Tuesday, January 31, 2023

January 2023 reads

Lots of reading time this month. I probably won't finish what I'm reading now today, so no reason to delay. Here we go, January reads:

Engrossing Reads

Maame by Jessica George - I really loved this - the writing was wonderful, loved Maddie and watching her grow out of and also into herself. She was a real combo of strong and vulnerable and ugh I just loved the whole reading experience and put the book down feeling warm. ARC paperback from St Martins Press & digital ARC from Netgalley  - I read the paperback

Signal Fires by Dani Shapiro - I don't even recall putting this on hold at the library, or where I heard about it? But I picked it up when I got the notice it was in and devoured it. I loved this book. It's so tender and terrible and great. OCNJ library hard cover

The Last Beekeeper by Julie Carrick Dalton - I loved this even though I not read up on it and was not expecting a whirlwind dystopian novel. Really good. I stayed up until 2 to finish this in one shot. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book comes out March 7

Weyward by Emilia Hart - Every time I'd start a section I'd say okay this is my favorite of the three, and every time I ended it I was sure of it, then started the next and the cycle began again. Hart did a good job weaving things together and making the Weyward women real and related despite the years between. Love the play of wayward Weyward. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book publishes February 2

All That is Mine I Carry With Me by William Landay - When I started this I thought I was reading a forward, so I started out disoriented. This was brilliantly pieced together. The second part was the best. I loved the writing and idea behind this. Story-wise it's more of a three for me, but the work as a whole is a 4.5-5 Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book comes out March 7

On the Savage Side by Tiffany McDaniel - I barely know how to describe this book. I didn’t want to put it down but had to. I could read the lyrical writing forever and not for another minute because of what it was describing. A searing look at being a woman in this world, and at addiction, abuse, mental illness, violence, and poverty…and cutting holes in all of those terrible things to let the light in and grasp at life in the face of a deeply disturbing present. A masterful tangled web. A harrowing, heavy, and powerful read. I hope readers who see this billed as a thriller don't expect the surface thrillers we typically get, and that people who read (versus readers) don't read this book because it's being talked about and pan it because it's too much. The world is too much, and that reflects in literature. This is serious shit. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book comes out February 14

Passed the Time Just Fine
The Love Story of Missy Carmichael by Beth Morrey - Welp I got this from Netgalley at the end of 2020 and just fucking read it now. I don't know why I was avoiding it. It turned out to be a completely different book than the title led me to believe.  loved this band of characters. Some serious themes in this book, and I liked how they were integrated into Missy’s awakening. Thanks to Netgalley for a free copy in exchange for an honest review

Two Old Women: An Alaskan Legend of Betrayal, Courage and Survival by Velma Wallis - This reminded me so much of parables from when I was little. I loved it. Super quick read. Paperback, own

A Burning Obsession (Abby Mullen #3) by Mike Omer - I standardly like Omer novels, and though I prefer Zoe Bentley over Abby Mullen, I was happy to read the end of this trilogy especially with Zoe making a crossover. Kindle, own

Spare by Prince Harry - I am not a Royal lover (although I so enjoyed the Royal Wedding Party we had for Will & Kate's wedding, that was a fun day) but I had to read this so I asked for it for Christmas. If you are not a fast reader I cannot imagine how interminable this book would feel. I get a lot of what he's saying, and the way the tabs have gone after Meghan is awful, but Harry is not anti-monarchy and while I also get that as that's how he grew up and what he knew, I sort of don't, if we're approaching this from a societal advancement scenario. Aside from the glaring imperialist racist colonialist history they have as a family...I do not understand how they function in modern society as they are. It's quite sad to me. Hardcover, own and passed on

The Angel Maker by Alex North - High creep factor, but lessened because the parts of this story felt too disjointed even though the plan for them to come together was definitely a unique and good one. It felt fully like reading and trying to follow more than five separate stories Thanks to Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an honest review, book publishes February 28

The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry (Harold Fry #1) by Rachel Joyce - I didn't know if I'd have the patience for this book when I started it, but by the time I finished it I felt warm inside. Looking back on it after I read the other two books, it is my least favorite of the three but still solid. OCNJ library hardcover

