Category: Lifestyle

How Family is Who You Love, Not Who You’re Related To

Family is traditionally defined as a group of people closely related to one another either by adoption, blood or marriage. Family can also be your extended family. Traditionally, family is your parents and your siblings, however, and most people will also have some extended family members. This means your grandparents, aunts, uncles, nieces/nephews, and cousins. 

Family, however, is not limited to people you’re related to by blood. Family can also be people you feel are kindred spirits and a close-knit group of people bound by love and friendship. Family is always who you love, not who you’re related to.

The idea of family being who you’re related to has caused many people harm because not all families are good families. Some families are abusive, manipulative, and dysfunctional. Such a family can make one feel lonely and deserted, especially since we live in a society full of mostly nuclear families. This makes people think that once their nuclear family isn’t loving, they have no family. This is not true. Family is much more than blood, and you can make your family. You can create your own family with people and friends you love. To create a good, happy and healthy family, you’ll need these qualities.

Qualities of a Happy and Healthy Family

  1. Patience – Patience is necessary for a good family. Members of the family should be patient with each other. Patience is a way to show love. Even when they’re being annoying be patient and wait it out. Patience is the best way to show love.
  1. Kindness – Being kind doesn’t equal being nice all the time or saying yes to all demands. Being kind means being considerate, friendly and generous towards members of your family.
  1. Peace – Peace is necessary for a healthy family. Arguments, noise and rage are things that we do not find enjoyable. Of course there’ll be arguments, but members of a family should never feel unloved or despised after a fight. Even when you argue you should still know that you are loved.
  1. Joy – Choosing joy in all situations. Tough times don’t last, but tough people do.
  1. Love – Show love through devotion, kindness, patience and sacrifice. Love must be shown through action. It’s not enough to say you love someone you have to show you love someone. Love is not disrespectful, and love doesn’t disregard your boundaries. Love doesn’t give an ultimatum, and love does not hurt.

Other qualities include being gentle and having self-control. If you’re in a traditional family where you’re being abused, belittled, manipulated or disregarded, then that is not your family. Those are simply people you are related to by blood. Family must have these qualities. A healthy family should be a safe space from all the trials in the world. If your family produces all your trials, then they are not the best family for you.

Of course, it’s difficult to cut off from your traditional family, and it may hurt, but you must do what it is best for you. Family isn’t always blood. It’s the people in your life who show you love, who show that they want you in their life. People who respect you and love you.

Best Record Stores to Visit in the US

Once upon a time there used to be lines of record stores everywhere you looked but that was once upon a time. Now record stores are not as common as they used to be, their numbers have dwindled. This decrease was caused by the rise of the digital era. Many people Have switched to downloading and streaming their music leaving the once crowded record store to be not so crowded. 

Although most people may prefer listening to music through streaming sites or downloading them there are still music fans who love and treasure the sound of records. If you are one of those music fans or you just love the nostalgia records give, here are the 5 best record stores to visit in the US.

Waterloo Records

 Location: 600 N. Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78703, USA

 Waterloo Records, the independent store has been at the forefront of Austin’s music since it was open in 1982. Its name “Waterloo Records” was gotten from back when Austin was called Waterloo. When visiting Austin Waterloo is a must-stop for music fans looking for quality records with a long catalog to browse through. They are also always stocked up with the new and latest releases from Austin’s bands. They hold in-store performances by hosting different artistic which gets the place packed. They get even more traffic during their Vinyl Happy Hour which is held every Tuesday. No other store music store can beat Waterloo when it comes to its line of vinyl and CDs cement its place as a must-stop. Visit them online at waterloorecords.com/Store/.

Gramaphone Records

Location: 2843 N. Clark Street, Chicago IL 60657

The store has been opened since 1969 and is arguably considered the pillar of Chicago’s dance music. The store has a large customer base consisting of techno dorks and Chicago house revivalists. They offer other genres but they focus on house music and have a collection of house labels. Learn more about the store at gramaphonerecords.com/.

