Want to Plan a Hassle Free Cremation? Here’s How

Hassle Free Cremation

It’s never easy to lose a loved one or to even make plans for what comes next. This also applies to when you have to make decisions for your own process after you have passed. It can be a dark and heavy time, and this is why we’re providing a guide that will help you get through it a lot faster. 

There are a couple of factors that you need to make sure that you take care of so that you can get through this without worrying about if you’ve got everything done correctly. If you opt to go down the cremation route, then read on to understand what is needed for a hassle-free cremation.

Hassle Free Cremation

 

PURCHASE THE URN

The first thing you will need to do is decide on what kind of urn you would like to use. This decision comes along with what kind of burial as well. So to save you the hassle, you can either have a look at the variety available of cremation urns online or you can consult with the crematorium or the funeral home to help guide you on what to pick. There are actually a couple of options that you may want to consider when picking the urn, and these include whether you’d like for there to be an inscription written on it, how many you’d like in case you’d like to share the ashes with several family members, and there are even environmentally friendly options which you might like to look into as well. These urns are actually biodegradable and there are urns available now that even grow into trees. In this case, you need to also consider where would be a good place to have a tree grown without the risk of disturbance. This is a beautiful urn and it serves a higher purpose where you’ll be giving back to nature and giving your loved one eternal life in a manner.

 

MAKE ARRANGEMENTS FOR THE CREMATION

You will need to make sure that regardless of whether you plan to have a funeral service or not, you need to make arrangements for having your loved one transported to the crematorium. Many funeral homes and crematoriums actually provide this service themselves so you won’t have to think too much about how to get this done, you just have to ensure that you arrange the correct timings so that it all goes according to the funeral plans you have in mind.

 

IF YOU WANT TO BURY THE ASHES

Many people like to go forward with the traditional burial processes, even though they are still creating. In this event, then you will want to contact a funeral service to organize a casket if you would like to organize a service with it at a set location such as your home or the church before cremation. You will also have to decide on where you would like to have the ashes buried, and what kind of burial you would like to have in terms of presentation at the cemetery. You can have a tombstone made as with traditional burials, or you can even have a mausoleum for the burial. There are many cases where families prefer to have their own mausoleum. In this event, you need to get the family together and discuss if this is what you would like to do, because if so, then you need to make prior arrangements to make sure that it is all ready on time. 

BURY THE ASHES

 

IF YOU WANT TO SCATTER THE ASHES

If you have chosen to keep the ashes yourself, and perhaps share them with a couple of family members, then this part of the planning is one that you certainly can take your time with in terms of deciding where you want to have the ashes of your loved one scattered. This could be something personal between you and them, and if it comes to it, you can also choose to keep the urn close to you until you feel ready to scatter them at all. Many people love to scatter the ashes into a body of water, like by the river or the sea, while others like to scatter ashes in several places, perhaps where they had their most precious memories. And still, others choose to keep the urns with them in their homes or as they travel so that they feel that they are still close to one another. 

 

Planning a cremation is not a hectic process, as long as you have the checklist provided in mind and to help guide you in preparing these components, you will not have to stress over any of it any longer. It’s always good to know what kinds of options you have in terms of burial as well, so make sure that you are made up in your decision on how you want to go about it. The great thing about cremation is that you can go any which way you like- you don’t have to have a burial at all or even a service beforehand if you don’t feel like you can handle it.

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How a Keto Diet Helps You Lose Weight

Keto Diet Helps Lose Weight

When was the last time you gave your weight some consideration?

If you’re like most people in the United States, there’s a good chance that you’re either overweight or obese. While you may feel fine right now, if left unchecked, your weight can quickly turn into a serious health risk.

Obesity has been linked to a huge list of health complications. Just by carrying a few extra pounds, you’re greatly increasing your risk of developing severe medical issues such as diabetes, cancer, and even premature death.

The thing is, self-love is important. There’s no reason you should hate yourself or your body just because you’re overweight.