The Love Song of Miss Queenie Hennessy (Harold Fry #2) by Rachel Joyce - I loved this character fiercely, first in glimpses of her in the first novel then as the star of her own here, which I liked more than the original impetus novel. I'll remember her for a long time in reading-years. OCNJ library hard cover

Maureen (Harold Fry #3) by Rachel Joyce - Getting this book from Netgalley was the inspiration for me to start the series from the beginning, and out of the three books, it ranks second in my preference. A nice wrap up to the Harold Fry series. It’s always nice to read people come around to who and where they are in life and love themselves. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

The Writing Retreat by Julia Bartz -This was a wild ride, not in a great way? In an attempt to be edgy it gets weird. LOL, I'm still unsure. I'm not sure I've read anything like this before. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book publishes February 21

Hide (Detective Harriet Foster #1) by Tracy Clark - I quite liked Harriet Foster and Li and will read the next. Thanks to Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an honest review

Not For Me/Did Not Finish
Just the Nicest Couple by Mary Kubica - I have a checkered past with Mary Kubica books...After four or five of her books, I'd sworn her off because I did not get the draw. I had her last book sent to me unasked for, read it and enjoyed it. This...as I stated in an IG share, the story is held together by Dollar Store brand scotch tape. We are back on a break. NFM OCNJ library hard cover

At Sea by Emma Fedor - One of the least likable characters I've read in a while coupled with a hmm, really story. Loved the cover, title, and the premise was promising but this is a hot mess. NFM Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book publishes March 7

Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano - I might be an outlier here given the high ratings on Goodreads. This was very slow moving and it felt like Walter’s parts almost moved backwards. I loved Sylvie, the writing, and some of the family relation stuff but this largely did not hold my attention. NFM Thanks to Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an honest review , book publishes March 14

We're All Lying by Marie Still -  I thought Cass was ridiculous and was very WTF about how it all went down with the husband and business and it was frankly ridiculous. NFM ebook

Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter - DNF OCNJ library hard cover

Kismet by Amina Akhtar - DNF, Amazon First Reads

What have you been reading?

Monday, January 30, 2023

Snippets of the weekend 1.30.2023

Workday spent with Mae and Billy while the best friend dogs were upstairs with MFD. Fresh nails (Olive Ave Pisces - dark purple - and Essie below zero). Knocked off at 4 to head to Cape May Courthouse to go to ReStore and TJMaxx on the hunt for a new side table for the shore main living room. Check, and check on two of my favorite candles that are no longer made, and check on a collapsible sled MFD purchased for...I don't know why. We are 46, do not sled, and in fact have seen no laying snow in Philadelphia this winter. We followd up with a dinner at the Lobster House. I got baked stuffed shrimp and did not like them but not because they were bad, just personal preference. Closed it out staying up late to finish a devastating book.

Since I was up late, I slept in and slid slowly into the day. I packed up some returns and dropped them at the post office, then headed up to the boardwalk to take a walk around. I saw the theater getting ready to make a comeback, which is super exciting. Those of you who grew up going to Ocean City boardwalk movie theaters on a rainy day or during a night of vacation know!
I also checked out the beach replenishment project which was at 11th from the Music Pier, then headed back home to sit out on the winter dirty porch and air out the apartment. MFD went back to Philly to work, and I made slaw for carnitas tacos - pulled the meat off the bone for those as well. I read throughout the day, puttered around, took a long walk with the best friend dogs, and sacked out on the couch at night.
Sunday we had a little lie in and MFD decided he wanted to go home to watch the Eagles game on a whim so we got our shit packed up and cleaned up, took a walk, and headed home. I started laundry and dropped him off at my brother's for the game while I ran errands through the first half - returned a bunch of shit and picked some random needs up. I watched the end of the game outside there and we came home and watched a bunch of Yellowstone episodes. 

As you know, I don't fuck with sports much period, particularly the NFL, but I do love many of the Eagles players, everything about Jalen Hurts including his game day outfits, the story of Jordan Mailata, Nick Sirianni's F bombs, both Kelce brothers and their podcast snippets (not a full podcast listener), how much Philly people love being from Philly and how hard they go for their teams, when players on said teams truly understand what the city and its fans are about, and the humming energy and shared excitement when one of our teams is on a championship run. And of course also football food so looking forward to Frank & Amanda's Super Bowl party already. 

