Consumer Real Estate News

    • How to Get Your Baby to Sleep Through the Night

      29 September 2022

      Caring for an infant can be exhausting, especially if the baby wakes up soon after falling asleep and you can’t get more than a couple of hours of sleep at a time. Here are some important things you should know about an infant’s sleeping habits and tips to help your baby sleep through the night so you can get some rest, too.

      Understand Your Infant’s Needs
      For young babies, eating is more important than sleeping, regardless of the time of day. During the first couple of months, it’s normal for an infant to wake up several times during the night to eat.

      After three to six months, your baby may sleep for longer periods of time. When your infant begins to realize that you will leave the room at bedtime, the baby may cry so you won’t leave. That’s a normal part of an infant’s development.

      Keep Things Consistent 
      Following a routine can help your infant understand the difference between day and night, and get them on a sleep schedule. The sooner you start, the better. The most important thing is to keep the routine consistent and to do the same activities, in the same order, every day.

      Keeping your baby active during the day will make the infant tired in the evening. As bedtime approaches, switch to calmer, quieter activities that promote relaxation, such as giving your baby a bath and looking at a book together. 

      The last activity should take place in the nursery and should be something that your baby enjoys. That will help your infant associate the nursery and bedtime with positive feelings. 

      An infant who is overtired may have trouble falling asleep. If your baby has a hard time dozing off, try making bedtime earlier. 

      Waking up and finding the room different can be unsettling for an infant.  Don’t adjust the lighting after your baby goes to bed. 

      Overstimulation can make it hard for a baby to fall asleep again. If you have to feed or change the baby during the night, keep the lighting the same as it was when the infant was sleeping and talk as little as possible. 

      Teach Your Baby How to Self-Soothe and Fall Asleep 
      You can soothe your infant with cuddling or rocking, but babies also have to learn how to soothe themselves. At 6 to 12 weeks old, start putting the baby to bed while drowsy, but not quite asleep. 

      You may want to try the Ferber Method starting at the age of 5 or 6 months. Put your baby to bed drowsy, but awake, and leave the room. If the baby cries, wait a few minutes before you return. Console, but don’t pick up, the infant. Only stay for a few minutes, even if the baby is still crying. 

      If the baby keeps crying after you leave, return to the room, but wait longer. This process can be stressful, but parents often find that their babies begin to sleep better within a week.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 5 Things to Avoid Buying in Bulk

      29 September 2022

      Buying in bulk may be costly upfront, but it can save you a lot over time. If you have the pantry space, there are some items that are ideal as bulk buys. Unfortunately, there are some things that just don’t make sense to buy in bulk. Save yourself some cash and some frustration by avoiding these bulk purchases.

      Your local discount or bulk store likely has a vast selection of spices, but don’t be fooled. Unless you tend to cook for large groups of people regularly, you likely won’t make a dent in the spice container after the first year of purchase. Remember, while spices don’t spoil in the traditional sense, they lose their flavor and potency over time, making them useless.

      Nuts may be shelf-stable, but they contain a lot of oil which can turn rancid sooner than you might think. Unless you have a large family that enjoys snacking on nuts daily, or you plan to do a lot of baking soon, it may be best to buy your favorite nuts in smaller quantities. The only exception? Nuts freeze well, if you have freezer space, this can be a good way to capitalize on a bulk deal without wasting the food.

      New Vitamins
      Buying vitamins can be a savvy shopping trick, but if you purchase a bulk supply of a vitamin, you should be sure you’re going to take it. Avoid buying expensive vitamins in bulk if you haven’t tried them before. No one wants to find out that a specific brand tastes awful or is hard on their stomach after they’ve purchased 500 of them.

      Name Brand Items
      Buying name-brand items in bulk can get you a good deal, but if you are shopping from a bulk store, you may find that the store brand offers an equivalent quality with an even bigger bargain. In fact, due to the large purchase agreements bulk stores can make, some items may be from the same manufacturer, making the only true difference between the name brand and its store-brand counterpart the label it comes in.

      Soda and Chips
      Soda is a loss leader at many chain grocery stores. These items are sold below cost to entice shoppers to come to the store. If you want a great deal for your next BBQ, you may find a better sale at your local grocery store.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 4 Tips for Saving Money on Vet Bills

      29 September 2022

      When you welcome a new pet into your home, it is important to be aware that, just like humans, pets may need to visit the doctor, too. From annual shots and vaccines to emergency visits, bills from your veterinarian can add up just like your own bills from your doctor. However, you don’t want to avoid bringing your pet to the vet just because it can be costly. Thankfully, there are a few ways you can save money on your next visit, care for your pet and stay on a budget-conscious track.

