College Bound, Education, Parenting

6 Ways to Prepare Your Teenager for College

You’re excited that your child is headed off to college at last! Most likely, you’re a bit worried and anxious, too, and so is your college-bound teen. Follow these tips to prepare your child for the first year away from home.

Determine How to Finance College Costs

Image via Flickr by CollegeDegrees360

Finalize college financing before your teen heads off to school. Help your child fill out federal and school financial aid forms and apply for scholarships. You may also need student loans to cover remaining costs. Remember that financial aid and grants don’t pay for some expenses, such as clothing, food, and car insurance. Consider taking out a private student loan to have extra cash on hand to cover such expenses.

Boost Emotional Skills

Right now, when something goes wrong, you’re right there to help your child through tough times. At school, your teen must manage emotions and challenging situations alone. Sit your teen down and talk about how to handle life events, relationship issues, and stress. Work to build your child’s confidence in handling emotional issues.

Review Basic Life Skills

Does your teen struggle to keep the bed made and the bedroom clean? Most likely, your child will share a room. Review how to clean, do laundry, go shopping, and cook some light meals. Make sure your college student will be a welcome roommate.

Discuss the dangers of alcohol and drugs, too. A college campus is a fun place that can be full of temptation. You won’t be there to help your child say no to risks like drinking and trying party drugs. Prepare your teen to make the right decisions when you’re not there.

Create a Budget

Teens who have not managed their own money will be in for a shock when they head off to college. Create a budget to show your child how much money to spend each month. Review how to track debit and credit card spending, and discuss the importance of paying bills on time.

Focus on Health

Immunizations must be up to date before your teen arrives on campus. Your child should also have a health insurance card and know where to go for help in case of illness. Review how to use campus health services, urgent care facilities, and emergency rooms.

You won’t be on hand to make lunch or dinner.  Teens will have a lot of food options, not all of them good ones. Help your child avoid the dreaded “Freshman 15,” which refers to extra weight college freshmen tend to gain. Review nutrition guidelines to help your child make healthy choices when you’re not around.

Make Your Expectations Known

Make it clear that your child is in school to learn. You’re not footing the bill or helping with loans so your freshman can hang out and drink beer. If you expect a report card with all A’s, make sure to tell your teen to work toward those grades.

Put your child on the path to living independently before your teen leaves for school. Review these tips with your college-bound teen to give him or her the necessary skills to be successful while living away from home.

Education, Gift Guides, Kids, Summer, Toy Reviews

Five STEM-Based Stomp Rocket Launch Toys for Toddlers to Adults

I have partnered with Stomp Rocket for this feature. Product was sent and opinions are my own

Five STEM-Based Stomp Rocket Launch Toys for Toddlers to Adults

For 25 years Stomp Rocket® has been making STEM-based play fun! Not only does it get the kids outdoors the adults have fun playing along too. With camping and BBQ season fast approaching this makes a great summer toy! It is 100% kid-powered fun.

We took some rockets camping this weekend and the boys had a blast. It brought out a lot of other campers too which made it a lot of fun!

–Stomp Rocket® Jr. Glow – Ages 3+

These are all foam and safe for ages 3 and older. They soar up to 100 feet and at night they glow in the dark for added fun! STEM learning: Physics and Motion

Buy It: Glow Stomp Rocket Jr.

–Stomp Rocket® Stunt Planes (NEW) – Ages 5+

There are 3 different styled planes great for the budding aeronautical engineers. They loop, glide and flip!

Buy It: Stomp Rocket ® Stunt Planes, 3 Planes

–Stomp Rocket® Ultra LED – Ages 5+

These LED-equipped rockets are bright! They can launch up to 150 feet and add fun for those summer nights!

Buy It: Ultra LED Stomp Rocket Kit

–Stomp Rocket® Dueling – Ages 5+

Need to avoid sibling rivalry? They each can have a rocket because this set launches 2 rockets at the same time.

Buy It: Stomp Rocket Dueling Set

–Stomp Rocket® Super High Performance – Ages 9+

Ok BIG KIDS (ages 9-99), this rocket is for you! Guess how high this one soars? How about 400 feet!! Have fun and remember to keep your eye on where this one is landing!