Friday, January 27, 2023

Friday files 1.27.2023

Sometimes I arrive at Friday and have no idea what happened throughout the week overall. Like today.

Monday was National Handwriting Day. I burned through all of my shore candles. Lots of beach trash pickup. Wind and rain made for a miserable Wednesday. I had a persistent sore throat out of nowhere. I read a lot of books. I've been existing on the turkey veggie rice soup I made Sunday, buffeted with a pork roll egg and cheese a la MFD. I've read a lot. I don't think I've left the house since Monday aside from going for walks and that's evident when I look at photos from the week.

Have you tried Tabitha Brown's popcorn from Target? I like the sweet and salty. I cannot locate the garlic parmesan anywhere and I desperately want to. It doesn't ship. The dill pickle doesn't have enough flavor for me. The vegan jalapeno hummus is excellent!

I'm poised for February but surprised at how full my calendar is when that is usually not the case in the history of Februarys. 

Another week passes without the bathroom posts I've been meaning to do for months.

This week the Union League of Philadelphia hosted Ron DeSantis who has supports the state banning AP African American studies curriculum. Local Philly folks, please call on all of your elected representatives to decline to attend events hosted at the Union League and any organizations you are a part of to find another location for events. If you need help on what to say or who to contact, let me know!

Speaking of DeSantis and his fans...you shouldn't be proud of being "anti-woke" without knowing where the term came from. Of course, many people do know where the term came from and are proudly anti-woke. If you don't know, in an unsurprising turn of events, what anti-woke means is anti-Black. Check out how woke went from black to bad

Today is Holocaust Remembrance Day, which coincides with the date the Nazi death camp  Auschwitz was liberated. Just 78 years ago today, which is not that long in the grand scheme of things. Certainly not long enough for anti-Semitism to be on the rise globally in the way that it is. Fascism rising the world over and it is fucking infuriating and discouraging. When people are trying to stop children from learning history and what discrimination is, that is all a part of the rise of fascism. 

I more than earned my pay this week, putting in some hours at night due to a deadline, and I am really ready to get my plan-less weekend started. I hope yours is super!

Monday, January 23, 2023

snippets of the weekend 1.23.2023

Work work, finish shore contracts for the summer, pay bills, pack pack, wait for 95 traffic to subside, and head to the shore at 7 to unpack and laze around. I slept 10 hours on Friday night and it was glorious. Saturday we did a beach walk and the sky and water were so interesting I could have stayed there all day but the wind was inhospitable and we had things to do.

We had lunch at The Grilled Cheese & Crab Cake Co. in Somers Point (I got the pork belly with muenster), hit up Big Wally's furniture, then spent 1.5 excruciating hours in Egg Harbor Twp. getting the flooring quote right in person for the first floor in the main house because five days of back and forth on the phone did not work. Off-season shore chores! I dropped MFD off and went to the grocery store. Back at home I read, then we watched the Eagles and I made wings in my new (as of December) air fryer - it's 8 qt and lavender, can you die. It's Crux, 8 qt, and $59 at Best Buy. It replaced my shore Cosori that was my original air fryer and died on Thanksgiving Eve.
Sunday I took the best friend dogs on an hour beach walk and we checked out the coastal replenishment At-At in action, found some sea glass, and enjoyed being outside despite the gray. I showered, then went back and purchased the furniture we decided on and did a Target pickup order. 

I contacted a returning renter who wanted to come back in September. We weren't planning on renting in September, but costs for floor replacement are higher than anticipated so now we are. It's good to have options. 

We hung out upstairs while I made turkey veggie rice soup from the Thanksgiving turkey carcass that was in the freezer. We watched Emily the Criminal. I started and stopped two books and finally started a third I think I'll stick with. We caught up a bit on Yellowstone and were in bed by 11.

Happy Lunar New Year despite yet another devastating mass shooting clouding the celebrations. Between that and the non-50th anniversary of Roe yesterday, it was a good weekend to largely be off the internet. 

Sunday, January 22, 2023

11 Reasons Why Weekly Meal Prep Is Beneficial

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Weekly meal prep is a great way to ensure that you have healthy and delicious meals ready to go throughout the week. There are many benefits to this practice, including saving time, reducing food waste, and making it easier to stick to a healthy diet. 

