Keeping Up With Your Kids and Being a Healthier Dad

They say that age is just a number, and while that can be very true, we are all getting older (which is never more obvious than when you are a parent and can see your kids growing at an alarming rate). If you are feeling your age, though, then no could be the time to do something about it. When you are taking care of yourself you are much more likely to feel fresher, younger, and have more energy for doing all that you need to do as a parent. So here are some tips and ideas to help you navigate life as parent, and fitting in taking care of yourself as well.

Practice Gratitude

Part of being healthy and well is all about feeling good both physically and mentally. Which is why something that can make a difference is practicing gratitude, expressing thanks, and being more mindful. When you have a lot on your mind you can internalize a lot of stress, but this can help. Express these things verbally or perhaps in something like a gratitude journal.

Develop Coping Strategies

There will be a whole range of emotions that you will go through as a parent, and just when living everyday life. Sometimes we can be overwhelmed and others we can be overjoyed with joy. So developing some coping strategies is a really good idea. It could be taking some time out to exercise, deep breaths, or just dropping everything to be fully-immersed with your  kids and just playing. Ways to cope will be different for everyone, so find something that works for you.

Stay Active

Depending on the age of your children, you are likely to be pretty active anyway. And unless you have had a vasectomy, then you never know if there may be more little ones to chase around on the cards. But if you aren’t, or your only activity is walking to and from school with the kids, then it could be time to do something more. When you move more, it can be beneficial to your mental health, physical health, weight maintenance, as well as keeping you healthy from the inside out. Of course, time is a must, and you need to find something that you enjoy so that you are motivated to keep doing it.

Develop Deep Bonds with Your Children

When you spend time with your children and develop deep bonds with them, then it can help you and your health, particularly your mental health, as well as helping your child and their emotional health as well. There has even been studies that have looked into this and have found that a man’s work-related stress is much easier to cope with and deal with when they have emotional involvement with their children. Plus, the more that a dad is engaged with their children and fully involved, the more satisfied he is with his life. So it makes complete sense to get fully involved with your family, as it is good for everyone.

This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.

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When Is It Time To Trust Your Kids With Technology

When you are a parent, it is important that you find the right balance between caring for your kids and giving them space to grow. Today, we can see small kids playing with tablets, mobile phones, and there is a lot of peer pressure out there. You will need to use your own judgment when it comes to when to get your child a mobile phone and computer. You don’t want them to be left behind, but you will also have to ensure they are safe online and offline. Below you will find a few tips to help you decide.

Their Age

The first thing you will have to think about whether or not they are old enough to make the most out of technology. If they only want to use the device for playing games, you might be better off helping them on your home computer or laptop first. You can try to monitor your children’s technology use at home before you trust them with their own device. You can create them their own account where they can install their own games and apps, so you can ensure they are safe and responsible.

How Responsible They Are

It is also important that you check how responsible and streetwise your kids are when it comes to looking after their own things and devices they borrow from you. No matter how careful kids are, you might still need to have the contact details of iFixYouri Smart Device Repair handy, just in case they happen to drop a phone or tablet, or you need to remove malware or other unwanted software.

Staying In Touch

If you would like your kids to stay in touch when they are at a sleepover or a school trip, it might be a good idea to get them a phone. No matter how much pressure they put on you to get the latest model, you should know better. Explain to them that it is expensive to get a phone and a contract, and tell them that as soon as they get a small weekend job or a paper round, they can start saving up. It is better to make them appreciate the value of items at an early age.

Security Features and Parent Control

There are some devices that can simply kill your family life. If you want your kids to stay healthy and exercise, you might want to delay buying a gaming console. It can be very addictive for small kids, not to mention that their posture will suffer. There are some tech gifts you should simply avoid if you don’t want to deal with the negative consequences.

Cost

It is also important that you monitor the cost associated with your child’s technology use. Make sure that you can add a cap to their phone contract or get a pay as you go phone, so you don’t end up with nasty surprises and excessive bills.

Deciding when your child is ready for a phone or tablet is one of the most challenging things a parent needs to do. Use the above tips to make the right choice.

This post is a collaborative effort by St. Louis Dad.

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How to Prepare your Kids for Getting a Dog

Getting a dog can be a very exciting experience. It gives your kids some added responsibility and it also gives them something to care for. If you want to prepare your kids for getting a dog, then there are a few things that you can try and do.