Buy It: Super High Performance Stomp Rocket

Connect with Stomp Rocket on their website. Also find them on Facebook and Twitter.

Education, Father's Day, Gift Guides, Graduation Gift Ideas, Reviews, School

We Are Celebrating Teachers and Dads with GIANTmicrobes

I have partnered with GIANTmicrobes for feature. Samples were sent and opinions are my own

We Are Celebrating Teachers and Dads with GIANTmicrobes

Can you believe another school year has come and gone? Now we begin to celebrate summer and Father’s Day as well as thanking our teachers for spending nearly 6 hours a day with our children. We are celebrating with GIANTmicrobes and it has been a hit!

Anthony wanted to gift his 4th grade teacher and his Health/PE teacher the Heart GIANTmicrobes from the 2-pack Heartfelt box for Teacher Appreciation Week last week. This meant we opened the box and got 2 gifts in 1! It was perfect in a year he did a lot of science in class and also for his health teacher. They thought the gift was so clever!

Each GIANTmicrobe comes with its own card with a bit of education and a connection to how relative it can be to your giftee. It’s the first thing Anthony grabs and reads on these fun plush!

 

The gift packs are really the way to go because the box designs are so adorable and they make great collections for your Teacher’s classroom or even dad’s office. No matter who or what you are celebrating you will have fun finding the right gift that will make for a great conversation piece with GIANTmicrobes.

Education, Healthy Living, Parenting

6 Things to Do Early With Your Kids (That You May Think Are Crazy)

Many people are often saying that today’s children are growing up too fast, and while we certainly want them to keep their innocence for as long as possible, it’s still very important to do certain things early with your children. This doesn’t mean they’ll be forced to grow up sooner, but it will help you from experiencing some meltdowns or other issues as your child gets older. Here are six things to do early with your kids that you may think are crazy but will actually help keep you sane.

6 Things to Do Early With Your Kids (That You May Think Are Crazy)
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1. Visit the dentist.

Ever since your child was born you take him or her to the doctor, but most parents think they can put off the dentist until your child is on his or her way to kindergarten. Unfortunately, this is not the case. According to professionals like Stanton Smiles in Florida, “Seeing a dentist early can not only accustom your child to a dental professional, but it can often help us resolve issues before they turn into more expensive fixes like root canals or pulled teeth.” According ot the American Dental Association, you should bring your child for his or her first dental visit around the age of one.

2. Eat healthy.

Sure, popping some chicken nuggets in the microwave or heating up a nice grilled cheese sandwich is the easy way out, but it’s meals like this that will get your kids to deny what’s good for them. From the moment you can feed your child something other than formula or breast milk, be sure to include healthy foods, such as vegetables, into his or her diet. Teaching them to be open about food and recognize what’s good for them can help you have a less picky eater as your child grows.

3. Talk about money.

Talking about important issues like money may seem crazy, but teaching your child about the importance of money at an early age will only benefit your child in the long run. For instance, be sure your child understands how to save money and the value of things like an allowance. You can even teach your child about how money comes in and goes out by “charging them” for things like rent, electricity, food, etc. Obviously, this can be done at a very small scale, but by doing so, you’ll have a child who understands the value of a dollar and can create a lifestyle that doesn’t involve too much debt.

4. Talk about sex.

If you think talking about money was hard, you know the sex talk may be a bit harder. However, when you can talk with your children early about sex, it will help them have a better understanding of their own bodies and how to protect it from harm. Let your child know what parts of their body are private and what to do if they ever feel uncomfortable with someone’s touch. Raising this awareness early can keep your child from situations that put them in danger.

5. Teach proper hygiene.

Kids are notorious for never wanting to bathe, but if you can make bath time fun and get your kids used to washing hands and brushing teeth regularly, you’ll have a child with better hygiene than most. It’s also a good idea to pay attention to your child’s body. Boys as young as first grade can start to produce a stink when they sweat, and this may mean you’re buying your son deodorant at that age. However, by teaching these things early, you’ll have an easier time with your child when they start to go through puberty.

6. Talk about other big things.

Talking openly and honestly with your child will be very advantageous for them, so don’t hold back on having big conversations. For instance, if you’re a religious person, then you may want to talk with your child about religion when they’re young. If you want to teach them about the dangers in the world, don’t hesitate to talk about things like “stranger danger” or even bullying in school or online. These conversations will not only help your child learn, but they’ll also encourage your child to come talk to you when they’re in need or troubled.