Here are 11 reasons why weekly meal prep is beneficial:

  1. Saves time: Preparing a week's worth of meals in one day can save you a significant amount of time throughout the week. Instead of spending time every day cooking and cleaning up, you can simply reheat your pre-made meals and enjoy them.

  2. Reduces food waste: When you plan out your meals for the week, you can make sure that you use all of the ingredients you buy. This reduces the amount of food waste you produce and saves you money. If you know how to make flatbread pizza then it’s easy to use the left-overs as toppings.

  3. Helps you stick to a healthy diet: When you have healthy meals already prepared, it's much easier to make good food choices. This can help you maintain a healthy diet and reach your fitness goals.

  4. Increases variety in your diet: Meal prepping allows you to make a variety of meals, which can help prevent boredom and make it easier to get all of the nutrients you need.

  5. Reduces stress: When you have meals prepared in advance, you don't have to worry about what to make for dinner or whether you have the ingredients on hand. This can reduce stress and make mealtime more enjoyable.

  6. Helps you stay on budget: Meal prepping allows you to plan out your meals and buy ingredients in bulk, which can save you money.

  7. Increases energy: Eating a healthy diet that is rich in nutrient-dense foods can help increase energy levels, making it easier to tackle the day ahead.

  8. Improves digestion: Eating regular meals that are high in fiber and nutrient-dense can help improve digestion and keep you regular.

  9. Enhances the immune system: Eating a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and other nutrient-dense foods can help boost the immune system and reduce the risk of illness.

  10. Increases focus and productivity: Eating a healthy diet can help improve focus and productivity, making it easier to accomplish tasks throughout the day.

  11. Helping out: Having meals prepped and ready to go can also make it easy to take a meal to someone in need, such as a new parent, a sick friend, or a family member who could use a helping hand. This can be a great way to show you care and offer your support in a practical way.

In A Nutshell

Overall, weekly meal prep is a great way to ensure that you have healthy, delicious meals ready to go throughout the week. It can save you time, reduce food waste, and help you stick to a healthy diet. With the benefits of meal prepping, it's worth the effort of taking some time to plan and prepare your meals in advance. Not only will it save you time, but it will also help you stay on track with your dietary goals, and make you feel more energized and productive.

This post was written with Life According to Steph readers in mind

Saturday, January 21, 2023

7 Tips For Creating the Perfect Date Night

You don’t just have to have a date on Valentine’s Day or even an anniversary; a date night could happen at any time, even a weekday other than Friday! These times with your partner must stay special, a time to forget worries and only focus on the love and happiness that both of you have for each other. So, here is everything you need to know about creating the perfect date!

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Set the right tone

Believe it or not, there are different tones to date. You can have silly dates, casual, flirty, and something romantic. So, you need to consider what you want for this tone. Whether you decide to head out for an evening of romantic fun or stay in to watch the big game, everything must flow together for the date. It doesn’t need to be hard to set the tone in the environment either. For instance, you both can dress up and head to a fancy restaurant or lounge in PJs at home and watch a movie. It’s really about making the tone fit the intention.

Find a place that works for both of you

When it comes to relationships, you need to meet both in the middle, which is especially apparent in marriages. So, why not look into an event or an activity that both of you could enjoy together? It’s important that both parties are happy and comfortable during this date. If some person absolutely hates nightclubs, and you want to go to a night, club, then the date night may not work as well as you hope. Above all else, ensure that this is a place that works for both parties; it’s the key to a happy date night with your partner.

Learn something new

Do you need a bit of a push to come up with the perfect date night plan for you and your better half? With a little planning and organization, you'll be on your way to a night you'll never forget. Learning helps make people bond. There are elaborate classes you could attend, such as pottery making, but you and your partner could even stay at home and learn something there instead. Overall, learning something new is great and can be the best way to bond while having a great time during date night.

Plan well

When it comes to a date night with your partner, it’s all really about planning. Yes, even a simple date deserves to have some planning put into it. Even something like going to the great outdoors, like a small picnic on the beach, will need to have some planning too. While yes, you don’t have to worry about making reservations or buying movie tickets in advance if you and your partner are doing something simple, it’s still important to just make a plan, especially if Plan A doesn’t (or cannot) work out the way you’re hoping it could.

