You can have great intentions to spend less money. Then enter children. And boredom. And whining. Next thing you know, you’ve shelled out hundreds of dollars to entertain the family and not have much to show for it after.
Here are some ideas to get you through any weekend, no matter if you’re trying to save lots of money or a little money. And if you’re attempting a no-spend weekend with that wallet completely on lockdown? You can do that too.
But first thing’s first. You have to plan ahead to avoid some basic pitfalls. All good plans can implode the minute the first person (kid or adult) gets hangry. (more…)
Of all the chaos in the world, and all the chaos in our own house with two young, growing, rambunctious kids… the drive to school in the morning is kind of a special time for me. It’s a few minutes without video games, TVs, loud toys, running, yelling, screaming (if we’re lucky), when my kids and I can really talk. We talk about the day ahead, upcoming plans… about everything from the lunch menu to what they want to be when they grow up.
But whatever we talk about, the last thing I always say to them before they hop out of the car and disappear into the crowd of kids is, “Be brave & kind.” (more…)
As a mom, there are many small and sometimes major moments that signal to you that your kids are getting older and they’re no longer babies. Some of these moments cause a sigh of relief… like when they’re potty trained, when they can feed themselves and when they finally stop sticking everything in their mouths. But some are a little more bittersweet… like when they’re embarrassed to have you kiss them when you drop them off at school, or when your daughter starts to rebuff the pretty, fluffy bows you’ve been sticking in her hair for years. That last one especially stings me lately. (more…)
We’ve all been there… whether you’re a mom or not… at our breaking point. And it’s usually self-inflicted. (more…)
According to KidsHealth.org, physical activity not only helps kids build strong muscles and bones and control weight, it can also help them sleep better, be more academically motivated and successful.
So, while you’re making New Year’s resolutions for fitness and better health, take your kids along for the ride. (more…)
For most kids, money is an abstract concept. They need food, water, clothes and a home, and all those needs are magically already provided for them. And when they want a toy or game, those wants are usually met too.
But they don’t yet have a sense that the money it takes to buy those things, requires work.
That’s why I personally don’t pay my kids an automatic allowance. It takes away the sense of work equalling reward and replaces it with a sense of entitlement, a feeling that they deserve the money no matter what.
But I’m not at all against giving kids money when they earn it.
I think the three most important things to teach kids about money are:
1- You have to work hard for it
2- You usually have to wait for it
3- And you should spend it wisely
And you can do this with these three tools: (more…)
When we moved to Florida last year I was elated. I’ve always loved the beach and jumped at the chance to live close to it. Perpetual sunshine and palm trees? Sign me up! Then hurricane season comes and I think most people would be lying if they said it didn’t make them question living near the Florida coast.
I still love Florida with all my heart but hurricane evacuation is not easy. I totally understand why a lot of people stay. First of all, the predictions are so flexible you can easily talk yourself into thinking it won’t come your way, it won’t make landfall near you and the pre-storm hysteria will be much ado about nothing. Second, a lot of people have nowhere to go and/or no way to afford to go. Aside from being emotionally draining, evacuating to another town or another state can be expensive. Here are a few ways to keep some of your money and sanity. (more…)
How did we even have birthday parties before Pinterest? I can’t hardly remember not scrolling endlessly through a sea of ideas. That’s the good part, endless inspiration. But on the flip side, there’s also scrolling through endless images of immaculate three tier fondant cakes and perfectly dipped cake pops (who can even do that?) knowing anything you do will be a failure in comparison. (more…)
Do you ever have so much on your proverbial plate that if one more thing gets added, you just might lose your sh*t? If you’re a mother, that’s probably at least once a day. And that one more thing is usually in the form of a sweet little voice (or multiple) saying, “Mommy.” A THOUSAND times a day, “Mommy” “Mommy” “Mommy” “Mommy” “Mommy” “Mommy” .. you get the point.
When I was working full-time I think this made me lose my sh*t at least three times a day. And I’m embarrassed to say I reacted by snapping at them. I mean for crying out loud, haven’t you learned to cook your own meals, wash your own clothes and google your questions yet? Oh wait, no. Because you’re 5.
And every time I would snap at them I would feel like a super jerk. Especially when my exasperated “WHAT!!!?” was followed by, “I colored a picture for you.” (face palm) Talk about a mom fail.
So one day I decided that every single time my children said “Mommy” to get my attention I would answer with two simple words. (more…)
As summer wears on into the second month, I’m looking to rev up our daily schedule a bit. Despite my good intentions there’s been way too much screen time. So I’m pretty much just dragging them out the door and figuring something out along the way. My goal is to leave the house in the morning and not return until late afternoon.
As someone who grew up on a farm in the country and played in the woods all day until I was called in for dinner, it seems funny to me that this is even a struggle. But, there you have it.
Here are some totally free ways I try to get my kids out of the house and promote family bonding.. this summer and year ’round. (more…)