Smart Budgeting Tips for Stay at Home Moms

Smart Budgeting Tips for Stay at Home Moms

Being a stay-at-home mom can be incredibly rewarding as it gives you the freedom to spend much more quality time with your children and be a much bigger part of their young life. Unfortunately, in these times of economic instability, trying to make ends meet on only one salary can be extremely difficult. Nonetheless, the statistics show that more and more women are again choosing to stay at home with their kids, which shows that it is definitely not impossible—especially if you remember to follow all of these simple budgeting tips. 

Create a Weekly Food Plan


Food is often one of a family’s biggest expenses, especially if you have a couple of ravenous teenage boys at home. Still, one of the easiest ways to cut back on your monthly food bills is to cook most of your meals from scratch. However, trying to create a weekly meal plan is another excellent way to cut down on food waste and lower your costs since you can often combine leftovers and use multiple ingredients for the same dish. In most cases, its best to do your shopping once a week and try to base your meal plan around whets on sale. 

Use Cash Whenever Possible


Creating a budget plan is by far the best thing you can do to make being a stay-at-home mom financially feasible, but you also need to be able to stick to that budget. In this case, trying to use cash is often one of the easiest ways to ensure you don’t run over your monthly budget. Most people have a much harder time of keeping track of exactly how much they spend when using a credit or debit card, which won’t be a problem if you simply withdraw your weekly budget from the ATM and limit yourself to it.

Free Entertainment Is Your Friend


No matter what anyone tries to tell you, life as a stay-at-home mom can sometimes get boring. This leads many to sign up for numerous classes and take part in expensive hobbies in order to pass the time, with the result that stay-at-home moms tend to spend much more on entertainment. If this is a problem for you, try seeing if you can’t find some free classes at your local recreation or community center. In addition, the library can also be your best friend—not only for the huge range of books, but also TV shows, movies, music and more.

Make Sure to Set Aside Money for Specific Goals


You and your spouse need to be flexible when planning your monthly budget, taking into account any short-, medium- and long-term goals and saving accordingly. In fact, the very first part of budgeting is to take account of all of your financial goals as this will determine how much you need to save each month to meet them. 

Don’t Forget About Yourself


Most stay-at-home moms have their own personal savings account or discretionary funds, but unfortunately, this can be a source of many marital arguments. Therefore, it is important to discuss with your partner a fair monthly budget for yourself to spend. After all, you are doing a lot of hard work too. Still, no matter what you do, don’t call it an allowance as this will only serve to reinforce the dominant ‘bread-winner’ dynamic.

Being a stay-at-home mom is truly one of the best things you can do for yourself and your children, and luckily, it doesn’t have to be all that difficult. By taking the time to plan out your monthly budget and doing your best to stick to it, you should be able to enjoy the benefits of being a stay-at-home mom without it ruining your finances. 

Getting Your Vehicle Ready for Parenthood

Bringing Baby Home: Getting Your Vehicle Ready for Parenthood

You will never carry a more precious cargo on board your car than when you need to collect your new bundle of joy and come home as proud parents ready to start an exciting new life.

There are so many things to try and remember with a new baby and no end of accessories that you need to have ready for when your parenting journey begins, and getting your vehicle ready for parenthood is definitely on that list.

Here are some pointers on what you need to do in order to get your vehicle prepared for transporting your child in comfort and safety.

 

Choosing the right car seat

If you are buying a new vehicle from someone like Adrian Brien Ford you will want to ask about the safety features that your car comes with and how it is intended to provide protection to you and your passengers in the event of a collision.

In addition to choosing a model that gives you a host of enhanced safety and security features, you will also want to take your time choosing a car seat that offers your baby the perfect combination of safety and comfort.

Rear-facing car seats have been shown to offer your baby the sort of protection they need if you are unfortunate enough to be involved in any sort of accident while they are on board and the aim should be to try and find the best quality seat that your budget will allow.

You might decide to choose a rear-facing seat that can be secured with a seat belt or one that is also secured using lower anchors. Ask your car dealer or check the owner’s manual for more information on how to use the pre-fitted vehicle hardware properly.

If you are unsure in any way about securing the car seat it is always best to get a professional to install it rather than leave anything to chance that you have not secured the seat correctly.

 

Get to know your locking system

Child-proof locks on the rear doors are useful when they get older but while they are babies and strapped in, your main concern when it comes to locking features is to ensure that you don’t mistakenly create a nightmare scenario where you risk locking the baby in the car.

