Kids are expensive, how to save money

Dear Readers,

As time has past this year I have truly realized the fact that kids are expensive. Now don’t get me wrong, I would not change the fact that I have a child. I love being a parent. This still doesn’t change the fact that a child is expensive. I have been trying to save money and figure out ways to decrease the costs and here is what I have come up with so far

– Cutting cable – I bought a apple TV and stream everything from that or my laptop to the TV using the apple TV. It is saving me about $120.00 a month

– Bulk buying – I use Amazon, Costco, and Diapers.com to buy bulk baby and toddler items and this saves me around $40 a month.

– Coupons and grocery store perks – Using a grocery store that I can get all my regular groceries and receive money off for gas is a great way to save. This helps a lot! I save around $54.00 a month on gas alone. Plus don’t hesitate to use coupons for groceries.

Overall it is hard to save money and can take some time to find the best deals. If you know of any other ways feel free to add to my list!

athomedadtalk logging out

Dads parenting style right or wrong?

Dear Readers,

Does your wife tell you that your parenting style is wrong? Do you do things different than your wife? Do your ways of handling your child work better than your wife’s? I recently heard a story about a wife and husband in which the husband is the stay at home parent.

It’s right before bedtime and Sylvia is about to flip out about something – that a page of her picture book is “broken” (read: torn, by her, days before) and that she can’t have three more handfuls of popcorn after we said “one more.” Before I have a chance to ask, “What’s wrong, Syl?” my husband walks up behind her, lifts her up into his arms, and carries her over his shoulder.

“MAMA! NO! Mom-me-ee-ee!!!” she yells, upside down.

My eyes are shooting darts at Aron’s back. By surprising her from behind, he’s made it worse. He just barrels on in, not giving her a chance to calm down. Now she’s never going to go to sleep. It’s just so –

And then, from upstairs, giggling. And then, the low murmur of story reading. And then, silence. And then a triumphant husband, breezing down the stairs, as if it were all a bunch of nothing. “What a sweetie she is,” he says.

I learn this lesson at least once a week: I confuse Aron’s parenting style with being “wrong.” I apparently think, especially in my weaker moments, that he should do exactly as I do. But his way often works just as well as mine – if not better.

And then I’m stuck in a brutal twist: If I thought he was wrong and his approach worked, does that mean he’s right? And that would make me…

Of course, this train of thought is likely to take me nowhere fast. “It’s not about copying your partner’s style or his copying yours,” says Rona Renner, host of the radio show Childhood Matters and a mom of four kids. “It’s about appreciating the way he’s different from you.”

The problem that my wife has with how I do things is not about my way being wrong but that she is not the one being able to console my daughter. She does not mean anything by it, it is just that moms have always been the one that console the children and now it is the dad. Plus sometimes the dad makes it look so easy. So don’t take offense if someone tells you that what your doing is wrong. If it works then stick with it! Has anyone experienced issues with this?

 

Athomedadtalk logging out.

Help your kid read by getting a dog!

Dear Readers,
I just read an article on ABC news on how having a dog can help your kid read! Think about when you were learning to read and how embarrassed you were reading in front of people. I know that I did not want to read in front of anyone because I was afraid of making a mistake. I did not want everyone laughing at me. If my parents would have thoughts to have me read to our dog it might have given me more of an incentive to read. In the article written by Ron Claiborne it stated

“A study this year by researchers at the University of California, Davis confirmed that children who read to Fido really do perform better. Young students who read out loud to dogs improved their reading skills by 12 percent over the course of a 10-week program, while children in the same program who didn’t read to dogs showed no improvement. Man’s best friend can do a lot more than fetch and roll over. Research now suggests that dogs can actually help children learn to read.

 Therapy Dogs Provide Comfort to Students

The positive effects of the concept are seen firsthand at the East Norwalk Library in East Norwalk, Conn. where students read to dogs as part of the “D2R2” program. The specially-trained therapy dogs are accompanied by their handlers, and the kids clearly love it. “I have somebody that listens when I read,” said Linda, one of the young participants. “If I make a mistake, there’s no one around me to laugh.”

baby and dog
This is a interesting study . I would not have thought to have my child read to the dog. To me this is just another reason of why people should get dogs. I know that I love our dog and know that he will be a great listener to our little girl. Are you ready to get a dog now?
Athomedadtalk logging out.