Being a parent is a tough job, but if you can start on these things early, you’ll find that your child has an advantage growing up. Plus, you’ll just be happy to know you were helping to shape them into good people from the start.

Children's Books, Education, Parenting

New Anti-Bullying Books: The Little Girl with the Big Voice

A copy was sent for feature

New Anti-Bullying Books: The Little Girl with the Big Voice

The Little Girl with the Big Voice – Release Date April 24, 2018

by: We McDonald

We Mcdonald was a beloved contestant on the hit NBC show, The Voice. In this book she tells the story in her own words about being a girl who endured bullying. In her story she finds her voice and no matter what anyone says, she overcomes the bullying and gains success.

This book is a part of the Lightswitch Learning division of the Sussman Education Company. This means that The Little Girl with the Big Voice is an engaging resource for parents and teachers who want to help their children succeed all the way around. The book is inspiring and based on a real life story.

You can find the book on Amazon and begin lifting a child up today with this inspiring story.

More children book reviews here!

Education

Legal Professionals You Might Need to Lean on for Help

Though it would be nice to go through life without ever facing any problems, it simply isn’t the case. When those issues concern your family and involve the law, you may not be able to resolve the matter on your own. This is where most individuals end up turning to legal experts for guidance. Whether you just need help getting the ball rolling, negotiating, or pleading your case before judge and jury, knowing the right lawyer to hire is of the utmost importance.

Legal Professionals You Might Need to Lean on for Help
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Traffic Lawyers

One of the most common types of lawyers you may need to rely on in your life to protect you and/or your family is a traffic attorney. If you’ve been pulled over by police due to a traffic violation, you will likely be issued a ticket. However, if the ticket cannot be easily repaid or there are significant consequences like the suspension of your license, high fines, or jail time, a traffic lawyer can help.

They are well-versed in traffic laws in your state and are best equipped to help you fight violations that you believe you were innocent of. They can also be instrumental in helping to get fines reduced, charges removed, and consequences lessened.

Personal Injury Attorneys

If you or your loved ones have been hurt in a car accident, on the job, or on someone else’s personal or commercial property at no fault of your own, you may need to hire a personal injury attorney. Legal representatives like Steve J Schwartzapfel can be a great source to turn to. They will review your case, help you file a personal injury claim, negotiate with big-time insurance companies and lawyers, and fight your case before a judge if necessary. As major injuries could result in you being out of work for a long time and high medical expenses, you may need a lawyer to help you get what you deserve so you can continue to provide for your loved ones.

Estate Attorneys

If you are planning for retirement, have fallen ill, or have an aging parent with assets, an estate attorney can help you get everything in order. They will review your assets and help you to create a plan for after you’re gone that will give your family the best fighting chance possible. This can include the preparation and execution of a will, allocating where funds and properties will go, designating a power of attorney, and more.

Divorce or Family Attorneys

You don’t enter marriage or start a family with the idea that you’ll one day separate, however, these things can happen. When emotions get the best of you, it can be difficult for you to make the most rational decisions about how you and your partner can move forward with the least amount of conflict. A divorce or family attorney can help you to sort out things like shared property and financial accounts, child custody, child and spousal support, and more. Using the law, they can be an unbiased third-party who does their best to help you get a fresh start in life.

Business Lawyers

Do you or your spouse presently have a business? Perhaps you’re thinking about starting one? If so, you may need to secure the services of a business attorney to get you off to the right start. They can help you with legalities like choosing the best business entity, drafting contracts, ensuring you’re in compliance with local and federal laws, and protecting you in the event that an employee, customer, or competitor tries to sue.

Laws are put in place to create boundaries and provide protection to the masses. That being said, the laws aren’t always easy to understand. When you and/or your family are going through a difficult time legally, it is recommended that you reach out to one of the above-mentioned legal professionals for guidance. From filing the right paperwork to negotiating fair deals and fighting your case in court, they will be your best source to get the best possible outcome. Many of them offer flexible repayment options or work on a contingency fee meaning it won’t cost you much to make sure that you and your family are well taken care of.