This can happen if your car has a keyless entry device. That moment between strapping them in and then exiting the car to take your seat in the front might be enough time for the automated locking system to activate and create a situation where you are stranded outside.

Make sure you know exactly how your locking system works and be mindful of this safety feature if you leave the car for a few moments and your keys end up on the inside along with the baby.

 

Protect them from the sun

A simple but effective preventative measure to keep your baby safe and happy is to have some sun shades fitted.

Babies won’t know how to avoid the glare of the sunlight coming in and they will soon get uncomfortable, so keep them protected and invest in a couple of sun shades for the rear windows.

Make the most of the technology and safety features available in your car and use them to keep you and your precious cargo safe at all times.

Can Pets And Babies Live Together In Harmony?

Something many animal lovers and parents or parents-to-be wonder, is whether pets and babies can live together in harmony. You would hate to have to get rid of your pets, or keep them separated from your baby constantly. Let’s take a look at this question in more detail:

 

Preparing Your Pets Before Hand

Your pets and your baby can definitely live together in harmony, but the key is to prepare your pets well in advance. There are a number of ways you can do this for the best result. You can make sure you get your pets used to baby sounds and smells, by playing certain tracks and videos and even by letting them sniff the baby products.

You can also get your pet used to the baby’s room if you wish, but you should enforce rules right away that they are not allowed in the baby’s crib – especially important if you have a cat. You can use netting and spray to keep them away. Getting pets used to baby gates, or not being allowed in a room is also a good idea.

Slowly but surely altering your pet’s routine in advance is a wise move. Just be sure they still have access to their favorite spots, and they have somewhere they can go to feel safe if needs be.

author

Spending More Quality Time With Them, Rather Than Quantity

You want to make sure that you can still spend quality time with your pet. You probably realize you won’t have as much time to spend with them, but this should mean that the time you do spend together is quality. By making sure of this, you can even ensure that giving them their k9 advantix ii is a bonding experience. Get them used to these changes in advance so that they don’t resent your baby once they arrive.

 

Never Leave Your Baby And Pet Alone

Even if you feel your pet is well trained, you should never leave your baby and pet alone together, not even for a minute. Young babies can make loud noises and sudden movements, and this can scare your pets. They might also want to simply play with your baby or sniff them, and not realize how delicate they are. This can lead to accidents that can be traumatising for you. It’s best to always supervise them and keep them apart when you can’t watch them every second.

Taking The Same Steps Each Time

If you plan on having more babies in the future, it’s a good idea to make sure you take the same steps each time. Even though you may think your pet is used to it, having a newer arrival can still be scary and nerve wracking for them. Taking the steps to get them used to it will reduce the amount of problems you have in the long-run.

 

There you have it; pets and babies can live together in harmony with a little preparation on your part. Leave your own tips below!

Using Wearable Tech for Child Safety

A child is the most valuable treasure for parents. As such, it is but natural for parents to be concerned about their child’s safety and well-being. Moms in particular would like to keep their eyes on babies and toddlers all the time. But since this is not possible, they rely on tools like baby monitors to help them out. Parents would then move on to wearable tech for kids as their child grows and become more independent.

At home there is no need to fuss when the kids are out of sight. But it is a different story when you are out in a crowded mall or park. Kids can easily get lost if they wander away from you. And when you lose sight of your child in a public place, panic can easily set in. Wearable tech for kids equipped with proximity alarms can help you address this safety concern. These devices can be strapped on your kids clothing, bags, or even worn on their wrists. Parents are notified if their child goes beyond a preset perimeter. Usually this is set on  a 5 meter radius. The alarm may come directly from the wearable device or sent through the parent’s smart phone.

Older kids like teens and tweens may not be too keen on wearing devices designed for toddlers. Luckily, wearable tech for teens is also available. A smart watch with GPS tracker is a popular choice for this age group. This watch allows parents to monitor the location of their kids and set safe zones as well. Parents are immediately notified if the child goes to unsafe areas or locations beyond the identified safe zones. If you want extra features in your tracker, then you may want trackers for kids with special needs. These devices are equipped with voice monitoring and location alert features to ease your worries whenever your child is out of sight.

The swimband is another wearable tech that parents can get for their kids. This is a personal drowning detection device that can be worn as wristband, goggle strap, or headband. It is designed to set off an alarm if a non-swimmer gets into the pool or if a child becomes submerged in water longer than they should. A perfect wearable tech for families who love the water.

