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

Safety kit supplies list

Dear Readers,

Do you have a emergency kit? Are you prepared for inclement weather? In light of the past few days weather it made me think of my emergency kit and being prepared for Hurricane Sandy. I searched through my emergency kit to see what I had and looked in the pantry to see what food was needed. As I was going through everything I realized I did not have a checklist to go off of in order to make sure I was prepared.  Here is a list of items that you need to have at a minimum.

A basic emergency supply kit could include the following recommended items:

  • Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
  • Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
  • Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
  • Flashlight and extra batteries
  • First aid kit
  • Whistle to signal for help
  • Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
  • Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
  • Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
  • Manual can opener for food
  • Local maps
  • Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
  • Extra baby food if it pertains to you

This is a good way to make sure that you are prepared. Always keep track of the local weather conditions and news for updates on the inclement weather. As well make sure you and your family have a disaster plan so that each person know what to do in case of separation. Athomedadtalk logging out.

Bus stop safety

The bus stop can be a fun and exciting time. The bad part is that it can be a scary time for the parents. Bus Safety Tips for Parents and Students:

Walking to the Bus Stop:
Walk your young child to the bus stop and have older children walk in groups. There is safety in numbers; groups are easier for drivers to see.
Practice good pedestrian behavior. Your children should walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, they should stay out of the street.
If they must walk in the street, they should walk single file, face traffic and stay as close to the edge of the road as they can.
Tell you child to stop and look left, right and then left again if they must cross the street. They should do the same thing at driveways and alleys.

Waiting at the Bus Stop
Don’t let your child play running games or push and shove at the bus stop. It is dangerous near traffic.
Make sure your child stands at least 10 feet (5 giant steps) from the road while waiting for the bus. The child will then be out of the way of traffic.

Getting On and Off the Bus

Warn children that if they drop something, they should never pick it up. Instead, they should tell the driver and follow the driver’s instructions. If they bend over to pick up a dropped object, they might not be seen by the driver and could be hurt if the driver pulls away from the stop. Remind children to look to the right before they step off the bus. Drivers in a hurry sometimes try to sneak by busses on the right. Teach your children to secure loose drawstrings and other objects that may get caught in the handrail or door of the bus as they are exiting. Give your child a note or follow the school’s procedures if you would like for the child to get off at a stop other than the one they are assigned. The driver isn’t allowed to let a child off at another stop without written permission.

If you meet your child at the bus stop after school, wait on the side where the child will be dropped off, not across the street. Children can be so excited at seeing you after school that they dash across the street and forget the safety rules.

Tips for Students When Exiting the Bus
If you leave something on the bus, never return to the bus to get it. The driver may not see you come back and she may begin moving the bus.
Respect the “Danger Zone” which surrounds all sides of the bus. The “Danger Zone” is ten feet wide on all sides of the bus. Always remain 10 steps away from the bus to be out of the “Danger Zone” and where the driver can see you. Always cross the street in front of the bus. Never go behind the bus. If you drop something near the bus, tell the bus driver before you attempt to pick it up, so they will know where you are. Never speak to strangers at the bus stop and never get into the car with a stranger. Always go straight home and tell you parents if a stranger tries to talk to you or pick you up

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.

Staying healthy for your child – (Try Crossfit)

Dear Readers,
One thing that I have been trying to do is to stay health for my child. I read a few books when my wife was pregnant and all of them mentioned that you should start to at least getting some type of exercise in three days a week to preserve your health. So I thought long and hard about this. In high school and most of college I was very healthy and in shape. I worked out, played soccer, and ran. I enjoyed being outside! As I made my way up the corporate ladder so did my weight. I took a long look at my eating habits and they were not that bad. I could make a few adjustments that would help but it was the lack of exercise that was making my weight increase.

I decided that I needed to do something. The question was what and how would I get back in shape. After looking into gym memberships, exercise groups, and a few other options I decided on Crossfit! I will tell you. Since I have started I have lost 15 pounds in 4 weeks. It is a tough workout but it is always changing and a great way to get back in shape. I was sore for about 2 weeks of the workouts but now I am feeling great and almost addicted to crossfit. If you have a crossfit group in your area I recommend that you try it! I want to be around as long as possible in order to see my little girl grow up. Being healthy is a good way to make sure that happens.
Athomedadtalk logging out!

Underwear on head!

Dear Readers,
I was doing some laundry today and letting my little girl play in the clean clothes because she loves it! I have decided to post this because I feel like it is a bit funny. Most days that we do laundry she palys in the clothes and some how comes out with underwear on her head! I am not sure how she finds them and gets them on her head but it is super cute! Anyone have similar stories or stories that are funny about their kids?

Fall bucket lists for stay at home dads and their kids!

Dear Readers,

Every day and every season is another time to make memories with your children. As kids get older they don’t want to leave the house and only want to site in front of the TV! Well this fall lets change that by crossing things of the fall bucket list. Lori Garcia listed Things every kid should experience this fall at yahoo.com.

Bucket list:

1. Visit a farm stand or farmers market Enjoy the bountiful harvest of the season with the freshest and most colorful produce to be found! Your kids will love choosing farm-fresh veggies for your family’s table.

2. Visit a pumpkin patch! It is great for family photos and it is a lot of fun for the kids

3. Carve pumpkins! Since you have visited the pumpkin patch and picked the best pumpkin let your kids show their creativity and carve scary faces on your pumpkins. If you do not want the mess just use paint instead!

4. Jump in a pile of leaves. Do you remember when you were a kid and you had to help your parents rake leaves all day Saturday? If so it made it all worth it when you jumped in the huge pile once you were done. It is great fun!

5. Visit a corn maze. a lot of times these are at the pumpkin patches so you can kill to birds with one stone.

6. Pick apples! Go to an apple orchard to pick apples for a apple pie or some apple cider.

7. Family football! There is nothing wrong with a little family exercise and friendly competition. I bet you kids will always remember the fun you had playing.

8. Drink apple cider. Once you are done playing in the crisp air drink some of the apple cider to warm up from the cold.

9. Take a hike to take in the fall colors. The fall is a unique time to experience all the colors of the leaves changing as well as the weather.

10. Make some pumpkin bread! Fill the kitchen with the aromas of fall!

11. Get crafty! Have your kids make turkeys from construction paper, paint things for Thanksgiving, or what ever your favorite fall activity might be.

12. Plant flower bulbs Fall’s the perfect time to plant tulips, daffodil, and hyacinth bulbs to bloom next spring!

All of these are great ideas to help make great memories with your kids.See how many of these you can check off your list this year. Athomedadtalk logging out.

The full article is here http://shine.yahoo.com/photos/15-things-every-kid-should-experience-this-fall-slideshow/

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.

Are you a stay at home dad?

Dear Readers,

Being a stay at home dad is not an easy thing to do. It can be very satisfying and frustrating at the same time. Don’t worry though you are not alone.

Nationwide, the number of stay-at-home dads has more than doubled in the past decade, as more families are redefining what it means to be a breadwinner. There were only about 81,000 Mr. Moms in 2001, or about 1.6 percent of all stay-at-home parents. By last year, the number had climbed to 176,000, or 3.4 percent of stay-at-home parents, according to U.S. Census data.

If you are a stay at home dad because of a loss of job or a mutual decision post your experience here. I would like to know your story. Stay at home dad logging out!