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Massive back to school Competition 2023

What on earth happened to the summer did I blink and miss it? How on earth are we all planning back to school already? I just can't belive the summer is coming to an end and what happened to the weather is anyone's guess. But there is one thing for sure the new school year is upon us all and it's time to get out act together and think about getting back to the grind. It is a bit bittersweet this time of year but it marks a new beginning for some and not so much for others but one thing is for sure with back to school comes the expense of it. This year is expensive enough already, isn't it. 

I have teamed up with the best UK bloggers to offer you the chance to win your child back-to-school essentials. This hopefully lightens the load a little bit for one of you. So good luck


Back to School Giveaway

With only a couple of weeks left until the start of the new school year, some of the top UK bloggers have come together to offer one lucky winner an amazing bundle of prizes to send their kids back to school in style. This is not only a giveaway but also a great Back to School Guide to help you get ideas and inspiration for your kid's new school year.

The Prizes

Microsoft Surface Go 2 Intel Pentium Gold from tier1

Tier1, refurbishers of laptops, desktops and tablets and more are the perfect solution for parents looking to equip their kids with great but affordable technology as they head back to school. Tier1 take pre-owned devices and puts them through a rigorous process of testing, cleaning, and repairing to ensure they are in excellent working condition. Not only do these devices offer significant savings compared to buying brand new, but they also provide a reliable and efficient way for students to engage in online learning, complete assignments, and explore educational resources.

With tier1, parents can find high-quality laptops and tablets that meet their children's needs without breaking the bank, allowing them to invest in their education without compromising on affordability. We have the Microsoft Surface Go 2 Intel Pentium Gold from tier1 for our lucky winner. Right now, tier1 have their summer sale on, making those back to school savings even greater!



Win a Futliit LED Backpack

Introducing the Futliit LED Backpack, the perfect accessory for those walking or cycling home after school. Safety is paramount, especially when it comes to being visible in the dark. Are you worried about your kids walking home in the dark? Don't worry! The Futliit LED backpack is here to keep them visible to passing traffic, ensuring their safety.

Equipped with two strands of LED lights and reflective panels, the backpack guarantees maximum visibility on your journey. But that's not all – the backpacks come loaded with features. With a spacious main compartment, a padded device sleeve, and ample storage space, your kids can keep all their school essentials secure.

Don't miss out on this chance! Enter our giveaway for an opportunity to win the Futliit LED Backpack. Ensure your kid's safety and embrace the #BeFutliit movement!

WIN a pair of premium Start-Rite school shoes !

'Motivate' and 'Encourage' deliver the very best protection Start-Rite has to offer, and here's your chance to win either style of your choice! These robust shoes are packed with the best Start-Rite intelligence, from Air Rite technology to biomechanical soles, reflective tabs, toe and heel bumpers, padded ankles, dyed through leather and adjustable rip-tape fastenings. 

The durable designs of these two new styles launched by Start-Rite, in collaboration with 'The Daily Mile', strengthen the joint ambition to support healthy development and physical activity for all school children.

'Motivate' - available size S10 - L4 (Standard and Wide width fitting)

'Encourage' - available size S9 - L2 (Standard and Wide width fitting)

To browse the full Start-Rite school shoe range - https://www.startriteshoes.com/school-shoes



Create-A-Space™ See-Thru Storage Caddy

Keep your kid's art and crafts supplies organised when they go back to school with the Create-A-Space™ See-Thru Storage Caddy from Learning Resources. The set comes with 4 very handy see-through storage bins on a portable base with a carry handle. It's the perfect caddy for creative kids, and we have one to give to our lucky winner! 

SMASH Lunchbags and Water Bottles

Going back to school with SMASH means you're going back in style! Our lucky winner can grab their kids the following lunchtime accessories:

The water bottles have an easy carry handle and a fast-flow straw sipper. The lunch bags are not only super cool and super stylish but they are also fully insulated with an anti-bacterial lining. Oh, and super easy to clean too! If you can't wait to see if you're a winner, these affordable lunch bags and water bottles are all available from Dunelm. 

Brainstorm Toys E2001 Light Up 2 in 1 Globe Earth & Constellations, Multicolor

Help your kids learn when they go back to school with Brainstorm Toys Light Up 2 in 1 Globe of the Earth and constellations. The Earth and Constellation Globe is two globes in one with a day-time and night-time view. In the daylight, the 22.8cm diameter globe shows political boundaries, oceans, equator, longitude and latitude lines, country names, capital cities and other major cities for each country in the world. By night the illuminated star map shows constellations with their common names. The globe is at a scale of 1:55,900,00, and it sits on a sturdy, stylish silver stand with a matching graduated meridian.

The Earth and Constellation Globe has an automatic light sensor, so when the globe is turned on and the surrounding area is dark, the globe will transform into a beautiful glowing globe showing the star constellations. It is a great learning tool for geographers and astronomers but also a great feature for your child's bedroom. And we have one for our lucky winner!