 

A Guide To Family Safety

We don’t have to go on and on about the responsibilities you face as a parent – but there are so many, and you know that! You’ll be whipping up the meals to feed the family, you’ll be the taxi ferrying them about their day, you’ll be the counselor in their times of need, and you’ll be the safety net for when things go wrong.

 

There’s a lot to do, as a parent. One of your main responsibilities is to keep your family safe, and if they are growing up – that can be easier said than done.

(source)

The first thing you should look at is the home. There’s no way your home should be vulnerable as it is the single place where you and your family can feel at their safest. The home needs to be secured and that can be something as easy as locking your doors. You don’t need thousands of locks like Fort Knox, but actually locking your door will be a huge deterrent. Limiting access to criminals makes your property a lot less attractive to prying eyes. With tech like window security sensors and smart locks, there’s no excuse nowadays for leaving your property unguarded. Look after your home as well, criminals will try their luck at your home if it looks like the homeowner doesn’t care – if the lawn isn’t clean, are there alarms? That’s the exact question they will ask and you do not want them to find out the answer.

That’s the home out of the way, but there’s so much more you need to know about family safety. There are really simply things you can teach right away – road safety, not speaking to strangers, being cautious of animals. There’s no need to bubble wrap them, but they need to know at least some knowledge of the outside world.

Let’s have a look at something that goes under the radar. Money. Teach your children about the value of money and savings. If they are taught to spend conservatively from a younger age, these habits may sink in well before they can access credit cards and the like. Debt is a major issue, and while it may not be physical safety, it certainly is financial safety. Teach when appropriate as well, your five year old might understand a lot more than your toddler!

Weather extremes are a huge cause of concern for parents. The extreme sun can burn our children and the snow can freeze them. There’s no break. Make sure your children are covered up in the summer with sun creams and hats and even more covered up in the winter, where they will need layers, hats, scarves and cup of your best cocoa.

(source)

Family safety, while it seems that it’s a big issues to find the time to teach your kids about keeping themselves safe – it’s better than the consequences of not teaching them at all, by far.

Add Some Sparkle To Your Christmas Dinner Parties With These Fabulous Tips

I’m sure that you will already be getting lots of invites to various parties and special engagements for this coming festive period. But why not host your very own dinner party this year? It’s a great way to get all of your closest friends and family together. And it gives you the chance to cook for others if you aren’t hosting people for Christmas dinner this year. You can, of course, use all these tips for your Christmas dinner if you are hosting, though! Hopefully, the following tips will be able to add some extra sparkle to your Christmas dinner parties this year!

plate

Pexels

Keep It Simple

You need to keep your dinner party menu very simple. Otherwise, you will just get super stressed and could end up in the kitchen all night rather than mingling with your guests! Seeing as we are gearing up for Christmas, you may consider making a roast dinner. These can be very simple, especially if you prepare as much as possible in advance. But seeing as people will be eating a lot of roast dinners over the next few weeks, you may prefer to do something different. A great alternative could be a curry. These are easy to prepare in advance, and you can simply reheat it once the guests arrive. You also need to think about your menu well in advance of the party. Don’t just cook something that you found on Google on the same day of your dinner party. There is a big chance that something could go wrong! It’s a good idea to cook a meal that you are very familiar with and could cook blindfolded!

fork

Think About Decorations

Your dining table will need to really look the part! There are some easy ways you can add some sophistication to it without blowing your budget. One of the best additions to any dining table is a couple of candles. Then you can dim your dining room lights slightly to create an intimate dining atmosphere. You should also think about napkins as well. Go for cloth napkins rather than cheap paper ones. You can learn how to fold your napkins by looking at guides online. And don’t forget about the cutlery! Make sure that you place all the starter cutlery on the outside of cutlery for the main course. If you are giving everyone a bread plate, make sure that it goes on the left-hand side of their setting. Don’t forget that everyone will need two glasses for water and wine too!

wine

 

Pexels

Add Some Music

One of the best ways to create a convivial ambience for your dinner party is to play some background music. It’s a good idea to make a playlist on Spotify before your guests arrive. That way, you don’t have to keep on getting up to change the music. If you are holding your dinner party in December, it might be a nice idea to create a festive playlist with lots of Christmas tunes. When you put it on, don’t have it too loud. It needs to be fairly quiet so that everyone is able to talk over it. It is also a good idea to try and choose songs that don’t have any lyrics in them. That way, your guests won’t be distracted by them.

wine-glass

Pexels

Think About A Seating Plan

It could be a good idea to create a seating plan for your guests. However, if you have invited eight or fewer people, then you should let choose their own seats. But for more guests, it is perfectly fine to have a seating plan. It is often a good idea to seat spouses next to each other. It is also worth mixing up shy people with people who extroverts. That is because the extroverts will chat with anyone, and can help to bring shy guests out of their shells. This will help keep the conversation going! Another great dinner party tip is not to invite all strangers. Make sure that at least a couple of your guests know each other. That way, you aren’t the only person who has something in common with the guests.

