Second jobs, who's more likely to work extra hours

Work life balance is a tenuous subject. A day job can be stressful, overwhelming or even cumbersome. If that day job is so difficult, why are more women choosing to take on a side hustle to supplement their income?

According to a recent Career Builder survey, 35 percent of women have some type of side job. This supplemental income isn’t necessarily for women below the poverty line. Workers with salaries above the $75,000 annual income are just as likely to have an extra job as workers under $50,000 a year salary.

Rosemary Haefner, Chief Human Resources Officer at CareerBuilder, said “while we continue to be at what is considered full employment, the quality and pay of jobs isn't always what workers want, causing them to seek out new ways to supplement their full-time income.”

While this survey is quite interesting, the numbers don’t tackle the underlying question. Is the side job a monetary issue or a job quality issue?  Included in the survey results were some popular examples of common side jobs. These jobs included chef/baker, blogger and dog walker. Could the side job be more about a passion versus income?

Looking at some of the popular types of side jobs, these jobs tend to fall under a passion profession. For example, many people are outstanding cooks with amazing culinary talent. But, making a living as a professional chef is tremendously difficult. For every Food Network Star there is a struggling line cook who can barely afford her apartment. Still, she may want to share her culinary creations with others. A side gig catering for friends or baking birthday cakes could be a way to increase her income and engage her passion for cooking.

The same can be said for the other examples of blogger or dog walker. Some people have a special way with animals, but veterinary school may not have been possible. Or maybe, a wife wants a dog but her husband doesn’t. A side job as a dog walker works for her. The same can applied to blogging for the struggling writer. Maybe that blogging job won’t pay the rent but it could keep you in Starbucks for the month.

Very few people are fortunate enough to have a well-paying job that is also their passion. Compromise in some job aspect is highly likely. From work/life balance to feeling undervalued, these thoughts creep into everyone’s daily lives.

While some people may point to this study as a reflection of workers being underpaid, I believe that simple answer isn’t the complete story. Of course, many people would love extra income for many reasons. From monthly bills to saving for a special event, extra income can be extremely beneficial. But, the type of side jobs seems to reflect more than just a monetary reason.

Women may be more likely to have a side hustle, but it may not be for the reasons you think. Even if I win the lottery this weekend, I will continue writing for publications because writing is enjoyable for me, regardless any money. 

How to Express Love with the Gifts You Give

Finding the perfect gift for your loved ones is less about the money you spend and more about knowing what they will love. You can show someone you love them by simple gestures. And, when you do gift them with something you bought, aim for practical AND sentimental instead of something they simply look at. Read on for tips on how you can express your love for someone with the gifts you give.

Know Their Passions, Hobbies, and Interests
When you love someone, regardless of what kind of love it is, you should know that person’s passions, hobbies, and interests. Do they love to make arts and crafts? Are they always in the kitchen cooking up something awesome? Or, do they simply love watching a good movie and lounging in a big, comfy chair after work? Or, better yet, are they the game king of backyard barbecues and <a cornhole boards? Whatever the case is, strive to get to know someone before you decide to buy them something.

Be Sweet, Sentimental, and Authentic
When you give someone a gift, it matters most when your feelings are in it. You should be sweet, sentimental, and authentic. How so? By giving them something that makes an impact and lets them know how you feel. For instance, if your loved one is an artist, a framed canvas of something you painted, or paid to have painted, is genuine, super-sweet, and memorable.

Include a Sweet Message or Kind Words
Love comes from actions more than words. But it takes courage to put your feelings to paper. When you give someone a present, include a sweet message, preferably handwritten in your own kind words. Express yourself in something short and simple, or compose a loving essay—your choice. But be genuine in whatever you say. If need be, look to a Thesaurus for words that mean more than the ones in your vocabulary, but make sure it all comes directly from you.

Make Your Gifts Memorable and Uplifting
The best gifts to loved ones are memorable, uplifting, and positive. They are trinkets with sentimental value, or practical gifts that allow your loved ones to practice their hobbies. They are gifts that show that you listen, pay attention, and know someone on an in-depth level. People need to feel that connection. And, in the case of gift-giving, you are showing your friendship, relationship, or love with personal presents from the heart.

When you give a loved one a gift, it’s important to remember the aforementioned tips. You never know how much a gift might mean to someone. You could make your loved one’s whole day with the perfect, well-thought out presents.

