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Tips&Tricks

The Pros and Cons of Pets for Children

There are a number of studies that prove having a pet is beneficial to a child’s emotional, social, physical and cognitive development. One such study that took place in the UK revealed how children who had a dog exercised dog exercised on average 11 minutes more every day than those who didn’t have one. Another study conducted by the American Academy of Pediatrics proved that young children who had contact with cats and dogs suffered less from respiratory and ear infections than those who lived without pets.

The Pros and Cons of Pets for Children

The Pros and Cons of Pets for Children

The responsibilities

As research appears to indicate, having a pet is beneficial to child development in many ways, which is why it’s important that we take care of our pets as best as we can. This means ensuring that they are fully covered by a pet insurance plan. It also means that we must be fully committed to the responsibilities of having a pet before we make the decision to have one. Even though our children will benefit from having a pet in the house, they might not be able to take full responsibility for its care. Ultimately we need to be ready to take care of our pets in the long-term. We must accept beforehand that the commitment won’t be minimal.

The main benefits

On the upside, running around and interacting with a pet can help children to develop strong motor skills. It can promote physical activity and keep them active. There’s also plenty of evidence to suggest that pets help children to socialize. Interestingly, when Dr. Lisa Wood conducted a study for the University of Western Australia, her findings revealed that cats and dogs are not the only pets that can help children become more sociable. Rabbits and snakes are just two of the household pets that also made the list.
The real beauty of a pet in terms of child development lies in the emotional support that it affords. Animals provide unconditional love and they never judge. They teach children to empathize with others and they provide safe environments in which to make mistakes and express true character without running the risk of not being accepted by others.
An interesting article published by ‘The Week’ also delves into the importance of pets for cognitive development. Children who read aloud to their pets are more likely to develop higher reading skills, according to the results gathered by a study that evaluated a group of second-grade children.

Possible cons to deal with

Even though dogs tend to be a real favorite with children, there’s always the risk of dog bites when small children are involved. There
are a number of breeds that are knowingly gentle with children – including golden retrievers, labradors and beagles – but the possible
risk never goes away and so children with pets must be carefully monitored.

Some parents may find that the death of a pet is an excellent learning curve for children to experience, while others may be concerned about the possible heartbreak that could come from losing a pet at a young age. While children under the age of two might only respond to the pet’s death if he or she senses the stress and sadness in other family members, children between the ages of 5 to 9 already begin to understand death as a permanent state of affairs. As such, the experience could be more traumatic for them.

Choosing the right pet

Choosing the right pet for your child is also very important. Cats and dogs are the most obvious choices, but turtles, birds, gerbils and fish are also great options to consider. While fish don’t offer the cuddly attention that dogs and cats provide, they are really easy for children to take care of and they require very little maintenance.
Birds, on the other hand, are very high maintenance. Their cages need to be cleaned regularly and if your child refuses to take on this responsibility in the long-term, it will become another weekly task to add to your already long list of household chores. The great thing about birds, however, is that they fly. This can be highly entertaining for young children and can get them interested in biology and animal development.

Likewise, Cats and dogs are playful, cheerful and adorable – and kids love them. Their veterinary check-ups, preventive care and maintenance are easier than the other animals. For more information, check out the resources at selfpetcare.

All in all, there are many benefits experienced by children who grow up with pets by their side; benefits that probably outweigh the causes for concern. The only real question you have to ask yourself is whether you are also willing to make a long-term commitment. Remember… a pet is for life.

Tips&Tricks

Shopping for a family winter Break

Getting away for a few days in the winter is a great way for everyone to reconnect and have some fun together. It could be something simple like staying with relatives or a week’s skiing. It is a great way to bust the winter blues.

Regardless, of what type of winter break you decide to take you will need to be ready to cope with bad weather. Everyone needs to be able to wrap up warm and stay dry. That way the bad weather will not keep you indoors.

winter family break

Coats for the men and boys in the family

It is especially easy to find thick coats perfect for a winter break when you shop online. This year, for men and boys, parkas are still widely available. They are a bit shorter than last year’s, but just as warm. Look out for the insulated padded versions and polar jackets. If your partner and sons prefer to wear a lightweight jacket, that is OK. Provided you buy one that is big enough they can easily wear a hoodie or fleece underneath it on particularly cold days.

Warm trousers and tops

Jeans are a great option for a winter break. They are thick enough to keep the wind out, so you usually stay war. Plus, they are not prone to creasing. Another great alternative is jogging bottoms. Potentially, you can layer these items on very cold days.

When buying tops think about wearing them in layers. Combinations of t-shirts, shirts and jumpers of sweatshirts can all work, you just need to select the right colors and styles to be able to wear them in this way.

