Social Wallaby https://socialwallaby.com Interesting. Fun. Intelligent. Simply Great Articles. Sun, 10 Nov 2019 09:57:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2 https://socialwallaby.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/cropped-Favicon-1-32x32.png Social Wallaby https://socialwallaby.com 32 32 5 Reasons Why Too Much Social Media Is Bad For Teens https://socialwallaby.com/2019/10/28/5-reasons-why-too-much-social-media-is-bad-for-teens/ Mon, 28 Oct 2019 10:43:58 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=1096 When kids ask their parents to buy them smartphones, mom and dad usually feel like they have no choice but to comply. After all, every kid in the classroom has one!   Now that the kids have the latest smartphone; it’s time for them to download Facebook, Instagram, and What’s app and enter the world […]

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When kids ask their parents to buy them smartphones, mom and dad usually feel like they have no choice but to comply. After all, every kid in the classroom has one!

 

Now that the kids have the latest smartphone; it’s time for them to download Facebook, Instagram, and What’s app and enter the world of social media in all its glory and with all its pros and cons. But are smartphones good for kids? And what about them spending all day on social media?

 

social media

 

Developing Brain

It’s a well-known fact that the human brain is still forming during teenhood. For that matter, the information going in should be positive and create positive habits and not negative ones. It’s far better for teenagers to engage in sports or spend time in nature, and not to sit like zombies in their smartphones swapping pictures, watching YouTube and trolling. The midbrain of teenagers is just organizing itself in these formative years, and ten hours per day in front of the screen is not great for that. And that’s not to mention the numerous behavioral issues such actions encourage.

brain black and white

 

Pure Entertainment 

The primary purpose of social media is networking. However, for the most part, social media platforms are a form of entertainment and not much more than that. No teenager is going to further their education much by sitting on social media all day. For that matter, neither Facebook nor Instagram will help that teen to better themselves in any real or will it likely open up job opportunities for them. When it comes to entertainment, not many things come close to competitive sports, enjoying a movie with the family or going on a camping trip with friends.

playing playstation

 

Negative Messages

For the most part, social media feeds teens a bunch of negative messages about life. In some social media sites, it’s all about posting pictures of your latest birthday present or capturing the best image of teens looking wealthy while away on vacation. Got 2,328 Facebook “friends?” how many of them are real friends, and how many of them have you ever met? Social media can stunt social growth and exploration for teenagers. Many teens who are really into social media seldom meet with friends face-to-face and simply spend all their time chatting online.

two friends talking

 

Addictive Habits 

Few things in life are more habit-forming than smartphones and social media platforms. It’s a proven fact that even the red notification icon – “you’ve got mail” – causes dopamine and serotonin in the brain to be released. This leads to “feel-good sensations,” and that keeps teens checking their phones for messages, sometimes up to hundreds or even thousands of times a day. Another bad habit that faces teens is that of continually posting pictures, usually selfies. Some teens also develop a type of “OCD” for checking their phones, just in case they missed a selfie or the latest post from a friend.

notification sign

 

Alternate Reality 

 Many teens who are seriously involved with social media often inhabit what can only be described as an “alternate reality.” While they should be concentrating on their studies during the day, they should also be hanging out with friends and doing all the usual things that teens do (or did before Smartphones were invented). Many teens only can function properly where their smartphones are concerned, while others have only online friends and no real ones. Teens need to inhabit reality in a healthy way and interact with life unplugged, lest they miss out on what life is really all about

water reflection

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Tips To Make Your Child Feel Nothing But Loved https://socialwallaby.com/2019/10/28/tips-to-make-your-child-feel-nothing-but-loved/ Mon, 28 Oct 2019 10:19:14 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=1086 While some parents find themselves in a rut, constantly telling their kids off and shouting, others take a more mindful approach to parenting.    Once the kids are asleep, after all the arguments, bribes, and shouting, many parents sit down for the first time all day and reflect. Those who take parenting seriously will ask […]

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While some parents find themselves in a rut, constantly telling their kids off and shouting, others take a more mindful approach to parenting. 

 

Once the kids are asleep, after all the arguments, bribes, and shouting, many parents sit down for the first time all day and reflect. Those who take parenting seriously will ask themselves questions like “was I nice to my kids today?” “Did I empower them with my words today or weaken them?” While these are great questions, the answers are often a lot harder to come by.

Here are five tips parents can use to make sure they’re the best mommy or daddy they can be.

