The weather is getting warmer, the days are longer, and you can finally get out of the house. What a great time to get a bunch of kids together for a playdate. Maybe you're really brave and are willing to take your kids and a few others down to the park, or maybe someone just came over to play in your yard. You're excited to finally have the kids be doing something outside of the house. All is going well until the kids start acting up a bit. Maybe you've got some five year-olds who won't stop with the potty talk, maybe it's nine year-olds who think it's cool to spit everywhere and you're grossed out. Maybe the kids keep running around the house and you're getting worried they are getting too close to the street. Either way you suddenly have a dilemma: You know how to discipline your own kids, but what do you do if it's your child's friend who is causing the problem? Here are my three simple rules for keeping the kids in line and your sanity in one piece.
How do you determine how much you pay your babysitter? Do you have an hourly price or a set fee for the evening?
What is the cost we pay for kids sports vs. parental income these days? Would our parents have ever spent so much money for us to be involved in activities 30 years ago? I just signed Jack, Michael and Tommy up for another session of Ice Hockey. Jack has moved to an in-house league, so he'll finally be playing in games. Tommy and Michael have passed out of "learn to skate" classes and now are in Pre-Hockey 1. That means they are finally wearing all of the equipment. Now I grew up playing hockey (and still play now - badly - in my old age) so I know how expensive the sport is. Outfitting a five year old in all new equipment can easily cost more than $300. And the fees are like no other sport. Besides the equipment cost the price for our boys to participate over the next two and half months is just shy of a $1000. And folks, that is for what would be conisdered minimal participation. We are in on the low end of the price spectrum.
The very cool Maureen Lipinski dropped by the show recently to chat with us about her latest, Not Ready for Mom Jeans. Maureen went from hip city girl to married suburban girl in not time flat - in fact, way faster than she expected to. Her second novel covers that ground, but we chatted about all of the things us parents go through as we make that big leap from young and free to feeling old and tied down. Her charm and quick wit make for easy conversation and a great read. You can see the video on the main page, as well as check out the full conversation in audio form in the audio archives. The question is - have you fallen into the "mom jeans" trap yet?
Look at me differently if you want to, I don't care. I balled my eyes out for about the last ten minutes of Toy Story 3.
Life lessons are around us everyday. Of course, the ones that make the most impression on us are the ones that either turn out really great, or leave us with that sickly feeling in our stomach.
Closing out the school year is such a mix of fear and excitement in our house. While the triplets are too young to do anything but enjoy school, Jack who is finishing out third grade is definitely at an age where he is ready to be done well before the last day of school finally arrives.
Hoping to save a few bucks this summer and still find ways to have a great time with the kids? Checkout the audio of our interview with David Mandt of the International Association of Amusement Parks and Attractions. We talked about some pretty smart ideas:
Well that's a pretty picture isn't it? And this is why sometimes you just can't trust dad with the kids. Now, it's not like I sent them down into the basement with sharp sticks and told them to play while I watched TV and drank beer. Although, maybe it's worse that I was actually playing alongside them when this happened. Maybe my only saving grace is that I wasn't the one wielding the stick that found it's way to Anna's forehead.
We've done a couple of interviews on the show in the last couple of weeks about all of the kids who are about to leave college with diplomas in their hands, ready to make their way in the world. Kate Brooks', You Majored in What?, and Ken Jedding's, Higher Education, both try to help kids find their way once they leave the comfy confines of college.