Dinner parties are a great excuse to catch up with your friends and relatives. Especially right now in the run up to Christmas! And, as this blog post shows, they don’t have to be too complicated. As long as you are well-prepared, dinner parties can be a really fun occasion, even for the host! Hopefully, you now know plenty of tips to make the evening simple and stress-free!

Double Protection with Ceelin Plus

Times have changed and kids are facing more health threats than ever before. Illnesses like Zika Virus, A(H1N1), and even Dengue is a major concern for everyone.  Not to mention the health implications of extreme weather conditions. Children with weak immune system can easily catch a virus or get sick. As parents, it is our job to protect our kids. We can strengthen their immune system with proper nourishment and supplements.  For this, I chose Ceelin Plus to give my son the protection he needs every day.

Ceelin Vitamins

Nutrients from food provide the energy for your kids’ daily activities. But they need more than that to protect themselves from diseases.  Ceelin Plus has Vitamin C and Zinc that help boost your child’s immune system. The use of Zinc Plus Technology equips the body with nutrients to minimize the risk of illness. It also helps reduce the severity and period of the ailment. I was also happy to learn from the new Ceelin Plus TVC that my child gets Vitamin C and Zinc equivalent to 10 glasses of milk or 59 pcs of biscuit in just 1 tsp. of Ceelin Plus. This is good news for me because I very much doubt if my son can consume that much food in one day. Kids with food allergy or diet restrictions may also benefit from Ceelin Plus. But of course they have to consult their doctor first.

Sean has been taking Ceelin Plus for awhile now. So far we have not experienced any major bout of illness. I am positive that Sean’s daily dose of Ceelin Plus Syrup has given him ample health protection to combat illnesses. For now, we will continue taking the apple flavoured Ceelin Plus Syrup. Then when he turns 7 years old, we can switch to their orange flavoured Ceelin Chewables.

As a mom, I would like to ensure that my child is protected from any type of illness. The best I can do is to give him the right nutrients for growth and a strong immune system. The Zinc and Vitamin C duo in Ceelin Plus helps me protect my son from illnesses. You can also give your kids the superior protection from #CeelinPlus. The combination of Vitamin C and Zinc provides #ProteksyongPlus that your child deserves.

IMG_2563

 

Do You Want To Give Your Children The Best Start In Life? Then These Suggestions Will Get You On The Right Track

Starting a family is one of the biggest journeys you and your partner can embark on. It’s both exciting and overwhelming. Nothing prepares you for it. No matter how many books you read, or who you speak to, you will be floored when that baby arrives. I don’t mean it in a bad way either. The love you feel is just incredible. Like I said, nothing prepares you for it. But once that decision is made as parents, we want to give our children the best start in life. From conception and newborn days. Toddlerhood and teenager years. Even when they are adults and no longer live with us, we will still strive to give them the best. Or help as much as we can.

I think a lot of how a child is as an adult has a lot to do with the early years. We can feel a lot of guilt as parents. We want to do what is right for them. But how do we know for sure what we do is the best? The thing is we don’t. But there are many things that we can do to settle that guilt. To ensure, we do give them the best start. What they choose to do with it growing up is out of our hands. With that in mind, I thought I would share with you some of things you could consider in the early stages of your child’s life. Maybe it will put your mind at ease that you are doing the best you can.

pregnant woman

Sourced picture

Look after yourself while trying to conceive and when pregnant

It may seem like an obvious point to make, but it’s essential to look after your body when trying to conceive. Of course, throughout your pregnancy as well. This means keeping up with regular activity, however, toned down a little to protect your developing baby. It’s important to be mindful of what you are putting into your body. It recommended to take a supplement of folic acid up to the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. It would also be a good idea to look at increasing your intake of Vitamin D. Both of which help your developing baby grow in those crucial early stages.

