Oops…Last Minute Christmas Preparation – 31 Day Challenge / Day 23

Prepare for Christmas Naomi Mc Laughlan.jpg

For some reason I am not (yet) in the Christmas spirit, which may be caused by the unlike warm weather in Europe. I honestly just realised today, that I have not been shopping to prepare the three day holiday feast and I am not even panicking at all.

I will have to go shopping later and may face long queues, but I don’t mind. Veg Food Store naomi Mc LaughlanI guess, I don’t need to be worried either, as I am not going to fight over a turkey or chicken anyway, as we will have delicious vegetarian / vegan meals, and I am assuming nobody is going to fight over fruits and veggies…

 


 

Here are my Top 3 Ideas for Last Minute Gifts:

  1. Candy & Hot Chocolate Jar Hot Candy Chocolate Naomi Mc Laughlan.png

Fill a large clean jar, for example a spaghetti sauce jar with lid, 2/3 with hot chocolate powder, then add mini marshmallows and crushed candy canes. Close the lid and tie a ribbon around the top and decorate with a hand written note or tag.

 

 

 

  1. Raw Vegan Chocolate Truffles 

Truffles Naomi Mc Laughlan.pngMix and blend 100g dry dates, 80g ground almonds or hazelnuts, 1 Tsp. coconut oil, 2 Tsps. chocolate powder, and 2 Tsps. water. Form 12 to 15 balls and roll in ca. 5 Tsps. desiccated coconut, chopped nuts, or for a simple finish, roll them in cocoa powder. Refrigerate for 10 minutes to set and  fill the truffles in a gift pouch.

 

  1. Photo Collage

Collage Naomi Mc Laughlan.pngChoose your most favourite pictures and create collage online using Canva or PicMonkey.

Print it on paper at home or at your local stationary shop, where you may be able to print it on a canvas, cushion, cup, or key holder.

 

 

 

I will leave you with a ‘Good Luck’ and ‘Stay Sane’ over your last preparations for the next three days.

Let me know what you think.

All the Best & Speak to you tomorrow,

Naomi xxx

(Can you tell that I LOVE CHOCOLATE? 😉 )

P.S.: I am not affiliated with the two online picture editor software providers, but I appreciate their free to use service.

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How to get Super Sleek Frizz Free Hair – 31 Day Challenge / Day 21

Frizz Free Hair Naomi Mc Laughlan

 

Naomi Mc Laughlan Super Frizz Free Hair beforeIf you have ever wondered how some women get their hair sooooo super sleek and frizz free, I have to admit that before starting to use relaxer cream it puzzled me too. I used to assume that they must have spent hours with a hair straightener or have just left a salon.

I tried many different products over the years now and I have realised that there are only a few good ones out there.

Dark and Lovely Products are my favourite, because they give you everything you need; the kit includes relaxer cream, shampoo and balm, for just a fiver.

I buy the relaxer kit either from the internet or from the local Afro Shop.

My hair is usually a bit dry for a week or two. So I make sure that I don’t wash it as often and I also use a special hair moisturiser (Pink Oil) for the first week after relaxing, to restore the moisture of my hair.

Depending on how fast my hair grows I relax the roots about every 3 to 4 month.

 

Naomi Mc Laughlan Super Frizz Free Hair after


 

This is how I relax my hair;

Step Nr. 1      Read the safety instructions.

Step Nr. 2     Put on the gloves. The mixed cream is very irritating on your skin.

Step Nr. 3     Mix Nr.1 Relaxer cream &  Nr.2 Cream Activator. Use the wooden spatula for it in a non-metallic bowl. Make a patch test on your arm first, if you are using a relaxer for the first time.

Step Nr. 4      Part your hair in at least 4 sections. I use plain ribbons for this.

Step Nr. 5        Apply the cream to all you hair sections.Start from the roots into the length.

Step Nr. 6        Comb your hair with very fine comb. Check the appropriate leave-in time, according to your hair you will find suggestions in the leaflet.

Step Nr. 7       Let another person assist you to wash out the relaxer cream. Wash the cream throughout with just water first, then use the shampoo and wash it at least twice. Keep your eyes closed.

