Christmas Fragrance Ideas

Image Credit

There’s so much to love about the Christmas season. Although it’s only just November — and there’s still Thanksgiving to navigate — it’s inevitable that around this time, thoughts begin to turn to the most wonderful time of the year.

Most of us have memories of Christmases of our childhood. If you think about the memories you have, you might be surprised to realize just how many of these memories are sense-based. The taste of cranberry sauce; the fragrance of pine needles and incense; the satisfying feel of a sliding fingers beneath wrapping paper in anticipation. Of these, by far the most pervasive memories tend to be fragrance-based. This is of no surprise, given how inextricably fragrance is linked to memory– for many of us, one inhalation can transport us back in time to another point in our lives, all based on memory alone.

Many of us now find ourselves playing hostess at Christmas, meaning that it’s the fragrances of our home this year that will last in the memories of our children. Even if you don’t have the traditional snowy weather, you can still use scent and fragrance to ensure the most “Christmassy” feel for your home– and a lifetime of memories for your children. Let’s explore some of the best ways to introduce fragrance to your home this year, as well as offer some tips on the most Christmas-appropriate scents that you’ll want as part of your celebration!

The Art Of Controlling Bad Smells

First and foremost, ensuring your house smells divine means you have to have neutral scents on which to work your fragrancing magic. Therefore, your first focus should be on neutralizing bad smells so that your home can become a cornucopia of fragranced delights.

The most obvious source of bad smells is the kitchen, especially if food burns or the trash hasn’t been emptied in the rush of last-minute preparations. If you don’t have a kitchen fan, then there’s still time to put one into place in time for Christmas. This will help ensure that any bad smells that do develop aren’t left to linger.

Another common bad smell that you might find yourself having to deal with is cigarette smoke. No vent is going to be sufficient for cigarette smoke; it’s notoriously stubborn, so your options are more limited. You could insist that smoking only takes place outside, or encourage the smoker in your life to head to Ecigwizard to stock up on vaping supplies. You’ll still need to remove the lingering smell of previous cigarette smoke, however; there’s a few great ideas to try listed here.

With your home now a scent-neutral zone, you can go to town on introducing the fragrances that will play such a huge role in your Christmas.

The Spice of Christmas

Image Credit

If a single fragrance was to be named the fragrance of Christmas, then without a doubt, it would be cinnamon. Cinnamon is a scent that we all associate with Christmas; it’s the scent of baked Christmas cookies, of incense, of candles burning over the hearth. You’re definitely going to want to make use of cinnamon for your festive fragrance needs.

There are various ways to do this. You can use the classic options, like candles, wax tarts, and incense burners– but there’s nothing quite like the smell of fresh cinnamon. Thankfully, cinnamon sticks are rather pretty, and can be made into lovely decorations that will go well with the rest of your Christmas decor. Tie a few sticks with some festive ribbon and you’ve got a simple ornament that also has a delicious scent when you stand close to it; add a few vanilla sticks in for a really Christmassy fragrance.

If you want to push things further, then these cinnamon ornaments are a fun DIY to do with your kids, so definitely worth considering!

Natural and Herbal Options

Of course, the one downside of using cinnamon as a Christmas fragrance is that it can make the whole household hungry! If this is an issue for you, you might want to use a blend of natural or herbal smells for your scent choices. Here are a few great options:

  • The smell of pine needles is a guaranteed memory-stirrer for Christmas, as we all associate the fragrance with Christmas trees. Many of the major candle suppliers now do pine needle scented options, or you can buy bags of dried pine needles for use in homemade pomanders.
  • Christmas roses don’t have a particularly different smell to standard roses, so you can use anything rose-fragranced you already have for this purpose. Rose fragrance goes well with pine needles and cloves to really enhance the Christmas feel.
  • Berry scents are also popular for winter, especially dark berries such as blackberries. To prevent berry scents from smelling too edible, pair them with pine needles, pinecones, or heavy spices such as peppers– cinnamon or orange may make them smell too sweet.
  • Finally, oranges make for a wonderful Christmassy fragrance, which work well when combined with essential oils such as clary sage, basil, or even lavender. These essential oils help to highlight the botanical, rather than culinary, notes of the oranges. You can also use star anise to decorate oranges for the perfect decoration.