Vintage Vinyl

 Location: ​6610 DELMAR ST. LOUIS MO 63130 

The store is known for its wonderful indoor shows and sometimes free beer. It is also known as of of the best record curator in the middle east. The store sees a consumer base consisting of rockers and bluesmen. Learn more about the store at vintagevinyl.com.

Louisiana Music Factory

 Location: 421 Frenchmen St, New Orleans, LA 70116

The store first opened in 1992 and along with selling amazing records and hosting life brass bands the store also has a strong history. It survived through hurricane Katrina and was still the first record store to reopen in its city. Learn more at louisianamusicfactory.com.

Electric Fetus 

 Location: 12 E Superior St, Duluth, MN 55802 (Duluth) -2000 S 4th Ave, Minneapolis, MN 55404 (Minneapolis)

Next on this list and having one of the craziest names is Electric Fetus. The store opened in 1968 and although its name might be considered as one of the most terrible business names the store itself is still going strong. Maybe it’s the curiosity that draws people in it but this store has had some celebrities as customers being one of Prince’s favorite record stores. The store claims to have something for all kinds of music fans giving it its diversity in customers. They sell used records but their shops also sell close. It is also known for its streaker sale where the customers are allowed to take whatever they want as long as they are shopping naked. Learn more at electricfetus.com.

Do note that some of these shops may be closed if you plan on visiting during COVID-19 but you can always get a vinyl subscription. This way you can get your vinyl shipped to you where ever you are.

Why You Should Get Health Insurance if you’re Under 40

So I started writing this piece, and all of a sudden, everything wiped out. Luckily I’m smart. Let’s see what I can come up with. 

So you feel because you’re not up to forty, you do not need to get yourself insurance. Don’t fool yourself, please. There are several reasons why you need to get yourself insurance. Let me try listing them out for you.

List of reasons why you need to get yourself health insurance before you get to forty.

Health insurance is not just for you.

Yes, you may feel young, healthy, like Iron Man even. When you feel these ways, you don’t think you need to get yourself health insurance. You don’t have diabetes or HIV, and you feel like there’s no point in actually getting yourself health insurance. Well, we are not the master of the universe. Anything can happen at any time. You understand. There are people in their mid-twenties that have slumped and died. Do you know that? So this health insurance is not just for you. It is for you, your friends and your family. 

It is not as difficult as it seems.

Many people are scared of going to hospitals, getting joined into the health insurance schemes, and the number of funds they would need to pay to start up with their health insurance plans. Well, there are people that, because of one thing or the other, they have ways that the number of funds they would need to pay would get reduced to a lower cost. They end up enjoying the same things other people want, and at the same time, if anything horrible happens to them, they get covered using their health insurance.

You end up living with peace of mind.  

Do you know what peace of mind is? Knowing that if anything goes wrong with you medically, your health insurance is going to pick you up and clean you up like the lovely person you are. But without it, imagine you need surgery or something important just like that, and you don’t have, you know, the necessary resources to cover up for everything. Where would you pick up or start from? Guy, it doesn’t matter your age or the healthy genes in your family. This is 2021. People are dying by the minute. We all need to do our best to survive. However, no one is getting out of this alive, but still. As we’re going and healthy so, we can try to live better lives. 

You would go through hell if you end up needing health insurance and you didn’t subscribe before.

Not literally hell, but. I mean suffering. Because I don’t get it, you have all you need. Like you have the resources to get yourself health insurance, you don’t want to? Why though? If you don’t have the resources, that’s different. I hope we end up making the right decisions. 

Pros and Cons of the Micro-Housing Trend

Having the necessary vision and knowledge on how you would like to downsize to about four hundred square feet, there are Pros to Micro Housing. The entire Micro housing trend has been around for quite a while. This also article is going to talk about the Pros and the Cons of the Micro-Housing Trend. But before then, we would give a brief definition of what Micro Housing or Micro units are. 

