Under the Sea Crafts for Kids

Still missing that fun, family vacation? No worries! Whether you and your family are hitting the beach, staying home or reminiscing about your family getaway, here a few sea crafts to bring the sea to your home! Your kids will love these and you’ll have a blast making them too!


Over at KidsActivitiesBlog, Michelle and her daughter brought the octopus crafts Wiggles and Oggy to life, using these crafts to inspire storytelling! Your kids can create their own story with their new octopus friends!

Aqua Sand

Who wants to see a magic trick? Well look no further! Louise at PagingFunMums, brought a fresh, new way for children to play in the sand. Adult supervision is recommended because we don’t want the kiddos to eat this fun creation!

Fish lantern

Is your child afraid of the dark? Or do you just want to add flair to a beachy room design? Look no further! Akane recreated her daughter’s field trip souvenir on JugglingWithKids. These lanterns are fun ways to get the creativity flowing with your children and bring the ocean to your home! The kids will love the light and design behind this craft!

Bringing the beach home just got that much easier with these activities. Have fun making your favorite under water creations!


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The College Curse: How to Pay Your Student Loans Without Going Broke

Attending college and earning a degree has become more than just an adventure that a high school graduate experiences for four years. It’s an adult responsibility that can weigh your pockets down until you’re permanently slumped over and depressed. As if eating Ramen noodles in between classes wasn’t enough, now you’re in the workforce and it seems your quality of life hasn’t changed because you’re stuck with an insurmountable mountain student debt.

college students

According to CNN, the average student loan debt for an undergraduate is about $29,400. For those who are ambitious enough to attend grad school, that number climbs to a median of $57,600.

If you’re struggling to survive with a burden of debt, consider the following tips to free yourself from it.

Cut Down All Your Controllable Expenses

You’d be surprised at the amount of money you’re likely spending each month that you could invest toward your student loan debt. Sure, you’ll have to sacrifice that lavish lifestyle you’ve grown to know and love, but that doesn’t mean it’ll be forever. The sooner you pay if off, the faster you can spend that money on the extras you enjoy.

  • Rent. Sharing a dorm room in college was an experience in itself, but you likely dreamt of the time you could live in an apartment that you could call your own. Well, if you want to pay off your student loan, keep dreaming for a few more years. Living with a roommate might seem like a hassle, but it’s the best way to put more money in your pockets considering rent is the biggest expense you deal with monthly.
  • Cable. Not only is cable TV bad for your mind, but it’s an easy expensive you can cut out of your budget. Instead, opt for streamed shows on your computer or subscribe to cheaper services like Netflix.
  • Gym. Staying active and healthy will help you alleviate some of the stress you feel from having student loan debt, but that doesn’t mean you should be forking over outrageous monthly gym fees in the process. If there’s a facility at work or where you live, use that instead. Instead of the treadmill, run outside.
  • Phone bill. It’s easy to get sucked into the hype and buy the newest version of a phone when it comes out. Not only that, but the service provider you decide on can also have a tremendous impact on how much you’re spending each month just to talk and text.
  • Online Classes.A student pursuing a taxation degree can save money and time by supplementing their campus experience with cheaper and more convenient online classes, that still deliver the same, if not better results.

Find Ways to Earn Some Extra Income

Now that you’ve cut out some unneeded expenses out of your life, it’s time to focus on how you can earn some extra income to put toward paying off your student loan debt. Here are a few ideas to help with that.

  • Babysitting/Petsitting. Two things are a fact of life: people have kids and people own animals. If you’re good with either, try your hand at watching them. It’s a relatively easy way to earn a few extra bucks.
  • Tutoring. Considering you went to college, you have some sort of expertise in an area that other people are lacking. Use that to your advantage by offering tutoring services to them.
  • Odd jobs. There’s plenty of odd jobs out there at any time — just check Craigslist’s job section in your area.
  • Mystery shopping. Before you accrued your debt, you probably thought this line of work was a hoax. Well, it’s not, and you should consider doing it to earn money. All you have to do is pretend you’re a customer at a restaurant, hotel, or entertainment venue and report back to the company with your experience.

