What To Teach Your Kids About Money

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There comes a time in each child’s life when they start to want to buy their own things themselves. This might be through the money they have earnt in a part-time job or from their pocket money. You should use this time to teach your children about money. They need to know when to spend and when to save and the importance of using money smartly. With that in mind, here is what you should teach your kids about money.

Teach Them About Spending

You should also teach your children about spending. They need to understand that money is a limited resource and that once it is gone, it is gone. This can be taught having a money pouch on a day out with your child, and as you buy things throughout the day, this will steadily run out of money. At the end of the day, when all the money is gone they can see that there is no more money even if they want to buy more things. Obviously, this is simplified for a very young child and won’t be appropriate for teenagers.

Children need to learn that eventually, they will need to be able to manage their own finances. A good way of teaching this is through setting a set allowance or pocket money and sticking to that figure. If they spend it all, then it is all gone. They need to learn the consequences of their actions and understand that the bank of Mom and Dad won’t always be there to catch them. If they don’t have money, then they might need to do things like take out a small loan if they desperately need money and you don’t necessarily want this to be the case when they grow up.

Teach Them About Saving

You should teach your children the value of saving money as early as possible. The sooner they understand the benefits of saving money for later, the better it will serve them through their lives. This will help them understand that they need to save money in order to purchase expensive items and that it is worth having some money set aside for times when they want it. A good example of this is if your child wants an expensive video games console, then encouraging them to save their pocket money and once they reach a certain amount you will also make a contribution will help them see the value in saving. Another example would be encouraging them to have a savings fund for when they go holiday so that they can enjoy more ice cream, activities and other treats. These are great ways to show your children how important saving can be and the rewards of doing so.

When they get older, this will also apply to understanding how savings accounts work. If they understand that interest means that their money will steadily grow without them needing to touch it and that the more they save, the more money they will have, then they are more likely to have good saving habits in the future. This will help them to save money for a house, education or anything else that they want to save money for. Teaching them that the sooner they start saving, the better is also worth doing.

4 Household Items That Can Be Fixed Surprisingly Quickly

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We live in a disposable society. The relatively cheap cost of technologies that would have shocked and wowed just a few decades have rendered many of the products we use on a regular basis so readily replaceable that we assume it’s quicker and easier to replace them than to repair them. The trouble with this mode of thought however, is that not only is throwing items that can easily be repaired away is not only inherently wasteful, it can be horrendous for the environment. Since our mindset veers so readily to replacement rather than repair, we’re often unaware at just how easily a whole range of household items from trouser zippers to USB cables can be fixed in a matter of minutes.

Why not set a positive example for your kids and choose to get handy the next time one of these commonly used  items breaks?

Clothes and zippers

The rise in affordable, good quality sewing machines has rendered many a savvy parent a dab hand at fixing the odd popped seam or torn knee. However, if you don’t have one, that doesn’t mean that clothing repairs can’t be made quickly and easily. Torn jeans, for example, can be fixed in moments with small patches of denim and an iron-on hemming web like Wonder Web. Simply turn the jeans inside out, place the patch on the affected area and secure into place with the hemming web. It’s a long lasting fix that takes less than five minutes.

Oh and those troublesome busted zips that we’ve all encountered at least a few times? They can be repaired in just a  few minutes too with just a set of needle nosed pliers. Use the pliers to gently lever the zipper open at the bottom (on the side that has come away from the track), feed the loose track back into the gap in the slider that you have created then close back around the track with the pliers when it’s secure.

Headphones

Your walk to work wouldn’t the same without music, podcasts or audiobooks to keep you company would it? The trouble is that your phone or mp3 player inevitably goes into your pocket, placing a lot of undue stress on the connecting wire. Inevitably this leads to loss of sound or stuttering sound in one or both ears. Fortunately with a soldering iron, some wire strippers and a little patience this is easy enough to fix in less than 10 minutes.

Scratched furniture

Pet owners know the frustration of seeing their beloved wooden furniture engraved with scratches made by unknowing claws. Fortunately for you (and your oblivious pet), these scratches can be visibly reduced by rubbing them with walnuts. Seriously. Walnuts! Take a shelled walnut and rub the ‘meat’ of the nut into the scratches. Not only will your scratches be filled up, but the oils in the nut will lend the surface a natural shine, making the scratches disappear as if by magic.

Charger cables

USB and charger cables can usually be fixed without even needing to solder them. All you need is a pair of sharp scissors and a four Scotchlok cable connectors. Strip off the damaged section of wire and cut the remaining cable in half. Strip away about an inch and a half of the plastic jacket, exposing the 4 USB wires hiding under the shielding (black, white, green and red). Cut the shielding away and slip the wires into the Scotchloks on either side. Your cable is now completely repaired!