The right footwear

Boots are the ideal footwear option for a winter break. They are comfortable and provided you buy a pair with soles that are thick enough they will keep the wearer’s feet lovely and warm. If the boots you buy are not waterproof, you can find out how to use wax to sort that issue out by clicking here.

Coats for the girls

For girls and women, parkas are also very popular, this year. The fur-lined hood really makes a difference to how warm you feel wearing one. For extra warmth, buy a full-length version with a fur-lined collar.

Another option is a reversible puffa jacket or coat. They look great and are really versatile.

Warm dresses trousers and tops

Jeans are great, but not every girl wants to wear them or trousers. Fortunately, this year there are some lovely warm dresses available in the shops. Jersey is a great fabric. It hangs well, does not crease and offers plenty of freedom of movement. So, if your daughter wants to wear dresses look at the jersey ones first.

Good quality boots

For little girls, this year, sparkly boots are the big trend. They are fun and there is no reason not to buy them. You just need to make sure that they are well-made and that the sparkle is not likely to come off when they get wet. For women, this year’s big boot trend is ankle boots. They are really practical and work well whether you like wearing jeans or trousers.

You should also not forget the little items. Hats, gloves, scarves and warm socks are also essential. It is best to buy these last. This will make it easier to buy items that fit in well with the rest of the family’s winter clothes.

These are the basic items you need to make sure that everyone stays warm and dry. Now all you have to do is to plan your winter break. If your children are young, you should find this article I wrote about planning a holiday with a toddler helpful.

Tips&Tricks

Unusual Parenting Techniques That Actually Work

 

Every child is hard-wired to mimic their parents (or caregivers) from the day they are born. It’s how they learn. What is more interesting is that in addition to imitating everything around them, children also mimic the breathing patterns of their caregivers. Why this isn’t taken advantage of more is a mystery but once you start to use these unusual parenting techniques, you won’t use any other.

Unusual Parenting Techniques

Unusual parenting techniques

Calming an Infant

Some nights your little one just won’t go to sleep. Instead of staying up all night trying every type of rocking motion, lullaby or the old school method your mother told you about, lay in bed with your child. Deep breathe slowly in and out for about five minutes. Eventually, she won’t be able to help but copy your deep breathing as well, and that will put your baby right to sleep.

Toddler Temper Tantrum

Tantrums no longer have to be a nightmare. Get as close as possible to your toddler, talk slowly to them and breathe deeply, nice and slow. Pretty soon your child will be calm. Tantrum over.

Older Children

There will be days where your child is over stimulated or just can’t calm down. Talk to them in a slow manner while you are deep breathing. Even the older children will mimic your breathing. Soon they will get out of that frustrated, over excited stage and calm right down.

We’ve all been there. It’s the end of the day, we’re tired, the kids are wired and we instinctively yell at them to calm down. When that happens our blood pressure rises, our breathing gets rapid and the kids see that. They react in the same way so it’s important to be mindful of our actions and of our breathing to keep the calm in order.

I love finding interesting tips and tricks on Quora and that is where I found this unusual parenting techniques too. See, it’s all about the breathing. These unusual parenting techniques won’t work for everyone, but who knows, maybe you will discover that they work for your kids! Try them!

Tips&Tricks

Top tips when purchasing clothing online

Many are the times that many end up getting excited when they realize how the internet has made it easy to get desirable items. Within no time and in the comfort of your home or office, you can have the item that you want to be delivered to you. While it is true that the internet and online shopping has made things easier and more straightforward, many often forget to consider some factor and end up getting a bad deal, which ruins the whole experience. For instance, clothing. When it comes to clothing, the very first thing that you should take into consideration is the size, among many other factors. Below are some top tips when purchasing clothing online.

The very first thing that you should do is ensure that you are in the perfect mood to do some online shopping. If you are feeling exhausted and not up to the task, you may end up getting an item that you will not be pleased with and which you never bought. Shopping has always been a practice that is exciting for ladies. As such, you should only sit behind your computer or laptop when you feel you are in the shopping mood.

As stated earlier, the size is a crucial factor to consider. This is especially when you are looking to buy a bra, shirt, trouser or skirt. You should, therefore, ensure that you have your updated size before you make your pick. If you are not sure of the scale, you can visit some sites that will walk you through how to determine your bra size.

After determining your size, the next thing that you should do is identify the budget that you have. You should always remember that online shopping is more like a vast ocean and you will be bombarded with different labels that range from affordable to highly expensive. Therefore, before you run for your credit card number and buy a particular piece, take a time out and come up with your spending budget.

