Tinsel may be fabulous, mince pies may be delicious, a festive glass of mulled wine may well be perfection in a mug, and Christmas time in general may just be the best time of the year, but it can also be stressful and expensive. There's pressure to get the perfect gift, have a show stopping Christmas day spread, the drinks cabinet to be fully stocked up on every single alcohol variety there is to keep everyone happy can not only be expensive, but it can all be, a bit too much, don't you think? 

Here are some of the best Christmas shopping hacks to help take the stress away from your mind, and also your purse so you can sit back and enjoy the festive fun without worrying too much about shopping. Cheers to that!

Christmas Shopping Hacks

When the days are short and the evenings are long, and outside it's cold and gloomy, you want to make sure you have a home which is well prepared for a long winter when staying in is often much preferred over going out, and cosy nights under a blanket become a regular occurrence. There are many ways in which we can improve our homes, some of them are simple, some of them may require more time or money. I've created a list of ways in which you can achieve a better winter-proof home.

Preparing Your Home For Winter

Looking after your physical, as well as mental health during the winter is incredibly important. Evidence shows that exposure to cold temperatures suppresses the immune system, and therefore the opportunities for infection increase. It isn't just our bodies which are at risk of suffering this winter either with long cold winters often having an impact on our mental health too. It’s not always easy to take precautions or avoid an illness or condition flaring up. However, staying warm and taking care of your general health can help a lot. Here are 5 tips on staying healthy this winter.


Supercharge Your immune System with Vitamins and supplements
Taking vitamins and supplements to compliment a balanced diet can help give your body the boost it really needs. One of the most beneficial vitamins to take in the winter is vitamin D. Low vitamin D levels are associated with immune dysfunction, depression and even cancer. Vitamin D assists the function of the immune system by reducing inflammation, as well as increasing the amount of antimicrobial proteins, which destroy invading germs and viruses, and help your immune system fight infections more effectively. There are hundreds of vitamins and supplements out there, so work out your problem areas and do some research as to what ones may be of the most use to you. A good place to start is with the basics such as iron, B vitamins, magnesium, cod liver oil and zinc.
Look after your aching muscles and general pains.
Cold weather can cause your body to ache and may even trigger existing pain conditions to flare up. One simple way to sooth your muscles is by taking a hot bath. Bath salts have many benefits for muscle pain and you can buy these from most drugstores and supermarkets for a reasonable price. 
You may also want to consider receiving professional help if your winter aches and pains cause you long term problems. Cold weather can cause you to tense up and many people suffer from joint and back pain in the winter. Physiotherapy is an excellent way at helping ease your suffering on a more long term basis and you can receive Physiotherapy Treatments for almost all physical issues. It is definitely worth considering physio if you want to prevent any further damage or if your problems don't improve over time.
Eat plenty of vegetables, spices and herbs
Eating a healthy balanced diet is obviously incredibly important, but it is equally as important during the winter to make sure you are eating plenty of veg, spices and herbs. They are jam-packed with essential vitamins and minerals, as well as phytochemicals and antioxidants, which support and strengthen the immune system. Go for a variety of different colours each day. Eating the “rainbow” truly does protect you from colds and flu. Include the following immune boosters on a regular basis – garlic, onions, ginger, and chilli; cruciferous veggies such as broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, brussels sprouts; and Vitamin A containing foods such as carrot, pumpkin, sweet potato, and green leafy vegetables are sure to help keep your body fighting fit. An easy way to get all of these into your body is through soups and stews. Delicious!
Keep exercising
The outdoors isn't always appealing when it is cold and wet outdoors, and we may be tempted to stay in the warm under a blanket. However, getting enough exercise in the winter is crucial and this can be achieved by taking simple measures when out and about like choosing to take the stairs, walk to the bus, or go for a walk in your lunch break (incorporating a little Vitamin D). Gentle exercise on a daily basis keeps circulation healthy and therefore blood and nutrient supply to all areas of the body. Exercise contributes to the circulation of antibodies and increases the production of macrophages, which attack the bacteria that can trigger upper respiratory diseases. It also reduces stress hormones, which can create havoc with the immune system. You may also prefer to exercise indoors so joining a gym might be a good idea or why not do a home-workout every other day? Get a friend or relative involved for some extra motivation.
Stay clean!
Wash your hands regularly! Hand washing is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of infections, and can reduce infection rates by up to 40 per cent. It doesn't need to be antibacterial hand wash, soap and water is fine, as long as your hands are staying clean. You may want to invest in a small antibacterial hand gel to keep in your handbag or car so you can keep clean quickly when out and about and on the go. You also want to make sure you are cleaning any surfaces in the home which have direct contact with hands on a regular basis too. There are lots of antibacterial sprays designed to use in the home and these are great at stopping the spreading of nasty germs which we could all do without this winter.
Tips On Staying Healthy This Winter

Of course, it makes perfect sense to want to be perfectly happy in the home. After all, that is the one place in the world where you would hope you could be somewhat happy at least most of the time, and it is one place where you have absolute control over things. But if you are starting to feel that you are not quite as happy in your home as you could be, you might want to think about what you could do to improve that. As it turns out, there are a number of steps you can think of taking if you are to be happier in the home, and it is worth looking into these as soon as you can. With any luck, you should be able to create a much happier and more enjoyable and loving space, and be much happier within yourself as a result.