      Regular Check-Ups
      Just like your annual physical at your doctor’s office or your regular oil changes on your car, taking your pet to the veterinarian regularly will not only keep them healthy, but catch a medical problem that needs attention before it becomes too advanced and costly to treat. Schedule visits in advance for vaccinations and be sure to make and attend all of your appointments to avoid any additional fees.

      Community Services
      Local veterinarian schools, animal shelters and clinics offer plenty of free services for your pets, including spay and neutering appointments. Be sure to check your local papers and message boards to find out about any upcoming events. If you do choose to attend one of these community locations for any services, be sure to keep the records and share them with your regular vet. 

      Insurance and Payment Plans
      Pet insurance can greatly help reduce costs at the vet, especially for an animal with a chronic medical condition who needs multiple treatments or medications. Consider adding this to your existing insurance coverage to bundle and save, or check if your employer offers it in your benefits package. Also, many veterinarians offer payment plans, which allow you to pay for services or procedures in monthly installments. At the end of the day, your vet doesn’t want your pet to suffer, so be sure to ask them about any payment plan schedules they may offer so that your personal financial situation won’t negatively affect their health.

      Discounts Available
      In addition to payment plans, many offices offer different types of discounts. From military discounts and senior discounts to off-brand medications at a lower cost, simply talk to your vet to see what they may have to offer. Telehealth visits are also available for pets, which can often be cheaper than in-person visits. There also may be certain months where discounts are offered, such as Heartworm Awareness Month in April, where you may find discounts on medications and treatments.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • A Family Favorite in Just 5 Minutes

      28 September 2022

      ( Running short on time from a busy schedule shouldn’t mean skipping out on your favorite desserts. In fact, it should be all the more reason to enjoy a sweet treat as a reward for all that hard work.
      When you’re due for a bite into dark chocolate goodness, all it takes is a few minutes out of your day to make 5-Minute Dark Chocolate Cereal Bars. This quick and simple dessert makes it easy to celebrate the day’s accomplishments without added stress.
      As a fun way for little ones to help in the kitchen, you can cook together the butter, marshmallows, peanut butter and cereal then let the kiddos drizzle the key ingredient: melted chocolate. All that’s left to do is cut and serve or pack a few off to school and work for an afternoon treat.  
      Find more seasonal dessert recipes at
      If you made this recipe at home, use #MyCulinaryConnection on your favorite social network to share your work.
      5-Minute Dark Chocolate Cereal Bars
      Recipe adapted from
      4 tablespoons butter
      10 ounces marshmallows
      1/2 cup peanut butter
      6 cups cereal
      4 ounces milk chocolate, melted
      4 ounces dark chocolate, melted
      Heat saucepan over low heat. Add butter, marshmallows and peanut butter; stir to combine. Add cereal; mix until coated.
      Line 9-by-13-inch pan with parchment paper. Add cereal mixture to pan.
      In bowl, mix milk chocolate and dark chocolate. Drizzle chocolate over cereal mixture; spread evenly then allow to cool.
      Cut into bars and serve.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 5 Journaling Tips to Help Maintain Your Routine

      28 September 2022

      Journaling is a relaxing and rewarding practice that can oftentimes be therapeutic. It is also a wonderful way to catalog and recognize your growth through different stages of your life. Unfortunately, the concept of moving the beautiful swirling ocean of thoughts from your head onto the page can easily become overwhelming. 

      Find a Journal You Like 
      Journals come in all shapes, sizes and colors. You should have one that you’re excited to fill! Find a journal that fits what you’re looking for. Do you want something small and discreet or something with plenty of space? Should your pages be lined or blank? How durable do you want your cover to be? Check bookstores, online stores and office supplies stores for a full range of designs and formats.

      Keep It Where You Can See It
      It’s easy to forget about a new practice when it’s in the primary stages of becoming a habit. Placing your journal somewhere where you are sure to see it will help to remind you to jot down a few thoughts before your day comes to an end. Set your journal on your bedside table-—or even under your comforter so that it’s out of view of others—to give yourself a visual reminder each day. 

      Write a list of prompts on the front page of your journal that you can refer to on days you’re feeling particularly stumped. Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

      • Tell a story about something funny that happened today.
      • What interactions did you have with others today that added value to your life? Did any interactions take away?
      • Was there something that happened during the day that you wish would have happened differently? Why? 
      • What are you grateful for today? 
      Get Artsy
      Journaling does not always require words. When you can’t quite articulate what you’re feeling by writing it, let yourself explore your artistic side. Doodle, sketch, make a word map. Journaling is an intimate and personal experience. You get to choose how you practice it. 

      Remember, Nobody Can Read it Except You 
      It’s easy to put pressure on yourself to make each journal entry a beautifully-written essay chalked full of perfect grammar and profound epiphanies. This is an entirely unrealistic and unnecessary expectation to place on yourself. Feel comfortable being sloppy, honest and open because nobody else will ever read your journal unless given permission.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.