‘Tis the Season for Giving!

By Staffquick Troy
Staffing Agency

‘Tis the Season for Giving!

Help our branches make this year special for members of their local communities by supporting their efforts! See below for how to help.

Several of our branches have signed up to be official drop locations for Toys for Tots.
“The mission of the U. S. Marine Corps Reserve Toys for Tots Program is to collect new, unwrapped toys during October, November and December each year, and distribute those toys as Christmas gifts to less fortunate children in the community in which the campaign is conducted.”
Please bring in new, unwrapped toys to your nearest branch.
Donations will be accepted through December 15th.
Peru office
2302 4th Street
Peru, IL. 61354
779-201-5985
Pontiac office
741 W. Washington Street
Pontiac, IL. 61764
815-844-0286
Galesburg office
1348 N. Henderson, Suite 3
Galesburg, IL. 61401
309-351-7421

Shelbyville Branch is taking donations benefitting Saving Orphaned Animals to help orphaned animals this holiday season. “We are dedicated to helping find orphaned animals a new home. These canines and felines are in a high kill facility in Shelbyville, IL.”
Please drop donations by the Shelbyville office.
1365 State Highway 128
Shelbyville, IL. 62565
217-774-2212
Donations will be accepted through the end of December.

Flora Branch is collecting Non-Perishable Goods to divide between county nominated families in need. Some additional ideas for donations are gift cards, Christmas cookies, candies and stocking stuffers.
They are also accepting nominations for recipient families in Clay County. You can email nominations to abbyk@staffquick.co or kristinap@staffquick.co.
Nominations will remain anonymous.
Please contribute by dropping items off at the Flora office.
834 West North Avenue
Flora, IL. 62839
618-662-8400
Donations will be accepted through December 15.

Quincy Branch is volunteering at the Horizons Soup Kitchen and Food Pantry on December 15th.
“Our mission is to feed the poor 
and hungry in our community.  We accomplish this mission through our daily soup kitchen and our free choice food pantry, all of which are offered in a safe, supportive and encouraging environment.   We meet the immediate needs of individuals and families who lack access to enough food to sustain an active, healthy life.”

On behalf of StaffQuick, thank you for your help.

Have a wonderful holiday season!

Tips to Control Holiday Spending

By Staffquick Troy
Staffing Agency

Make a Budget

Decide what your max budget is and work within that budget.

Look for deals/coupon

Most stores offer discounts, coupons, red hot deals, etc. leading up to the holidays. Make sure to capitalize on those deals! Hone your bargain shopping skills and cross items off your list.

Save

Start saving each month to build an allowance for the holidays. A few dollars per paycheck adds up!

Start early

Don’t procrastinate. Waiting until the last minute puts stress on you and restricts your budget. Buy gifts throughout the year and save them to give at the holidays.

Use cash

Plastic is out of sight out of mind. If you aren’t careful you can ring up a lot of debt over the holidays. Using cash gives you a limit which keeps your budget in check and saves you from mountains of debt in the New Year.

Consider your gift list

If your gift list gets longer every year, consider cutting back. Assign a dollar amount to each person. If you are over your max budget, you need to reconsider who you are buying for or how much you are spending per person.

Get creative

You don’t have to buy an expensive gift for everyone. Handmade items are thoughtful and typically less expensive. Cookies, cards, soaps, ornaments, etc. can go a long way to cross people off your gift list and save your budget.

Quality time

Sometimes spending quality time with someone is the greatest gift of all! Maybe you don’t live close by or you work long/odd hours; take some time to visit with friends and family. That may be just what they were hoping for!

Stick to your list

Make a list and check it twice! Try to come up with ideas for each person on your list and stick to the list. Impulse buys don’t follow a budget and spending can get out of control!

Secret Santa

Families tend to grow year to year. Friend groups expand. More holiday events are planned. With every new person and event your list gets longer and your budget gets higher. Talk to your family and friends about doing a Secret Santa instead of buying gifts for everyone. This will significantly help you cut back and save some major dough!

 

Changing Seasons and Your Health

By Staffquick Troy
Staffing Agency

The weather in the Midwest can be unpredictable. With all the changing temperatures and weather patterns it is difficult to stay well during the changing seasons.

Here are a few tips to help keep you healthy.

Change your air filters

Be sure to change your HVAC filters as recommended by the manufacturer. This will help to reduce dust and dust mites inside your home.