Definition of Micro Units 

This is for people that have not heard about the trend yet. Micro housing units are usually two hundred and fifty to four hundred square foot living apartments. These are rising in the districts. We have bedroom condominiums and typical studio apartments which are about five hundred square feet. We have beautiful micro-units that are created to merge all the amenities available in your apartment to stay comfortably in a small space. By surprise, most of these have all the necessary properties that a typical unit used for a living would have. They have things like the usual dryer, enough space for you to keep a large bed in, it also has enough space for you to put in all your kitchen appliances. 

Pros of the Micro-Housing Trend 

In matters related to having an apartment and fully living in the city, what type of living space is seen to be too small? For a lot of people honestly, they desire and choose to live in a cute small little apartment. Due to a lot living in a small space was just done out of choice at instances where they had to attend college or stay in a boarding house. The demand for living in town continues to increase by the day. What people get to enjoy from living in this type of apartment is that they get to have peace of mind, there’s usually no one following people that live in micro-housing units. You get to enjoy your life as you desire. Nothing fancy or flamboyant. Just peace and good vibes. You have all you need in your micro-housing space. We are humans, how much space can we take on alone. 

Cons of the Micro-Housing Trend 

There are lots of people that love to live a big life. You know the large lifestyle. These types of people would not enjoy living in a Micro apartment. They would feel uncomfortable at every point in time. This case is way worse if they are living in this micro-apartment with family members or with friends out of their choice or out of their will. They would get irritable at every little thing you do. Though it is not their choice to live in these types of apartments, they would feel entitled and claim they own the space and before you know, innocent you that simply don’t have a choice but you have to be there would feel highly uncomfortable. These are the sad parts of the micro-housing trends.

Tired of TV? Learn 3 Simple Songs on Acoustic Guitar

Learning how to play the guitar is a fun and rewarding experience. If you’re currently learning how to croon your favorite tunes but feel stuck then this article is just for you. Acoustic vintage guitars are great for learning songs. This is because they are easy to learn and with enough dedication, it can be mastered. We have compiled a list of songs from different genres to give you a wide variety of options. Here are songs you can learn on your acoustic vintage guitar.

Popular Songs

These are popular songs you might have heard and want to try. They are also easy to learn. Three popular songs you can learn on your acoustic guitar are:

  • Stay with Me by Sam Smith
  • Let Her Go by Passenger
  • Riptide by Vance Joy

Love Songs

Acoustic guitars are a go-to for serenading and singing cute love songs. These are love songs you can learn on your acoustic guitar.

  • Sweet Caroline by Neil Diamond
  • Just the Way You Are by Bruno Mars
  • Love Story by Taylor Swift

Guitar Songs

We also have songs that were originally played on a guitar for you to learn. These are songs that have background music produced by acoustic guitars.

  • The Only Exception by Paramore
  • Creep by Radiohead
  • Thinking Out Loud by Ed Sheeran

Kids Songs

If you’re teaching a kid how to play the acoustic guitar then you’ll need slow and simple songs that repeat their chords quite often so it’s easy for them to grasp. Our selection includes nursery rhymes because it’s much easier to teach them songs they are already familiar with.

  • Mary Had A Little Lamb
  • London Bridge is Falling Down
  • Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Christmas Songs

Another easy way to get comfortable and familiar with the guitar is by learning Christmas songs. These are familiar tunes and you’ll be a lot more comfortable with them. Here are our picks.

  • We Wish You a Merry Christmas
  • All I Want for Christmas is You
  • Jingle Bells

Bonus Songs

Here are a couple of bonus songs you might try out for fun. These songs may be challenging but they are fun to try

  • I Walk the Line – Johnny Cash
  • Smells Like Teen Spirit by Nirvana
  • Viva La Vida by Coldplay

These are our picks for beginners learning to play acoustic vintage guitars. When learning to play a song there are mainly two ways you can do this.

Learn By Ear

This is when you listen to the song several times and try to pick out the chords. You listen till you pick out the first chord and then you play it, you do the same for the second, and third, till you learn the entire song. This can be stressful for a beginner so the second method may be preferable for you.

