your friendships don’t suffer. You will feel much better when you focus on something else entirely, and it will prevent you from becoming a workaholic hermit. You don’t have to keep in touch with everybody, most people will understand that you’re having a busy period. Just make sure you stay in touch with the people that make you happy and inspired.
Make room for rest
This one’s important. Make sure that whenever you plan to rest – really rest. That means that you will have to make a conscious effort to push all work-related thoughts and worries away. It’s also important that you rest your mind as well as your body. 5 minutes of stillness is better than 30 minutes in front of the TV!
Surround yourself with inspiring photos
This can be a formal Vision Board if you have room or the inclination, or simply photos that matter to you taped to a computer monitor, in a pretty frame or even a screen saver of all your favorite images from Pinterest- I love this option because I create a rotating series of inspiration boards to keep me going.
Write a daily gratitude list
A daily gratitude list is really helpful to shift your focus and help you appreciate the situation. It doesn’t have to be long, a few sentences will do. If you keep a gratitude journal, you can also look back on your previous entries whenever you need a little boost of happiness and motivation.
Wear your pretty clothes
Don’t save the cute new shirt for “something special,” you needing to feel good is THE “something special.” With your most powerful, wonderful and pretty clothes on, you’ll feel like a goddess for the rest of the day.
Take a hot bath
This is my go-to when it’s been a really rough day. I don’t know if I get any thinking done while I’m prone with a washcloth over my face and the bathroom door locked so my son can’t keep stumbling in. But after, I’m limp and relaxed enough to sleep, whether I want to of not. Plus, an evening bath may be the best way to relax because of this simple fact – you can’t take your work and your computer with you.
Do something silly
Most people would interpret this as an elaborate gag or practical joke. I simply learned a pile of really lame knock-knock jokes. They still crack everyone up, maybe simply because they are so stupid. (Editor’s note: there’s a big ol’ bunch of them right here.)
Accept a little clutter and mess
Some dust and a little dirt has never hurt anyone. Focus on what’s important to you, you can always clean up the mess later. This only works if you can overlook it, like The Todd, I will only add the mess to my spiraling anxieties and it only gets worse. You know your comfort level.
(Image credit: Gage Skidmore)
Kevin Bacon’s Passing Out Blankets At The SLC Rescue Mission. Kevin Bacon was in town for the Sundance Film Festival, and he took a drive down the canyon- not to meet with the “Beautiful People,” but to hand out blankets at the Salt Lake Rescue Mission as part of his ongoing charity, 6Degrees.org. Because he’s awesome like that.
You can hear the whole story here on The Todd and Erin Daily Stream.
New Resolutions Series – The Secrets To Your Success. In our New Resolutions series, if one of yours is building your career, Dan Young from PC Laptops is here to tell you how.
Imagine bringing your son from North Carolina for a holiday visit, and the high altitude here in Utah sparks headaches so violent that a trip to the ER reveals he has brain cancer… just in time for treatment. It’s a miracle. There’s a GoFundMe account raising money for his treatments, you can find it here.
What Do You Do When Things Fall Apart? What do you do when things fall apart? I mean, everything in your life is in pieces? Kirk Bentzgen- owner of the massive Performance Auto- is my favorite story of how to come back when everything looks utterly bleak.
How do you come back from divorce, losing your business, losing your father and getting brain cancer? This man is a hero, and his path back is a great guidebook for all of us struggling with loss. Watch and be inspired.
Need more uplifting stories?
Gentle ways to care for yourself during busy and stressful times- find it here.
Do you know someone who has overcome unimaginable odds to find happiness again? We’d love to talk to them- please email me at Erin@thetoddanderindailystream.com
You Can’t Come Home For Christmas? I’ll Come To You. When you’re new to your position, you get all the “non-popular” shifts, like the holidays. As for flight attendant Pierce Vaughan, she was unfortunately scheduled to work through Christmas Eve and Christmas.