The Bloggers

In order to be able to bring you this incredible giveaway, some of the UK’s top bloggers got together and contributed. A massive thank you to our bloggers! The bloggers taking part are:

My Balancing Act | The Mum Diaries | Life with Jupiter and Dann | Mummy Fever | Jenny in Neverland | Suburban Mum | Stay Positive | Wotawoman Diary | Catch Up With Claire | Synderella Slims | Make Money Without A Job | The Festive Feelings | Thrifty Husband | A Thrifty Gamer | Mrs Pinch |  We Made This Life | My Life Your Way | We Made This Vegan | Effervescent Kelly | Diary of the Evans-Crittens |  Best things to do in Cambridge | Two Plus Dogs | The Financial Wilderness | Cats Kids and Chaos | Ideas For A Good Life | My Money Cottage | Clean Plates All Round |  Boxnip |  Everything Enchanting | Pounds and Sense | Life Loving | Spillinglifetea | Missljbeauty |  A Suffolk Mum | Sustainable Business Magazine | BLUEBEARWOOD | THE TOY SCOOP | mummy and me x2 | Crazy Little Thing Called Love | Hannah and the Twiglets | The Geordie Grandma | In The Playroom | Catbaba | Birds and Lilies | The Happy Budget | Testing Time | PrettyCore | Remote Working Guru | Mummy Saver Money Maker | Moms Money Makeover | Real Girls Wobble | Lifestyle Original | Anything and Everything Else | Cyprus Property Blog

How to Enter

You can enter the Giveaway by completing as many Rafflecopter widget entry options below as you like. All entries will be collected and one winner will be randomly chosen. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and Conditions

UK entries only
The giveaway will run from 7pm 20th August 2023 to 11.59am 30th August 2023.
The winners will be notified by email from rowena@mybalancingact.co.uk
The winner will have 7 days to respond after which time we reserve the right to select an alternative winner.
This prize draw is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, BlogLovin or Pinterest or any other social media platform.
Prize open to over 18s only. Age verification may be required to receive some prizes.
If any prizes are out of stock then we will do our best to find a suitable replacement but can not guarantee it.
Anyone who unfollows before the giveaway ends or doesn’t complete the required entry action will be disqualified.
The prize is non-transferable, non-refundable and cannot be exchanged for monetary value.
We may be using a parcel service or RoyalMail for some of the prizes and their standard compensation will apply in the event of loss or damage.
Some items may be sent directly by the supplier and we do not have responsibility if these go missing and we cannot replace these.
In the unlikely event, one of the companies withdraws a prize, we cannot offer an alternative.
The winner’s name will be stated on some or all of our blogger’s websites and announced on Twitter and other social media channels. It will also be displayed on the Rafflecopter Entry. By entering this prize draw, you give your permission for this.
Please note the winner may have the same name as you so if you see your name displayed, be aware that you are not the winner unless you have been notified by us.
There may be some delays in receiving prizes.

Finding Yourself When You're Feeling Lost

At one point or another, most of us have felt a bit lost in life, like we're floating in a river with nowhere to go or a clear direction. This can happen for so many reasons it could be due to a major life change, daily life becoming monotonous, or simply growing older and questioning our place in the world, it’s a totally natural feeling and we all feel it. 

So, if you're feeling a bit adrift lately, don't worry! You’re not alone. Let's embark on this journey together and explore some ways to find yourself again.



Self-Reflection
This isn’t about staring at yourself in the mirror. Take a few moments daily or weekly to write down your thoughts, feelings, and experiences. Answering questions like, "What truly makes me happy?" or "What do I want to achieve in life?" can open doors to understanding yourself better. Yes, this might should a bit cringy bit it is worth giving it a try. Some people swear by it. 

Travel Solo:
If you can, pack a bag and venture to a new place on your own. This doesn't have to be overseas even a day trip to a nearby town can offer new perspectives. Being in unfamiliar surroundings often forces us to look inward and understand ourselves in a new light. I find even a long bus journey can help me to really think.

Seek New Experiences: Join a class, pick up a hobby, volunteer for a cause, or simply attend local events. New experiences can jolt us out of complacency and reignite passions we never knew we had. They are always worth a try. 

Speak to Someone: Whether it's a therapist, a close friend, or a family member, sometimes speaking about our feelings and fears provides some clarity. They might offer a different perspective that you hadn't considered. It is always worth letting someone in on how we are feeling. 

Meditation and Mindfulness: 
Tuning into the present moment, focusing on your breath, and letting go of clouded thoughts can be truly helpful. If you've never meditated before, there are a sp many apps and YouTube channels to guide you. I like guided meditation I find it the easiest to do. 

Read: 
Books offer glimpses into different worlds, philosophies, and lives. Sometimes, all it takes to understand oneself is to understand others. I know I need to do this one more. 

