Why You Should Put an Air Purifier in the Kids’ Room (By Guest Blogger, Angela Berry)

You may have lived without one (or several), your entire life, so chances are you don’t even know what you’re missing. Nonetheless, the quality of the air we breathe is, we must face it, not the best, and you are definitely all in dire need of a great air purifier. Now, while a grown-up’s body may be more resilient, children are more fragile little humans and for their sake, you need to protect and make your home the best it can be, so without further ado, let’s see how every kids’ room can benefit from an air purifier, and perhaps along the way you’ll realize you need one for your room as well.

The beloved pets

For most people, the thought of abandoning a pet once the babies come is virtually inconceivable, as it should be. Babies and pets can certainly coexist in the same space happily and actually be very beneficial for each other. Still, our beloved pets can bring about a certain number of issues. When you welcome an animal into your home, you also leave the door open for pet odors, urine stains, and skin dander. These odors can be upsetting and cause respiratory distress in those prone to allergies, and since you never know when a child can develop an allergy to something, it’s better to be safe than sorry. Of course, although an air purifier alone can’t fix everything, and keeping a clean home is paramount to your health, great air purifiers can do plenty to add to the state of your home and the air you breathe as well as eliminate these allergens from your home. Vacuum regularly, keep your home clean and call an air purifier for extra backup.

They serve as helpers with asthma

Your child’s developing body doesn’t work like yours does. Their metabolisms are immature and can’t always excrete chemicals as efficiently as an adult, which in turn makes them more vulnerable to the effects of air pollution. Many children who suffer from asthma can be further aggravated by airborne particles and chemicals, and that’s where a great air purifier steps in. They clean the air, remove dust, destroy or prevent the formation of mold and certain kinds of bacteria. Therefore, they reduce allergen levels in your home, and help fight allergies and asthma.

A purifier a day keeps the illness away

As a parent, your number one priority is your kids’ health. Well, there are times when grown-ups, whether it’s you, or a friend or a relative who visits your home that brings the flu into your home. Airborne flu virus particles move from person to person through sneezing and coughing and failure to wash hands afterward. Bacteria thrive in warm, humid areas of the home and can cause serious illness to the young ones. So, even if the people carrying the virus are nowhere near the kids, it’s not guaranteed that the germs won’t find their way into their room. So, when there’s an air purifier present in your child’s room, the risk of these germs and subsequent illness will be significantly lowered and that will help keep your kids healthy.

You live in a less than perfect neighborhood

If you live in an urban area, that’s either close to the freeway or generally gets a lot of car traffic, you most definitely need to pollute-proof your kids’ room. As their main task is providing clean, safe air, that’s exactly what they’ll do. You can’t afford to keep your windows closed at all times, and a certain amount of polluted air is bound to creep from the street and into your home, so make sure you nip it in the bud.

You just moved to a brand new home

Buying a new place where you will form new and happy memories is a wonderful thing. However, there is a little-known fact that that ‘new house’ smell usually comes from pollutants such as formaldehyde which is a dangerous toxin that has been shown to cause health problems. An air purifier can help filter this toxic air and give everyone in the home a bit more confidence that they are breathing healthier air, and as much as it’s important for your health, it’s crucial for your children’s.

Dear Jack: It’s the Dog Days of Summer, So We Might as Well Go to the Movies!

6 years, 8 months.

Dear Jack,

This is what I call “the dead of summer.” Not winter, but summer.

Most people refer to this as the dog days of summer. It’s this time of year that I unapologetically think to myself, “I wouldn’t mind it being winter right now…”

Here in Tennessee this time of year, it’s so hot and humid that there’s not a whole we can do outside; unless it involves water- but even then, we have to be sure to prevent sunburn.

During the colder weather months, you and I are able to spend quality time together by going on our hikes in the woods. But as for now, a trip to the matinee is our choice.

Last weekend we saw Spiderman: Homecoming. Obviously, we had a great time and loved the movie!

I personally loved seeing the dynamics of the older, more mature Tony Stark (Ironman) mentoring Peter Parker (Spiderman), as he is basically auditioning to be an Avenger.

And you loved getting to see Spiderman in his own movie. After all, you have so many Spiderman t-shirts, as well as a Spiderman bath towel, Spiderman water hose sprayer, Spiderman toothbrush, and Spiderman Band-Aids, it was about time you got to actually see Spiderman on the big screen.

Granted, we had to get there an hour before the movie started just to get a seat, even though it wasn’t even opening weekend. And then there were 30 minutes of commercials and previews before the movie began. So by the time we stopped by Moe’s for dinner afterwards, we were gone for about 4 and a half hours!

In less than a month, you’ll be starting 1st grade. I’d say it’s been a great summer for you. So many field trips, road trips, and even violin lessons.

Not to mention, you’ve got a week-long stay at Nonna and Papa’s coming up. I know you’ll love that! But as for this coming weekend, I believe you and I will be back at the movies…

Love,

Daddy

Dear Holly: You’re Growing Up Faster (in My Mind) than Your Brother Did

1 year, 2 months.

Dear Holly,

Last weekend Mommy and I were talking about just how quickly it seems like you’re growing up. Now that you’re confidently walking everywhere, it seems like the crawling stage was so short lived for you.