Her dad Hal was not thrilled with this news, and decided that if she couldn’t join the family for Christmas, he would join her. So he mapped out all her flights- six in total- over the two days and booked a seat for each one.
Mike Levy happened to be on the first leg and seated next to Hal. After hearing the whole, sweet story he had to post about it on Facebook. Since then, the story’s been shared tens of thousands of times. Pierce also followed up on social media, since everyone was dying to find out how it all worked out. It was a challenging schedule, and when you’re on a “buddy pass,” like Hal was, you’re one of the first to get bumped if the flight was full. Here’s what she wrote:
“Dad’s first trip using his benefits was a success! A special thanks to all of the patient, wonderful gate agents around the country and my perfect crew. He made it on every flight and even got first class RSW-DTW (Christmas miracle).
Shoutout to Mike Levy for being a great first class passenger & helping us to understand how cool this actually is!”
I’m always filled with happiness when I see a family so devoted to each other.
(Image credit via Flickr: Simpleinsomnia)
5 Fresh Ways To Celebrate New Year’s Eve. Erin here… I have to be honest–years of hosting New Year’s Eve events as a radio “personality” leaves me with a loathing for the Big Drunken Bar Fest. It’s depressing being the only sober one in the room and trying to give away prizes to people too drunk to remember their name, much less read the teeny tiny numbers on their winning tickets. Maybe you’re just looking for something different because you’re different–you’re a mom now, or you’re newly single. Here’s some ideas I found poking around New Year’s Eve celebrations across the globe. (Editor’s note: stop by our Amazon.com page– I’ve picked out affordable options to help you enjoy all of these traditions.)
5 FRESH WAYS TO CELEBRATE NEW YEAR’S EVE
(photo credit: The Style PA)
1. Wear Red Lingerie: In Italy it is considered good luck to wear read underwear and lingerie on New Year’s Eve. It is believed that wearing something red will give you good luck in love and relationships in the year to come.
(photo credit: Peter Mooney)
2. Run: you don’t have to be training for a marathon to want to be stronger and leaner in 2019. What better way to bring in the New Year than while exercising? If you can run outside, bring a group of like minded friends and champagne in the water bottle. My friend Cheryl snow shoes through the forest with her family to greet the New Year in utter, perfect silence.
(photo credit: Charlie G)
3. Jump: in Denmark they have a tradition of climbing onto a chair and jumping off at the stroke of midnight. How about going a little bigger? Jump into a (heated) pool or body of water. Jump without fear into the New Year and all the adventures you’ll bring with it.
(photo credit: Quazle)
4. Get Rid of Loose Ends: one of the many traditions of New Year’s celebrations in Vietnam, is a purging of unfinished business. Return all things you’ve borrowed and pay off any debts you can. Start off the new year with a clean slate.
(photo credit: Chrls Blakely)
5. Burn, Baby Burn: pick up flash paper from a local magic shop or order online from here. Write your worries, troubles, frustrations and things you want to leave behind as you head into the New Year. Light and throw into a big pan or barrel–they flash white light with a very satisfying “whoosh!” as your troubles disappear along with 2018.
Our personal New Year’s Eve tradition? We use sky lanterns-write down a worry or trouble you want to leave behind from 2018, and a new wish or goal for 2019. Your worries fly away to be consumed by the flame-and your wishes are marked down by Fate to come true. (Obligatory warning: we of course check with the local fire department wherever we do this to make sure we’re following local regulations.)
About Todd & Erin
Twenty years of marriage, three kids, an emotionally needy Portuguese waterdog and the long-running Todd and Erin Show - we're about as Utah as you can get. The Todd is the master DIY genius that might save you or sink the boat. Erin is the Comic Con regular with celebrity chats and film and entertainment news. Be sure to enter our weekly $100.00 gift card giveaway - everyone deserves a little extra luxury in their lives, and we're here to give it to you, missy! Stick around, let's be friends. Life is good here!