Vacation to Revitalize Your Soul and Your Relationships

It is time to start planning your summer vacation! Have you thought about taking some time off to enjoy some fun in the sun? Whether you choose to escape for the weekend, or spend several weeks at some exotic retreat, it is so important to enjoy a fun vacation from time to time. Taking some time off from the same old daily grind is an excellent way to recharge your batteries and can greatly improve your wellbeing. By getting some much needed rest and relaxation, you can reduce your stress levels and stay healthier.

The proverbial saying, “All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.” – is so true, as without time off from work, we may become bored with life, and also boring to be around. With many employers, it is mandatory to take vacation, as it actually improves productivity and moral. In most European countries it is quite common to take a month off at a time to go on an elaborate holiday, usually touring other countries to visit family and friends.

When we have something to look forward to, we tend to have a much better attitude about life in general. We feel happy and excited when imagining what our impending vacation might be like, as we envision various possible scenarios. The bottom line is that taking a good amount of time away from the stresses of daily life can give us the break we need so that we can return to our lives refreshed and better equipped to handle whatever comes.

Vacation brings about change in our ordinary routine, and can help us to see things with a different perspective. We have feeling of freshness and tend to worry less about our day to day troubles while spending time away. Often times, vacations promote creativity. As we take a break, it is a good time to reconnect with ourselves – operating as a vehicle for self-discovery and reminding us of our passions and dreams.

“A traveler am I and a navigator, and every day I discover a new region within my soul.” — Kahlil Gibran

Vacations can also help rekindle relationships whether you take a trip with your spouse, friend or family member. It is certainly a great way to get to know someone when traveling with a new friend or potential partner. Spending quality time with another will undoubtedly bring you closer together. Or you may discover qualities that you dislike depending on your experience with them. Either way, you will learn a lot about each other when you choose to be travel partners for any amount of time.

A recent study by the Department of Health and Human Services found that women who took vacations were more satisfied with their marriages. If you take a vacation with your significant other, it can definitely strengthen the bond between you and enhance your marriage. By creating happy memories together, it will deepen your connection and keep your relationship strong. Likewise, if you go on vacation without your partner, it can also evoke clarity and a greater sense of appreciation when you spend time apart.

When you do plan a romantic get-away with your sweetie, it is an ideal time to reignite the sparks of passion and burning desire for each other. Sometimes just being in a different setting can stir up fervent excitement and stimulate your senses. One of my favorite items on the vacation packing list is the Sensual Massage & Premium Bodyglide – and comes in a great travel-size airless pump 1.9 oz bottle. The 2-in-1 massage gel and quality lubricant is perfect for setting the mood with a relaxing sensual massage leadinging into more intimate connection, and getting you through an adventurous night of pleasure-filled fun. ♥

Kids on Summer Vacation: A Working Parent’s Dilemma

For families, June is a busy time with graduation parties, little league championships and music recitals. And we all know that right around the corner is summer vacation – lazy days for kids but often stressful for working parents. So if you haven’t nailed down your plans yet, here are some ideas that can help with your work/life balance:

Stay flexible. To minimize your anxiety and maximize time with your kids, try to negotiate a flexible work schedule. Even if you only take the odd morning off or leave early once in a while, find someone to cover for you. Downtime to rejuvenate is important for you and for the wellbeing of your family.

Arrange creative child care. There must be plenty of responsible teenagers in your neighborhood who are looking for a part-time summer job. Or why not organize a co-op or a weekly swap with friends? Don’t forget grandparents or other family members who always say they feel bad that they don’t see your kids more often.

Plan a staycation. Arrange a meeting and encourage a discussion about the activities each family member would like. With a democratic process and everyone having a voice, you’ll ensure cooperation. Think about visiting a local museum, playing beach volleyball, attending an outdoor concert. If money is an issue, several day trips or weekend camping trips can make the whole family feel recharged and reconnected.

Embrace boredom. Encourage your kids to use their imagination and discover their own ways to keep busy – a lemonade stand on the corner, watching home movies, planting a small garden, walking the dog, swimming in the community pool. It could be fun to play board games, ride bikes or shoot hoops with friends on the block.

Assign chores. How about having your kids help around the house with jobs that you don’t have time for during the school year – clean out broken toys or box up outgrown school clothes. Have them run small errands or go to the corner grocery store. Let them keep the change and buy themselves a treat. They might even like having the independence and responsibility.

Limit Internet use. You may be tempted to use technology as a babysitter but try to institute some tech free days. When kids have unsupervised access to media, it can be at the expense of their growth. Emerging research reveals that technology can short-circuit healthy development in socializing and learning.

Encourage reading. Talk with your kids and listen to what they have to say about their summer reading. Most public libraries support a reading program with some sort of positive end result if all the requirements are fulfilled. And reading is a great habit to nurture. You can build structure by having your teens read to your younger children or even organize an informal neighborhood book club.

If you have to spend a little money on your kids’ summer activities, it’s in your best interests for a safe, fun environment and your peace of mind. A week or two of camp can build social skills and interests as well as character strengths. And it provides a structured and enriching environment so you don’t have to worry about what they’re up to.

Your kids have their whole summer ahead of them – no schoolwork or having to get up early. And you deserve to relax some too. With the long warm summer nights, you’ll have plenty of chances to spend quality family time together.