 

Positive Messaging

One of the most important things a parent can do is to give their kids healthy, positive messages on a regular basis. Statements like “You can always count on me in any situation,” “I’m so grateful to have you as my child,” and “To me, you are totally amazing – inside and out.” Statements like these, said to kids and teenagers as they mature, are the first vital step to positive parenting, and more importantly, to give kids confidence in their abilities. In turn, most kids and teens who get constant positive messaging from their parents go on to become functional and positive parents themselves in later years.

 

believe in yourself

 

Giving Self-Esteem

One of the hardest issues facing teens these days is the issue of low self-esteem. Low self-esteem affects boys and girls equally and is a terrible thing to live with. Possibly one of the most important things a parent can do for their kids is to fill them with a sense of high, healthy self-esteem and not to be down about themselves. Low self-esteem can be implanted into the minds of kids and teens if the right encouragement isn’t given to them. Without turning them into a “golden child,” honest and timely encouragement and compliments are the keys to ensuring a healthy upbringing for any child.

 

girl dressed up

 

Staying Positive 

Another vital tip for good parenting is to stay positive with your kids, no matter what. Life is filled with trials and tribulations and is seldom an easy thing. The more positive you can keep things with your kids, the better. Words of encouragement, as mentioned in the previous tip, are vital as are positive vibes as often as possible. Little Jimmy failed his math test? Never mind, that new private tutor is going to help him out. Little Sarah didn’t make the lacrosse team? That’s alright; there are more trials next year. In other words, always attempt to keep a positive attitude when it comes to the hard times in life. Your kids will most likely take away the right messages to set them up for later in life.

think positive

 

Strong Connection

Maintaining a secure connection with your kids is all-important. And while that sounds intuitive and logical, many parents inadvertently miss the mark with this. There are few things more empowering than keeping a strong connection with your kids, and that includes teenagers, no matter how much they are out or how much they rebel. Power struggles and arguments ensue when that strong and vital parent/child connection is broken or non-existent in the first place. Sit with your kids of an evening, interact with them, ask them about their day. Ask them to tell you three good things that happened that day. As you’ll soon see, the results are astounding.

 

father and child

 

Making Time

In the modern era in which we live, life can get busy, very busy. Unfortunately, that often translates to a breakdown in communication between parents and their kids, and problems often spiral from there. No matter how hard you work or how much housework you do, making quality time available to spend with your kids is key to their healthy development into adulthood. Going for a walk in the park or nature or eating breakfast together daily without fail is a good place to start. Few things in life are more important than spending wholesome and quality time with your kids, no matter their age.

family walking together

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5 Reasons Why Millennials Are Choosing Not To Have Kids https://socialwallaby.com/2019/10/27/5-reasons-why-millennials-are-choosing-not-to-have-kids/ Sun, 27 Oct 2019 15:44:42 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=1058 The trials and tribulations of parenthood are considered par for the course by most when it comes to having kids. With that said, there are reasons why so many Millennials are opting out of parenthood and following their dreams. The survival of the human species isn’t exactly a priority for most Millennials. That’s evidenced by […]

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The trials and tribulations of parenthood are considered par for the course by most when it comes to having kids. With that said, there are reasons why so many Millennials are opting out of parenthood and following their dreams.

teenagers take a selfie

The survival of the human species isn’t exactly a priority for most Millennials. That’s evidenced by the fact that the number of children born in the USA is currently at its lowest level in more than three decades. That’s terrible news, and the truth is that the decrease is mostly down to Millennials and their attitudes to having kids. We’re taking a look at five reasons why Millennials are opting out of parenthood.

 

Cost of Living

These days life is expensive, especially in the west. With all the best will in the world, some Millennials simply feel like they can’t afford to have kids, and they probably aren’t that far off the mark. Sure, with enough sacrifice having kids is an option. However, many Millennials have been raised to believe that they’re at the center of the world, and kids are nothing but an annoyance, especially financially. Many Millennials battle daily to pay off their college loans, and that fact means they can’t realistically entertain the option of the kids, or so they assume.

Wallet with bills

 

Priorities Changing

The modern world is full of innovations and new ideas that bombard most of us daily. Whether it’s adverts for the latest and greatest Smartphone or social media posts that need to be followed or liked, the last thing on most Millennials’ minds is having kids. Many younger people want to travel the world and see the sights. However, in order to do that, they need to save up for a long time, even years to make such a trip happen. Those who are “child-free by choice” claim to know what they’re doing and are in no hurry to hear the patter of little feet. These days, peoples’ priorities are changing, and that change needs to be understood and managed correctly.