Set Small Goals: 
Large life goals can be overwhelming. Start with smaller ones like reading a book, exercising, or mastering a new skill. Achieving these can boost your confidence and pave the way for bigger goals. It is ok to start small and build up. 

Nature Time: 
Nature has a soothing, grounding effect. There is nothing more important than getting out in nature. 
Walks in the park, hikes, or simply sitting by a body of water can provide clarity and a sense of belonging. Nature has a strange way of bringing you back to the present. 

Limit Social Media: 
It’s easy to feel lost and compare ourselves when we see everyone’s ‘highlight reel’ on social media. Taking a break can help recalibrate your sense of self. Remember people tend to only show the polished version of themself online. That influencer you think has her shit together actually doesn't and has the same insecurities we all have. It's their job to make you think they don't. 

Revisit Old Passions: 
Think back to what made you happy as a child or teenager. Rekindling those old hobbies or interests might reignite a part of you that you've forgotten. There is nothing more fun than having fun so find your fun again. 

Remember, feeling lost doesn’t mean you're off track. Sometimes, it's life’s way of nudging you to discover a path you wouldn’t have taken otherwise. Every experience, even the confusing ones, adds depth and richness to your life. 



How to cope with unexpected anxiety

We've all been there. It's a normal day, everything's going fine, and then suddenly boom anxiety hits out of nowhere.  completely out of the blue. It's like a surprise party you didn't really ask for but you're forced to attend and you have no idea what is actually troubling you. But don't worry, I've got your back. Let's talk about how to cope when anxiety decides to make a surprise appearance and you are in the grips of an anxiety spiral and don't know what to do. 



1. Recognize that it is anxiety and not a real problem


First things first, let's recognize anxiety for what it is an unwelcome guest that has arrived just as you are about to have dinner and you don't have enough food to go around. When it hits out of nowhere, it can feel like lightning has hit you and you are paralysed with fear.  You might experience rapid heartbeat, sweaty palms, or feel a sense of impending doom. you might be wraking your brain to what is the problem where is this fear coming from? What am I missing? It has to be for a reason right? Wrong anxiety can be for no reason at all. Remember, That these symptoms are temporary and they will pass. Acknowledging this can help take the edge off. You can say out loud this will pass. This is temporary. I do. 

2. Grounding Techniques


Grounding techniques are a lifesaver when anxiety hits you. One popular method is the "5-4-3-2-1" technique. Identify five things you can see, four you can touch, three you can hear, two you can smell, and one you can taste. This exercise helps bring your focus back to your surroundings and away from anxiety.

I like to do the finger-touching technique. Where I tap my fingers off my thumb and count. This puts me back in the moment. 

3. Breathing Exercises

When anxiety hits, our breath often becomes quick and shallow. this can make it even worse.  By deliberately changing your breathing pattern, you can help your body calm down and relax. Try the 4-7-8 technique: inhale for 4 seconds, hold your breath for 7 seconds, and exhale for 8 seconds. Repeat this cycle until you feel calmer. Concentrating on breathing can really bring you back to the moment. 

4. Reach Out


Sometimes, talking to someone you trust can help to be the best coping mechanism.  This doesn't necessarily mean you have to talk about your anxiety. Just the act of chatting about everyday things can be enough to distract you and help you feel more grounded. Remember, it's okay to ask for support when you need it. It is not a weakness to say you are struggling it is a strength. 

5. Self-Care

In moments of sudden anxiety, self-care becomes more important than ever.  You are important. Do something that brings you joy or comfort. From making a cup of tea to listening to your favourite music, going for a gentle walk or watching TikTok. Taking care of your needs can help your body to settle and your mind to refocus. Do something for you. 

6. Write It Out

Try writing down your thoughts and feelings in a notebook or blog. It doesn't have to be coherent or structured.  just get all though thoughts out. The act of writing itself can help to organize your thoughts and provide a healthy outlet for your feelings.

I write down what is worrying me in the moment then I think and what would I tell my friend if they said this to me. This really helps. 

7. Seek Professional Help

If surprise anxiety attacks become frequent or particularly distressing, Please please speak to a mental health professional. Therapists and counsellors are trained to help you develop coping strategies tailored to your unique situation and will help you. 

8. Animal therapy

I am a great believer in animals as a way to help with anxiety. My own dog is wonderful at sensing when my anxiety is peaking and will come and sit on my knee. Just her doing this comforts me. If I am really struggling one day I will turn the day around but making it about her. She needs walking feeding playing. She looks after by letting me look after her. 

Remember, it's okay to feel anxious. It's a natural, even if it's an uninvited one. The next time anxiety decides to crash your party, remember these strategies. You're stronger than your anxiety, and each time you face it head-on, you're building resilience.

And always remember, it's okay to ask for help. You're not alone in this. There are people who care about you and professionals who can support you.