A Gift That’s More Than Just a Gift

It’s not unusual to feel stressed when you realize you need to find a gift for someone’s birthday, plan a party or decorate your home for a holiday and your schedule is too packed to allow for leisurely shopping, planning and decorating time. Just imagine how wonderful it would be to have a special go-to idea or plan that eliminates that stress. Fortunately, there are some tips to follow that will give you an enthusiastic, rather than stressed, approach toward special occasions and holidays.

Shopping Made Easy

One of the best ways to save time and give exceptionally thoughtful gifts is to find a gift source that offers gifts for all occasions. Jim Shore figurines is an ideal example of a source you can depend on to find gifts for kids, teenagers, adults friends and family. Disney theme collectibles can delight a child and revive happy memories for teens and adults. Giving a young child a collectible can be a teaching opportunity. They can learn that some gifts are meant to be played with while others are to be appreciated for their artistic beauty. You can start a trend by giving friends and family collectibles for special occasions. You won’t have to wonder what to give them and they will eagerly anticipate the next item to add to their collection.

Holiday Decorating

If you acquire a collection of holiday-themed figurines, you can quickly decorate your home for all special occasions. Figurines don’t require much storage space. You can rotate the figurines as the seasons change or as specific holidays roll around. You can choose a central location in your home as a display space or incorporate the figurines in various decorative ways throughout you home. Your family and friends will be impressed with your style and creativity and you’ll be pleased with how quickly it all came together.

You can choose party themes that coincide with the collectible gift you plan to give someone on their special day. Regularly exploring collectible gifts may inspire you to give someone a surprise gift when there’s no special occasion. Gifts to encourage and comfort someone often become treasures that they can see, touch and be reminded of how much you care. Always remember, it’s okay to buy a gift for yourself simply because it makes you smile.

Treating Pets Like Royalty

When you're on vacation, your pets can be on a vacation as well. There are boarding facilities that offer suites that are comfortable and feature amenities that the pet would find at home, such as a cot or a blanket. Facilities will also provide food and water as well as time outside for the dog to play. A luxury dog hotel offers a bit more in the way of freedoms that are offered and amenities to make the dog feel like it's in a castle instead of in a kennel.

With most hotels, the staff will contact the owner of the dog to make sure that they are still planning to arrive. This is to ensure that the space will be used. The staff will also find out if there is any special treatment that needs to be offered or if the dog has any dietary needs that the staff needs to abide by, such as a food for a healthy weight. Most luxury hotels offer a spa package that includes a bath and a massage. This helps the pet relax while away from home. It's a good idea to make sure that this service is included if the pet has never been away from your before as it can be a way for the pet to focus on the attention instead of being away from home.

When the dog is inside the suite, there will likely be some kind of sound. Some suites have a television that is set to an animal channel while others play soothing music. A benefit of your dog staying in a pet hotel is that someone will take the dog outside for walks and play time during the day. If the dog has been spayed or neutered, then there could be play time with other dogs staying at the facility. This is a fun time for dogs as yours might not interact with others at home. Dogs are fed a high-quality food and given water during the day. Treats are usually given as well. Your pet is treated like royalty at most luxury hotels, allowing you to focus on your vacation and time away from home.

Urban Hymn, letting a song lead a new path

I was sent a screening copy of Urban Hymn.  All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Life is full of choices. Sometimes those choices are easy and others are quite difficult.  The new movie, Urban Hymn, a young girl's difficult choices. 

Although sounding like an old person, kids today have a rough life.  Growing up too fast, too many temptations, lack of direction and a multitude of other issues are part of every day life.  For many kids, it is just easier to choose the like path, follow the crowd and basically give up.  The new movie Urban Hymn examines how a young girl can make a different choice by finding her voice, literally.

This movie examines the relationship of a social worker and a young girl. The young girl has a talented singing voice.  The social worker recognizes this talent and encourages the girl to explore her talent.  The hope is that this talent can bring the girl out of a less than ideal place.  But, the decision isn't as easy or clear as it seems.

Many of the characters and scenes are realistic.  As much as we want to over look it, kids make poor choices, use foul language and may be walking down a bad path.  If they are lucky, someone will try ton intervene and make a difference.  Unfortunately, many kids don't have a positive influence.

Even with a good voice in their ear, kids have to choose the right path.  Standing out from the crowd is often more difficult than the repercussions from a bad choice.

Urban Hymn is a good conversation starter.  The movie isn't easy to watch and it shouldn't be.  The dirty side of growing up is real even if no one wants to see it.  Change is possible, but only when the problem isn't ignored.

Although this movie isn't for young children, it could be a worthy watch for parents.

Urban Hymn is out now and available for download.    To learn more about this movie, visit their social media pages.  Facebook  /  Twitter