Learn Through a Tutorial

When you learn how to play a song through a tutorial you’re following a tutorial you found or seeking the guidance of a teacher. You don’t have to figure out the chords yourself, you simply follow the instructions given by the teacher. This is very helpful for beginners who may not be familiar with chords or any acoustic guitar terms.

Here are some tips to help you while you learn.

  • When selecting a song to learn make sure you find a clear version.
  • When selecting a song you must find a live or acoustic version by the artist. This is very helpful especially if the artist also plays the acoustic guitar in the song. This way you’ll be able to follow more clearly without getting distracted by the production of the music.
  • If you’re getting confused by the chords and vintage guitar strings try labeling them till they are familiar.

Where to Buy a Guitar

If you’re looking to purchase quality vintage guitars then you should visit Gruhn or Carter Vintage in Nashville. If you want a newer guitar on a smaller budget, you can try places like Amazon or Guitar Center.

Modular Homes versus Mobile Homes: Which is Better?

For a lot of people, purchasing a home is a very important life and financial milestone. But as you search for the best house, you’ll hear people talking about things like manufactured, modular, and site-built homes.

What’s the Difference Between These Three Types of Homes?

As expected, site-built homes are the types of homes that are constructed completely in place. These homes are built from specifications gotten to create them to the last piece. From the foundation to putting the last light bulb. Everything gets assembled on the site.

Secondly, manufactured and modular homes are created in factories. These homes are merged in sections, and then they get transported to the site of the home using flatbed trucks. Here they are merged following a plan that was originally organized by constructors. You could settle and customize your home, because it is created in sections. You could have your home look like whatever you might want. It could be any size too.

Manufactured apartments are also created in factories. But these are created completely before they get transported on their frames or chases, and they get transported using their wheels. These are more difficult to create, but still you could have your manufactured apartment delivered in days.

Both manufactured and modular homes could be more affordable than site-built apartments. Though there are some essential differences and one needs to take them into account before one decides to choose between manufactured homes and modular homes.

Modular Homes

On a good day, modular homes get the same treatments as homes built on sites. Though these are merged from built sections individually, they are organized using a traditional foundation. Also, these modular homes are inspected structurally by professionals, and they all have to follow local building codes.

One can customize a modular home. These changes aren’t so available if you want to make use of a home that is created at a site.

You can get a large number of people to manufacture your modular home. Here you can look at the size of the apartment, the construction timing, and the layout too. Most times, these modular homes take a shorter time to complete building than when you compare this time to that of the real site home. These modular homes are known as real properties. Simply like the site-built homes, buyers have the same options to finance in both cases. The legal rights and protections are the same as the treatment of tax.

Manufactured Homes

A manufactured home is created completely in a factory, and then when it is ready, it gets delivered to the site of your home, making use of steel chassis and its wheels. These wheels would get removed, but these chassis most times aren’t. From the past, these homes are mostly known as trailer homes or mobile homes.

For the question on which is better, it all depends on which type you desire, your needs, and your budget.

Real Christmas Tree vs. Artificial Tree: Which is Better?

Christmas trees are the centerpiece for celebrations on Christmas. As consumers became more tuned with the environment, they all started thinking about which purchase is smarter and more eco-friendly – a real Christmas tree vs. an artificial Christmas tree. Which is better?

Cutting down trees is like reducing forests that are already depleted. But artificial trees are made using plastic and these aren’t green in any way.

So now the question is, which is better in a system where one always has to think about the environmental factors and to think about artificial and real Christmas trees. The main thing is your choice. For you to get the tree which you personally prefer.

How Friendly to the Environment are Real Trees for Christmas?

There isn’t a contest. You should know that the real trees are more friendly to the environment than the artificial ones, because you can recycle them.

A lot of people get fake ones because it is more convenient for them, and there’s a long myth which states that cutting trees isn’t cool for the environment. But most times that’s just a lie. If you see any real Christmas tree from a forest, make sure you avoid them. Christmas trees are best from a farmed crop that gets safely harvested, and it’ll make ways for new crops in the next year.