 

Career Focus 

Many Millennials love kids, at least according to surveys which have been carried out in recent years. For example, while some Millennials choose not to have kids, they choose careers that require them to be involved with children in one way or another. Some Millennials love kids and make great aunts and uncles’ even if they don’t want little ones of their own. It doesn’t stand to reason that Millennials mysteriously dislike children, even if they make a life choice not to have them. It’s also worth mentioning that Millennials reserve the right to have kids later in life, even if they have no plans to have any at the moment.

man with laptop

 

No Regrets

For the most part, Millennials claim to have zero regrets when it comes to the decision not to have kids. Obviously, these people need to be asked the question about kids again later in life, but most Millennials feel confident with their choices and don’t waste a bunch of time second-guessing themselves. There’s little choice other than to accept the reality that Millennials have chosen for themselves. At the same time, it’s worth trying to support their decision and not to fight against it. In that way, everyone loses.

woman looking at the view

 

Feeling Fulfilled

While parents feel their kids will miss out on life if they don’t have children of their own, Millennials feel precisely the same way about the sacrifices their parents made for them. And when it comes to the question of who will look after them in their old age, many Millennials have a backup plan, mainly in the form of money which they can use in retirement and not spend on their kids’ houses. With that said, many Millennials  report feelings of fulfillment in life from their endeavors and don’t feel that having kids would bring anything to the table. On the other hand, Millennials are unfamiliar with the special feelings of pride one gets from their kids, and in that regard, they cannot argue the other side of the coin conclusively.

couple laying

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5 Ways To Protect Your Family From ‘Virtual Kidnapping’ https://socialwallaby.com/2019/10/16/5-ways-to-protect-your-family-from-virtual-kidnapping/ Wed, 16 Oct 2019 10:36:24 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=989 In this day and age, one has to pull out all the stops to keep safe and secure online. From identity theft to credit card fraud and many things in between, so-called ‘virtual kidnappings’ are the latest scary online craze that parents have to face.     Incidents of virtual or ‘online’ kidnappings are on […]

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In this day and age, one has to pull out all the stops to keep safe and secure online. From identity theft to credit card fraud and many things in between, so-called ‘virtual kidnappings’ are the latest scary online craze that parents have to face.

 

silhouette

 

Incidents of virtual or ‘online’ kidnappings are on the rise, while various law enforcement agencies struggle to come to grips with the phenomenon. Virtual kidnappings are not real abductions, but leave the family member or members being called in a panic with threats of murder or even torture. Virtual kidnappings take place when scammers uncover personal information about people; usually members of the same family.

 

 

These scammers locate email addresses and phone numbers via social media and other sources and use that information to attempt to extort money from innocent people. One of the main tricks these less than scrupulous scammers pull is something called “spoofing.” They spoof or copy the phone number of a person and use it as their caller ID to contact another family member. When the person picks up the phone, the scammer tells them they have their son, daughter, father, mother, even grandmother, and threatens to hurt of murder them unless a ransom is paid immediately.

The good news is that there are steps one can take to protect their family and keep them safe from the threat of virtual kidnappings in cheap and easy ways.

 

Virtual Security

The first place to start when it comes to averting any kind of virtual kidnapping is by ensuring you have good quality, up-to-date internet security across all your devices. That also includes making sure you have a secure home network and no hackers in sight. Keep user names and passwords safe and never save them in your email inbox or drafts.

 

hacker

Secret Word

The next measure is to sit with your family (as opposed to emailing or texting them) and advise them of a secret ‘safe’ word that can be used in the event of a virtual kidnapping. If you ever receive a call from a would-be kidnapper, ask them to ask your child what the “secret word” is. This will put a stop to the scam before it gets any wind in its sails.

 

neon sign

Slow Down

In many cases, the family member who is supposed to have been kidnapped will be at work, school, or even just sitting in their bedroom. If you ever get a call from someone claiming to have abducted a loved one, slow things down. Talk calmly with them, as you search rooms at home or call your kid from another phone. Most of the time, that will be the end of the scam as soon as they realize you’re onto them.

 

 

Apply Pressure

Scammers are nervous as they know they are cloning the number they’re calling from and are on thin ice from the get-go. If you suspect you’re being scammed, especially if little Jimmy is tucked up in bed, apply some pressure on the scammer and get them on the back foot. Tell them you’re “triangulating” or “tracing” their call and will be at their place just as soon as possible. It might not be the truth, but it will have the scammer scrambling to end the call just in case you are tracing them.