Wash your hands

Think about how many other people have touched that door handle… wash up to eliminate germs and help stop them from spreading.

 

Stay hydrated

Drink lots of water. It is recommended to drink half your body weight in ounces per day.

Take your vitamins

Start your day with fruit juice high in vitamin C. This will boost your immune system.

Add a Vitamin D supplement to your daily routine to replace what you were getting from the sun each day in the summer months.

Control your diet

Don’t get carried away with those comfort foods! Be mindful of what you are putting into your body and the amount you are consuming. This will help with energy levels.

Exercise

Speaking of energy levels, stay active! It is recommended to get at least 30 minutes of exercise per day.

Rest

If you are feeling drained you may not be getting enough rest. Shoot for seven to eight hours of sleep per night. Try using essential oils or hot tea before bed to help fall asleep more easily.

Dress appropriately

Be sure that your apparel changes with the weather. Wear layers in colder temperatures.

Back to School Ideas and Tips

By Staffquick Troy
Staffing Agency

Back to School – Getting back in the swing of things

Meal Prepping on Sundays always makes for an easier week. Grab-n-Go breakfast and lunch will make the morning rush to get out of the door much quicker.

Create separate compartments in a drawer or on the counter in your kitchen (for dry snacks) and a drawer in the refrigerator/freezer (for cold snacks). This will keep breakfast and lunch items separate from other foods and make it easier to judge what you have left during the week.

Easy Breakfast Ideas

Granola-Crunch-apple Peanut Butter wraps
Tortilla wrap  
Spread peanut butter
Sprinkle granola, dried cranberries or raisins
Layer sliced apple
Roll into wrap
Bag separately

Easy Lunch tricks

Portioning lunch items
•Buy snacks in bulk and portion yourself to save money (trail mix, veggies, fruit, chips, etc.)
•Don’t want to use baggies, use muffin liners in the lunchbox.
•Use a pencil box for a lunch box, these sometimes have compartments that will help keep lunch items separate as well.

Keeping Lunches Cold
•Freeze juice boxes, grapes and sliced banana to keep lunches cold; drink/eat at lunch once thawed.
•Freeze a sponge in a baggie to keep lunch cold.

Keep items fresh
•Sliced fruit – coat with lemon juice to keep from browning.

Keep it Fun
•Use cookie cutters to make fun shapes out of sandwiches, fruits and veggies.

Beat the Summer Heat & Save on Utility Bills

By Staffquick Troy
Staffing Agency

Clean or change AC filters once a month – Keep your air conditioner functioning at its best. The better it can breathe, the more efficiently it is at cooling your home.

Keep air vents clear –Take a few minutes to rearrange your furniture so that all vents are exposed for maximum efficiency.

Switch out your light bulbs – Install LED Lights because they produce light without generating extra heat. You’ll use up to 90% less energy.

Switch it off – Keep lights, computers, televisions, and other heat-generating appliances off.

Use the wind-chill factor – Try using a portable fan to blow cooler air towards you. Also, turn your ceiling fans off when you leave a room.

Use windows and blinds to your advantage – Open your windows to let in cooler air at night. Close your blinds/curtains during the day to keep sunlight from heating up your house. Insulated/blackout curtains do a terrific job keeping the sun at bay.

Get crafty – Install heat-reflecting film on windows.

Seal it up — Make sure cracks and gaps around doors and windows are sealed.

Close off unused rooms – If you have bonus rooms upstairs, they likely get very hot. Close them off and don’t use them during the hottest months of the year.

Get low – When it’s really hot out, try hanging out in the basement or lowest floor in your home. You’ll stay cool as your home’s cold air naturally sinks to lower levels.

Program your thermostat – When no one is home, program your thermostat to a higher temperature. You can save about 1-3 percent per degree, according to the U.S. Department of Energy.  

Save it for later – Wait to do heat producing tasks like using the dishwasher and doing the laundry until cooler hours like late afternoons and evenings. Instead hand wash dishes and hang clothes to dry outside.

Switch up how you cook – Avoid using the oven, instead use your grill, the microwave or a slow cooker. Better yet, try meals and snacks that don’t require cooking.

We’d like to thank Christina and Kristina for allowing us to use their blog posts as sources.  If you’d like to get the full details on these tips and tricks and find out more about them, please visit them at  http://www.itisakeeper.com and  http://proverbsthirtyonewoman.blogspot.com respectively.