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Survival Tips For Holiday Travel

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holiday travel tips
Some people have the luxury of staying put during the Holidays, but some of us have to travel hundreds of miles to spend time with our loved ones. This is not really so bad considering that Christmas is the time for family and friends. What's bad about it is that hundreds of other people will be thinking of the same thing and will want to spend time with their loved ones too. This makes traveling during the Holidays difficult, harsh, and exhausting. Here are some tips to help you survive the holiday rush.

Pack Ahead

One of the reasons why you forget a toothbrush or your cell phone charger is, because you like to pack at the last minute. To avoid forgetting important things, pack ahead of time. If your flight is in a week, start putting together your wardrobe at least 3 days before the date of departure. The night before, pack your toiletries except for your toothbrush and deodorant. Upon getting up and using said items, put them inside your toiletry case then pack them up. This way, everything is inside your suitcase and ready to go. You can also purchase new toothbrush and deodorant so that you can pack them up 3 days before your trip.

Get Up 1 to 2 Hours Early

Set your alarm an hour or two earlier than the usual. This will give you extra time to get ready. You can use this time to pack (if you did not follow above tip), unplug appliances, eat and cook breakfast, and  set up your security system or inform the neighbors or neighborhood watch that you’re going away. The extra time can also be used to check the car if you’re going on a road trip or to avoid traffic if you’re going to the airport or bus terminal.

Pack Earplugs

Ear plugs are some of the best inventions, especially if you're on a long commercial flight. They will enable you to tune out unnecessary noise or get some much needed sleep. Shutting down noise can help decrease stress levels whether you're waiting for your flight to board or actually sitting in your seat. Earplugs are not only for air travel, they can also be used to tune out your sister's music or your brother's sports talk.

Avoid Being Hangry

Have you ever noticed that you’re grumpier when you’re hungry? We call this being hangry. It's when you’re hungry and angry at the same time. Avoid this by eating regularly even when you’re traveling. Eat something at the airport before boarding or eat the airplane food. You can also bring food along with you in the car and eat snacks or fill up on fluids to avoid getting hangry.

Give Gift Cards

Lugging heavy gifts in the airport or cramming them inside the car can be very inconvenient. The TSA suggests that giving gift cards instead of gifts to avoid checking in lots of items or being asked to open a bag at the x-ray machine. Gift cards are also smaller and fit inside your purse, so they don’t have to fight space inside the luggage compartment of your car.

Travel During Off-Peak Days

The Wednesday before Thanksgiving is the busiest time for travel. Avoid this day as much as you can. If you work, arrange for a leave of absence early so that HR can prioritize you. Traveling early in the day is also better than getting later flights. According to studies, late flights have a bigger possibility of getting cancelled usually due to weather and other delays.

Lifestyle

Meal Prep Ideas for Your Busy Work Week

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Here are some meal prep ideas for your busy work week. If you're busy, then you may not feel like coming home and investing energy in cooking complicated meal prep ideas. However, with proper planning and doing the meal prep on weekends, this task can become easy and fast. If you prepare a menu for the week, you can buy all the ingredients at once and preserve them. Here are few steps to ensure that you get nutritious homemade food even during a busy work week.

Planning in Advance

Plan in advance for the meal prep ideas that you are going to prepare for the coming week – just pen it down. You should create a menu either for the week (preferable) or the month, and make sure that you have a list of the ingredients that you need for every meal. Make sure that you have a list for every meal that you will be preparing at home, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Make sure to have snacks available.

Preparation

Another way to save time is putting meals together, especially those that you'll be baking or slow cooking. You can do this for as many meal prep ideas as you want, and store them in your freezer to pull out whenever you are going to cook them. Make sure you have all ingredients. Put all ingredients into the slow cooker and leave it to cook.  Set the timer correctly to avoid the food getting burnt.

