Anything Parenting

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Dining Out With The Children

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Everyone enjoys dining out once and awhile and if you have little ones, it might be best to go somewhere that has foods that they enjoy eating. Although some children will try new foods, for the most part, they like what they like and that is all they will eat. If you take younger children to Chinese restaurant and they have never had it before, you could very well end up with a cranky child on your hands.

Little ones seem to behave better when they have foods that they know and like verses eating something that you enjoy. Dining out can be fun for the entire family as long as you keep in mind that kids only eat what they want too. The place to try new foods is definitely at home.

Find a restaurant that caters to the family, especially little ones. The restaurants that are family orientated will have more of a selection for the kids. One thing you can do before heading out the door is to remember to take along a coloring book or something that will keep the kids entertained if the restaurant does not offer this table service.

The more things you have for the kids to do while waiting for dinner and after dinner will eliminate boredom, which sets in easier for younger kids than adults. There are ways to enjoy dining out with young children, you just need to think ahead.

A night out for the entire family is a great way for mom or dad to get out of the kitchen and the house while enjoying the night having someone wait on them. Having the children along can be enjoyable if you take along enough things for them to keep busy. Some nice dining establishments have plenty of things for the kids to do. You might try a Chunky Cheese or another type of restaurant that has activities for the kids to occupy themselves. Many family orientated restaurants around beside Chunky Cheese have fun things for all the kids and adults too.

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Friday, September 28, 2007

Children and Fires

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There are many cases where children playing with lighters or matches have started home, garages and debris on fire. The losses are usually substantial since children run and do not want to tell anyone. Why are children playing with fire in the first place? For the most part, they see adults or older children lighting things with a lighter or a match and just want to experience.

If you sit down with a child and explain the dangers, it may or may not have any impact. Kids love to explore, it does necessary mean they are bad, they see you do it and want to do it as well. Schools have firefighters come in and teach about the dangers of fire and this is a great idea, but how many children think about what it would be like to start a fire.

Normally children do not think about the dangers, they are just experimenting and this can be very dangerous. You can hide your lighters or matches and hope that they do not any outside the home, but in all reality, if they find the tools to start a fire, they make experiment.

As parents, you need to sit down with the children and tell them about the dangers, but you also need to tell them stories that may scare them a little. If they see and understand that a fire can kill someone, they may think twice before lighting anything on fire. It is imperative that parents teach their children right from wrong. This goes for anything that children may experiment with and not only fire.

For the most part, anything that is bad for children and can cause bodily injury and even dead. This is just another part of life. Parents need to participate in the upbringing of their children and pay closer attention to what they are doing or what they are inquisitive about before they find out for themselves.

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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Kids Do The Darnest Things No Matter What The Age

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Kids always think the rules do not apply to them, we see this every day. Even if it is something small, it can be avoided by following the rules.

My first trip anywhere and I took my daughter along as a graduation present. She enjoyed Bungee Jumping and spending time with Grandma and Grandpa at their winter condominium. We were out everyday, enjoying the special attractions and restaurants in the area when we decided to go to the old downtown area for the nightly laser show. It was wonderful. We enter many of the casinos and my daughter came in with us with no problem.

Three days later, we went to Bellagio casino. The sign was big and very clear. “No one under the age of 18 years allowed into the casino”. They had a kiddie’s room off to the side for kids to play video games. My parents, my boyfriend and I went into the casino to do a little gambling. After about an hour or so, I was on a winning streak when a security guard approached me with my daughter.

Apparently, she had become bored with the kiddy’s room and came into the casino to see the excitement. The security guard grabbed her and escorted her throughout the casino to find her parents. Oh, what fun it was when he told me I had to leave with her. My dad stepped in and told the security guard he would take my daughter with him so I could stay at the casino. The officer agreed and my daughter was sent to the door to wait until my dad found my mom.

Since she was going to be 18 years old in five days, she told the security guard she could be in the casino. She also went on to tell him she had been in other casinos in Las Vegas with us. She just would not shut up for nothing. She did lose the battle with the security guard, but can you imagine me wanting to laugh so hard because she would not back down, she felt she was right. It was a fun trip and she never seizes to amaze me the way she thinks.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Choosing a Parenting Plan Verses a Custody Award

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When parents divorce with children involved it makes things harder not only for the parents but for the children. Today, more parents are weighting the options of a parenting plan verses a custody award. There are benefits to both along with drawbacks. When the court recognizes a parenting plan both parents and the children benefit. A custody award limits parental visits and can cause due stress on the parents and children.

The parenting plan works by allowing the parents to plan who has visitation when and when the child will live during different times. One example of a parenting plan is one week the child resides with the father and the other week the child resides with the mother. This means that each parent has two weeks a month with the child. This can also help with figuring child support.

With a custody award, one parent has permanent custody of the child and the placement of the child is with that parent. The other parent has visitation on scheduled days. This can be hard for a child that wants to be with both parents. They tend to have resentment of not having equal time with the parent if this was the case before the divorce.

The advantages of the parenting plan are geared more for the child but benefit both parents as well. They both share in the raising of the child, but in different households. If you cannot agree on a parenting plan or a custody award, the judge will order mediation that helps work through the issues. In many cases, the child is also appointed a Law Guardian/GAL, which works with the parents to benefit the child.

The parties involved will benefit by sharing the responsibility of child support and child rearing. The child benefits by having two parents taking an active role in their lives.

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Tax Advantages to Alimony Payments

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Alimony is monies awarded to the wife or husband upon a divorce. The receiving party receives a monthly sum of money determine by the courts. This amount reflects a percentage of the ex-spouses wages as well as the receiver’s income. For instance, an ex-husband might have to pay a percentage of his wages to the ex-wife even if she works. Alimony allows her to live in the lifestyle she was accustomed to before the divorce. This amount is separate from child support and offers different tax breaks for the payer. The receiver however, has to claim the alimony as other income.

The ex-spouse that is required to pay alimony can claim the payments for the year on their taxes as a reduction of tax liability. The receiver is responsible to claim the money and pay taxes on the money received. Therefore, alimony for ex-spouses allows taxpayers to deduct this amount from their income if they pay it to an ex-spouse. The receiver however, does not claim child support unless they claim Homestead in most circumstances. This advantage does find more ex-spouses wishing to pay alimony instead of child support so they can use it as a reduction of their tax liability.

The advantage of alimony benefits the payer more so than the payee. As for income reporting purposes, the payer can claim alimony as an income for receiving credit or loans. However, alimony is only paid as long as the payee does not remarry in most instances. It also may cease if the payer no longer has the income that they did when the divorce was finalized. Therefore, the benefits and advantages do have a downside. It is also possible to reduce alimony if the payee makes more money than what they did when the divorce was finalized.

As for alimony itself, the benefits lie with the payer more so than with the payee. The ability to claim alimony payments on your taxes helps reduce your tax liability, therefore, saving the taxpayer money. Child support however, is not claimed on the payer’s taxes and you pay the full amount of taxes on that money.

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