Image Credit

You can use raw herbal and natural products, but they are less likely to fragrance an entire house. Essential oils, candles, and diffusers are the best option if you truly want the fragrance to permeate. You can use real products for decorations, just don’t expect to be able to smell these from more than a few feet away!

Mix and Match

Of course, there’s no reason you have to restrict yourself to just one or two of these options! Christmas fragrance should be indulgent and enjoyable, so play with ideas in different rooms. Berry options are wonderful for living spaces, whereas culinary choices like cinnamon and vanilla are a natural fit for the kitchen. Play around with whatever works for you, and you and your family will soon be enjoying a fragrant Christmas that will live long in your memories.

Continue Reading

How NOT to Deal with Stress

Photo Credit

Stress is an issue that affects all of us at one point or another. And you have probably already heard a whole host of advice that people offer about the ways that you can deal with it. Get plenty of exercise. Do some yoga. Spend time alone. While this is often sage advice, we will not be focusing on it in this article. Instead, we will be looking at some of the most self-destructive and damaging ways that you can tackle stress, which often leads to further problems somewhere down the line.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of people only tackle their problems in the short-term. It is like putting a band aid on when what they really need is surgery. There are a whole host of coping mechanisms that provide a quick fix, but they don’t get to the root of the problem. While there is nothing wrong with indulging yourself or some escapism from time to time, these are not things that you should become over-reliant upon. So, let’s delve further into some of the ways NOT to deal with stress which are better off avoided.

Drinking, Smoking and Other Vices

Probably the most common way of dealing with stress is by overindulging in a negative vice. For some people alcohol or coffee, for others, this is nicotine or other drugs. And while any of these things may bring about positive feelings in the short-term, they are never long-term solutions. If you have a high amount of stress in your life at any one time, you could find that these things spiral into a bigger issue and may even lead to addiction. If you feel like this is happening to you, take a look at addiction and abuse treatment at Serenity at Summit. Ignoring these problems is never the answer.

One of the main issues with a lot of these habits is that they only increase the negative effects that stress has on the body such as raising your blood pressure, disrupting your sleep patterns and generally increasing your feelings of anxiety. This then leads to a vicious cycle of feeling more stressed out and going back to the vice over and over again.


Photo Credit

The thought of just curling up under your duvet until the problems go away is certainly a tempting one. But sleeping too much isn’t going to do you much good in the long-run. Some research has actually shown that the more sleep you get, the more tired you feel. And again, we are back into vicious cycle territory where you are not taking steps to deal with the causes of stress head-on. While getting enough sleep is good for your health, getting too much can have a detrimental effect. Human beings naturally tend to avoid problems where they see them, so instead of throwing the covers over your face, you need to face what is causing you stress.

Ignore the Problem

As we already mentioned, there is nothing wrong with a little bit of escapism from time to time. The problems arise when you are actively avoiding the issues that you have to deal with. A common way of doing this is by watching hours and hours of TV. In fact, becoming a sloth is more likely to add to your issues by making you feel depressed because you are not doing anything to tackle your problems.

While it may feel good to avoid your problems, there is always that constant nagging at the back of your mind that there is something that you should be doing. Instead, you should try to break down your problem and tackle it step by step. Start by writing out a plan of action detailing what you are going to do. Set yourself clear timescales otherwise these things could easily drag on indefinitely. Appeal to other people for help if you need it. Things always seem a lot easier when you have someone you trust who is also working on solving your problem. When you are clearly taking steps to deal with the causes of your stress, it will naturally start to diminish and dissipate.

Dwell on the Negative

Negative thinking is toxic, but it is also very easy to engage in. For example, if you have made a mistake at work, you may instantly start thinking that you are going to get disciplined or fired. In reality, the consequences are rarely as serious as you imagine they might be. And you have caused yourself a great deal of stress and anxiety simply by focusing on them too much.

Instead of blowing everything out of proportion, you should aim to be more realistic in your thinking. No one is going to be as hard on you as you are yourself. Even if you did make a mistake at work, it is highly likely that people have already moved onto the next thing while it is still keeping you up at night. Instead of berating yourself, try looking at things from a different perspective. Pretend that you are offering advice to one of your close friends. You are much more likely to have some constructive and positive things to say with this approach.