Step Nr. 8        Apply the Restoring Balm. I usually leave it in my hair for at least 5 minutes, before I wash it out.

Step Nr. 9       Dry & Style your hair as usual.

I hope you like your new look.

Let me know what you think.

All the Best & Speak to you tomorrow,

Naomi xxx

P.S.: I am not affiliated with Dark and Lovely and I have not been paid  to review their products. I have used it for many years now though, as I think it works really well on curly hair, while leaving it glossy and shiny.

By the way, this blog post was initially published in 2013 here on my WP blog, but I thought it may still be of interest for you, while I have updated it a little.

 

 

Gratitude & Well-being – 31 Day Challenge / Day 5

Thank you Naomi Mc Laughlan

Unfortunately many people feel under-appreciated at home and in their workplace, which may influence their health negatively, cause drama and unhappiness.

According to a recent study report from Randy A. Sansone, MD and Lori A. Sansone, MD, gratitude is connected to well-being, as they state “… gratitude is the appreciation of what is valuable and meaningful to oneself; it is a general state of thankfulness and/or appreciation. The majority of empirical studies indicate that there is an association between gratitude and a sense of overall wellbeing.”

Do you feel undervalued at times? If so, what do you do about it?

On the other hand, do you appreciate other people and show or tell them how much their effort means to you?

Here is my Top 5 List of how to show appreciation:

  1. Say thank you; as obvious as it may seem it is important
  2. Smile; who doesn’t love a 😉 ?
  3. Write a note or card; I personally love these little pieces of care
  4. Thank the person and say how they have made your day special; pointing out what and how it is helpful makes it even more distinct
  5. Acknowledge the persons positive attributes when you speak to another person; even if the other person cannot hear you, you are sending out love

Philip Watkins, Kathrane Woodward, Tamara Stone and Russel Kolts ,from the Eastern Washington University, conducted a study on ‘Gratitude and Happiness’ and conclude “We have found that grateful individuals tend to be happy individuals, and that grateful thinking improves mood. …findings suggest that gratitude may be an important component of the good life”

Why not make it a habit to show appreciation as a means of positive cause of action for your loved ones and others, as well as for yourself?

So Thank You for taking time to read what I write, for sharing, liking and commenting my blog posts!

Let me know what you think.

All the Best & Speak to you tomorrow,

Naomi xxx

Multisensory Activities for Children with Special Needs & SEN + Home-School Tips / Part 1

My kids looooove Arts & Crafts, so whenever possible we try to do something new. Over the years I have noticed that from a learning standpoint it gives me the opportunity to integrate multisensory learning nuggets.

Stimulate the Senses NaomiMcLaughlan

You can integrate:

  • Visual stimulation though; colours, text, video, and images
  • Auditory focus on sound through; music, speech, rhymes, and creating poems
  • Tactile stimulation using the sense of touch and using; soft and hard items, experiment with different textures, temperatures, small and large objects
  • Kinesthetic use of body movement and involve fine and gross motor movement such as; movements paired with activities while counting, jumping rope, clapping, stomping, singing songs, dancing, beanbag tossing, basketball, rhythmic recall games, and academic competition such; quizzes or flashcard races

In this post and the upcoming post I will share some fun activities you can easily do at home.


How to Make Tie & Dye T-Shirts

Tie Dye 1 NaomiMcLaughlanWhat you need:       

  • Cotton T-Shirt
  • Dye (we used 4 different colours)
  • Plastic Screw-Top Bottles for easier Dye Application
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Rubber Bands
  • Apron
  • Plastic Bags (one for each T-shirt)

Please note: Each dye has slightly different instructions on how to mix it with water, therefore please refer to the manufacturer’s instruction for best results.

NaomiMcLaughlan Tie Dye Collage Gif 1How to create Tie & Dye Spirals

Step 1: Grab the centre of your t-shirt and start twisting it in a spiral

Step 2: Secure the T-shirt with 4 elastic rubber bands across the spiral

Step 3: Dye each part of the spiral in another colour

Step 4: Place the T-shirt in a plastic bag and let the dye work, so that it has time to react with the cloth for up to six hours.