And over time, as these trees continue to grow, they create habitats for animals. They aid in the conversion of carbon dioxide to oxygen. They also help to hold soil in a particular place on the roots to stop erosion. These would all make these green choices better ones to go by.

What About Fake Christmas Trees?

Fake trees are created using polyvinyl chloride, also known as PVC. These are metal and plastic pieces that take a thousand years to deteriorate in landfills. But natural trees would simply go back to nature in the decay process. It can also get repurposed for a second use.

After Christmas passes, these real trees could get recycled. Some places gather these trees and convert them to mulch or turn them into ponds or local lakes where fishes can grow in peace.

The issues with fake trees can be compared to those from straws and plastic bags. They just sit and waste space, contaminating the Earth. These have made some clients change their consumption habits.

This could shock you but almost 82 percent of trees displayed are artificial, and that is the amount proportionately that people purchase more. These details are from a survey done by American Tree for Christmas Association.

At the end of the day, it is your choice to purchase whichever type of tree you prefer for Christmas.

Best Christmas Gift Ideas for Teens

We’re getting closer to the season of love and sharing. This is the best time to plan for what you should give to every important person in your life. Do you have a teenager in your family that you think really deserves a show of love? Have you been wondering what the best gift is that you can give to them? Relax, you’re in the right place.

In this article, I’ll give you a list of the best Christmas gift ideas for teens that will fill your teenager’s face with total joy and gladness. Your gift is most likely going to make their Christmas better than anyone they’ve had before.

1. Tiny gold heart necklace

Everyone loves a beautifully shining necklace. To make your teen feel loved and think about you every time, you should give them one shaped in the form of a heart. Their Christmas would be made to the fullest.

2. Instax mini 9 camera

This is another way to keep yourself in your favorite teen’s mind for a long time. This mini camera will follow them everywhere they go this Christmas. They’ll love to take pictures of all the beautiful events that they attend. The best part about this camera is that it comes in an all-pink version, which I’m sure your princess would dearly love.

3. The NFL pull-over football hoodie

If your teen loves football, they’ll love this one with all their heart. Get them a hoodie of their favorite football team to wear whenever they want to see a football match.

4. Lego F.R.I.E.N.D.S.

This one is much younger than teens from twelve to fourteen. Building with Legos is always a pleasure. What better way to keep them busy and loved at the same time than to give them this box of goodness. Before you get them this gift, you must make sure they’re Lego fans. Although I’m very sure they’d love it even if they weren’t, they’d appreciate it better that way.

5. Karaoke Bluetooth microphone

For every teen that loves to sing, get them this beautiful microphone so that they can have all the fun singing away in their room. They’ll be grateful to you. In fact, I can assure you that the mere sight of the microphone will leave them with a broad smile for a long time.

6. Hydro flask

After the holidays come resumption of schooling activities. They’ll pray for the holidays to be over so that they can quickly show this to their friends. The flask is gorgeous in its entirety, and the best part is, it keeps cold water cold and warm water warm.

7. Beautiful printed vests and shirts

You can have anything printed on the shirt. To make this one even more fascinating, you can buy a plain shirt and have something funny, witty, or beautiful written on it. They’d light up with joy when they see a new addition to their wardrobe.

These are only a few of the fantastic things you can get for them this Christmas. I’m pretty sure these can never go wrong.

Worst Beauty Products by Companies that Test on Animals

We all know that most of the products we use on our bodies ranging from drugs to ordinary things like soaps, are not tested on actual human beings before they’re released out for sale. Beauty products that are going to be used by human beings should be made free from every possible chemical (like the products from 100% Pure) so that they can be tested on humans before they’re sent out for sale.

In this article, we’re going to look at some of the worst beauty products that are produced by companies that test their products on animals. Follow me through this article, and you might dump a few beauty products that you’ve been stuck with.