Eat Your Feelings Away

Photo Credit

Like the other harmful coping methods that we have already discussed, eating too much certainly fits into this category as well. If every time you feel stressed, you immediately open a big bag of potato chips or head over to your local drive-thru, your body and mind will begin to naturally link the negative emotions you have been experiencing with eating. And then, this will start to become a habit and you will do the same thing every time you feel sad, angry or stressed. Once again, we have to mention the vicious cycle as overeating can cause weight gain, which in turn, makes you feel worse about yourself.

Take it Out on Other People

Photo Credit

A common way of reacting when people become stressed is by lashing out at the people around them. So, you may become angry over a little thing that your partner or your kids does. Instead of dealing with the problem, you are instead transferring in onto others who are usually not the cause of the stress you are feeling. Over time, this can lead to divisions between your friends and family members. And you will probably add to your negative feeling stockpile by feeling guilty about what you have said or done to them.

Your friends and family should be there to provide you with support, and they are much more able to do this if you speak to them about what you are going through rather than speaking to them in anger.

These are the main harmful coping methods that people use when they are feeling stressed. And while they may all be tempting, they are not going to help you out in the long-run. So, if you have identified yourself when you have read through these things, it is time to learn some new techniques for stress management. There are plenty out there, so you just need to check out a few before discovering what works best for you. That is not to say that it is a big problem if you indulge in your vices from time to time. But you need to be able to differentiate between helpful and harmful stress coping mechanisms so you can increase the former and reduce the latter.

Continue Reading

Telemedicine Etiquette Tips for Delivering Exceptional Care

There is no denying that telemedicine is changing the healthcare sector. It is making healthcare more convenient and more accessible, reducing the number of hospital re-admissions and ensuring more profitable practices. Nevertheless, healthcare professionals need to work hard to ensure telemedicine continues to be a success. With that in mind, read on to discover some top telemedicine etiquette tips so that you can deliver an outstanding service to your patients.

Image Source

  • Be clear with any post-appointment instructions – If your patient must schedule a follow-up appointment, make sure you tell them this. If your patient needs to pick up a prescription, you should also let them know. Patients can become frustrated when they feel like they don’t know what to do after their telemedicine appointment. Make sure you are direct and clear with any instructions you provide.
  • Keep lag time in mind – Not all Internet connections and telemedicine software are created the same, so you may need to accommodate some lag time. It is a good idea to wait two seconds before speaking so that you can be sure your patient has finished talking too. It will help the conversation to flow better.
  • Have a set approach – There are many uses of telemedicine, from home healthcare and birth control counselling to minor urgent care and prescription renewal. It’s important to have a set approach in place for dealing with each type of appointment you are handling. This will help you to keep things more organised and ensure you don’t forget anything during your call.
  • Communicate when you need to look away – It is likely that you will need to look away from the screen during your web call, as you will have to make some notes. Let your patient know that you are still listening, but you are writing down notes about the appointment as required. This can be obvious when you have a patient in your office, but it’s not so evident over webcam.
  • Dress the part – You may be working from your home office, but this does not mean that you should wear a T-shirt and sweatpants. You should dress exactly as you would if you were working at your practice. This will give off a professional vibe, and you will instil confidence in your patients.
  • Be punctual – One of the main benefits of telemedicine for patients is the fact that it eliminates the waiting times they usually have to go through when visiting their local practice. You need to make sure that this is the case. Your patients won’t be happy if they have to sit at their computer for 30 minutes, waiting for you to come online. It is a good idea to have a notification system in place, which alerts patient via text or email that you are ready to see them.
  • Set up a professional space – Last but not least, you should set up a professional space for your virtual visits. It is important that there are no distractions. Patients want to feel secure that their privacy is protected, which is why a clean and quiet space is a must. Plus, it looks much more professional.
Continue Reading

Keep Your Senses in Peak Condition With These Useful Tips

Nothing should be considered as precious or important as your senses. As you get older, you will inevitably notice they strain gets put on your senses in a way that never used to be they case. This is just part and parcel of ageing, but that doesn’t mean that you should just stop looking after them.

You can keep your senses healthy and functional for much longer if you care for them correctly. That might sound difficult and bothersome, but it’s more than worth your time and energy. Here are some of the things you can do to keep your senses healthier for longer.

Get Checked Out Regularly

The most important thing you need to do is get checked out on a regular basis. If you’re getting checked out, you can be sure that you don’t miss any serious problems or downturns in the effectiveness of your senses. That might not sound like all that much, but it really does matter to a lot of people. Checkups are always worth the expense, and try to get checked out by the same people each time. That way, you will be able to build up and idea of how your senses are holding up over a longer period of time, and that’s really key.