Get artsy

If you're looking for the perfect date, you might want to get artsy. It can be a good idea to check out the local festivals and events, especially if you're in a bigger city. You can even try an improv comedy show for a fun night out. A great arty date idea is to take a look at a community theater production. You can also try your hand at making a sculpture out of nature. In general, those paint and sip classes are a lot of fun, and you don’t have to feel limited at all. So why not get out there and get artsy?

Spice it up

Why not do something different to spice up these dates? Even if you both live together, it’s still very important to spice up the date here and there. This can include staying the night somewhere, such as a short trip, or even going to a concert if that’s rare for the both of you. Overall, adding some flavor is sure to make these date nights memorable.

Stay in

There is nothing wrong with staying inside for a night. It’s relaxing, it’s calm, and fewer things can go wrong if you stay in your home. Plus, since this is your and your partner's safe haven, it just has a way of making it feel a lot better. Another benefit of staying home for date night is the amount of money you get to save. From board games and video games to a good movie, it can call be wonderful. Besides, why not cook together? There's a really tasty no bake cheesecake recipe at britneybreaksbread.com that you have to try and can easily make with your partner!

This post was written with Life According to Steph readers in mind

Friday, January 20, 2023

Friday Files 1.20.2023

I went to our new office location in Old City Wednesday and I freaking love it down there. So much easier to get in and out of the city, plentiful and cheaper parking, a much better vibe, lots of new restaurants to try, right near Congress Hall, etc. 
Getting my poop in a pile for February and I'm surprised I have so much on the calendar. That is usually not the case. 

Shore contracts are finally done for the summer. My least favorite part is paperwork. We only have Memorial Day weekend open. I'm looking forward to a great year if I could get the fucking main floor flooring situation figured out.

The Simple Modern 40 oz cup is superior to the Stanley in every way. The lid! Chef's kiss. I think the Stanley is awkward AF and the lid is hideous.

Tough reading week this week. I had a DNF and a struggle read. I think I'm coming through the other side now.
Fuck Sephora and their return policy. I'm finished with them. 

Pet pics of the week. Billy Hicks says fuck y'all no photos please
OPI Rated Pea-G & Zoya Amara. Very Eagles-y, no? Go Birds.

Happy Friday! Have a good weekend!

healthy fast recipes for the new year

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If you want to start the new year as you mean to go on, you are in the right place. So much of our life quality is determined by our diets, but we can slip into bad habits very easily. If you want to stay healthy and improve your wellbeing, you need the right food groups for meal planning.  

Veggie Soups 

Soups aren’t only for winter; they are perfect for any time of the year! Veggie soups are also simple to make and keep you healthy. There are various types of veggie soup; you can have a combination of vegetables from your veg box or something more focused, like spicy carrot soup. 

If you want to maintain a healthy diet for yourself and your family this year, make sure you have plenty of ingredients in for soup. As long as you have some vegetable stock, soup is always an option; simply decide whether you want spicy carrot soup, spicy vegetable soup, or minestrone.   

Spaghetti Bolognese 

Another firm favorite for most families is spaghetti bolognese. This Italian staple is fast and healthy; it can also be easily frozen, making it perfect for lunches on the move. Again, spaghetti bolognese is a creative meal; you can choose to add various vegetables and spices to flavor.

All you need in your cupboards for spaghetti bolognese is pasta, bolognese sauce, and your choice of vegetables and spices. This meal has a low number of calories - around 300 per serving - it is also low in fat and sugar. Don’t forget to add some cheese gratings on top.    

Instant Pot Collard Greens 

For a healthy and fast evening meal, choose instant pot collard greens. Collard greens are a selection of loose-leafed greens that include Champion, Ellen Felton Dark, Georgia, Morris Heading, and Tiger Hybrid. These are super healthy and delicious with some added bacon. 

Collard greens with bacon offer excellent nutritional value and taste; this simple meal can also be made in around 30 minutes, enough time for you to arrive at home after work. It’s best to wait until greens are soft and stringy before eating - learn how to make collard greens with bacon!   

