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Today we’re talking about Christmas gifts. There’s little denying that ensuring that everyone you need to buy gifts for receives the perfect item for them can be overwhelming. Many people seem to already “have everything”, and for friends and family members that we don’t see very often, it can be hard to know what is an appropriate gift.
The Oxfam Unwrapped Christmas Gifts give you the chance to make a difference in communities around the world.
This years Oxfam campaign is targeted towards supporting refugees, and allows us to give life-changing gifts to people who have had to leave everything they own behind. This includes emergency essentials like food and shelter, hygiene kits, winter clothes, and clean water, meaning you can help a few of the millions of people who have recently been forced to flee their homes.
An example of one of the people you’ll be helping with your purchase is Irhlas, who has been living in a refugee camp called Zaatari for three years. Located in Jordan, this camp is providing shelter to more than 80,000 Syrians who have had to leave their homes.
Oxfam is providing refuse management, sanitation, hygiene education and water throughout Zaatari, along with clean water for washing facilities and toilets- keeping residents healthy. Irhlas has called the campaign a “great gesture”, saying that it can feel like their lives are made of dust, and knowing that other people care gives the refugees hope of a brighter future.
Did you know that it’s been proven that people receive more pleasure from giving a gift than receiving one? That means that by choosing an Oxfam Unwrapped gift that’s really for someone less fortunate, you’ll also be giving the person receiving your gift the chance to feel good about themselves, since they’ll be indirectly giving to someone else.
Some of the most popular Oxfam Unwrapped gifts have included goats, ducks, chickens, manure, food baskets, a well, farmer education, piglets, a goat couple (these are a hit for weddings), seeds, water-quality testing kits, and more.
If you’ve got that special someone in your life, and you just can’t think what to get them, consider jumping onto , where you’ll find a range of awesome gift ideas.
Not only will you be reducing the stress associated with Christmas for yourself- after all, shopping for everyone you know is time consuming, frustrating and stressful, but you’ll be directly improving the lives of people elsewhere in the world- something that’s guaranteed to get you into the Christmas spirit.
Often, we can get so caught up in our huge list of chores around Christmas, that we can lose sight of what it’s actually about. Christmas is a time of giving, and your family and friends are likely to be touched and excited to see that their gifts will directly impact the lives of refugees who are living in camps around the world.
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Taking a road trip to see your favorite band or to see your grandparents for Christmas allows you to leave the monotony of life behind for a few days. However, you will need to spend some time planning your trip to make sure it goes smoothly. What should you plan for before leaving home?
What Happens to the Mail and Newspaper Delivery?
If you are going to be gone for more than a couple of days, it may be a good idea to have your mail kept at the post office. You can pick it up whenever you come home or ask that it be delivered at a later date. Cancelling the newspaper avoids having clutter on your driveway while also a potential security hazard that can occur if people notice that no one is home to pick up their paper.
Who Will Take Care of the Animals?
Those who own pets will need to arrange for their care. This may be done by dropping them off with a friend or family member or having someone stop by the house to feed or walk them. It may also be possible to leave them with a kennel or take them with you to your destination.
Book Your Flight, Car and Hotel in Advance
Generally, flights cost less when you book them far in advance. They also are generally cheaper during weekdays or during overnight hours. These are all things that you should keep in mind when planning when you will leave and come back from your trip. Booking a car and hotel room in a bundle with your flight may help you save money on all of them. Finally, using a credit card to make your reservation offers fraud protection as well as possibly helping you to earn rewards points or other perks.
Bring a Credit or Prepaid Card with You
When traveling to other countries or to remote areas of the United States, you can’t assume that there will be an ATM around. This means that you may not be able to rely on cash to pay for your purchases. Therefore, make sure that you have a credit card or prepaid debit card that is accepted at the majority of hotels or restaurants where you will be traveling.
How Much Will You Budget for Discretionary Spending?
Don’t forget to budget some cash to buy a t-shirt, hat or some other souvenir from your trip. If you are short on cash and want to make money fast, you may be able to get a temporary second job or ask for overtime at your current job to pad your vacation fund. Online surveys or freelance work may also help you earn money in a hurry just before your trip.
When you take the time to plan ahead, a road trip can be a fun experience that you will remember for the rest of your life. When you get back, you will be relaxed and ready to jump back into work, school or whatever other responsibilities you are used to taking care of.
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If you’ve recently been in an airport, you’ll know that while some airports seem to be created specifically for meeting the needs of visitors, others are a great example of what you shouldn’t do when you have hundreds of thousands of people waiting to catch their flights.
Sure, some airports are great- take Singapore for example, however others (particularly in the United States) are relatively boring places to be and you’ll need to work on creating your own fun.
Here are some fun things to do while waiting in an airport:
Load up on Snacks
If you’re going to be flying on a low-cost airline (or you’re simply flying domestically), there’s a pretty good chance that you’re not going to be having a great meal onboard. Even the best plane food isn’t quite the cuisine you’re anticipating, so your first step should be to load up on some snacks.
While it can be tempting to choose high carb and high sugar foods, your best bet is to try to get some protein and healthy fats in there as well. Think cheese sticks, carrots and hummus, nuts, protein bars, and plenty of water to stay hydrated.
If you have electronics, you’ll need to make sure that they’re nicely charged and ready to go. Charge them before you arrive, and once at the airport, scope out the best places for outlets. If you’re travelling with a friend, one person can stay with the electronics while the other goes to look for food and keeps an eye on your departure gate.
You’ll also want to get connected to the internet. While some airports are great for this, others are all about making people pay to use hotspots. If you can hunt down a Starbucks or McDonalds, these are usually good places to find wifi, and if you have a 3G or 4G service on your phone, you can either use your smartphone or tether the signal to your laptop for online browsing.
Play some Games
If you’re bored at an airport, one of your best options can be to take the opportunity to . Consider finding an internet casino, and you could find yourself winning big while you play fun games like blackjack, poker, slots, and more.
This can be an excellent option if you’re super bored and have hours before your connecting flight, just remember to play smart and don’t bet more than you can afford.
Heading to a new country? Now is your chance to learn the language. Install an app like Duolingo or Mindsnacks, and you’ll be able to learn some key phrases while still having fun. There are plenty of excellent resources like YouTube videos and language learning tutorials online, and you’ll also find some great podcasts, apps and more. If you’re moving countries or even just visiting, it can be helpful to at least learn a few basic words in the language to impress the locals and ensure you can get around.
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