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If you have a substantial debt figure before you have a baby, there's a good chance it will swell once your baby arrives. Pixabay

Preparing for a baby isnt only about purchasing tiny clothes, diapers and mittens. It goes beyond watching the endearing ultrasound photos and counting baby kicks; baby planning involves a lot of financial preparation.

Priti Rathi Gupta, Founder of LXME, MD & Promotor Anand Rathi Group spells out the most crucial financial tasks that must be on your checklist from the onset of your pregnancy, including estimating your medical costs, planning leave from your job and budgeting for your new born’s arrival.

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Save for medical expenses

The most obvious first step to take – start saving! Considering the exorbitant charges for medical check-ups and tests, and poor maternity benefits in health plans, it would be wise to keep aside a small amount each month in a liquid fund soon after you receive your good news. Don’t forget that with prenatal care, epidurals, and hospital stays, giving birth doesn’t come cheap.

Preparing for a baby isnt only about purchasing tiny clothes, diapers and mittens. It goes beyond watching the endearing ultrasound photos and counting baby kicks; baby planning involves a lot of financial preparation. Pixabay

Keep your debt status in check

If you have a substantial debt figure before you have a baby, there’s a good chance it will swell once your baby arrives. The ideal scenario is to be debt free with probably just your mortgage because when the baby comes along, expenses are bound to shoot up. Ensuring your debt is under control will render you financially secure resulting in peace of mind and contentment. If debt is all you think about, it will be hard to focus on your family.

Prepare for Maternity Leave

Taking time off your job to bond with your new baby, heal your body and adjust to the changes in your family is extremely important. According to the Maternity Benefit Amendment Act, women can take 26 weeks maternity leave. As per the Maternity Benefit Amendment Act, women can commence their leave upto a maximum of 8 weeks before the expected delivery date and the remaining time can be availed after childbirth. Some couples also make use of their paid vacation or sick days once the baby arrives. Discuss with the HR department and understand your company’s policies with regards to this so that you can plan your leave accordingly.

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Review your health insurance

You will need to include your new born to your health insurance policy, so take the time to review your policy now, while you are still free from baby duties. If you’re currently covered through your job, you can find out more from human resources, or talk to your insurance provider. It would be of use to note that even with health insurance, you might be responsible for some out-of-pocket expenses when it comes to childbirth and family coverage plans. By reviewing promptly you will have more time to clarify any doubts and start saving. (IANS)



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If humanity is hurt, God is hurt.

Religion without compassion might give way to hatred. Compassion with a "self-interest" motive is completely irreligious. But of late, some of the religions have departed from those basic human values. Love and compassion are for only those who follow their "specific" faith. Very sadly, the religions are up as trading commodities in the world of proselytization. Better preachers attract more followers. Of course, no issue if they are not vying for their religious "supremacy". But the ground reality is utterly different. The claim for exclusive supremacy has become the first commandment --- a real bone of contention among the existing religions. In the name of religion, we have polluted our minds. we have corrupted our souls. We have also gone so much astray that God must have now shut his gateway to heaven!

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The Aruba villa has great interiors, an outdoor facility, amazing bedrooms, clean bathrooms and huge living space.

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Taking out time for family has become very difficult as people are pretty busy in daily life and find very little time to spend with their loved ones. Planning a family vacation is an excellent way through which the whole family can step away from their daily life and have fun. You can find many destinations for a family vacation, but there is no place that can beat Aruba.

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Photo by Flickr

Milky Way galaxy as seen from Chitkul Valley

NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory has for the first time spotted signs of a planet transiting a star outside of the Milky Way galaxy, opening up a new avenue to search for exoplanets at greater distances than ever before.

The possible exoplanet -- or planets outside of our Solar System -- candidate is located in the spiral galaxy Messier 51 (M51), also called the Whirlpool Galaxy because of its distinctive profile, NASA said in a statement.

Astronomers have, so far, found all other known exoplanets and exoplanet candidates in the Milky Way galaxy, almost all of them less than about 3,000 light-years from Earth.

An exoplanet in M51 would be about 28 million light-years away, meaning it would be thousands of times farther away than those in the Milky Way, NASA said.

"We are trying to open up a whole new arena for finding other worlds by searching for planet candidates at X-ray wavelengths, a strategy that makes it possible to discover them in other galaxies," said Rosanne Di Stefano of the Center for Astrophysics at Harvard and Smithsonian (CfA) in Cambridge, Massachusetts, who led the study.

The findings are published in the journal Nature Astronomy.

The exoplanet candidate was spotted in a binary system called M51-ULS-1, located in M51. This binary system contains a black hole or neutron star orbiting a companion star with a mass about 20 times that of the Sun. The X-ray transit they found using Chandra data lasted about three hours, during which the X-ray emission decreased to zero.

Based on this and other information, the team estimates the exoplanet candidate in M51-ULS-1 would be roughly the size of Saturn and orbit the neutron star or black hole at about twice the distance of Saturn from the Sun.

The team looked for X-ray transits in three galaxies beyond the Milky Way galaxy, using both Chandra and the European Space Agency's XMM-Newton. Their search covered 55 systems in M51, 64 systems in Messier 101 (the "Pinwheel" galaxy), and 119 systems in Messier 104 (the "Sombrero" galaxy).

However, more data would be needed to verify the interpretation as an extragalactic exoplanet. One challenge is that the planet candidate's large orbit means it would not cross in front of its binary partner again for about 70 years, thwarting any attempts for a confirming observation for decades, NASA said.

Named in honor of the late Indian-American Nobel laureate, Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar, the Chandra X-ray Observatory is the world's most powerful X-ray telescope. It has eight times greater resolution and is able to detect sources more than 20-times fainter than any previous X-ray telescope.

Known to the world as Chandra (which means "moon" or "luminous" in Sanskrit), Chandrasekhar was widely regarded as one of the foremost astrophysicists of the twentieth century. (IANS/JB)

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