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Family Life Blog Posts

A woman and man walk for exercise.

January 11, 2021

A new year often signals a new start or reboot, which is a great thing. For many, this means setting health and wellness goals like losing weight, eating healthier, and being more physically active.To be able to achieve your goals and make your resolutions a reality, your goals need to be realistic and measurable.

Graphic of disaster go box checklist

January 5, 2021

The New Year has arrived. Whether or not you make resolutions, putting together a disaster go box will help you be ready for all kinds of emergencies that may require you to leave home in a hurry.

Real Christmas trees piled with curbside garbage

December 18, 2020

If you celebrate with a real tree, you’ll have to decide how to dispose of it once the holiday is over. You have some good options for recycling the tree instead of sending it to the landfill.

A woman stands on the front steps of a home.

December 7, 2020

Because many families are celebrating this holiday season a little differently, we might feel a little stressed. One of the things that helps me stay grounded during this time is physical activity. It’s one of the most important things you can do for your health.

A white mask hanging on Christmas garland.

December 3, 2020

Looking for the top gift to give your loved ones this holiday season? Here’s an idea: a COVID-free celebration! The holidays are normally a time when we open our homes to friends and family and celebrate together. The spread of COVID-19 has caused us all to reimagine the way we enjoy the holidays. 

Just how do you celebrate this time of year, while limiting the spread of COVID-19?? It’s not an easy answer, but here are a few tips to help your holidays be as safe and festive as possible. Please note, this information is based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease...

Closeup of ornaments and lights on a Christmas tree

November 11, 2020

Choosing, cutting, and bringing home a real Christmas tree is a fun, family tradition that makes memories to last a lifetime. If you plan to have a real tree this year, be sure to observe some safety rules.

Banana in aluminum foil

October 26, 2020

Do you ever feel like you have to trick your kids into trying new foods or eating healthier options? Sometimes all it takes is a different cooking method to turn a finicky eater into a fan!

Most people don’t think of fruit as a hot treat unless it’s a sugar- and fat-loaded pie or cobbler. These Banana Boats can be cooked on a grill, in the oven, or even over a campfire or fire pit! The best part is their versatility. The original recipe calls for a tropical combination of banana, pineapple, and coconut. But you can try other combinations, too: banana and strawberry, banana and blueberry, or even banana and peanut butter!

A white house with grand columns and two pumpkin displays on each side

October 22, 2020

Can we all take a moment to appreciate our county Extension agents? Llike everyone else, the way they did their job turned upside down due to COVID-19. They went from hosting events in their respective counties to using social media to share information and ideas with the public. 

Many Extension agents are starting to post ideas for fall projects. I don’t know about you, but I can’t get enough pumpkin posts in my social media feed! Whether you use a real pumpkin or one from different craft materials, you’re sure to find an easy DIY project that adds some fun fall flair to...

A black jack-o-lantern mask, bottle of sanitizer, and two pumpkins on a wooden backdrop.

October 16, 2020

COVID-19 has thrown a wrench in everyone’s plans. Creating a sense of normalcy while keeping safety measures in mind can be challenging. Just because the holidays aren’t traditional this year doesn’t mean they can’t be fun and memorable.

A woman stands in front of a house as children with backpacks appear in the backgroud.

August 11, 2020

No matter how your children go back to school this year, healthy lunches and snacks will provide them with the nutrition they need to learn, grow, and build their immune systems.

Graphic showing kids wearing masks with tips for parents.

July 28, 2020

If your children are headed back to the classroom, they may be required to wear a mask. We have some tips to help you and your children get ready for this new rule.

Frozen yogurt-dipped grapes sit on a baking sheet.

June 2, 2020

Do you need some quick and healthy snack ideas for the office or to pack the pantry and fridge for the kids this summer?

Hands typing on laptop keyboard

April 30, 2020

If social distancing measures and the shelter-in-place order have left you with reduced income or without a paycheck, we have some tips to help you take control of your finances.

A Christmas tree decorated with white lights.

December 10, 2019

If just the thought of the holidays sets off a sense of dread, consider approaching the season differently this year.
Dr. David Buys, Mississippi State University Extension Service health specialist, has some simple, practical tips to help you. 
Photo credit: Michael Voroshnin – Unsplash

Wreath with Santa hat and white tulle shaped to look like a beard hanging on a wooden door.

December 3, 2019

Christmas is my favorite time of year! We wanted to share a fun DIY craft to make with your family this holiday season. Natalie Ray, Extension agent in Clay County, made the cutest Santa wreath with her 4-H’ers and we had to share the instructions!

Conversation cards. Complete description in link.

November 19, 2019

We all know the holidays can bring together family members with a wide variety of opinions. To keep the conversational train on the tracks, try out our conversation cards this holiday season.

A display of healthy treats for Halloween.

October 21, 2019

Trying to eat healthy during the Halloween season can be frightening and a little challenging. Here are a few tips to get your broomstick flying in the right direction.

 A mosquito sits on a person's arm.

September 10, 2019

September has arrived, and that has me thinking about all things fall. But the reality is it’s still sweltering outside, and we’ve got several more weeks of defending ourselves against mosquitoes.

Two walls of a kitchen that has been flooded show significant mold damage and damage to the drywall.

August 22, 2019

When you’re ready to hire a contractor to repair or rebuild property damaged by flooding, keep these tips in mind to help avoid being scammed.

A kitchen with white walls and cabinets shows severe flood damage, including mold damage, on floors and cabinets with doors and drawers removed.

August 21, 2019

Getting started on clean-up after a flood can seem overwhelming. Before you do any work, be sure you know what your insurance company needs to file a claim. Take photos and video of damage, inventory items damaged beyond repair, and keep track of expenses.

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About Extension for Real Life

Extension for Real Life is a product of the MSU Extension Service’s Office of Agricultural Communications.

That’s a long way of saying we are professional communicators who get to talk about food, families, 4-H, flowers, and farming for a living. Pretty good gig, right?

The three main writers for the blog are Ellen Graves (Seamstress of Social Media Strategy), Susan Collins-Smith (Content Connector) and Keri Lewis (Captain Cat Herder). But we get by with a lot of help from our friends in Ag Comm and Extension!

You can reach us at 662-325-2262 or extreallife@msstate.edu

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