The Greatest Gadgets For Parents With Babies

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Nobody ever said being a parent was easy, but why did they have to put the most difficult part right at the start of a journey? Having a baby is a baptism of fire for a parent, especially when dealing with their first. It’s a steep learning curve filled with sleepless nights and desperately trying to negotiate with a tiny person who seems to want…. Something, but you’ve absolutely no idea what! Watching a baby grow and develop (which they do, really fast) is a wonderful, edifying and life affirming experience… but it’s also a lot of hard work. Fortunately, living in the modern world affords parents a plethora of helpful and surprisingly affordable gadgets that not only make parenting a little easier but provide much-needed peace of mind. We’ve assembled a few of the best right here…

Diaper Pails

Never put disposable diapers in the trash. Ever. They’re not like regular garbage and should not be treated as such. Very few garbage cans can mitigate the inevitable odor that accumulates in a household where diapers are changed on a regular basis. A diaper pail is a relatively low-tech piece of kit, but one that makes a big difference. Click here for more information on what to look for in a diaper pail guide. You’d be amazed how much rosier your worldview gets when the smell of baby poop no longer permeates your home.

The Pacifier Thermometer

Newborns are extremely prone to infection. Checking your baby’s temperature is one of the surest ways to give yourself the peace of mind of knowing that your baby is healthy. The trouble is that getting a thermometer into the mouth of a screaming wriggling baby can be a long and exhausting process. That’s why some bright spark thought of putting one right there in a pacifier!

The MamRoo Car Swing

With Thanksgiving and Christmas just around the corner, chances are there are some long journeys to catch up with friends and relatives for the holiday season scheduled in your calendar. This can be tortuous when you have an upset baby in the back. Of course, it’s imperative that your baby be kept safe in a car seat but this car swing by 4Moms will bounce and swing your baby just like you do, lulling them gently to sleep with these familiar motions while you concentrate on driving.

Video baby monitors

New parents, particularly first time parents, live in a near-constant state of paranoia. Aside from the ever-present “am I doing this right?” mentality that plagues those early years, there’s the very real worry that nags away whenever your baby is out of your sight. Audio baby monitors have given parents peace of mind on this front for decades, but living in the digital age has made it so much easier for parents to keep an eye on their beloved child at all times wherever they are. The current generation of video baby monitors allow parents to see how their baby is in real time using an app on their smart phone.

Gadgets like these are great for giving parents peace of mind and lightening the load so that they can take some much needed time for themselves.

When You’re Feeling Stretched Thin it is Time to Take a Moment for Yourself

Appointments, practice, carpooling, shopping, reminding, cooking, cleaning, consoling – a mother’s work is never done. Sure, it’s rewarding to finally hear a “Thanks, Mom!” or see your little ones grow into full-fledged individuals ready to slowly take responsibility for their daily lives.

Take a Moment for Yourself

A REAL Break 

But in the meantime, start thinking about your birthday, or Mother’s Day. Just a few times a year when you can guiltlessly ask for a little time off from the family grind. Such occasions are the perfect time to treat yourself to a short vacation.

But we’re not talking about an evening off to see a movie with your friends. Rather, this would be the perfect time to catch up with old college friends, or other moms who could really use some respite, and whisk yourselves away to a new destination where you can unwind.

Here are four U.S. cities you should consider, and why they’re great mom getaways. 

  1. Portland

Nature, art, wine, hotels – Portland is a real up-and-comer in terms of where to go next. If cityscapes aren’t your bag, you and your friends can take a daylong wine tour through the Willamette Valley. You’ll be picked up in the city and given a scenic sipping tour with exceptional views of the Cascade mountains.

There are also a number of boutique hotels who are known for rare pleasures like tea services, as well as rooftop bars, theaters, and more. 

  1. Dallas

Got a little money to burn? Here’s a secret: Dallas, Texas is a shopaholics’ mecca. Book your suite at a Marriott and Uber down to the flagship Neiman Marcus on main Street. The historic building offers personal stylists, trunk shows, an espresso bar, and salon services.

From there, you can visit Highland Park Village, Dallas’ premier shopping plaza with stores like Chanel, Etro, Diane von Furstenberg, Hermes, and Dior. 

  1. New Orleans

If you and your girls really want to cut loose, you might be considering NYC. However, it can be a little tough to nail down what you’re going to get into without serious planning or prior experience. Instead, book a trip to New Orleans and get settled on Bourbon Street. Live music, dancing, drinks, tons of great food – you’ll be talking about it for years to come. 