Keto Diet Helps Lose Weight

 

But by letting yourself continue to maintain an unhealthy weight, you’re actually practicing the opposite of self-care.  Self-care is caring about your mental and physical health. This involves taking care of your body and giving it the proper sleep and nutrients, it needs.

It can be a challenge to try to shed weight and maintain a healthy BMI (body mass index). Not just to help your self-esteem – which is very important, too – but to help prevent weight-related problems from arising.

With more people than ever before struggling with their weight and falling prey to yo-yo dieting, the need for a lasting solution to the obesity epidemic is critical.

That potential solution is something called the “ketogenic diet.”

 

What Is the Ketogenic Diet?

Before you can consider starting the ketogenic diet, it’s important to know exactly what a keto diet actually is.

The keto diet is a specific type of diet that promotes a low-carbohydrate, moderate-protein, and high-fat menu.

While macronutrients may vary from person to person, one key principle of the keto diet is that carbs are absolutely not allowed.

That’s not to say that the keto diet is zero carbs, though. Many people make a few keto mistakes when first trying out the keto diet.  While some people may enjoy up to 50 grams of carbs per day, others do like to avoid all carbohydrates when they are on a ketogenic diet.

 

However, everyone’s body is different. How many carbs you should eat depends on your own body’s tolerance for them and your personal preference.

That said, if you decide to start a keto diet, it’s important to know what foods are allowed and what aren’t.

Popular foods in a keto diet include meat (steak, anyone?), butter, bacon, and full-fat dairy and cheeses.

Most vegetables are allowed, too, as long as they aren’t starchy. This means that leafy greens and cruciferous veggies can be enjoyed in abundance.

On the other hand, if you eat keto, there are a few foods you should avoid completely.

 

Grains and sugars are absolutely forbidden on a keto diet. Legumes (like beans and peas) are typically too high-carb for a keto diet, too.

So are most alcoholic beverages, as they tend to be very high in sugar and carbs. Even natural sugars, like honey, have no place in the keto diet.

High-carb vegetables (such as potatoes and winter squash) are also a no-go, as are most fruits. However, lower carb fruits (such as raspberries) are okay in moderation.

Most nuts are allowed, too, so feel free to grab a second handful of almonds or macadamia nuts.

While it may seem like the ketogenic diet is restrictive, it’s actually the complete opposite of that. You can eat anything you like, as long as it’s low carb.

And, with all of the choices of delicious foods that you can eat on keto, the ketogenic diet is anything but restrictive!

 

How Does the Ketogenic Diet Help You Lose Weight?

When you think of weight loss, do you think of deprivation and starvation?

If you do, you’re not alone. Diet, after all, is a four-letter word!

Fortunately, if you embark on a ketogenic diet, you don’t have to worry about going hungry. The keto diet has been shown to be very filling and squashes hunger and cravings in their tracks.

Many people report having a lower appetite on the keto diet, too, meaning they feel less like grazing between meals.

Not only do you feel like eating less, but you’ll also be burning more calories throughout the day on a ketogenic diet.

The keto diet has been shown to speed up metabolism. Not only does it require more energy to convert fat and protein into glucose, but it also helps your body torch calories by speeding up your resting energy expenditure.

 

That means you’ll burn more calories even when sitting still on the keto diet!

The ketogenic diet also makes it easier to build muscle, which causes your metabolism to speed up.

It increases fat oxidation, too. Just by eating keto foods, the fat will melt off your body.

One major cause of obesity is poor insulin sensitivity. When your insulin levels remain high, it tells your body to convert glucose into straight-up fat.

The ketogenic diet can help regulate your body’s insulin. In turn, your body doesn’t get the memo to turn your food into fat. Instead, your metabolism perks up and uses the energy for fuel.

Do you know another major cause of obesity? Inflammation.

And do you know what keto does to the body? If you guessed that it reduces inflammation, you’d be right!

The benefits of the keto diet truly are endless, aren’t they?

 

Getting Started with a Keto Diet Today

A keto diet can seem restrictive at first, but the fact is, it’s actually a very inclusive diet. You can eat all of the permitted foods on it with zero limitations.

Sure, it cuts out most junk foods, but who needs that rubbish in their diet anyway?