Understand the Dog’s Background

It doesn’t matter where you purchase your dog, or even whether you choose to adopt. You need to know the dog’s history, and you also need to know if they are aggressive around children. At the end of the day, your kids should always come first and by knowing information like this, you can be sure to make the best decision. A lot of people think that they can force an unwilling dog to accept a child, but this should never be the case. It will end up in an almost certain disaster, and it will also put pressure on the family as well.

Treats

Treats are like currency, for canines. They are a fantastic motivator when you use them properly.

If you want to help your kids to understand this, then start by giving your child a couple of treats to hold. When the dog is being well-behaved, or when they do a trick on command, tell your child to give them a treat. This will help your child to bond with your new pet, and it will also help the dog to be more accepting of your kids too. When your child hands out a treat, make sure that they keep their hands flat as this will stop their fingers from being nipped. As time goes on, you can use the treats less and less.

Warning Signs

You should always tell your child to use gentle body language. You also need to tell them to use slow, and deliberate gestures. By doing this, the dog is aware of when they are going to be petted, or stroked and it also helps your child to respect the dog’s feelings too. Of course, you do need to tell the child about the dog’s body language too. They need to listen out for warning growls, and they need to know when to leave the dog alone. If your child does not look out for these signs, then your dog may end up with anxiety or they may even resist having a close relationship with your child. Remember that not all dogs will have been socialised to deal with new people and they might not all act the same way either.

Responsibility

Getting a dog is a fantastic way for you to teach your child responsibility. They need to know when to feed them, when to give them more water and even how to help them to stay healthy. If you want to help your child, then try and assign them certain jobs. This could include filling up your dog’s bowl in the morning or it could even involve letting them out in the yard. Depending on how old your child is, you may not want to let them take the dog out for walks to begin with. The main reason for this is because younger dogs tend to pull on the lead, purely because of how excited they are for their walk. It’s very easy for a child to lose control here, so always insist on holding the lead yourself until the dog calms down a bit.

Health

Looking after a dog isn’t just about giving them food and water. They are essentially becoming a member of the family, so you need to look after their health too. This could involve taking them to the vets and even getting their claws clipped from time to time. Your child may love giving your dog a treat from time to time and this is great, but they do need to understand that if they do this too often then they could risk harming the dog’s health. Your friends may ask “why does your dog’s breath smell so bad?” and you may even notice that they start to become overweight as well. All of this can be contributed to a poor diet, and if you can teach your child about this then you can help them to understand the needs of the dog you have much more efficiently.

So, getting a dog can be great for the whole family, but it is important that you teach your child how to look after them and how to care for their immediate needs. The sooner you do this, the better experience you will have.

 

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Easy Ways to Keep Kids Entertained on Rainy Days

Kids love to be outside in the great outdoors. They can play out with their friends, or they can even ride their bikes around the local park. If it’s raining then they may feel cooped up inside and this can easily lead to feelings of boredom. Luckily, there are a few things that you can do to try and alleviate this.

 

Try your Hand at Baking

Baking is a fantastic way for you to spend time with your kids. It’s super easy to do, makes very little mess and you don’t even need a lot of ingredients either. When baking with the kids, try and make sure that you give them as much to do as possible. Let them stir the mix, put it in the oven or even choose the flavourings. When you do this, you can then help them to really get invested and you never know, they may end up loving it and want to do it again! The best thing about baking is that you can eat the fruits of your labour that night, whether it is with a movie or even when playing a family game.

Have a Family Movie Day

When was the last time you all sat down together and watched a movie? Probably a long time ago. If you want to try and help your kids to curb those feelings of boredom then try and choose a film that everyone is going to love. You might also want to get some popcorn and make a full day of it. Grab the duvet from upstairs and light some candles too. When you do this, you can easily help them to feel as though they are doing something positive and it also gives you the chance to spend some quality time with them.

Delve into Arts and Crafts

If your kids love to get crafty then why not consider doing some arts and crafts? When you do activities like this, you can easily encourage them to explore their creative side and this can be really good for their motor skills. If you are stuck for some ideas, then look into making your own paper aeroplanes and have a competition to see who’s can go the furthest. You can even try and make something out of clay, or draw together. Family activities like this can really help you to encourage them and it can also put an end to boredom once and for all.

Play some Fun Family Games

Family games are a great way for you to really get everyone involved. The Ms Pacman arcade game is a fantastic choice, and you would be surprised at how many hours of fun it can give you. The best thing about games is that there are so many of them available and this is great if your kids have a ton of energy that they can’t seem to get rid of. Of course, you can have competitions to see who can get the highest score and you can even work with them to try and teach them the rules of any new games you have around the home too.

 

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