 

 

Report The Crime

Even if you’re tempted to just leave the matter alone, safe in the knowledge that it was nothing more than an ill-conceived scam, report the crime. Stealing identities, let alone threatening the life of someone, is a crime that carries some severe penalties if prosecuted. Contact your local police department, the Internet Crime Complaint Center, or the Federal Trade Commission. They will offer advice on the next steps and will take their own steps to stop and apprehend the scammer.

 

police station sign

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4 Ways To Get Your Husband’s Attention Off His Gadgets And On The Kids https://socialwallaby.com/2019/10/16/4-ways-to-get-your-husbands-attention-off-his-gadgets-and-on-the-kids/ Wed, 16 Oct 2019 09:38:48 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=974 When the screen time becomes too much, and no amount of shouting or punishments suffice, it’s natural for parents to go with the “if you can’t beat them, join them” philosophy. However, that only makes matters worse as the whole family descends into the virtual abyss on their smartphones and other gadgets.   With all […]

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When the screen time becomes too much, and no amount of shouting or punishments suffice, it’s natural for parents to go with the “if you can’t beat them, join them” philosophy. However, that only makes matters worse as the whole family descends into the virtual abyss on their smartphones and other gadgets.

 

father and child

With all that said, there are some clever steps you can take to make sure, at the very least, that the man of the family is managing the smartphone (TV, PlayStation, Tablets, and all other gadgets included) crisis properly and responsibly. The fact that kids love screens is here to stay, but there are ways to get them to interact in the non-virtual world regularly. The first step is to put the subject on the table and talk about it as a family. These 4 tips are also a great place to start:

 

But Mom, But Dad!

The last thing any parent wants to be is a hypocrite, however hard it is to avoid that sometimes. The new reality of widespread smartphone use makes not being hypocritical a challenge, especially if you yourself are glued to your phone at any given time. Sadly, many parents have caught the smartphone bug, and that doesn’t bode well for the future; for them or the little ones. The first and foremost thing you need to do is to put that phone down and show your children that you are anything but addicted to it. You absolutely can’t be preaching to your kids about screen time when you yourself are stuck texting on it all day or playing Candy Crush. That also applies to dad, even if he does need to check important emails from work once in a while.

 

child with phone

Family Meeting

The next step is to call a civilized and calm family meeting in the living room to discuss the “changes” that are about to happen. You’d be surprised just how resilient kids can be, even when it comes to change. Explain to them that the screen time has gotten out of hand and that there are some new rules in town. The rules can be simple enough and, if followed, can still give everyone plenty of time on their gadget of choice. Limiting screen time as a family is a great place to start. Simply announce or even write on a black or whiteboard, the designated screen time hours at home, and those that are restricted to family time. Ensuring no smartphones from 7 pm until bedtime means the family gets to spend quality time together, eating dinner, playing a board game, or watching a movie.

 

 

family hug

 

Fair Rules

If you get too militant right from the get-go, things could come crashing down, and the new screen time plans could be in danger of failing. It’s essential to include the whole family in the discussion when it comes to making the house rules. It’s also advisable to be flexible and show you’re taking everyone’s suggestions seriously and in equal measure. When it comes to the husband in the family, unless something is really urgent, encourage him only to check the emails on his phone after the kids have gone to bed. When they’re dealt with, tempt him to the sofa with a warm cup of cocoa and a good movie to watch – no gadgets allowed!

 

 

red sign

Replacing Habits

One of the most powerful weapons in your arsenal when it comes to getting the family together for quality time is introducing new habits. The family may have been in a rut for months or even years, sheepishly peering at each other over their smartphone screen, but it’s never too late. Set aside a specific time to take the whole family to the cinema or to the bowling alley. Spend time hiking and doing treasure hunts in the back yard or open space nearby. Basically, no matter what it takes, try to encourage outdoor time (preferably in a location with no WiFi and no 3G) and keep the smartphones and tablets at home. There is a learning curve, and some adjustment is necessary, but there’s no doubt that perseverance is the key to success here.

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Maid of Honor Shocks With T-Rex Outfit At Sister’s Wedding https://socialwallaby.com/2019/09/26/maid-of-honor-shocks-with-t-rex-outfit-at-sisters-wedding/ Thu, 26 Sep 2019 15:24:22 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=908 When Deanna Adams from Nebraska was asked by her bridesmaids what to wear to the wedding, she threw caution to the wind and let them choose the outfits themselves.   When Deanna asked her younger sister Christina to be the maid of honor at her wedding, she was brimming with excitement for the big day. […]

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When Deanna Adams from Nebraska was asked by her bridesmaids what to wear to the wedding, she threw caution to the wind and let them choose the outfits themselves.