  1. Charleston

The best word to describe Charleston, South Carolina would be “charming”. You and your best friends can stay at Zero George, a historic, luxurious boutique hotel notorious for its exceptional cuisine – there’s even a cooking school!

Stunning outdoor piazzas, a lush courtyard, beautiful suites, and unparalleled concierge service that will ensure your entire trip is a hit with the whole crew.

Sounds so good that you won’t want to leave, right? Well, one of the most unexpected benefits of taking this time for yourself is that when you return, you’ll feel like a whole new person. Distressed, recollected, and renewed, you’ll get back to life the way it once was – except better!

The Importance Of Protecting Your Home From The Elements

The Importance Of Protecting Your Home From The Elements

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What is the reason you own a home for? Is it to provide loving experiences, shared by all your family members? Is it so you have a place to house all of your belongings? Is it so you have a place to lay your head at night, so you can comfortably sleep and begin the next day refreshed? Or, is it to protect yourself as a shelter from the elements outside?

Of course, it is likely all of these reasons in one, but there’s no denying that last part is the one with the most immediate priority. Our homes are often so beautiful and refined compared to the shelters crafted by humans in the far past that we forget their primary and sole purpose – to keep us safe from an unpredictable outside world. Not only do the walls help keep us in, but they help keep everything else outside.

For that reason, protecting your home from the elements should be carefully considered, and not taken for granted. Of course, no amount of preparation can prepare your home for the unfortunate issues which took place in Florida and the Caribbean in recent weeks, but a little foresight can surely help some of the most commonly insidious and preventable issues from arising.

Here are some tips for the budding homeowner:

Water

Water can enter your property in many different ways. From leaky taps to flooding, to appliances going haywire, sometimes we are dumped with a little more moisture than we’d like. Solving this can be an issue, especially when you don’t have the tools to best remove the issue. For this reason, it’s best to use a sump pump such as those found here https://www.crawlspacecharlotte.com/sump-pump/, which installed under the foundations, can give you a perfect draining solution to solve the problems in a matter of minutes.

However, water damage doesn’t always enter the bottom or basement floors of your property. A leaky roof or a poorly insulated window can both contribute to letting the rain in, especially when it’s falling with some intensity. It’s important to be wise about the solution you use here. Applying better and more insulated roofing felt in the property, as well as using silicon applications to overcome any insulation issues is sometimes the best place to start. 

Damp

Damp can arise similarly. Cold air outside can lead to excess moisture inside, and if this doesn’t have any way to escape the heat simply piles upon your walls, window fixtures and potentially electrical implements as moist mould. This can grow over time and lead to spores which can, in their worst estimation, make you very sick. Damp prevention is usually easy, but it will require a stern eye, good ventilation, and a solid understanding of the fault points that are most likely to carry its symptoms around your home. This is more a reaction to an outside element than one inside, but the validity of preparing for it is no less important.

With these simple tips, you are sure to have a leg up in repairing the potential damage of your home, and preserving its value and safety.

 

 

3 Tricks For Weaning Off The Pacifier

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One of the best comforts for a tiny, crying baby is a pacifier. Baby needs comfort, Mom needs sleep; it’s a no brainer that a pacifier is probably one of the best tools in the parental box of tricks. It’s your child’s first love and as with anything, breaking up is hard to do! The pacifier has provided you with hours of quiet while the baby soothes themselves into naptime oblivion, but the time is coming to start weaning off that comfort. Some like to wait until a child is starting to talk before weaning, which is a good idea!

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Teething is a huge reason a lot of parents turn to a pacifier. Not only does baby have something to hold onto and chew, they have a soother with them to rely on when the pain gets a little too much. There’s no true ‘right time’ to start weaning off the pacifier, as the time is going to be individual to each child. However, you can have a chat with your kids dentist and talk about when a pacifier starts to impact their dental care and growth and make a decision based on that. If you want to get your child off the pacifier earlier, then we’ve got some tricks that will help you to make the transition a little easier for you and for baby!

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Timing It Right. Did you know that a pacifier can help to prevent SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome)? At night, babies often forget to stop breathing and the presence of a pacifier in their mouth can remind their brain to breathe as the tongue relaxes and triggers a suckling reflex. Try not to wean off the pacifier too early, and avoid trying to wean during big life changes.

Cold Turkey? Perhaps Not. Every parent knows their child individually, so you will know when your child is ready to let go. Sometimes, you can tell they are ready before they can tell you, so even though it may make for a rough couple of days, you can take the pacifier away and endure the crying. The best idea is from around 12months, start refusing the pacifier in the day time unless for a nap. Distraction techniques with toys work wonders here! Once they’re used to only using it for nap time, start to wean off the night usage by using….