Talk With Your Loan Advisers and Choose the Right Payment Plan

In addition to cutting out expenses and earning extra income on the side, paying off your student loan debt won’t happen unless you talk with advisers and choose the right payment plan. You should study your financial options as much as you studied for your finals (well, hopefully). The more aware you are of what you can do to pay off your loan faster without burying yourself, the better off you’ll be. So don’t run and hide from your responsibility.

Don’t let the weight of your student debt pummel you into your grave. Face it and pay it off today so you can have a better tomorrow.

photo credit © Sandor Kacso

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SUNsational Summer!

child on the beach

Dr. Kara Beair, DO & Kim Beair, MS, LPC, NCC Inspiring Strategies for Success by Friends and Experts You Can Trust Keep yourself and your kids burn free this summer by taking a few tips to heart. No one is immune from sunburn and skin damage; even those with darker skin tones need to be […]

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Munchkin LATCH Baby Bottle Giveaway


LATCH has an accordion-style nipple which moves, pumps and stretches like the breast. The three key features that aid in the transition from breast to bottle and back are: o   Stretches for a Better Latch: Accordion-style nipple designed to stretch like the breast all the way to a baby’s soft palette, affording babies an easier […]

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Help Your Kids Eat Healthy With A Simple Chart

Peter Rabbiit

Having a hard time with a picky, little eater? Having trouble making sure your child is actually getting their wholesome fuel? How about using a simple chart? While nutrition plays a huge role in a child’s growth and development, as children grow and begin to develop their own tastes, foods with nutritional value are usually rejected, […]

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Summer Cyber Safety

kids with a computer

Dr. Kara Beair, DO & Kim Beair, MS, LPC, NCC Inspiring Strategies for Success by Friends and Experts You Can Trust Times have changed and summer for kids isn’t what it used to be. In the age of computers and cell phones, kids who are normally in school all day now have many more hours […]

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Soft Pastel Baby Shower


Congratulations to my friend who just had a healthy, handsome baby boy! It seems as if just yesterday I hosted a baby shower for her, and here he is! I designed the overall theme after being inspired by old-fashioned organic wooden toys, which I found in Washington D.C. on one of our street shopping outings. […]

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Discipline: Summer and Beyond

children with dog

By Kim Beair, MS, LPC, NCC & Dr. Kara Beair, DO Inspiring Strategies for Success by Friends and Experts You Can Trust Discipline – hardly the word anyone wants to think about for the lazy days of summer. Summer can be a great time to relax and still get kids started on a fun and […]

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Wet and Wild! Staying Hydrated for Summer Fun!

baby on the beach

Dr. Kara Beair, DO & Kim Beair, MS, LPC, NCC Inspiring Strategies for Success by Friends and Experts You Can Trust Dehydration is dangerous to kids and adults alike. Kids present a bigger challenge in this arena because let’s face it – they just get so busy! Some kids drink a lot while they play, […]

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Concert to Benefit The Signing Time Foundation


When you first see 21-month-old Brynn, the first things you’ll notice are her big blue eyes and her tiny blonde pigtails. Although she is typically quiet around new people, she loves being read to and dancing to her favorite songs in her Play & Sign class, where young children and their parents learn a handful […]

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Happy 4th of July


All of us at Just Between Friends wish you a happy and safe holiday weekend! (Visited 8 time, 8 visit today)

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Fun 4th of July Crafts!

handprint & footprint flag

Fourth of July is just around the corner, and who doesn’t want in on all the fun!? Here’s a few simple, festive July crafts for your kids to enjoy plus add some patriotic pizzazz throughout your home! Ginger over at GingerSnapCrafts created a cute, patriotic flag craft based on a painting she had seen on […]

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10 Simple Dos and Don’ts for Parents to Raise Emotionally Healthy Children

summer kids

by Mary Jo Rapini, MEd, LPC Everyone wants happy, successful children, but everyone parents in a way that increases the chance that this will happen. The reasons are simple: parenting great kids is a lot of work. It’s uninterrupted, consistent, hands-on dirty work at times, but if you delegate parent’s work to teachers, youth leaders, […]