Is World Ventures The Real Deal or Just Another Scam?

A common question that many people who are new to the network marketing industry have when trying to evaluate a potential company is “Is this a scam?”, so I wanted to take some time to research a relative newcomer in the notorious network marketing travel industry that has a lot of people curious if it’s a good opportunity or not. The company I checked out is World Ventures, so here’s what I found which I hope will help you to decide for yourself, “Is World Ventures a scam or a good business to join?” .

You may have bought your entire seat, but you’re only going to need the edge on this one, folks…

Here’s the thing that’s most important to consider with any MLM company you’re thinking about joining:

1. Whether or not a real product and/or service exists.
2. Does the service or product provide real value to its customers regardless if they’re involved with the company as a distributor? Simply, would people still buy it even if they didn’t earn a bonus (We’ll go over the World Ventures LTC and Dream Trips programs in-depth soon)?

This is definitely the most important aspect of any serious evaluation, and World Ventures is no exception because if the service or product doesn’t hold up to scrutiny, than every other aspect of a network marketing like World Ventures is essentially moot.

Would you agree?

World Ventures travel products: Do they provide real value?

The Dream Trips product currently sells for a $199.95 fee up-front and $24.99 per month after that. The basic concept behind this product is the same as Costco or Sam’s Club. They purchase in bulk and through their customer’s monthly membership fee, they get access to discounted travel packages. I took a look at the World Ventures website and there are currently about 70 vacations to choose from.

Are the vacation packages a scam or are they actually good deals?

It would be very time-consuming to compare all of the vacation packages currently being offered by World Ventures to properly determine the value, but the few prices I audited were actually good deals when I put them head-to-head with some of the top travel booking sites.

One vacation I compared was to Cabo San Lucas at the Riu Palace (yes, please!). For two adults, this vacation was priced at about $760 with World Ventures via the Dream Trips product and Travelocity was almost $200 more expensive at about $950.

Another comparison I did was for the Grand Lido Braco resort in Jamaica. This trip for two adults was priced at about $890 via the Dream Trips product with World Ventures and Travelocity came in around $1050. At least in these two examples the savings were pretty substantial.

Since we’re comparing “oranges-to-oranges”, there were some more extravagant trips listed that couldn’t be easily compared because they included extras that someone couldn’t buy through some of the major travel sites, or they didn’t show the price unless you were a World Ventures customer.

Based on what I’ve seen so far, it looks like most World Ventures consumers would recoup their Dream Trips membership cost with the money they’d save by taking their first trip. You’ll have to keep in mind that this isn’t an exhaustive Dateline NBC-type investigation since I only reviewed 2 of the almost 70 Dream Trips to a major travel booking site, but based on what we’ve seen so far, I think it’s reasonable to say that people who take at least one good vacation per year would get some value out of their World Ventures membership.

The “World Ventures Scam” is looking busted…

World Ventures Leisure Travel Consultant Package (LTC)

The World Ventures LTC program also sells for a start up fee of $199.95 and $24.99 per after that. The best way to think about it would be as a turnkey online travel business. The start-up fee includes your own online retail travel website, web-based travel learning modules along with an exam, and opportunities for higher-level travel industry training. Cutting edge marketing training excluded, from what I can tell they give their distributors many of the tools they’ll need to build a thriving online business in the travel industry.

I was also extremely impressed with the Rovia search engine because, after messing around with it for a while and seeing how it searches all the other major travel sites, I could start to see how World Ventures’ claims of not needing to search multiple sites to get the best deal could be very true.

Speaking of getting the best price, they also have a “Match or Beat” price guarantee for online travel bookings against Priceline, Travelocity, Orbitz, and Expedia which could be a very positive marketing tool for someone who is working to build a network marketing with World Ventures.

Common claim of why World Ventures is a “scam”: World Ventures LTC program is essentially a “travel agent card mill”?

Over the past 10 years or so, there have been more than a couple network marketing companies that have tried to take advantage of the undeniable fact that a rapidly increasing amount of travel is booked online. Unfortunately for the end consumers, these companies didn’t really provide much real value and left them with “a bone to pick” with the entire network marketing travel industry.

What these companies were doing was they were selling a cheap plastic card disguised as a good product that allowed people to get discounts as if they were licensed travel agents when they technically weren’t. This is where the term “card mills” came from.

It’s kind of like those B.S. scam “classes” that are conducted in international waters where a school will issue you a college degree in an afternoon for a fee. Super, you got a piece of paper that says you’re a qualified lawyer in Kazakhstan. Very nice!

I’m happy to say that I didn’t see anything on their website or in their marketing materials which would show that World Ventures has gone this route with their LTC program. Actually, World Ventures went a step further and made it so that LTC’s can’t get this card until they’ve booked a standard number of travel sales along with completing additional training similar to what offline agents must do.

It’s important to keep in mind that World Ventures product is a discount based on their buying in bulk and not by giving everyone travel agent discount cards like some less-than-reputable network marketing travel companies have previously done.

I hope this has helped provide some insight into World Ventures as a company and will help you figure out for yourself if it’s a scam or not.

(Disclaimer: I am NOT affiliated with World Ventures in an way and am providing non-biased information along with my opinion based on 10 years in the MLM industry.)