The Dummy Fairy! Children respond well to fairy tales, especially ones that involve a gift. It may be bribery for some, but who can say they’ve avoided parenthood without bribery?? About a month before the pacifier is permanently in the trash, start talking about a fairy who brings a present and takes the pacifiers to the new baby. The night before, leave the pacifier in an envelope and swap it for a small gift for being such a big girl or boy.

Getting your child on board to give up a pacifier doesn’t have to be a difficult feat. It means you have to be strong and stay calm and they will emulate that behaviour. Good luck!

 

 

Time To Take Control: What Can Be Forgotten Now You Are A Parent

Getting that positive pregnancy test, welcoming a newborn into your life, and becoming a parent for the first, second, third or whatever time is always a remarkable and amazing experience. You become entered into a bubble, a special club, that only you and other parents understand. The sleep deprivation, the overwhelming feeling of love, and the fact you no longer mind the look and smell of dirty nappies. However, because we can become embroiled in the world of parenthood, there can be a few things we simply forget to do or even think about. Even though they may impact our family in the future. I thought I would share with you what some of them are.

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Taking out life insurance

While it may feel inappropriate to think about a time when you might be here if we are truthful with ourselves not one of us really knows what the future holds. The last thing any of us wants to do is to leave our partner or our children struggling to pick up the pieces. This is when it might be worth considering a life insurance policy. A life insurance will pay out a lump sum if you are no longer around, some people tend to take it out to cover a mortgage and any debts you may have. Even covering a loss of income, etc. Some people may assume that life insurance doesn’t cover you long term, but this is when companies like Whole Life Insurance comes in. You may be wondering what is whole life insurance, so head to the website to find out more about eligibility criteria. You may be surprised to realize that even with the biggest of issues in your life, you can still secure your family’s future.

Saving for your children’s future

It is hard to think about years ahead when right now you can’t see past tomorrow due to lack of sleep. However, these children grow up so fast and before you can even blink college and university will be here. This is why it is so important for parents to start saving for this as early as possible. It isn’t just about education either. You may want to have money set aside for their first car, even to help them get on the property ladder. We all know how hard that is for young adults these days. It could be a small amount each week, saving any birthday or Christmas money they receive in a bank account, but over the weeks, months, and years those small amounts can really add up.

Securing your own future

Finally, we can often forget about ourselves and our futures, so it’s just as important to have general savings to cover family expenses, trips, and even to help with your future finances when retirement comes along. You also might want to think about getting a will in place now that you are a parent. Every one of us has assets, be that of monetary or sentimental value, and it’s important that should anything happen, that your children and family know what your wishes and intentions are.

I hope this helps you take back some control of the future.

The 3 Pillars Of Healthy Development

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All parents are likely to agree that ensuring your children are raised as well as possible is vital for their adulthood. You want your children to develop in a way which is healthy and happy, and you need to know how you can ensure that that is all the more likely. As it happens, it’s pretty straightforward to do, as long as you follow some essential rules for doing so. In this post, we are going to take a look at three of the main pillars of ensuring healthy development in your children, and how to bring them into being in your child’s life.

Mindfulness

Although it is a practice aged at around three thousand years or so, mindfulness still receives mixed coverage in the media and in everyday conversations. This is ultimately down to a lack of understanding on most people’s part; before you have practised it a great deal, it is difficult to fully grasp the practice itself, and its many benefits. But it has not existed for so long for no reason at all; as it happens, it is one of the most psychologically beneficial practices out there, and the earlier you introduce it into your child’s life, the better. Encourage in your children the ability to be mindful, and they will grow up with a stronger resolve, a better grasp on their emotions, and with a more loving and kind outlook. What could be better than that?

Diet

Mindfulness is just one part of it, though – and it too is affected by many other factors, diet being a primary one. A good diet in your children’s lives will mean that you can expect to see them be healthier, happier and have much more energy. The best way to encourage this is to make it so from a very young age, as young as possible. You can use happy tot super foods to introduce great healthy foods into their diet very early on, and then continue this trend as they become older. They will then be more likely to continue this into adult life. With a great diet, it is often true that all else will more quickly fall into place.

Exercise

Most of us don’t really exercise as much as we should. There is probably not just one reason for that, but a significant influence is likely to be the way we approach it when we are young. If you want your child to grow up to exercise well and look after their body, then you should seriously consider encouraging them to exercise and to enjoy exercise. This might be easier than you think. Mostly, it is just a matter of getting them into the habit nice and young. If you make it just another ordinary part of their everyday life, then they will be much more likely to continue it on as they age. This, coupled with the previous two, is sure to guarantee a much healthier later life for your children – and that is exactly what you should be hoping for.