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Three States in the U.S. Perfect For Family Vacations

Screen shot 2014-05-25 at 10.21.29 AM

It can be hard to take a tropical trip or a European vacation when you have a family, mainly because the costs of flights can really add up when its more than you and your spouse traveling. So why not take your family somewhere in driving distance, and leave the hassle of price behind? Here […]

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Summer Crafts From Simple Household Products

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Summer is the perfect time to make some simple crafts and get the kids involved.  Kids of all ages will enjoy these clever crafts. Heather, from WhipperBerry, was planning an activity for her youth at church and came up with a version of water dodge ball.  She decided that it would be fun to kick […]

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Summer Fun at the Beach


The cross-country trek to a summer vacation at the beach has started!  Parents are gathering all the things they need to keep their kids busy and happy for fun in the sun.  Moms are hoping to get through a few pages of a new book, and Dads are thinking about sneaking off for a round […]

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Don’t Let Feelings of Guilt Overwhelm You

mom and daughter

Guilt is an unavoidable emotion that plagues the spirit of most conscientious mothers. There are so many demands. Moms feel guilty when they fall short of their own expectations and are quick to blame themselves whenever their kids have problems. Raising children is stressful – not just the physical everyday stuff of laundry, cooking, and […]

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Make Toys Using Recyclables!


On average, how many boxes, plastic bottles and other recyclables do you dispose of each week? While their intended use is over, it doesn’t mean they still can’t be functional! Look at these three ways to turn your trash into toys! 1. Stair Slide If you’ve got sizable cardboard lying around (think refrigerator-sized boxes), flatten […]

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Popular Foods to Avoid


It can be difficult to tell your children that the foods they want to eat aren’t beneficial to their growth and health. However, with these foods, it is absolutely necessary. 1. Kraft Macaroni and Cheese It’s easy to whip up, but the high sodium level isn’t worth it. Not to mention the load of additives […]

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The Best Entertaining Yard Yet


Summer vacation is just around the corner, which means three months when kids can spend their days outside. While the backyard is a great place for families to spend their time, parents will want to make sure their space is ready for kids to have fun too. This year, keep guests of all ages entertained […]

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Father’s Day Photo Shoot Ideas


Step up your Father’s Day gifts with these fun photo shoot ideas! These are a sure way to add some creativity to the day and put a smile on his face. 1. Dress Up Like Dad This idea is best if you have multiple children (or, if you’re good with photo editing, one will work!). […]

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Twists on Classic Summer Treats


The Ice Cream Man may or may not be a regular on your block, but with these three recipes, you won’t need him! Ice Slushy Mostly Homemade Mom has used this recipe for over two years, and it remains the best and easiest way to treat your children during the summer. Check out the full […]

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Summer Slumber Party Ideas


Sleepovers are already great, but adding these summer twists will make them even better! Try out these summer slumber party ideas for loads of fun! 1. Camping Outside The weather is perfect, so it’s time to gather your extra bedsheets and build forts in your backyard! As always, be there for any technical support, but […]

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Giveaway: Mimijumi Baby Bottle


mimijumi, LLC based in Nashville, TN is a design-driven company that specializes in simple, safe and natural products for the modern family. Through the design and production of infant care essentials, mimijumi products are made for both baby and parent to create the most natural experience possible. This design is based on the psychological dynamics […]

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Tips For Beating Allergies This Spring


If April showers bring May flowers, then surely what comes next is the “wheezing and sneezing” of spring and summer allergies.  We’ve all heard the conventional advice before, but there are some less talked about ways that allergy sufferers can try to zap those nasty symptoms for good. Robin Wilson is an ambassador for the Asthma and […]

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Summer Water Games for Kids


It’s getting hot. And after a while, the pool can get redundant. Here are three ideas to cool down while still having fun! 1. Car Wash Your kids are probably fascinated by car washes when they’re going through them, so why not create one in your backyard? Set-up might take a while, but if built […]

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