You need to make sure you are getting plenty of rest. Your body is doing something incredible and miraculous, so try and respect that.

family

Sourced picture

Establish a loving, secure, and stable environment

Once your baby has arrived then during those first few months and years it’s important to establish a loving environment. Children need to feel secure and stable. But most importantly loved. You may think this is yet another obvious point to make, but it can be easy to let daily life rule you. As adults, we keep a lot of what goes on away from our children. Money worries, problems with one another. They are all things we try and keep away from our kids. This is to protect them obviously. But this is where you can get distracted. Children need to feel stable, so it’s best to remember that when things aren’t going your way. While you can’t always promise a family unit, you can promise love and support.

Children thrive when they feel love. Imagine a newborn baby. It gets showered with affection. Fed on demand and can cry when something is wrong and have it resolved. As children get older you may not be showering them with as many kisses, but the love and attention needs to continue. This enables you to a raise a confident child.

nutrition

Sourced picture

Take care of their diet and nutrition

As parents we can worry a lot about our children’s nutrition. Especially if we have found ourselves with a fussy eater. Why is that children just choose to eat beige food? This can be a big worry for parents. With many articles printed almost daily about good nutrition and diets we can feel guilt about all sorts. The best thing any parent can do is to keep on trying. Children develop fussy habits over time. It’s important to remain consistent and encourage healthy eating. Even if it isn’t always possible each day. You are doing your best by offering children a different variety of food. Thankfully these days there is a lot of recipes online that provide you with many firm family favourites with hidden vegetables. Making those yummy meals more nutritious that the whole family can enjoy. Don’t let the guilt takeover. Every parent deals with a fussy eater at some stage. It’s just how you choose to tackle the situation that makes things different.

savings

Sourced picture

Set up a savings account when they are born

While this isn’t necessary for every parent to do it can be a great way to ensure a good start for children. It doesn’t have to be too much. What many parents choose to do is open up an account when their child is born. They can put in as little or as much as they want. It’s a great way to save for college or university. Even maybe putting it towards their first car. While money isn’t the most important thing in the world, or to a child’s life. It can provide a lot of stability and support for the future.

education

Sourced picture

Consider their education

While you can’t make a child learn, you can ensure you give your child the best start in education. This starts from as little as choosing a great nursery for them and school. Some people choose to pay for tuition while others consider their local schools. This, however, is when things can get a little tricky. Schools all have different reports and ratings. Judging them on their results. Many parents look to these as some guidance in picking the best schools for their child. If you are set on getting your child into the best possible school, your area may not have that option. Education is important, it’s worth moving for. Which is why many parents make that decision to relate to new areas housing better options for their kids. Moving house may seem like a big thing to do, but ensuring a great education for kids is vital for their future years. If you are considering changing areas then there is more information detailed by Entwistle Green online.

As mentioned though, sometimes parents do not have control over everything. Providing the best possible start is only the foundation. It’ s up to your children to then apply themselves in class and beyond. This is where having an active role in their school and homework also helps make the most out of their education.

Try not to spoil them too much

It can be hard to resist temptation of buying yet another toy your child is screaming out for but you must not give in. This is because pandering your child’s every want is potentially going to make them spoilt. What you need to establish is a fine line to being treated and for them showing gratitude for what they have. The last thing you will want is for your child to take for granted all the things they have in life. It isn’t always the case for some kids.

playground

Sourced picture

Encourage physical activity

Encouraging your child to be active is a great way to tackle the rising problem of obesity amongst kids. This is another fabulous way to ensure you give your child the best start. It doesn’t mean you expect them to exercise each day. The best advice is to encourage an active lifestyle that the whole family can get involved in. It might be kicking a ball around in the local park. Heading out for a family bike ride. Or enjoying a sunday afternoon hike in the local mountains. Whatever your family is into embrace it and keep being active. Too many times you hear of stories about children spending way too much time on computer games.

Another great way to encourage your child to be more active is by enrolling them in after school activities and clubs. This is an excellent way to encourage social skills while having fun at the same time. All parents can do is give their child opportunities to better themselves.

Raise a confident child who knows their self worth

Self worth and confidence is one of those things your child needs to develop on their own. But this doesn’t mean you can’t have a hand in guiding them in the right way. Praise is often important, but too much praise can not have the desired effect. Establishing groundwork by praising what is good, be that the effort or the result. Don’t offer praise for something that didn’t turn out well, instead praise the effort. This sets realistic goals and boundaries for your children. Moulding them to be confident and aware of themselves.

I hope this encourages you and inspires you to give your children the best start in life. Whatever you do, know that you are doing your best. It’s all you can do. Your child needs to know the power of positivity and feeling good about themselves. Your love is one of the ways you can do that.

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save