 

When Deanna asked her younger sister Christina to be the maid of honor at her wedding, she was brimming with excitement for the big day. When she told her she could dress however she wanted for the event, Christina could barely contain herself.

wedding couple

Dress Code

Letting her bridesmaids and maid of honor choose their own clothes for the wedding was always going to be risky, but Deanna didn’t care. She was 40 and getting married later in life meant she could care less about specific finer details when it came to her big day, so she left those details to the girls.

 

freinds

 

Fancy Dress

While Deanna knew her baby sis had a penchant for fancy dress, she had no idea what she was about to pull for the wedding. When Christina rocked up to the event wearing a giant, inflatable T-Rex dinosaur costume, the bride was outraged but unsurprised.

 

T-Rex costume
 

Going Viral

The wedding was a blast and not just because of the fancy dress. Once the big day was all said and done, it was time for the wedding photos (which were always going to be hilarious) to be enjoyed. The pics of Christina the dinosaur alongside the bride and groom inevitably went viral, garnering more than 54,000 shares and thousands of comments.

 

wedding

 

Regret Nothing

The truth is that Christina was thrilled that her big sis was finally tying the knot. She wanted to mark the day with something special, and a little different. In the caption of the picture that went viral on Reddit and other platforms, she wrote, “When you’re the maid of honor and told you can wear anything you choose. I regret nothing.”

 

No Shocker

According to a MailOnline report, “about a year ago, my big sister texted me asking if I would be her maid of honor,’ Christian recalled. “She, knowing that I’m not a big fan of wearing formal dresses and that I probably wouldn’t have a lot of money to buy something really nice, reassured me by letting me know that I could pick out any outfit that I choose.” It was no shock when she showed up as larger than life dinosaur.

 

counting money

 

Only $50

Christina wasn’t about to go out and spend big on a maid of honor outfit she could ill-afford. As she explained to the publication, “I was trying to think of something that I would be willing to wear more than once and thought to myself, ‘Well, she did say anything, and if I’m spending more than $50, I want it to be a dinosaur costume, because they’re fantastic and I’ve always wanted one.”‘

 

Other Ideas

In the months leading up to the wedding, Christina had some other great ideas for fancy dress costumes for the big day. A Tardis from Doctor Who was floated as an alternative but for some reason the dinosaur idea was the one that stuck. Christina had her doubts but ultimately decided to go ahead and be brave on the big day.

 

Real Hot

It was a hot day in Nebraska, and boy did the maid of honor know it. “It was hot!’ Christina remembered. “I remember being surprised that everyone seemed to be doing their best to avoid noticing the elephant in the room (or should I say dino), but it was hard to see in the costume.”

 

Side Story

Christina explained that the atmosphere at the wedding was light and jokey. As a side story, she shared, “about 15 minutes into the reception, someone was looking for me and said they saw me walking around the neighborhood with a boy,” she said. “But it wasn’t me, it was a kid and his friend who was just cruising the neighborhood in another T-Rex costume!”

girls holding hands

 

Awesome Sister

Deanna also spoke to the publication, explaining, “The point was to get married to the man who treats me like I hung the moon, and we did that part.” She also explained that she loved her sister for pulling the stunt and had no regrets, “My sister is awesome, and I genuinely was not kidding when I said she could wear whatever she wanted,” she concluded.

 

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Loving Brother Loses 175 Pounds To Save His Sister’s Life https://socialwallaby.com/2019/09/26/loving-brother-loses-175-pounds-to-save-his-sisters-life/ Thu, 26 Sep 2019 12:45:57 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=894 When doctors told Jonathan Coronado that he was too obese to save his sister’s life, he made the life-changing decision then and there to lose a massive amount of weight.   Jonathan ate what he wanted when he wanted, wasn’t overly interested in sports or keeping fit and generally liked to “chill.” He knew he […]

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When doctors told Jonathan Coronado that he was too obese to save his sister’s life, he made the life-changing decision then and there to lose a massive amount of weight.

 

Jonathan ate what he wanted when he wanted, wasn’t overly interested in sports or keeping fit and generally liked to “chill.” He knew he was overweight to the point of obese, but due to some low self-esteem issues was never motivated to do anything about it. Then, some tragic news came about his 13-year-old sister Denise and Jonathan faced the hardest decision of his life.

kids sitting on chairs

Little Denise 

When Denise was just 9, she was diagnosed with a very rare blood disorder called Henoch-Schonlein Purpura. This life-threatening disorder inflames tiny blood vessels in the intestines and harms the kidneys. Little Denise endured dialysis for four years but as time went by she grew sicker and sicker.

