The Gift of Giving ~ How To Make A Difference When Life Keeps Getting In The Way

We all like to think that we are charitable people, we feel good when we give and make people smile. We drop our loose change into collection buckets, we support local cause days by dressing our kids up and sending them to school with a gold coin, we might even go as far as organising a fundraiser morning tea or girls’ night in.


But what do you do when you want to give more, and there is nothing left to give? Budgets can pull tightly at purse strings, family life can inhibit our ability to commit time to extra projects, and quite frankly, some of us just don’t know where to start.


With the science of the benefits of gifting well documented, and something we care immensely about here at Happetite, this month’s blog discusses how you can lift someone’s spirit with charitable giving, when there are everyday hurdles holding you back.




Time poor? 

For those of us with busy careers, homes, children or a combination of the lot, time is a rare and precious commodity. We often find ourselves prioritising never-ending to do lists, multitasking and juggling heavy workloads because quite simply put, we have too much on our plates as it is.


Charitable giving for those of us with limited time resources can look like many different things. It can look like sponsoring a needy family’s farm animals with a monthly contribution, it can look like online orders of groceries or food gifts for friends who could benefit from someone else doing the thinking for them, or it may look like cash donations to worthy causes.


However you chose to give, be sure that you have done your research and that your charitable acts are not going to impact on your already tight schedule.


Cash poor? 

The concept of giving does not always have to be dollar based – think of volunteering your time at a local soup kitchen, donating unused clothes and toys to a charity store or baking cookies to sell at your next fundraising cake stall. With a little clever thinking and an investment of your time, non-monetary charitable gifts can be just as effective and well received as those involving cheque books.


Don’t know where to start?

I’ve always found that the best place to begin when chosing a charity or cause is to stick with what is close to your heart. It is entirely unnecessary to start at a global level, although it that’s where you want to invest your time and energy, then that is amazing and I’m incredibly proud of you.


For those who would prefer to start small and see how they go, think of the charity that really pulls on your heart strings, the one that has affected you or a loved one personally perhaps. A quick google or call out on your local community Facebook page and I can guarantee you’ll be connected with the right person or resource to get you started in no time.


Still seem too grandiose?

Charity begins at home, and a great idea to give a little back and lift someone’s spirit, is to offer something you have to someone you know needs it. Offer to take your single Mum friends kids for the afternoon to give her a chance to grocery shop alone, bake a sponge cake for your elderly widowed neighbour because she once told you it was her favourite, or offer to walk abandoned dogs at your local rescue centre once a fortnight – no matter your choice of charity or the method in which you give, the gift of giving will lift your spirit, and make someone else’s day just a little bit brighter.


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The Way To Daddy’s Heart ~

As our lives become ever busier and our to do lists grow ever longer, it is easy to allow healthy eating to slip to the bottom of that list.  We are great at ensuring our kids eat well, yet as parents we plump for the kid’s leftovers or grabbing a less than nutritious snack from the cupboard.

While it is always important to consider the nutritional needs of our little people, with Father’s day looming and Dads everywhere preparing their surprised faces for the ceremonial gifting of another pair of ‘World’s Best Dad’ socks, what better way to surprise Daddy this year than with the gift of some great food?


And while we’re on the subject of food, here are a few tips to ensure Daddy’s everywhere, have a full tummy of yumminess every day!

Don’t skip!

Daddy is busy his morning is frantic. There are school bags to help pack, kindy drop off to do and an early meeting that won’t wait for him.  But if our Mothers taught us anything, it’s that breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. While his schedule might not allow him to leisurely indulge in eggs and soldiers with the kids, with a little planning and an alarm clock set 15 minutes earlier, there is no excuse for him to replace breakfast with a double espresso on the run. Try overnight oats, breakfast bars or a smoothie for a nutritious breakfast you can take along with you.

Relive your school days and pack a lunch

As a working parent days are long and nights are short. Us Mums are reminded to nourish our bodies so that we can run on a full tank for the entire day and it is just as important for Daddy to do the same.  Packing a lunch each day can save some pennies too! Leftovers from the night before, a lunchbox filled with lots of colour and variety (which can be made the day ahead along with the children’s) or a homemade meal mass-prepared on the weekend can mean the difference between firing on all cylinders or loitering around the vending machine. Try and shop for high protein and vegetable rich foods so that Daddy is more likely to fill up on nutritious goodness, rather than those ever tempting high-fat and high-salt alternatives.

Eat together

Busy schedules do not always allow for it, but trying to eat as many meals as possible around the table as a family will reap many benefits you may not have considered. Not only will you be eating at regular points throughout the day (which can aid in digestion and curb cravings), you’ll also model exceptional eating behaviour for your children. Numerous studies have shown that kids are more likely to try a new food if they see a parent trying and enjoying it first. Kids are also more likely to engage in important conversations that you might otherwise miss. Even good old fashioned manners are more likely to be mirrored if little ones see their mum or dad adhering to the same etiquette on a regular basis. Don’t have time during the work week? Then make it a family tradition to always eat together on weekends. Is there a better reason to light up the barbeque or throw a roast in the oven?!


Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!

The eight glasses of water a day rule isn’t just an old wives’ tale – the rule applies for and Daddy too. Take a cue from your kids, keep a refillable water bottle handy and set yourself goals to have it finished throughout the day.  Skip that second latte and replace it with green tea or lemon water. Proper hydration can aid good digestion, ward off fatigue and headaches and has been linked to heart health. No excuses drink your water and nudge Daddy too!

Cook healthy meals to share with family and friends

Here at Happetite, we are big on the benefits of sharing homemade meals with family and friends. Cooking for others can ease the pressure on someone, incite feelings of happiness in both sender and receiver and provide comfort but most of all can lift the spirits of the recipient.  There aren’t many gifts that can do that!

Why not pull out old family recipes, search the Internet for meal plans that make you salivate, and chose produce that makes your heart sing – the joy in cooking for others will be intoxicatingly addictive.   And when time is tight or distances an issue, that’s when Happetite Food is here to help!

So, is the Daddy in your house too busy to think properly about his nutrition? Forget the golf tees and tie rack and give dad something he’ll really enjoy this Father’s Day with our Happetite Beer and Pie food gift package. After all, they do say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, right?!


Westmead Children’s Hospital

On Friday 6 November, Sydney’s 2UE and Channel 7 News are joining forces with an on-air pledge to raise funds for The Children’s Hospital at Westmead.

Happetite Food will be there with tasty meals to sample so come visit and help raise money for a great cause.