If you find yourself struggling with cravings, there’s no shame in trying to find healthy, keto-friendly substitutions for your favorite foods.

You can try to learn a few new recipes. There are many ways you can “keto-ize” your favorite foods by substituting in low-carb ingredients.

Craving bread? You can easily swap out white flour for almond or coconut flour.

Want pasta? Make zoodles (spiralized zucchini noodles) with your favorite pesto or Bolognese sauce.

As you learn various hacks and tricks, the keto diet will get easier. Scout’s honor.

 

The trick to a successful keto diet is finding balance.

Eat only the foods that you like, and don’t force yourself to eat the ones you don’t care for. Not big on bacon? Skip it and reach for chicken instead.

Don’t want to chug down bulletproof coffee (coffee with a tablespoon of butter in it) in the morning? Then add a healthy splash of heavy cream to it.

The best diet is one you’ll actually stick to. If you’re choking down the food on the keto diet, you’ll just feel miserable and are more likely to give up.

 

However, if you stick it through?

You may find yourself happy with the results you’re getting from it. While a slim body is definitely a perk of the keto diet, it’s so much more than that.

The ketogenic diet has been proven to be safe in the long term, lowering blood glucose levels, cholesterol, and triglycerides.

After all, at the end of your day, what matters most is your health.

If the keto diet helps you attain that, then it means you’ve actually achieved your ultimate goal: looking (and feeling!) good in your own body.

Isn’t that worth giving up a few carbs for?

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10 Best Vacations for Teens

Thailand

Kids grow up so fast. One moment we see them playing with their plush toys, and the next one – they are graduating from high school. It happens so fast that we aren’t even aware of it, so when they tell us they want to travel the world without us, it can come as a surprise and shock, yet we feel proud. After all, it’s logical that they deserve some kind of a break and to be rewarded after finishing school and listening to all the lectures, passing all the exams and learning so much. So, if the time has come for your child to explore the world on their own, let’s see what are the best vacation options out there!

 

Rocky Mountain National Park

Rocky Mountain National Park is quite busy, bringing repeat visitors and awing them all with its beauty. It’s actually one of the most visited parks in the USA, and there are friendly and knowledgeable park rangers who provide advice on weather conditions and hiking trails, so your kid will love it. It can be quite adventurous for a teen!

 

Thailand

Thailand is among the most favorite destinations because of its diversity.  It’s one of the liveliest places where you can find a lot of entertainment for teens. There is world-class diving, hill tribe trekking, elephants, bustling night markets, as well as impressive temples! Add amazing food to all this, and we can say it’s a dream destination!

Thailand

 

Volunteering in Cambodia

Traveling can also mean a memorable holiday where one can really make a difference in someone’s life. If your kid is graduating soon, you can give them a trip of a lifetime by considering some of the schoolies 2020 options. It’s a perfect graduation gift, and more than 20,000 students have had a chance to travel to destinations all over the world so far. There are many options, and one of them is being a volunteer in Cambodia. Your kid can work with Cambodian children and teach English in orphanages and have wonderful experiences! It’s a remarkable chance to do something meaningful that they will remember for the rest of their lives, not to mention they will help those who are truly in need.

 

Paris France

Paris is a glamorous city of fashion, perfect for teens who love shopping! Your kid will like making selfies with the Eiffel Tower in the background, but Paris has so much more to offer than this unique hallmark! There are many activities to enjoy there, from bike tours and macaron classes to looking for Instagram or snapchat spots.

 

Venice Italy

Many would agree that Venice is charming and it is quite a safe destination, which is great! Teens can enjoy strolling down alleyways while eating delicious one-of-a-kind gelato and window shopping for breathtaking Italian leather handbags, feeling carefree. They also sell really cool-looking masks that make perfect souvenirs. Young travelers really like this!

 

Argentina – Buenos Aires

This list would be nothing without this marvelous South American destination! Incredible hostel deals can be found, and you can let your kid enjoy a real Argentine escapade! Buenos Aires is remarkable because of tango, delicious cuisine, soccer, and shopping. There are plenty of activities for young travelers and they can taste some cultural influences from France, Spain, Italy and beyond.