Veggie Yaki Udon 

Stir-fry is one of the fastest and healthiest foods you can find; all it requires is some noodles, some vegetables, a wok, and around fifteen minutes to put it together. Stir-fry might be simple and healthy, but you might get tired of eating it fairly soon. So, why not try an alternative to it? 

Veggie Yaki Udon is a suitable stand-in for conventional stir-fry. Yaki Udon noodles are thicker and more substantial, offering better value and added nutrition. As with stir-fry, you can add plenty of flavor, vegetables, and meats depending on your tastes - there are also vegan options.    

Healthy Salads 

If you want a fast and healthy meal for lunch or dinner, make sure you don’t dismiss healthy salads. Leafy greens and fresh vegetables are some of the healthiest and most energizing foods you can find, and a salad doesn’t have to be boring either - check out these recipes
This post was written with the Life According to Steph readers in mind

smart lessons for your child enjoying their first laptop

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It’s nice to see our children gaining independence at the right age, such as the first time they head to the store or go to the cinema with their friends, and without any adult supervision. As a parent you will worry about them ten times over, and that’s good, because you care.

It’s also good to make sure they adapt to other means of independence in the best way, such as when you buy them their first online device like a laptop or smartphone. In this post, we’ll discuss the former most of all, but most of these have similar functionalities and so many of the same points can apply.

Obviously, safety, online conduct and security are the most important markers to hit here. With that in mind, please consider the following advice: 

Teach Cybersecurity

When your kids get their first laptop, it's important to teach them about cybersecurity. This includes teaching them about creating strong passwords, not sharing personal information online, and being cautious when clicking on links from unknown sources. Additionally, you can teach them about safe browsing practices and the importance of keeping their computer and software updated to protect against viruses and other malware.

This guide that shows how to protect your email, as well as showing them how viruses can be downloaded via ensuring websites have security certificates when you visit them (this is the ‘lock icon’ at the top section of each browser”) will make a huge difference.

Encourage Online Safety

Online safety is absolutely crucial, now and always. To help them understand that, and how to ensure it, teach them about responsible social media usage and the importance of being kind and respectful to others online. Additionally, you can teach them about the risks of cyberbullying and how to handle any negative interactions they may encounter online, by reporting them, telling you, and limiting comments or setting appropriate privacy settings.

You can also:

Set Limits And Boundaries

When your kids get their first laptop, it's important to set limits and boundaries on their usage. This can include setting time limits on how long they can use the computer each day, as well as setting limits on the types of websites and apps they can access. Additionally, you can use parental control software to monitor and filter their online activity.

This will help you ensure that their online activity is properly monitored, and that they remain protected from bad sites such as those which present adult content, or those that allow them to access online chatrooms or apps which connect them to other people. It’s a horrible and unacceptable fact, but it’s not uncommon for those with poor intentions to seek out children online. This step helps completely stop that from happening, or allows you to cut any issues in the bud before they can begin.

It’s good to set some ground rules also - such as limiting their access to certain social media sites, or ensuring they have the correct privacy settings enabled for them.

Encourage Creativity And Learning

While it's important to set limits and boundaries on your kids' laptop usage, it's also important to encourage creativity and learning. This can include encouraging your kids to explore educational websites, apps, and games that can help them learn new skills and expand their knowledge. Additionally, you can encourage your kids to use their laptop for creative activities such as writing, drawing, and coding.

Now, let’s be honest, they might also care about reading celeb gossip, talking to their friends from school, and generally being a teenager watching YouTube. But it’s also good to help them use the laptop for more than this, for instance as a means by which they can edit their photography or even enjoying writing and video games that take thought. 

Teach Them Appropriate Laptop Care

When your children receive their first laptop, it's essential to teach them how to take good care of it. This includes instructing students on how to handle and store their laptop properly and stressing how crucial it is to keep it clean and in good condition. 

You can also emphasise to them the value of shielding their laptop from physical harm such drops, spills, and scratches. This will ensure that their laptop lasts for a very long time and teach them the importance of caring for the possessions they have. Perhaps with the gift you can also provide a carry case to make this easier.

With this advice, you’re sure to offer smart lessons for your child enjoying their first laptop, keeping them safe as the utmost priority.

This post was written with Life According to Steph readers in mind
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