1. New York Lash Stiletto Ultimate Length Mascara by Maybelline

Maybelline is one of the famous names in the American cosmetic market. They’ve been known to be cruelty-free (meaning that they don’t test their products on animals) for years until they recently released news that they’re now going to be testing their products on animals. This is probably because they’re moving the market to China, where every product has to be tested on animals.

In one honest review by a customer, she claims that she “hates” Maybelline mascara, but “hate” is a strong word.

2. Sugar Sugar by Revlon

Revlon is another company that is not cruelty-free and still puts out terrible products. One customer stated that the Revlon Sugar Sugar lip topping is a waste of money. Another one claims that the product feels like having sugar in your lips, sticky and annoying. Another angry customer says the product is tasteless, to begin with, and that the name is misleading.

In my opinion, if they tested this product on real humans, they could have done better with it.

3. Healthy Skin Glow Sheers by Neutrogena

Although Neutrogena claims that they’re working on being completely cruelty-free, they still test some of their products on animals where required by the government. This is mainly due to their entry into the Chinese market.

One customer, in a review, said that their Healthy Skin Glow Sheers is a total “…waste of money” and isn’t worth the hype. Another customer said she was excited to buy the product until she realized that the foundation actually made her face excessively oily against her hopes.

4. Micro Liner Ultra Fine Lining Pencil by L’Oreal Paris

L’Oreal Paris still tests their products on animals when they’re required to do so by the government. We all know that they’re new entrants into the Chinese market, and it is why they have to test on animals. They claim to do everything possible to ensure that they’re cruelty-free soon.

Their lining pencil has gotten lots and lots of bad reviews from people who have actually used them. One customer stated that “…the color was so light…” And it didn’t feel or look like she even had anything on her face.

These are just a few of the numerous terrible products by companies that still test on animals.

Which Evening News Has the Highest Ratings?

In recent times, the age-long American tradition of watching the evening news has been revamped. This was dwindling in the past as many Americans got the news in various ways other than the evening news. However, since the pandemic started and various states instituted lockdown, families have been drawn more to television, and getting their evening news through this avenue.

There are various stations like CNN, Fox, and ABC that have evening news with different ratings. In this article, we are going to discuss the evening news with the highest ratings.

Evening News with the Highest Ratings

The hike in ratings of the evening news is due greatly to the COVID-19 pandemic, it has forced people to be cooped up in their houses without much to do and a longing to know what is happening all around the world and in the country. The craving for information has drastically increased and this has contributed to the tremendous increase in TV news viewership.

News stations are experiencing their highest numbers in a very long time. Fox News is being viewed by the greatest number of people since its inception, also CNN, MSNBC are experiencing 168 percent and 24 percent more viewership respectively.

This wave of increased viewership is not isolated to evening news as even morning news shows are having increased viewership. CBS recorded it’s most-watched show in the 21st century this year with “60 Minutes,” a program by CBS and is rated as one of the top programs shown weekly.

National evening news is all the rave these days, the major stations that broadcast evening news have been recording a monumental increase in viewership. Some of them are:

World News Tonight: This is evening news broadcasted by ABC, it is receiving the highest ratings out of all evening news, it is also regarded as the most-watched evening news, it has about 12 million viewers. This is the highest since the beginning of this century.

Nightly News: This is broadcasted by NBC, it is the second-highest evening news in terms of ratings. It is popularly regarded as NBC Nightly News. It has about eleven million viewers, this is arguably the highest since the early 2000s.

CBS Evening News: This is broadcasted by CBS, it has a viewership of about eight million people. These ratings are great as evening news is now considered one of the most-watched categories of programs in the U.S. these days. This was not the case before the pandemic. Perhaps the upcoming presidential election is a major factor leading to this increased ratings.

These ratings may not be as high as the ones from the 1980s, but it is high compared to the ones since the boom of online news. The internet could be said to have been detrimental to viewership of cable news, and this invariably led to the steep decline in cable news viewership. Wil these ratings continue to increase, or this is just a one-time thing due to the coronavirus pandemic and the presidential election?