However, considering your budget does not mean that you should settle for something that is cheap as this can profoundly affect the quality of the product, and you end up uncomfortable wearing it. Also, pieces that are made out of poor quality do not last and tend to wash off after one wash.

If you are shopping for specific clothing, it is advisable that you first determine the outfit. Go to your closet and pick out the outfit that you want to pair the clothing too. This will make it easier to pair and match.

Also, if you will be buying online, you should try as much as possible to shop in bulk as this will enable you to get discounted prices. Also, before you make a purchase always check to see if there are offers within the site that you are shopping from.

This last tip that will come in real handy when buying clothing online: do not get carried away by the moving pictures that the sites may have put up for advertisements as you may end up getting something that you will not even wear.

Tips&Tricks

Clever Hacks For Parents With Infants And Toddlers

 

This stage of your child’s development is when they soak everything up like a sponge, develop personalities and begin to learn right from wrong. It can be a handful with just one child and having two or more can seem like a nightmare. These hacks for parents are meant to make the journey a little easier for the whole family.

I have just one child at the moment, but I was born in a big (and happy) family. I was the oldest one and I watched my mom handling all of us, so I gathered her best hacks for parents and decided to share them here!

hacks for parents

Hacks for Parents

Create Feelings of Sufficiency For Everyone

You can create a conscious awareness of the infant by including the toddler in activities such as feeding time or changing the diaper. Make it exciting for them by creating a song they can partake in or have your toddler tell the baby a story as the diaper is being changed. A sense of unity will be accomplished and your toddler will feel like part of the process.

Make your toddler feel important after they have gone to school or a relative’s house. Pay attention to them. Put your baby down somewhere and have some baby-free time with your toddler. Listen to their stories, ask them questions about their day and do this every time they come home.

Independence

Eventually, it will be necessary for our children to be independent. Be proud of your child when they do something by themselves and acknowledge the act. I like how you did that all by yourself. Let them explore and discover things on their own. The less they ask if they can do something, the more independent they are becoming. Use No for only the most serious cases (sticking things in electrical outlets, running into the street, etc.).

Cooperation

Stop using the word “share“. It’s abstract and not as easy to understand as taking turns. Teach your child to take turns when engaging in an activity. That is something they can see in everyday life and you can use examples to teach them about cooperation and taking turns. You can say things like: “See how everyone is waiting to take their turn to see the cashier?

Perseverance

Toddlers can get frustrated if they try an activity and is unsuccessful. Without the proper teaching on perseverance, they can develop the mindset that any activity that is difficult isn’t worth trying. That is something we all know will not help them succeed in life. Remember the saying: “If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again” and say that to your child daily. Make a song about it so that every time they come to a difficult task you both can sing it together.

These hacks for parents can make life at home with an infant and toddler a little easier. The older child can even teach the younger one. You can tell them that the baby is smiling because the toddler has taught them something. It makes them feel special and confident that they can do things with the baby too. You all work as a team and create a sense of unity in the family.

I hope these hacks for parents will help someone. You can find more great tips on Quora!

Do you have some hacks for parents with infants and toddlers?

Tips&Tricks

How to save money when planning home improvements

Overspending on the budget is undoubtedly one of the biggest fear of every homeowner when it comes to remodeling or renovation projects. Even when it’s the third or fourth time you’ve had such tasks, it’s difficult to keep the bills for materials and contractors in check. Don’t worry because you are not alone. With a little bit of planning and thinking, you can easily cut costs without compromising the ultimate quality. Below are a few helpful tips to show you how to save money when planning home improvements.

1. Focus on efficiency rather than size

If you would reorganize and innovate your kitchen for optimal utility, it’s not necessary to knock down the walls to have extra square footage. Instead, you can replace a space-hogging shelf with pullout drawers, which contain racks for storing items. By increasing the efficiency in a specific space, you can save a lot of money from enlarging the area.

2. Make use of natural light

Before making a big hole in the wall of your living room and installing the frame for new windows, consider less expensive and invasive ways to capture light. For example, you can brighten up your windowless hallway or bath by installing a “light tube,” which would slip between the roof rafters and reflect sunshine down to your living space.

3. Visit the recycling centre

If you are a DIYer, it’s able to get significant savings with lightly used or recycled building materials or light fixtures. There are many recycling centres around the city which sell salvaged materials at much more affordable prices. Investing your time in these facilities, and you will significantly reduce your renovation budget.

4. Do it yourself

If you are a keen learner and think you can complete certain parts of the home improvement you are doing then why not. It can save you a lot of money in the long run. For example, if you are getting a new kitchen installed you could take out the old cabinets and take your kitchen back to basics yourself. This will save you a lot of money instead of hiring a trade to do it for you.