 

Getting Sicker

Soon after her 13th birthday, Denise was getting even sicker, and her doctors told her concerned parents that her only chance of a normal childhood was a kidney transplant. As it turned out, her brother Jonathan was a match as a kidney donor, but at 356 pounds and only 5 feet 4 inches, he was classed as morbidly obese and therefore unfit as a donor.

 

Low Esteem

Jonathan knew he was overweight, but he didn’t care much. That’s until his wife posted a photo of him and her on their wedding day on Facebook. “I would never look at myself in the mirror,” Jonathan, 31, told TODAY. “We took a picture at my wedding, and my wife posted it on Facebook, and I got upset because she posted it. I didn’t know I was that big,” he said.

 

man looking at the mirror

Taking Steps 

Soon after his wedding, when Jonathan received the news that his sister Denise was deteriorating, he wanted to help and was devastated that he couldn’t do so simply because of his weight. Jonathan decided on the spot to take steps to change, and he started by watching what he ate. First went the sugary sodas, then went the cookies and cake. Jonathan was on the right track; a track he had never been on before.

 

Healthy Habits

As Jonathan told the publication, “I learned as I went,” he said. “The more I lost weight, the more I got confident and doing more workouts. (Healthy) diets just became a habit.” He explained that he set himself “moderate goals” at first but then got into what he described as “healthy habits.” At first, Jonathan would walk around the park and eat healthily. Within six months, Jonathan had lost 100 pounds but was still “hungry” for more.

 

healthy food

 

Pushing Limits

Jonathan caught the wellness bug, and his whole life became about losing weight and helping his sister. “I felt like I needed to lose more, so I just re-adjusted my diet and calorie intake,” explained Jonathan. He increased his cardio and started lifting weights, eating homemade meals instead of take-outs. He soon lost another 60 pounds but still needed to lose more weight to become a kidney donor.

 

All The Way

When Jonathan reached his target weight of 195 pounds, he was thrilled. “I went all the way down to 195 pounds, and that’s when I was eligible for donation,” he said. On September 10, 2018, Jonathan donated his kidney to his sister, returning from hospital the very next day. Denise’s recovery was a lot longer and harder than her brother’s, but she just went from strength-to-strength as the months drew on.

 

weight scale

 

Doing Great

As her physical health started to improve, Denise was able to get to do some of the things she loved most. That included studying hard and doing well in tests, something Denise did very, very well. As a straight-A student, Denise secured a scholarship and seeing his sister living a full life made Jonathan extremely happy.

 

Life-Changing

As Jonathan explained, “It was life-changing for her. She started to be happier,” he said. “She is starting to go out and have fun and do the things she couldn’t do when she was in dialysis. It makes me happy to see her that way,” he added. For his part, Jonathan is proud of his own achievements when it came to transforming his own life; something he thanks his little sister Denise for.

 

change sign

 

Lessons Learned

Jonathan feels he learned some vital life lessons from his plight to lose weight, but especially from what Denise went through. Eventually, his weight stabilized to 200 pounds, a weight Jonathan was satisfied with. For him, it was all about self-will and determination. “You have to really want to do it if you want to lose weight,” he said. “It was easy when I wanted it.  “I did it for her and for myself. I wanted to do it for myself, but it could also benefit her,” he said. “I just did it for the both of us.”

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5 Ingenious Tips For Saving Space At Home https://socialwallaby.com/2019/09/26/5-ingenious-tips-for-saving-space-at-home/ Thu, 26 Sep 2019 11:56:01 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=887 For those living in big cities, space is of the essence, and even just a few inches pinched from here or there can make a massive difference to your quality of life.   These days, many young couples can hardly afford the monthly rent, let alone the ability to buy a home of their own. Especially […]

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For those living in big cities, space is of the essence, and even just a few inches pinched from here or there can make a massive difference to your quality of life.

 

These days, many young couples can hardly afford the monthly rent, let alone the ability to buy a home of their own. Especially in large cities, people have to settle for less space at home, and that means they need to be inventive and creative when it comes to saving space.

Thankfully, there are some great space-saving tips one can incorporate that ease the space issue, and while some ideas are common-sense, some are pure genius.

 

By Hook or By Crook

 

One of the best pieces of advice for anyone struggling for space at home is to install as many hooks as possible (without it looking weird). Hooks are a great way of maximizing space, and that applies equally to the bathroom and the porch. The principle here is “what goes up usually stays up.” As long as you use strong hooks which are installed professionally (metal are better than plastic), you’re good to go. Hooks are great for hats, coats, and umbrellas in the wintertime, but equally useful for handbags, laptop bags, and headphones. Hooks give you tons more floor space as well as the opportunity to store way more items in a room. Just make sure they are firm to the wall and able to take the weight.