Take the Advice of the Professionals

Going for regular sensory checkups only really matters if you’re willing to take the recommended action after attending the checkups. You won’t get anywhere if you ignore advice to get hearing aids or something similar. If you aren’t going to trust these medical professionals and what they’re telling you to do, there is no point in seeing them in the first place. Leave your hesitancies at the door because your senses really do matter, and you need the right people to help you look after them.

Know What You Can’t Handle Anymore

As you get older, your body changes. And that means that there are going to be certain things that your body is not capable of handling as well as in the past. We all get older, so it’s up to you to determine the things that your body is simply not capable of anymore. You might not be able to attend loud music events or you might find dealing with harsh sunlight harder than ever before. It’s important to know your body’s limits so you can modify your behaviour appropriately. Those modifications might only be small, but they could make a big difference.

Wear Sun Protection Outdoors

If you’re someone who likes to spend a lot of time outdoor or you do so because of the job you do, you need to make sure that you stay protected from the sun. It can do your skin a great deal of damage if you’re not careful. This combined with the fact that your skin becomes weaker and less elasticated as you get older means that this something that really is worth thinking about. It might seem excessive to use it every time you’re spending a little time outside, but it’s worth the hassle.

Image Source

Eat Right

The way in which you eat will have a clear impact on your health and your senses. Eating vegetables, and especially once which contain antioxidants is one great way of ensuring your sensory health remains in peak condition. If you’re generally unhealthy, have a bad diet and don’t think about the effects these things have on your senses, you’re going to be in for a surprise. For example, eating foods high in sugar will cause your blood sugar levels to rise sharply. And this can eventually lead to damage to the blood vessels in the eye.

Quit Your Damaging Habits

There are some bad habits that you definitely need to give up if you want to protect your senses for longer. The biggest of them all is smoking. It’s the one thing that really damages your smell and taste. You don’t want your enjoyment of food or glowed is damaged and limited just because you can’t stop smoking the cigarettes that you know are hurting you. Drinking too much will also dull your senses, so you should try to keep on eye on exactly how much alcohol you’re consuming.

Make use of all the things you’ve learned above if you want to keep your senses in peak condition for a long time to come. That way, you’ll be able to get more out of life for much longer too. What’s not to like about that?

Continue Reading

Get Expert Help With Tax ID Filing

If you are going to start a small business in the United States, you will have to obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN) or the Tax ID number. It is a nine-digit number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to businesses for the purposes of identification.

Employer Identification Numbers (EINs) are used by employers, sole proprietors, corporations, partnerships, non-profit organizations, trusts and estates, government agencies, certain individuals and other business entities. These numbers are used to identify taxpayers that are required to file various business tax returns.


An employer needs an EIN to pay employees and for filing for a business tax returns. Once an EIN has been issued to an employer, it will not be reissued. EINs do not expire. All businesses must file an annual income tax return. There are 5 types of business taxes.

1) Income Tax – a tax imposed on individuals or entities. Taxable income of taxpayers is generally total income less income producing expenses and other deductions. Self-assessment of tax is required of the tax payers and advance payments of tax by tax payers may be required. Those who do not pay their tax on time are generally subject to a certain amount of penalty.

2) Estimated Taxes – a tax on income that comes from self-employment, business earnings, interest, rent, dividends and other sources. This tax is usually paid quarterly.

3) Self-Employment Tax – is the Social Security and Medicare tax paid by self-employed individuals. It is withheld from an employee’s pay check.

4) Employment Taxes – as an employer, you must withhold certain taxes from your employees pay checks. Employment taxes include a) Federal income tax withholding, Social Security & Medicare taxes, and Federal unemployment tax act (FUTA).

5) Excise Tax – are taxes paid when purchases are made on a specific good, such as gasoline. Excise taxes are often included in the price of the product. There are also excise taxes on activities, such as on wagering or on highway usage by trucks.

If an employer has employees working under him, he has to pay certain taxes and certain forms to file. If you are a first type employer and is new with the process of tax id filing, I would suggest that you get help from the experts. Gov Doc Filing has an extensive network of tax professionals that can help the employer obtain his or her EIN in a short time. These experts are effective and efficient in getting the formation of your Limited Liability Company formed.

Continue Reading