Easy meal prep ideas

Prepare easy meal prep ideas such as salads, soups, sandwiches, and pasta. There are also other items that you can find in stores that are “ready to make” packs. Have them on the menu and leave the most complicated recipes for the weekend. Simpler meals will often suffice as long as you put some love into it. Just ensure that whatever you eat is healthy and nutritious.Shop intelligently. You can have your menu ready and do the shopping all at once on a weekly or monthly basis. This saves time and money as well. Also, you can make it easier for yourself if you just plan in advance and ensure that nothing is left for the last minute. Here's also some healthy ideas you could try with super foods.
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Lifestyle

The Divorce of Fantasy and Science Fiction

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fantasy and science fiction

The divorce of fantasy and science fiction

When you walk into any Barnes and Nobles, you'll notice that the layout of the store is separated by shelves.  Each row of shelves is marked by genre.  There's an isle for Romance, one for History, one for Children's Books, and New Releases.  If you continue walking, you'll notice an isle titled fantasy and science fiction.For most of the history of literature, you'll see these two paired together. Fantasy and science fiction are both genres of fiction and they present worlds where impossible things happen.  What's the difference?  In fantasy, the story is driven by mystical and magical forces often in a time and place that isn't real.  In Science Fiction, the story is driven by technologies not yet known or mastered, often with settings in the far off future.

The divide between fantasy and science fiction

Until recently, it made sense to group Science Fiction together with Fantasy.  Stories of these genres often shared similar tropes and literary aesthetics and both being worlds of impossibility.  However this is quickly becoming less and less true.  There is a chasm growing between these genres.  This gap grows parallel to the current explosive growth of internet and technology.  Famous science fiction novels like The Time Machine and 1000  Leagues Under the Sea would seem far outside the realm of possibility, especially to people during the Victorian era (the era that produced the steam punk aesthetic).  But when you compare the fictional plot lines of these same works to what we're achieving technologically today, you won't see too much of a difference.  Famous classic pieces like Issac Asimov's, iRobot don't look very different that the automated world we live in today.  In an age of drones, artificial intelligence, and self-driving cars, how far from the future are we?

What does the future hold for these genre?

We're reaching a point in time where these two genres need their own separate bookshelves and it seems that as humanity changes, so does our literature.  As imaginative and timeless as the genre of fantasy can be, the magic that shapes it will sadly never truly exist.  As we continue to innovate more and more, science fiction will have to find itself a new name.  In what category will we call the stories of the future?  What new genres will we create?
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Lifestyle

Beating The Post Holiday Blues

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The Holidays are always a rush of gift giving and food. We usually ride the season with a lot of adrenalin to help us get through the parties, vacations, and coming home to mom and dad's. But, after you've opened all your presents and uploaded your holiday pics to social media sites, the adrenalin wears off and you start to feel down in the dumps. It is no surprise that holiday blues usually take place after the trimmings are taken down and the festivities have ended. During the crash, fatigue sets in, we don’t want to go to the gym and postpone opening and reading emails. All we feel is laziness usually due to over indulgence of food. But it does not have to be this way. Here are ways to kick the post holiday blues.

Stay Connected

Just because you've said goodbye to friends and family does not mean that you can't communicate with them until the next holiday season. Drive away the doldrums by keeping in constant contact. Continue to update them on social media or send them emails from time to time. Call mom and dad on the phone even just to say hi. When you stay connected with the important people in your life, you feel less lonely and won’t miss them as much.

Exercise

Did you know that exercise is a good way to get rid of depression? Working out can actually make you feel better. Exercise releases dopamine into the bloodstream so you feel happier and content. As a bonus, you get to melt off pounds that you probably put on indulging in turkey and dessert during the holidays.

Plan Your Next Holiday

Nothing can get you more fired up than thinking about your next trip. Why wait for Christmas when you can plan another getaway during Valentine's Day or any holiday? It can be something simple as a budgeted long weekend or even an overseas trip. Whatever your plan is, it will make returning to work easier and help you avoid thinking about the holidays. Cultivating something positive and forward thinking is also a good way to reset your brain.

Schedule Fun Activities

Drinking alcohol will only make you more depressed, so switch to scheduling fun activities instead. Research tells us that having things to look forward to makes us happy. You can host a President's Day party with friends or a small tea party to catch up with friends you weren't able to visit during Christmas. If you want to keep it simple, you can engage in movie night with your siblings, dinner with the family, or a relaxing massage.

Spend Time Outdoors

This might not be possible for some people but spend time outdoors every day. According to a meta-analysis of 10 studies, spending as little as 5 minutes outside everyday can help improve mood and self-esteem. Spending time outside is also recommended for people who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) or winter depression.Keeping these strategies in mind can help you beat post-holiday depression. The holidays have to end, but it does not mean to say that the fun has to stop. Think of these suggestions every time you’re battling post-holiday misery.
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