 

hooks on wall

Folding Furniture

 

Various great options exist when it comes to using folding or multi-purpose furniture in a small apartment. When it comes to studio apartments, folding beds can transform a living room into a bedroom in seconds. Folding sofas which double up as beds are also an excellent idea for, particularly cramped spaces. There are also more complex systems which raise the bed to the ceiling and have a built-in sofa, (like the BedUp made by Décadrages). When shopping for furniture, always make sure you’ve measured up space in advance and try to opt for smaller rather than bigger when it comes to things like tables, chairs, and coffee tables.

folding furniture

Box Clever 

 

Storage boxes are also a great way to save space at home, especially in a cramped apartment. A lot of clothes, bed linen, towels, and other similar items can be stored inside boxes, especially if they’re vacuum-sealed in special bags. Always ensure your boxes are sturdy and robust and if stored in an outside area, they’ll also need to be waterproof. It’s also advisable to store boxes high up (like in a bedroom wardrobe or attic space.) Small holes in boxes – especially if items are being stored long-term or in a damp or hot place – are also a great idea to keep your belongings ventilated.

 

Staircase Storage

 

For those living in duplexes or small houses, that space under the stairs is prime real estate that shouldn’t be ignored. Some internal staircases have a small room already built-in. There are some fantastic systems available like those from a company called Schema, which create built-in wooden cupboards under the stairs, featuring an alternating-tread staircase with a wall of wardrobes. If you have metal (or in some cases even wooden) banisters or rails, there are specially-designed storage holders that attach to them, making the dead space on the other side of the rail alive again.

staircase

Take Away Tip

 

No matter which of the above options you choose, just ensure that you tailor it to meet your needs specifically. Furniture’s generally costly (especially if purchased new), and there’s little room for returning items that have been unboxed or built. Try to figure out where the dead spaces in your apartment are and invest some time and money into filling them appropriately and cleverly. Also, don’t forget about that space under the bed (or beds) and as a last resort, there’s always the garage.

 

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4 Tips For Staying Safe During Floods  https://socialwallaby.com/2019/09/16/4-tips-for-staying-safe-during-floods/ Mon, 16 Sep 2019 13:27:45 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=674 As the season changes from summer to fall, many parts of the world find themselves in the grips of flooding. Severe floods affect the lives of tens of thousands of people around the world each year, but there are steps one can take to stay safe.     When Mother Nature decides it’s time to […]

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As the season changes from summer to fall, many parts of the world find themselves in the grips of flooding. Severe floods affect the lives of tens of thousands of people around the world each year, but there are steps one can take to stay safe.

 

car driving in flood

 

When Mother Nature decides it’s time to stir things up, all humans can do is battle down the hatches and try our best to prepare for the worst-case scenario. In many cases, the right preparations can avert disaster, and even minor adjustments can spell the difference between life and death.

 

people in flood

Floods affect many parts of the U.S, and especially states such as Florida. With that said, Caribbean countries are some of the worst affected by floods during the wet season, and much property and lives are tragically lost annually. When the volume of water and the force that comes with it is too much, even the most robust precautions make little difference, but there are always ways to minimize the fallout and the damage.

Tip 1 – Assemble Supplies  

The most important thing to take care of when it comes to assembling supplies ahead of a flood is clean drinking water. Humans can survive for some time without food but only a few days without water. Special water pills are also a good option in case of severe flooding whereby the water supply gets completely cut off. Non-perishable food items like cans of tuna and beans are also a great idea for your flood supplies kit. A solid first aid kit and a battery-powered radio are also a must, as are flashlights and a good supply of spare batteries.

flood

 

Tip 2 – Make Emergency Plans

In cases where the flooding is so bad that people need to leave their homes, it’s vital to have easy-to-follow backup plans in case you find yourself homeless. Always have in mind locations situated on higher ground and make sure your gas tank is full. It’s also a great idea to locate in advance routes from your home or office that are less prone to flooding, just in case. A family disaster plan is also worth putting together ahead of time, noting where family members should meet if they get separated and having good quality walkie talkies handy for such an eventuality.

plan on board

 

 

Tip 3 – Secure Valuables

As well as costing state authorities and insurance companies alike a small fortune, floods cost individuals a lot of money too, and that’s not to mention all that sentimental loss. As well as having the best insurance policies in place, for building and contents damage, those prone to floods are advised to place valuables and family heirlooms at the highest point in the house or outhouse. It’s also advisable that outdoor items such as lawn furniture, garbage cans, and BBQs be taken indoors and secured.

street sign in flood

 

Tip 4 – Don’t Enter Buildings

One of the most common causes of death when it comes to severe flooding is collapsed buildings. If you’re outside due to your own home or place of work being flooded, stay outside and do not enter buildings situated on low ground or those that have clearly been affected by flooding. Cracks on the outside of the structure and at the foundations of a building are a tell-tale sign of an imminent collapse, so the best advice is to remain outdoors and on high ground.