Child Milestones from baby to age 3.

Babies grow in such unique ways: The baby who sits up weeks before her peers might be one of the last to learn how to crawl. Or the 18-month-old who’s still communicating with grunts and gestures suddenly bursts forth with prepositional phrases at 2 years. That’s why we created this series of charts.

Since babies aren’t identical — thank goodness! — the charts allow for variations in stages of development. Use them to gain insight into what you’re observing in your baby today and to preview what you can look forward to in the months ahead.

Milestones

Record the moments that matter in your baby’s amazing development.

One thing you shouldn’t use the charts for, however, is grist for the worry mill. Each chart is meant as a guide, not as a source of concern.

For information about particular milestones, click on the links below or head to the baby, toddler, or preschooler development pages.

Click on the link below to see the charts:

http://www.babycenter.com/milestone-charts-birth-to-age-3

Does your kid scream in the car seat?

Dear Readers,
Does your kid or kids scream in the car seat? Do you hate to go anywhere because your baby screams until they are out of the seat? Well if your baby does, then you are not alone.The second we put her in the car seat she would start wailing and wouldn’t stop until we got her out. I had friends whose babies would sleep under tables in their car seat or sleep in it all night. Not my daughter. I wanted to write to say that it GETS BETTER! She started to change around 9 months and for the past few months he has LOVED being in the car. The turning point began when she could play with her hands. Eventually we could give her a toy to play with. When we switched to the “big girl” car seat things got even better. Then once we turned the convertible car seat around at 14 months and 21 pounds there was a complete change. It either made her sick from looking backwards, was too cramped, or just wanted to see what was going on. Overall all things get better with change.

Athomedad logging out for the night. Let me know if you have had similar issues.

Are you ready to be a stay at home dad?

There are a lot of fathers out there who say they want to be a stay-at-home dad – but could they hack it if given the opportunity to care for the kids full-time? Most likely, but it isn’t a move to be taken lightly and there is some preparation to do.

After all, the happiness of both dad and kids is at stake.

Careerbuilder.com has conducted an annual survey of working dads throughout this decade, and consistently about four out of 10 of them have said they would be a stay-at-home dad if their families were in the right situation. But what is their true motivation?

Staying at home isn’t getting to wake up when you want or having the freedom to do as you please during the day. The kids usually dictate the schedule.

So how do you know if you are ready to join the ranks of stay-at-home dad? There are a few important issues to consider.

Are you Ready for the Job Transition?

This is one of the biggest career moves a dad will ever have to make. He will be going from the rat race to domestic chaos.

Adult interaction will be limited and dad will be on call 24 hours a day. Instead of pounding away at the computer for eight or more hours, there will be play dates and dinner menus and housework.

Obviously, perks include getting to enjoy the day with the children. Field trips are a little more common and cubicles will be extinct.

But the days will be very full with little chance for a break. If you don’t want to change the baby’s fourth poopy diaper of the morning, there is no co-worker to hand off to. It is all up to you.

Although the move can be very gratifying, if working and producing something every day is what fulfills, think hard about what will make you most content. The kids aren’t going to get a lot out of an unhappy supervisor.

Can you Afford it?

There can be many financial advantages to not working. Working costs a lot when you factor child care, car costs, clothing, business lunches and even snacks in the office. But most people work for a reason and that’s money.

A family must evaluate their financial situation and determine if losing the extra income is acceptable and whether or not the remaining paycheck will be enough to keep the household afloat. Even if the answer is yes, it will be important to adjust to living on one income, which could be the first time the family has had to deal with that.

Money is one of the primary stresses on families. Definitely make sure you are on top of the finances before making a SAHD decision.

Are you Mentally Prepared?

It is a must to be in the right frame of mind and have a little bit of an idea what is going to be thrown at you every day. Even with that preparation, you will still need to adjust to many curveballs and some pitches you weren’t expecting at all.

A stay-at-home dad will likely feel some burnout, a little isolation and will have to deal with stereotypes, many of which are negative. Knowing that these potential aversions are out there, and being ready to deal with them, is key to being content in the role.

Don’t forget there is also a house to tackle mostly by you, meals to plan and prepare, errands to run and, most importantly, looking after the children to do all at the same time. It can be very tiring. The best defense is a good mindset.

So a dad has to determine if he is up to the challenge, which can be easier said than done. But once the transition is made, the rewards can be endless.