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Each week, we’ll teach you how to make improvements to your home, in your work life, or for your family as you reimagine happiness and a balanced life.

Lifestyle articles

Colorful hand drawn bingo cards on a table.
Young woman sitting on a dorm room bed with a laptop computer.

Printable Spring Bingo Card

Spring Break is upon us and those with kids are beginning to search for ways to entertain their littlies and avoid boredom during the break! Add a little ‘adventure’ to your outdoor activities with these printable Spring Bingo Cards.

Setting up a dorm room.

Moving into a dorm is an exciting time. But decorating that new, compact space can be a challenge. Designer Julia Domogalla from Nesting Blissfully Interiors shares her expert tips for making your dorm room your own.
taking a family portrait at home

How to Take a Great Family Portrait at Home

Getting that perfect holiday family portrait can be tricky even at the best of times. We’ve compiled a simple guide so that you can learn how to take a great family portrait without the fuss.
Family Meals

Meals for Under $10

In our new normal, your home is no longer just a home. It’s probably a restaurant now, too—serving every meal, every day. Hungry family members have taken the place of impatient customers, and they don’t tip nearly as well, either. So with your budget tightening and meal prep becoming more crucial than ever, how can you keep the whole family fed and happy without breaking the bank? We’ve prepared a menu of meal ideas that you can prepare for less than $10 for a family of four.

couple holding up house keys

How To Make a Great Offer on a Home

Over 6 million homes sold in the US in 2021 and that figure is predicted to rise significantly this year. With the market so hot, how can you ensure that you make a great offer on your next dream home?

hands typing on a laptop keyboard

Know How to Spot a Remote Access Scam

Threats to our digital security are developing and evolving every day. A recent rise in remote access scams means that fraudsters are relying on you to make a mistake, and provide them with access to your computer under false pretenses.

How To Cool Your Home Without AC

A 90 degree day can be great until it's time for bed. Sleeping in a hot home with no air conditioning can be taxing for even the heat-lovers among us. Try these 7 tips for cooling your home without a/c.
Person pouring grain from a jar into a bowl

Sweet treats without the sugar

Love it or hate, sugar can factor heavily in our diets through processed foods, sauces, fruits and even some veggies! Trying to cut down can be hard, especially if you have a sweet tooth. That midday craving for candy can play havoc on your health and leave you feeling slow and sluggish once the sugar high is over.
A lady in a grocery store

Get your grocery budget on track.

Do you feel like you spend too much on food? It’s easy to fall into familiar patterns when we’re meal planning and snacking, without taking into account what we’re spending to fill ourselves up—and how we could save. You don’t need to become a careful coupon clipper to find savings in the grocery store aisles.
woman in a living room reducing clutter on the coffee table

5-minute Decluttering Projects

Organize your home in small steps with our collection of simple, achievable decluttering projects. By carving out just 5 minutes a day you can tackle some of the smaller tasks that are often overlooked, leaving you feeling a little more organized at home!
building a terrarium

How to Make Your Own Terrarium

Terrariums are a great, low- cost way to add greenery to your home. And if you choose the right  plants, you can get away with forgetting to water them once in a while, making this the perfect greenery for those without a green thumb! 

In this article you’ll learn how to make your own terrarium, how to choose the right soil and plants for your terrarium and how to maintain your terrarium for years to come.
woman smelling flowers

Gardening in California

Depending on the time of year, your property’s micro-climate, and where you live in California, planting and tending a garden can be both enjoyable and rewarding. It’s also a chance to play in the dirt. Here are some tips for planning your garden in the Golden state. 
mom with child gardening

Gardening in the Pacific Northwest

Depending on the time of year, you’re property’s micro-climate, and where you live in the Pacific Northwest, planting and tending a garden can be both enjoyable and rewarding. It’s also a chance to play in the dirt. Here are some tips for planning your garden in Oregon and Washington. 
vegetable gardening

Vegetable and Herb Gardening 101

It seems easy enough. You plant some seeds into decent soil, give it some water and sunlight, and it grows. But, there’s a bit more to it than that if you want good results. We’ve put together some introductory tips to help start a vegetable and herb garden at your home.