 

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3 Common-Sense Tips On How To Prevent Skin Cancer https://socialwallaby.com/2019/09/16/3-common-sense-tips-on-how-to-prevent-skin-cancer/ Mon, 16 Sep 2019 10:48:28 +0000 https://socialwallaby.com/?p=665 With global warming and the slow but sure breakdown of the ozone layer, sunbathing can be a dangerous pastime in many parts of the world. Skin cancer is an increasing epidemic, affecting thousands of people each year, but there are steps one can take to prevent it.     One of the first things parents […]

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With global warming and the slow but sure breakdown of the ozone layer, sunbathing can be a dangerous pastime in many parts of the world. Skin cancer is an increasing epidemic, affecting thousands of people each year, but there are steps one can take to prevent it.

 

girl tanning on the dock

 

One of the first things parents do before a weekend trip to the beach or pool is to smother the kids in sunscreen. Most kids, especially those living in cities that get hot during the summer months, remember that familiar smell of high SPF cream with nostalgia and associate it with tons of fun.

Various forms of skin cancer affect people, and especially those in particularly hot climates or south of the Equator. Melanoma, Basal cell carcinoma, and Squamous cell carcinoma are some of the most common forms of skin cancer and can lead to deadly consequences if left untreated.
The good news is, there are some simple, common-sense tips that you can incorporate into your everyday life to prevent the likelihood of skin issues from the sun.

 

close up face

 

 

Tip 1 – Love Sunscreen

If you live in a hot climate or in a place that gets hot in the summer, it’s a good idea to apply a generous amount of sunscreen daily to exposed parts of the skin. Even a slow 20-minute stroll to school or work, if the sun is hot enough, can lead to skin cancer issues. The arms, hands, legs, feet, top of the head and neck are potentially risky areas, and these need to be covered or at least covered in sunscreen. Wearing lots of sunscreens is the number one piece of advice offered by dermatologists to patients or those concerned about skin cancer. Opt for a sunscreen with an SPF of 30+ and try to ensure you buy sunscreen, which is “waterproof” and “broad-spectrum.”

hand with cream

 

Tip 2 – Cover Up

While sunscreen, especially one with a high SPF, is a fantastic (and potentially life-saving) tip, nothing is better than covering up in the sun with garments or material. For people living in the middle-east and Sub-Saharan areas of the globe, the thought of taking one’s clothes off in the sun is a crazy one. In many cultures, the sun is respected and feared accordingly, and people cover up with clothes and headscarves when the sun beats down. Sure, an hour or two on the beach once in a while with the right protection isn’t the end of the world. However, wearing sleeves, socks, broad-rimmed hats, and long pants is always advisable when spending time in the sun. This applies all the more so during the hottest time of the day in summer (12pm-3pm).

woman

 

Tip 3 –  Get Checked Out

Some skin cancers, including melanoma, are hereditary to a degree. For anyone with a family history of melanoma, annual checkups with a skin doctor (dermatologist) are a must. It’s also an excellent idea to self-inspect various parts of the body that show signs of potential skin cancer issues. A self-inspection is simple enough. Simply stand naked in front of the mirror, paying particular attention to the chest, shoulders, and arms, under the arms, and the front of the thighs and calves. Forearms, palms of the hands, and fingers are also areas you’ll need to pay close attention to. If you suspect any strange new moles or itchy skin blemishes, make an appointment with a skin doctor just to be sure.

freckled guy


Take-Away Action Items

  • Buy good quality sunscreen which should ideally be “water-resistant” and “broad-spectrum”
  • For maximum protection use sunscreen which is SPF 30 and more
  • Re-apply sunscreen if swimming or at the beach
  • Wear clothes, scarves, and hats when and where possible when in the sun
  • Be especially careful when outside during the summer months between midday and 3 pm
  • Self-inspect for different or new moles or skin blemishes regularly
  • Get checked out by a skin doctor annually

 

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