Step 5: Take of the rubber bands and rinse the T-shirt until there is no remaining dye draining from the T-shirt.

Tie Dye Shirt NaomiMcLaughlan

NaomiMcLaughlan Tie Dye Collage Gif 2How to create Tie & Dye Horizontal Stripes

Step 1: Fold your T-shirt lengthwise.

Step 2: Tie as many rubber bands as you intent to create horizontal stripes along the T-shirt.

Step 3: Dye each part of the horizontal stripes in another colour.

Step 4: Place the T-shirt in a plastic bag and let the dye work, so that it has time to react with the cloth for up to six hours.

Step 5: Take of the rubber bands and rinse the T-shirt until there is no remaining dye draining from the T-shirt.

Tie Dye Collage NaomiMcLaughlan

SEN Tip: This visual and tactile activity allows your child to experience a wonderful transformation created by his or her own hands, which your child can later proudly wear and talk about.

Home-schooling Tip: You can use this activity to explore how dye cures, in which countries tie & dye is a common way to make colourful clothing, or how cotton is produced.


How to make Chocolate Coated Cake Pops

NaomiMcLaughlan Cake Pops 2

NaomiMcLaughlan Cake PopsWhat you need:

  • Sponge Cake
  • Milk Chocolate (melted)
  • White Chocolate (meted)
  • Chocolate Drops
  • Desiccated Coconut Flakes
  • Sugar Pearls
  • Cake Pop Sticks
  • Apron
  • Fondue (optional to melt the chocolate and to make the experience a little more special for your children, but it should be handled and supervised at all times with great care, due to the heat)

Step 1: Break, cut or form small squares or balls from your sponge cake.

Step 2: Place one cake pop stick in each cake square or ball.

Step 3: Dip the cake pop in chocolate.

Step 4: Coat each cake pop with chocolate drops, desiccated coconut flakes or sugar pearls.

Step 5: Allow the cake pops to dry, either facing down on a plate or standing up in a cup or cake pop stand.

SEN Tip: This tactile and kinestetic activity is excellent, as it allows your child to create an edible treat for him or herself or a hand-made gift for a friend or family member.

Home-schooling Tip: You can use this activity to explore the origins of chocolate, you can learn about the ingredients of chocolate and how they are transformed to chocolate products, or how cocoa beans grow and in which countries.

Please note: We used solely vegan and non-dairy products, as my daughter has serious food allergies and we avoided the use of nuts for the same reason.

I hope you will enjoy the activities as much as we did, Please LIKE & SUBSCIBE

All the Best,

Naomi xxx

P.S.:

If you like to read more about “Why teaching your child multisensory simultaneous helps her/his brain to function at its best!”, read my blog post here: https://naomimclaughlan.wordpress.com/2013/04/26/why-teaching-your-child-multisensory-simultaneous-helps-herhis-brain-to-function-at-its-best/

Spring Clean Your Home

I love spring clean, not the cleaning itself… No! – Rather the feeling of freshness around the house. One really great thing I find is to discover long lost items that just vanished behind a drawer or between the shelves.Spring Clean your home by Naomi Mc Laughlan.com

Here is my Top 10 List of a Stress-Free Spring Clean:

1. Don’t do it all at once

2. Clean room by room, for example the kitchen on Friday, the Bedrooms / Kids Bedrooms on Saturday and Sunday, a weekend later continue with the living room, cellar and garage etc.

3. Sort out unwanted, unused or worn out cloth

4. Fix or dispose broken furniture, kitchen utensils and other household items

5. Reward yourself with at least one new item per room, for example a new decorative vase, a pretty tea set, feel good cuddle cushions or blankets etc.

Have you run out of cleaning liquids?

No problem! Use a glass of regular Coke instead, because Cola contains citric acid and breaks up even the most difficult stains!

For your windows – Pour or spray Coke over your windows and wipe them down with a moistened cloth.

For your toilet – Pour regular Coke into your toilet bowl over the dirty areas and wait for 10 minutes.

Did you know that April is Home Improvement Month?

So why not get inspired by the following tweaks?

  • Remove or replace your carpet or tiles,
  • Sand your floors with a power sander,
  • Paint or wallpaper one wall to get a new focal point and refresh the room.

