5 tips to co-parent successfully over the festive season without going nuts



Dear KOT, please you must plan how to deal with co-parenting this holiday season if faced with this situation for the kids sake to  enjoy the holidays. Here are five ways you can do this

1. Coordinate with the ex. This ensures things flow as smoothly as possible, and decisions don’t clash in any way for the holidays.  Make sure that your kids can spend an equal amount of time with both parents during the holidays. For instance one can take the first half of Dec, and the other the end of the holidays season.

2. Plan and let each other know what gifts you are each giving the child. Talk with your ex about who is buying what to ensure equality and to also avoid buying two of everything.

3. Prepare for tough/rough times. What do I mean? Everyone gets emotional during festivities for one reason or another, either separation or divorce, and nerves can be rattled. Set up rules to be followed and how it will be handled.

4.Sit down and talk with your kids leaving no topic unhandled.anger

Schedule a time to talk with your children and make sure that they understand that the transition is hard for everyone. Tell them it’s hard for you too, and let them see your vulnerability. Being emotionally prepared is the best thing to do.

5. Don’t forget to take care of yourself. I know it happens to the best of us. It’s easy for anyone to get overwhelmed during the holidays. Take care of yourself physically and emotionally.


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How to indulge this Christmas WITHOUT the guilt

With Christmas fast approaching, many people find their calendars filled with social events complete with indulgent platters and tasty treats.

And while many avoid the temptation for fear of gaining unwanted kilos over Christmas, Australian dietitian Melissa Meier insists it is possible to indulge without the guilt.

‘What you do in terms of nutrition throughout the year leading up to December will have a much larger impact on your health compared to the few weeks leading up to Christmas,’ she wrote for Aldi Unpacked.

However, this doesn’t mean you can eat anything and everything until you until you are bursting at the seams.

‘As always, balance and moderation is key – I’m just saying there’s no need to feel guilty about enjoying a slice of pavlova, a couple of glasses of Champagne or a scoop of delectable Christmas pudding with your nearest and dearest,’ she said.

If revellers find themselves unsure how to strike the perfect balance, Melissa has shared her best tips for the festive season.

According to Melissa keeping portion sizes in check will help to avoid unnecessary kilojoules over Christmas.

An easy way to control this is to consume individually packaged sweets, bite-sized treats and mini cakes or pies.

‘Doing so will also encourage you to eat more mindfully, because you’ll be more likely to savour each mouthful, rather than eat spoonful after spoonful without a second thought,’ she said.

There are a variety of portion controlled Christmas treats Melissa recommends people purchase for their lunch or dinner table.

One such recommendation are mini pavlova’s as instead of people cutting huge slices of dessert they can consume mini nests that make portion control easy.

Another trick is purchasing individually wrapped chocolates so that those with a sweet tooth aren’t tempted to eat an entire block of chocolate.

‘Now for my second hot tip, “crowding”. To explain this theory, I’m going to use my all-time favourite party food: the cheeseboard,’ she said.

‘Typically covered in treats like creamy dips, antipasto meats and an array of cheeses, the good old cheeseboard is a party-pleaser – but can also be a calorie bomb should you go overboard.’

Thankfully Melissa’s solution isn’t wiping everybody’s favourites off the board – simply ‘crowd’ the board with more nutritious options.

Hosts can make fresh produce the focus by filling the board with chopped up vegetable sticks and fruit that is in season, such as cherries and stone fruit.

‘Opt for healthy dips like Deli Originals Topped Hummus with Pine Nuts or Deli Originals Traditional Greek Style Tzatziki Dip instead of the traditional high-salt creamy ones,’ she said.

‘When choosing a healthy dip, scan the nutrition panel and aim for less than 400mg sodium per 100g.’

People should also read the ingredients list and opt for something that’s vegetable or yoghurt-based.

You can’t have a cheeseboard without the cheese but you don’t need giant wheels and wedges as people can instead opt for smaller varieties.

‘Last but not least, wholegrain crackers provide a boost of fibre and slow-burning energy to leave you feeling satisfied,’ Melissa added.

– Daily Mail

Six ways to beat your muffin top after this Christmas celebrations

Christmas is a time of indulgence with delicious cuisine but the result can also leave some fraught with panic.

Some feel a conflict of guilt as they forego a salad for another helping of mashed potato. Then, as New Year rolls around, there is a rush of people signing up to the gym to beat their festive bulge.

It is important to remember that a couple of weeks of festive treats and relaxation is not the end of the world, and we should not beat ourselves up about it.

But there are some things we can do to keep our bodies healthy ahead of the season, so we feel happy, fit and balanced.

We caught up with nutritionist and personal trainer Julian Gaine of MealKit who provides us with his top tips to ditch that muffin top just in time for Christmas.

1. Drink more water

I know you are sick of hearing that water is great, especially when it comes to weight loss, but perhaps you are not being told enough.

Drinking more water means you snack less and as your snacks are likely to be full of empty calories with high amounts of sugar, this is an enormous benefit when you are trying to lose weight, especially around the stomach area as this is the first place sugar goes.

Water also flushes out any debris from the cells in our body, which can help burn fat and speed up our metabolisms, subsequently acting as another way to help us lose excess weight.

2. Do some core workouts

When targeting your muffin top, you should focus on core workouts such as abdominal crunches, oblique twists and leg raises.

Keeping these core muscles strong will not only help to get you that washboard stomach you’ve been yearning for, but can also do wonders for your posture and give you more strength when doing other exercises like running and walking.

3. Monitor your portions

One of the first things you need to be doing is monitoring your portion sizes.

Often people pour out their morning bowl of ‘healthy’ Granola without realizing they are unintentionally about to consume half their calorie intake for the day.

If you really want to fight away that muffin top fast, try using portion control gadgets.

Portion control and food prepping continues to be one of the main reasons why we continue to struggle with weight management, as well as our increasingly demanding lives which often make it difficult to find the time to prepare healthy and nutritious meals.

4. Realize that stress IS affecting your weight – and make relaxation a priority

Monitoring your stress levels is incredibly important when working on your stomach area as increased stress levels have been shown to lead to weight gain around the middle.

This is mainly due to the production of increased cortisol levels, which leads to fat being taken from other parts of your body and stored around your stomach.

To avoid this you need to try to mindfully de-stress.

Of course, this is hard in the run up to the festive period when you’re trying to organize for the big event, but you need to make sure take some time out for yourself and de-stress.

5. Consume fat-burners like green tea and avocado

When trying to target specific areas of your body, it is very easy to focus on all of the foods you can’t eat.

There are loads of foods you should actually be adding to your plate to assist you in decreasing belly fat and getting rid of the dreaded muffin top before Christmas.

You need to focus your meals around foods that melt fat, such as avocado, nuts, green tea, yogurt, berries and water. Though some of these foods are high in fat, they are high in good fats which can help you to lose weight, when eaten in moderation as they help you to feel fuller for longer.

6. Ditch the sugar

One of the top ways to reduce that muffin top is to eliminate sugars from your diet.

Sugar can be found in almost all processed foods, so we need to be particularly conscious when consuming them in excess.

Unfortunately, this does mean stopping that extra spoonful of sugar in your tea or unnecessary sugary snacks such as sweets and biscuits.

A diet high in sugar can have catastrophic consequences on your weight, particularly around the stomach area as sugar is converted into glucose and pushed into our blood to be stored in our livers, with any remaining stores going straight to the muffin top area.

-Daily Mail