Finding Someone Safe to Care for Your Kids

Baby Gates: An In-Depth Buyer’s Guide

There is so much in the media about children being mistreated that it is very difficult to decide who they will be safe with. If you need a nanny or a babysitter, how do you know that they are responsible enough to give your children the care they deserve and you want them to have? You should never just accept someone because they are convenient; there are processes you need to go through to be sure.

What Do You Need And What Can You Afford?

Childcare costs are often the second biggest expense for families in the US after housing costs such as rents and mortgages. You need to look carefully at what you need and then at how much you can afford to pay. With babysitting averaging at $16 an hour and full-time nanny’s earning more than $650 per week, it is an expense that you have to be certain you can afford before taking anyone on.

Of course, you will always find people that will work at a lower rate, and that is fine as long as they fill the criteria you have for the person caring for your children. Do some research and find what the going rate is in your locality, and that will be much fairer for you and whoever you employ.

See if you can move the hours around as it could be better to employ someone for two full days rather than for a few hours five days a week.

Nanny Agencies Are Not Always The Best Way

Nanny agencies are not always the best place to find the perfect babysitter or nanny. To start with, you need to be confident that the relevant background checks have been carried out and there have been instances in the past where false information has been provided regarding these from nanny agencies.

The only way to trust the checks is to do them yourself.  See if you can find a company like Jumio, but who will work with parents/nannies, for an identity verification check, and take up any references they have provided, ones from past employers will usually throw up a red flag if they had a problem with them. Check out their social media pages, as these will show a truer picture of their personality.

Speak to friends and relations to see if they can recommend anyone, and there are also nanny and babysitting sites that have qualified people advertising their services.

No one would suggest that all nanny agencies are bad, but you still need to do the checks yourself to be certain they are right. 

Interviews Next

When you get to the interview stage you need to be well prepared. Have your questions ready and answers to any questions you expect them to ask you. Try to avoid questions that can be answered with a simple yes or no as you will not learn much about them that way.

Do not expect them to automatically know all the answers regarding your children, as some things will depend on your practices with child-rearing.

Anyone that you think might be suitable, let the children meet. Try to leave them alone for just a few minutes and see how things are when you return to the room.  If you do this with 2 or 3 candidates you will find that your children have a preference, and that is great of it agrees with yours.

Have A Trial Period

A trial period is vital just to see how things work out before making it a permanent arrangement. Set a period of a month or so and see how the children and the nanny are getting on after that.  

Always be aware of your children’s reactions. This does not just apply to nannies and babysitters but to anyone, they come in contact with. Children do not generally shy away from people without reason, so be wary of anyone they do this with.

Some parents go to the extent of having cameras fitted around the home when this happens, but if you do this you should inform the person providing the childcare that they can be seen.


Every two or three months you should sit and chat with the nanny to find out anything they are not happy with, and vice versa. This should be seen as a review of their performance. It is a chance to reward them if they are doing exactly the job you wanted, or to point out things that need to change.

This chats can be useful for you and them, but the people that should benefit most from them will be the children.

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7 Strategies to Teach Your Kids How to Take Care of Their Teeth

Just Showing kids how to brush their teeth helps by example

7 Strategies to Teach Your Kids How to Take Care of Their Teeth
Source: ADA

Dental health is an essential aspect of a child’s life. Most of us do not take dental hygiene seriously until our children begin having issues with their teeth. Inculcating good dental habits and routines helps the children to take dental hygiene as a fun part of their lives. Good strategies help the children to look forward to taking care of their teeth even when parents are not around.

Fifty-one million school hours get wasted in dental-related illnesses in the U.S. The statistics are as a result of the report released by the U.S Surgeon General Report. Such facts bring about the need for parents to teach their children about dental health. The education can help avoid dental illnesses later in their children’s lives.

It is important to make sure you make regular visits to a dentist for checkups. Professionals such as dentist Wagga will help detect problems early enough to fix them. Strategies that parents can use to cultivate positive habits of taking of their children’s teeth include:

  1. Make brushing Teeth a Family Activity

Children are not able to brush teeth on their own. It is crucial that they have an adult to supervise what they do. It is only until the children are about eight years old that they can brush their teeth alone. You can take advantage of the situation and make the best out of it. Instead of standing in the bathroom instructing the kids, why not make it fun?

Dance, hum, sing, make faces on the mirror while demonstrating to your kids how to brush their teeth. Take the time to bond and make the exercise fun for the children. Such memorable activities will help the children treasure taking care of their teeth. It will no longer become stressful or boring for children to brush teeth.

  1. Show Your Kids How It’s Done!

Unlike adults who can learn through receiving instructions, children cannot. Kids learn through what they observe their parents do. It is critical at this point to be the best example for your children with regards to brushing teeth. Make sure you brush your teeth together, help them be able to brush their teeth using different techniques. Kids will mimic what they see you doing.