But do not forget to set a fixed budget for any home improvements, as it is easy to get carried away…lesson learned! 😉

All the Best,

Naomi xxx

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STOCKHOLM meets PARIS Review on the Caroline Blomst Collaboration Collection

Deichmanns’ SS14 Collaboration Collection designed by fellow fashion blogger Caroline Blomst is available from today, 3rd March 2014 and includes 7 stylish pairs of shoes; at a price range from £17.99 – £27.99.

Deichmann is Europe’s biggest shoe retailer, with stores in 23 countries worldwide as well as online, with 80 high street shops in the UK alone. Deichmann has teamed up in the past with celebrities including Halle Berry and Cindy Crawford to create stylish, affordable and ‘must-have’ shoe collections.

“Every shoe has its own detail.” Caroline Blomst

5 Things I love most about Caroline Blomst collection:

1. Style

2. A pair for every occasion; form leisure, office to night out

3. Super comfortable to wear

4. Affordable

5. High quality

I have tried and tested the Peep-toe Court and the T-bar Court which I find great to wear. In the video below you can hear a little more about what I think.They both have the look and feel of quality products, well made, shiny and sparkly, looking beautiful and stunning… I LOVE shoes can you tell?! 

CB naomimclaughlan

Peep-toe Court £27.99 UK Size 3.5 – 7.5 (EU 36-41) Heel height: 9.9 cm Heel Type: Court Colour: black

T-Bar Court £24.99 UK Size 3.5 – 7.5 (EU 36-41) Heel height: 6.5 cm Heel Type: Court Colour: beige, gold, black

I will let the rest of the seven part collection speak for themselves*:

Minimalistic & Comfortable

Graphic print smoking slipper, £17.99 (Caroline Blomst)

Fun Shoe

Pixel print sneaker, £22.99 (Caroline Blomst)

Spicy

Peep toe shoe boot with cut out detail, £27.99 (Caroline Blomst) 1 290 604, Pointed multi-strap gothic-style heel, £24.99 (Caroline Blomst)Peep toe lace shoe boot  with ankle strap, £27.99 (Caroline Blomst)

 

*Loafer £17.99 / Lace-up Trainer £22.99 /  Peep-toe High Front £27.99 / Buckled Court £24.99/ Peep-toe High Front (Lace) £27.99 

Caroline Blomst & Deichmann 

Please let me know what you think!

All the Best,

Naomi xxx

How to make £400 / $650 Extra in a Month

Finding money to buy something new for your family or to reinvest in your entrepreneurial venture can be very hard and stressful in the current economy. But there are still many ways to make money in a short time, without robbing the bank. One of those is to sell via online market platform.No need to kill the piggy bank naomimclaughlan.com

Did you know that the BEST time for retailers, about 75% of sales, in the entire year is between 1st December to 1st January? And you don’t have to be a professional retailer, to jump on the sales train.

So if you are looking for ways to make some extra money, think about what you have in your home that you can sell online, for example used cloth, Baseball cards, stamps, toys, or furniture etc.

Or add the products and services you offer on your homepage, to create another option for customers and clients to find and buy from you.

Ask.co.uk states that “eBay has created a powerful marketplace for the sale of goods and services by a passionate community of individuals and small businesses.  eBay is The World’s Online Marketplace with a global customer base of 233 million customers. eBay.co.uk has achieved the 10 million live listings landmark, meaning there are more than 10 million items for sale on the site at any one time.”

Here is my Top 5 list on How to Quick Sale Products on Ebay:

1. Clean the item (used items)

2. Check for faults and if you find any describe them in your listing

3. Take a picture on a white background (if possible)

4. Write a full item description and list all benefits of the item

5. Package the item well enough for a secure transport

Here is my Top 5 list on How to Quick Sale Services on Ebay:

1. Describe your service in detail

2. List ALL benefits

3. Choose a picture that connects well to the service you provide

4. Include where the service takes place, for example town or country

5. Include how the service will be provided, for example in person, online or via phone

What has worked for you? Let me know by leaving me your comments below, thanks!

Please LIKE & SHARE

Xxx Naomi