Argentina – Buenos Aires

 

Japan

Anyone can experience Japanese culture by ordering sushi or reading anything written by Haruki Murakami, but going to this magical East-Asian island country can be an unforgettable experience for a teenager! Japan has beautiful shrines, but maybe young travelers prefer something like a kimono and tea ceremony, or Akihabara, home of manga and anime. They can even take a peek at some sumo wrestling or see authentic samurai gear.

 

Russia – Saint Petersburg

Saint Petersburg is famous for its inspiring churches, palaces, and museums and has incredible architecture and culture. Teens who like sightseeing will definitely enjoy it a lot because there are plenty of great things to see. For example, there is Pushkin, the summer residence of the Tsars. It is great for those who love history!

Russia – Saint Petersburg

 

Costa Rica

This rugged and forested Central American jewel is appreciated because of its hot springs, beaches, and diverse wildlife, so if your teen is a nature lover, they will be thrilled to visit this destination! They can visit the famous Corcovado National Park and the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Also, anyone who likes exotic animals will be excited to see spider monkeys and quetzal birds!

 

The Bahamas

Let’s not forget to mention this beautiful coral-based archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean! People love the Bahamas because of cruises, which are actually a perfect thing for teens since they offer so much. There is a skating rink, rock climbing, zip-lining, arcade, surf simulators, mini-golf, teen lounge, 3D movie lounge, and disco. It’s definitely not difficult to find something enticing!

So, school is over for your kid and it’s the time they become a globe-trotting traveler who wants plenty of escapades far from home to broaden horizons. Luckily, there are so many great choices and so many dreamy destinations! Beautiful beaches, breathtaking nature, shopping, fascinating culture, amazing food, different fun activities or volunteering and doing something meaningful – so many things can be done and experienced in 2020!

 

Jack Kewell is a writer, science editor, naturalist, entrepreneur. He is focused on writing and illustrating books. Also, he is a regular contributor to Smoothdecorator.

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2020 Inbound Marketing Trends Your Small Business Can Use

Inbound Marketing

The past two years have been revolutionary when it comes to the way businesses are marketed. The development and increased accessibility of artificial intelligence and machine learning have presented an opportunity for small businesses to compete on a global scale.

Inbound Marketing

Inbound digital marketing is the way of the future. If you’re a small business owner, you can get ahead of the curve by looking at trends for 2020 and beyond. Here are five inbound marketing trends to jump on today.

 

Video Marketing

Video marketing is largely taking over the content marketing world. The idea behind it is simple: videos are eye-catching, visual, engaging, and easy to commit to. Think about it: why write a long piece of content and hope that people will read it when you can get the idea across in a two-minute video?

Whether you’re planning on creating a business selling strategy for the next few years or you’re in it for the long haul, video marketing is an incredible opportunity for expanding your audience and increasing your prospect base. 

Live videos, in particular, are a powerful focal point for digital marketing efforts. Using cross-streaming capabilities through webinar providers like Zoom, YouTube, and Facebook Live will get your audience active and engaged.

 

New Social Media Channels

Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest still have an important role in social media strategies. However, there are new social media channels that you’d be remiss to leave out of your future inbound marketing strategy.

While many of the current social media moguls target the Millennial generation– a wise choice since Millennials are coming into their prime spending years— it’s not too early to think about Gen Z.

Gen Z started in 1995. These people have never lived in a world without the internet. They’ve learned from the mistakes of the Millennials and have new interests. To Gen Z, Facebook is for old people. Their focus lies in the untapped market of TikTok, VSCO, and UStream.

While Gen Z might not have the buying power yet, small businesses can plan for the future and start experimenting with these opportunities before they get lost in the noise.

 

Micro-Influencers

Influencers play a significant role in modern inbound marketing. That being said, as time goes by, trust goes down. Consumers are no longer putting their faith in celebrities with millions of followers. Instead, they want to hear from the everyday Joe or Jane that’s working hard for the money.