A woman sleeping

Start getting a better night’s sleep 

For a few minutes, let’s forget about all of the external factors that keep you from getting a restful night of sleep. There is no shortage of outside influences—from fussy pets to stress at work—that can encroach on our down time and impede our sleep. There is no silver bullet solution that can deliver lasting and consistent results, but by focusing on a few key strategies that are under your control, you can start seeing fast improvement in your quality of sleep.
Smiling woman near waterfall

Friluftsliv - Outdoor Living

We all know that getting outside is great for the body and soul. That’s why in Norway, where the days can be short and the nights can be long, they have adopted a way of life that fully embraces the great outdoors.
outdoor movie watching

Build your backyard movie theater

You don’t have to venture out to enjoy the drive-in experience. You can do it at home. All you need is a backyard, an inexpensive projector, a Bluetooth speaker, snacks and friends. Here’s how to throw the perfect backyard movie night. 
woman shopping for wine

How to Pick the Right Bottle of Wine

Being an adult means you can buy a bottle of wine, pour yourself a glass and enjoy the fruits of a winemaker’s labor. But how do you choose the right wine at the grocery store or when you’re eating out? We have some quick and easy advice to help uncork this age-old mystery.

Smiling woman with headphones looking at a laptop computer

Protecting Your Eyes From Digital Screens

Technology plays a significant role in our daily lives. It has revolutionized the way we work, learn and communicate. We live in an era where advancements in technology are common and while it’s undeniable that these advancements have yielded many benefits for society, the impact has not been entirely positive.
Woman working at kitchen table with children

Tips for Working from Home With Kids

Thousands of parents and caregivers have found themselves working from home this year. And with many families without childcare, this has thrown up a whole host of logistical issues. 

Adults have had to learn to juggle hours of Zoom call meetings with colleagues and emails, at the same time as entertaining, teaching and caring for their children on a daily basis - this is no small feat! Here we share 5 tips for working from home with kids.
woman at laptop

Entering the Workforce During COVID

Navigating the path to your first job is intimidating under the best of circumstances, and with a job market affected by coronavirus limitations, entering the workforce in 2020 might feel like an especially daunting task.

Don’t worry, make an action plan instead. Companies large and small are still constantly in search of new talent entering the job market, and you can stand out from the crowd without the normal outlets of job searching and networking available. Here’s how.
guy riding bike

What is an Enneagream?

You may have heard of the Enneagram, but what exactly is it and how can you benefit from knowing your Enneagram number?

The Enneagram is an ancient personality typing system that defines nine basic personality types in the world. Each of us displays behavior from all nine types in the Enneagram, but we naturally gravitate more towards one, which we learn during childhood, and which helps us navigate the complex world of relationships.
woman on laptop

Tips for Better Video Conferences

Working from home has become a common reality, and it's likely to continue for the foreseeable future. Enter the video conference—the virtual meeting room where we can still have live, face-to-face collaboration. Now is a great time to take your video conferencing skills from 0 to 11. At First Tech, we've got some tips on how to makeover your video calls and be the envy of every meeting.

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First Tech Lifestyle Highlight Reel
Discover a treasure trove of content that's tailor-made to fuel your financial aspirations and beyond with the First Tech Lifestyle library. From insightful articles to helpful how-tos, we provide resources that make your growth easy and enjoyable.
September 28, 2023
Rewards Checking Account Part C
Learn more about the First Tech Rewards Checking Account® from First Tech employee Natalie Cooper.
September 18, 2023
Rewards Checking Account Part B
Learn more ways to choose the right rewards checking account for you based on your lifestyle, spending and saving habits with First Tech employee Natalie Cooper.
September 12, 2023
College Prep Part C - Discretionary Spending
College life can be expensive and so it’s important to budget and know both your income and outgoing expenses, but don’t forget those discretionary items! First Tech employee Matt Richwine explains more.
September 05, 2023
Tips for Staying Hydrated
Staying hydrated gives us more energy, fewer headaches, and is very important for overall health. Here are some key tips for staying hydrated.
August 23, 2023
At Home Tips for Sunburn
Even with sunscreen, sunburns can happen. But don't fret! Your pantry might hold the key to natural relief. Try these pantry staples next time you need to soothe sunburned skin.
August 22, 2023