Be Happier In The Home

Perhaps you have been hearing or reading about the many benefits of CBD oil and are still afraid to give it a try? It can be empirically stated that CBDs are safer than most, if not all, chemically derived prescription pharmaceuticals on the market. Unfortunately, this is where all the controversy as to its efficacy stems from. Knowing what you do about Big Pharma in this country, do you have any doubts whatsoever why they want to keep their coffers filled while keeping the ‘little guys’ pushed back? If you are looking for proof that CBD oil is a safer alternative, it pays to understand why there is so much negative press being given to one of nature’s biggest miracles – cannabis.

Proof That CBD Oil Is a Safer Alternative to So Many Pharmaceuticals

With Autumn now in full swing, peoples’ minds are drifting to the months ahead. With promises of Christmas celebrations and New Year’s parties, there is much about winter that keeps people in high spirits. However, there are also many aspects that cause people to book a holiday to a far away part of the world, such as cold nights and harsh winds. In such places, you will find the sun out on show, and perpetually warm temperatures. Just as with any holiday, you will need the right tips to prepare yourself for your time away, which will reduce stress, and help you indulge in your sunny surroundings.

How to Prepare for Your Next Winter Getaway


Becoming engaged can be one of the most exciting times of an adults life. Everything engagement symbolises is truly special and is a massive milestone in any relationship. Whether you and your partner had already agreed that you would like to get engaged or if you were asked as a total surprise, it is something to be celebrated regardless. To find somebody you love so much that you want to spend the rest of your life with them and share a unique journey together is a blessing. That is why choosing the right engagement ring is so important. You want to make sure your partner has a ring they adore and will feel excited about wearing for the rest of their life. There are lots of things to consider when purchasing the perfect rings for you.
Engagement Rings. Things To Consider Before Buying One.

Every season comes with magic of its own and winter isn’t exclusive. In many places around the world, it’s one of the coldest seasons. While some love the idea of boots, coats and hot chocolate for a few months, others may not be as enthusiastic. Nevertheless, there are many activities that can be done during this season aside from snuggling up in front of the fireplace and binging on your favourite shows. Whether you want to dance the night away or do something out of the ordinary, there’s likely something that will tick off your boxes. Here are some unique activities that you can enjoy this winter whether on your own or with your loved ones.


Indoor Skiing and Snowboarding 
Have you ever been skiing and if so, was it indoors? If not, you should add this to your list of activities to get up to this winter. This is something that can be done at the Chill Factore at the Trafford centre outside Manchester. Tickets are from £17 for 90 minutes. It’s also a chance to learn the basics of skiing or snowboarding as well as update your existing skills if you know the basics already. Some other activities you’ll find there is a children’s play area in the snow, a climbing wall, and a skate park.

Theatre Show 
If you want to do something you wouldn’t typically do this winter, why not go to see a show at the theatre? In the case that you’re typically a cinema kind of person, this can offer a different experience. This is because you’re seeing stories enacted live as well as renditions of some of your favourite childhood films. You can get some inspiration by first looking at tickets for Christmas 2018 West-End shows and seeing if any tickle your fancy. For instance, you may want to watch Wicked if you want a drama-filled show, while Aladdin is ideal if you want something for kids. 

To warm yourself up during the cooler months of winter, why not do something like horse riding? This isn’t your everyday activity, and it can be a lot of fun, especially if you do it in the right area. Perhaps think about going to Northumberland to ride as the coast is a sight to see during winter. Kimmerston Riding Centre offers a number of rides and trips can cost anywhere from £20 upwards. 

Visit a Christmas Market
For all of the market lovers out there, visiting a Christmas market could be an exciting activity to consider. Some things you’ll get to experience are mulled wine, numerous stalls and live music which should put you in high spirits and make you feel connected to the season. Some of the best Christmas markets are Birmingham Christmas Market because of the range of products they offer as well as Nottingham’s Winter Wonderland. 

Go to Kew Gardens 
It’s possible that you’ve heard about Kew gardens, which is one of the most attractive botanical gardens in the UK. You should know that during winter, they tend to have an after-dark Christmas which consists of good food, magical lights and ground rides. Tickets are £16 for adults and £10 for kids, so book online if it sounds like something you’d enjoy. 
Winter brings with it many possibilities in terms of fun and activities. With Christmas lingering in the air, it’s an opportunity to take advantage of the many festivities taking place. Seeing as winter only comes around once a year, whether it’s your favorite season or not, make the most of it. 

5 Unique Activities to Enjoy This Winter


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