Sometimes you can even let them help you brush your teeth. The activity will allow you to determine how best they are learning the skill. You can equally brush their teeth to show them how it is done. Another way to teach them is to show them YouTube videos of other kids doing it. The videos will motivate the kids to brush their teeth more often and encourage them.

  1. Make Teeth Brushing Time A Story Time

The good thing with kids is that they love stories. Creating micro stories can create an incentive for kids to brush their teeth. It can make them look forward to brushing their teeth and they can even remind you when you forget. You can tell half a story each day to create the suspense in children. In that way, they will not forget to brush their teeth.

You can become creative and tell stories of the importance of brushing teeth. You can use characters such as the knights to represent the toothbrush, the goblin to represent the plaque, and a kingdom to serve as the mouth. In that way, children can learn the importance of taking care of their teeth. They can also learn about the consequences of poor dental hygiene. The children’s learning will sustain the practice into their adulthood.

  1. Give the Children a Little Control

Kids love when they are involved in activities around the house. To make the process of brushing teeth engaging and fun, give up some control. Allow the children to select their toothbrush and toothpaste. You can make the process fun by going out on a special day for toothpaste and toothbrush hunting.

Take the opportunity availed to teach them about how best to select a good toothbrush and toothpaste. You can then leave them to make the selection so that you can see whether they have learned. Allowing the children to have some control improves their ability to take part in brushing their teeth. It trains them on how to take care of their teeth when they grow older.

  1. Provide Varieties

Kids can be excellent when it comes to taking up new activities such as brushing their teeth. However, the downside is that they quickly get bored. It is essential to keep the activity fun and exciting. One way is by regularly changing and replacing the toothpaste and toothbrush. Allow the kids to choose from various types of toothpaste available.

You can decide to buy them fruit-flavored toothpaste such as strawberry to make brushing teeth interesting. Keep changing flavors to prevent them from getting bored. Find toothbrushes with different shapes and designs that are intriguing. Providing varieties will help make the activity sustainable.

  1. Time your Kids

What better way to make the act of brushing teeth fun than to time the children. The activity provides a method for you as a parent to teach your kids about time value aspect. You can get them to brush their teeth within a stipulated time limit properly.

The timing helps to keep them focused on brushing their teeth as it reduces distractions. The kids get to learn about managing and valuing their time. You can choose to reward the kid who performs best.

  1. Create A Reward System

Kids need the motivation to do a lot of things. Rewarding them for their efforts can help encourage kids to develop positive habits towards brushing their teeth. Depending on how well you know your children, you can either choose the instant or delayed reward system.

At the end of the period, i.e., a year, you can buy gifts for the children, take them on tour, or buy toys. With time as the children grow, you can let them decide the kind of gifts they want for their reward.
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3 Ways That You Can Improve Your Wellbeing as a Parent

Parents are often expected to make the impossible happen on a daily basis, and on most days, they probably do. However, seeing as they’re half superhero and half human, there are days when they happen to fall short. If you’re a parent, you can likely relate with this and understand how challenging it can be to find a balance. For this reason, it’s important that when taking care of everyone else, you also remember the importance of your overall wellbeing. To help you find ways to do this, you’re going to find three ways you can improve your wellbeing as a parent in the following article. 3 Ways That You Can Improve Your Wellbeing as a Parent

Check on Your Health Regularly

Life can get extremely busy as a parent, seeing as it’s a fulltime job. For this reason, making sure you make the time to check on your healthy regularly is essential. You can do this by scheduling appointments to get a physical examination with your health provider on a regular basis. Some of the things that they’re likely to do include updating your health history, vital sign checks, visual exams, physical exams, as well as lab tests which require them to draw blood. These checks should ensure that everything is intact health-wise, and you shouldn’t need them more than once a year unless you’re experiencing anything abnormal.

Set Aside Time for You

Creating time for yourself is key, especially as a parent who no longer seems to own their time. It can seem like every minute you get is divided between your kids, domestics, and work but you’ve got to make time for yourself as well. A failure to do so could result in exhaustion, high levels of stress and in some cases, it could trigger depression. This could lead to things such as substance abuse and addiction as a means of coping, so try and find healthy ways to unwind. If you’ve struggled with an addiction before, you may have found ways to achieve adult sober living successfully, so avoiding things that could trigger a relapse is key. Ideas of things you can do in your alone time include going to the spa, yoga, meeting up with friends, catching a movie, or taking yourself out to eat your favorite meal.

Don’t Take on More Than You Can Handle

As a parent, you may feel as though you can handle everything but this isn’t usually the case. You should, therefore, be realistic about what you can handle and avoid taking on more than you can. Some ways to do this include avoiding trying to do everything in one day, being more organized, and learning to say no. For those who struggle with saying no, some tips to help include saying yes to something else, being firm, and not giving excuses.

As a parent, your wellbeing is just as important as everyone else around you. It is imperative that you take time out to pamper yourself, check how you’re feeling and ensure you’re in good health. Doing so ensures the many people that you love and nurture on a daily basis have a happy, healthy and whole mommy around them in years to come.

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