A micro-influencer has less than 500,000 followers. They may even have as few as 1,000 to 10,000 followers. The difference here is that the audience is engaged and has a connection with the influencer. As marketing experts around the world will be quick to tell you, most purchasing decisions are made from a place of emotion rather than logic.

Micro-influencers are the future of influencer marketing. For small businesses, targeting local celebrities or up-and-coming influencers to promote your goods and services is a smart move. 

 

Email Lifecycle Marketing

Email marketing is still the bread and butter for many businesses. While sensitivity to emails has decreased, email lifecycle marketing is renewing the effectiveness of this communication channel.

With email lifecycle marketing, you use smart analytics and automation to truly personalize your content. Rather than letting people know what products are available that they might be interested in, you meet them where they are in the sales funnel.

Some common examples of email lifecycle marketing efforts include abandoned cart emails and lapsed customer incentive emails. These targeted efforts encourage an initial sale and keep retained customers for the long-haul.

 

2020: The Year of Small Business Success

2020 will be the year of small business success. Choose one or a few of these strategies and start implementing them over the next year. Set key performance metrics and track your progress to make outcome-based decisions that will take your business to new heights.

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Tips for Choosing Your Hotel While Traveling

Choosing Hotel

Are you looking forward to your trip but have booking fear due to your inexperience or past bad experiences? Well, it’s time to leave the past behind you and book your hotel without fear. If you know how to look, you’ll find wonderful accommodation and have a comfortable and fun stay. Here are some of the best tips when choosing a hotel when traveling.

 

Decide what you want

You need to set your priorities straight before you even think about booking any accommodation. Ask yourself whether there are any attractions you want to be close to. If location is your top priority, you can open Google Maps, choose your desired location and hotels in the area will automatically pop up. This is a great way to save time and narrow down your accommodation choices. Or is parking your main concern? Some people love a hearty breakfast at the hotel while others prefer to hit a local bakery—think which one are you. Usually, each hotel has a pretty good offer description, so make sure to give it a thorough read.

Choosing Hotel

 

Read reviews

If you don’t know anything about the hotel that caught your eye, make sure to search the internet for some guest reviews. People love to share their good and bad experiences, so you’ll definitely find both pros and cost concerning your hotel. The more reviews there are, the more accurate the rating will be—this is something to keep in mind. Also, don’t let one or two one-star reviews turn you off. Sometimes, everyone has a bad day, both guests and hotel staff, so bad reviews might not be so accurate.

Hotels reviews

 

Decoration matters

No matter if you’re Instagram-obsessed or just want to enjoy some luxury on your trip, don’t forget about the aesthetic appeal of your hotel. Today, hotel owners and interior designers can find beautiful artwork online, so there are really no excuses for bare walls and outdated art. A well-decorated hotel with modern art in every room will not only surround you with beauty but also almost guarantee that the hotel is well kept. If they make an effort to impress you with art, they certainly take good care of cleanliness and ensure guest satisfaction.

 

Look for good amenities

Unless you’re planning to spend all your time outside or in your room, make sure to check what kind of amenities does the hotel offer. One of the best amenities is definitely the pool. There’s nothing better than relaxing in the water after a long day on your feet. Swimming is also one of the best morning activities to get you moving. If you require more intense physical activity than swimming, check whether your hotel has a gym. This will allow you to follow your workout regime and stay in shape no matter where you are in the world. Staying in town for a longer period of time? It’s best to choose a hotel with a laundry service that will allow you to freshen up your clothes and always look put together, no matter the situation.

Hotels good amenities

 

Wi-Fi is a must

Today, free Wi-Fi is a must in every respectable hotel. No matter if you’re a digital nomad or just a curious tourist, you’ll definitely need an internet connection that will allow you to do your job, learn about the destination and stay in touch. If your hotel doesn’t offer Wi-Fi, expect to spend a lot of money on data or waste plenty of time searching for free hot-spots around the city.

 

Don’t rush your decision. If you want to have a comfortable, smooth and peaceful vacation, make sure to follow these tips and book the right hotel. Only when you’re cozy can you have a memorable travel experience!

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