One theory we came up with is that with your brother, Mommy and I were clueless, being first time parents. The whole process was an ongoing learning curve that really didn’t slow down until your brother was around 3 years-old.

But he’s 6 and a half now. Not a whole lot has changed in his development and the way we have parented him in the past 3 years. We’ve basically been on autopilot, to some degree, for the 2nd half of his life.

So when you showed up over a year ago, Mommy and I already had previous experience to use as a guideline. I think just that alone makes it so much easier to raise you during these younger years.

But it also has a perceived effect in which it seems like you’re growing up faster than your brother did. Similarly, I’ve been telling Mommy how, from the beginning, it’s been easier for me to emotionally connect to you than it was for me to connect to your brother.

Actually, I specifically remember your brother being 15 months-old before I felt like more than a shadow to him. But with you, I’ve always felt you’ve acknowledged me. (You’ll be 15 months old in a few days, by the way.)

You’re always excited to see me when I get home from work. You recognize that I’m fun to be around. With your brother, I was nothing if Mommy was in the room too.

Maybe that instant connection I’ve had with you is something to do with this being my second time around as a parent- and that naturally, I am providing a more natural and accommodating environment for you; as compared to how I was with your brother when he was your age.

Either way, I’m glad you like me so much!

Love,

Daddy

The Bondaroo by Dadware: A Skin-to-Skin Bonding Shirt for Dads with Their Infant

One of the fun perks of being a daddy blogger is receiving new products from companies, as they cleverly use my platform as a way to get the word out about their goods. Typically when I receive these types of inquiries, my response is, “Sure! Send it my way.”

And that’s what brings us to today’s blog post. Yes, as you can see, I am modelling The Bondaroo by Dadware for you. It’s a really soft polo style shirt with a Velcro opening to place your infant, which allows for skin-to-skin bonding.

This is to not only to promote the release of Vasopressin and Oxytocin hormones in Dad and baby, but also to help boost the immune system in newborns.

Obviously, at 14 months old, my baby daughter Holly is no longer a newborn. Instead, she’s walking now. For what it’s worth though, I attempted to “capture” her in my Bondaroo as I hovered down over her as she was playing on the floor, but my plan was unsuccessful. She just resisted and escaped.

So instead, I decided to use her stunt double, Dolly, who is the size Holly was a year ago.

 

Of course, my soon-to-be a 1st grader son also agreed to help me show how the Bondaroo works; even though, like his sister, he’s a little too tall and mobile for the product.

Obviously, the Bondaroo is a way for newborns (not 6 year-olds, 1 year-olds, or dolls) to bond with their father. I think it’s a really cool idea. So forgive me for not being able to properly model how this product works, but I’m sure you get the idea.

Also, if you’re thinking about getting a Bondaroo for a soon-to-be dad, I recommend buying one size larger than he actually is.

I’m 5’ 9” and 160 pounds; I always wear size large for my shirts. However, they sent me an XL instead. I’m glad they did, because it fit the exactly the same way a size large shirt from Gap fits me.

Thanks for sharing in this learning experience with me about The Bondaroo by Dadware.

A Step-By-Step Guide To Moving With Kids And Pets (By Guest Blogger, University Moving and Storage)

No matter how you look at it, moving can be stressful — especially when you add kids and pets into the equation. Changing routines, packing everything you own and uprooting your household is a surefire recipe for stress regardless of who you are.

When you can’t understand why everything is in disorder, it’s even more difficult to cope. So when you’re moving with pets and kids, what can you do to ease the tension for the ones you love? To help answer that question, see the following tips and accompanying step-by-step guide to improving the way you move with children and pets.

Preparation

The more you can prepare your household for a move, the better they’ll be able to handle it. Take advantage of the time you have prior to your move to help everyone efficiently cope. Two key ways to prepare:

· Practice traveling

· Talk about the move

With your kids especially, have conversations about what’s coming for the family. Make the idea of moving a journey, and get them involved in the prep work. Maybe you let them choose decorations for their new rooms, or drive them around the new neighborhood. Help them visualize what’s coming, as much as possible. Equally, if you know you’ll be spending a lot of time in the car during a long-distance move, get your family used to the idea. Practice with a few shorter trips to adapt everyone to what moving will involve.

Make Plans for Moving Day

Expect moving day to be frenzied, and do everything you can to ease that stress. Can you have friends watch your pets? Can you hire a sitter for the kids? Maybe you can keep your pet in an extra room or the backyard of your new home? If someone is keeping is your children and/or pets entertained while you’re unpacking, it’s possible to relieve a lot of stress associated with the move.

Post-Move Tips

Returning your pets and kids to their routines as soon as possible is a good way to help in the first days after a move. Set up food dishes and get your pet on a regular eating schedule. Give your kids their preferred toys as soon as you unpack. If there are certain things you regularly do as a family — such as taco Tuesdays or weekend movies — try to apply them when you’re transitioning. Getting back to routine provides comfort and security to little ones in the midst of change.

Check out the below infographic from University Moving and Storage for more information.


A Step-By-Step Guide To Moving With Kids And Pets created by moving company University Moving and Storage

 

I’m Not a Good Person. I’m Not a Hard Worker. I’m Not Special.

Being born in 1981, my childhood was fully infused with an overdose of the teachings of the Care Bears and The Get Along Gang. I’m referring to that mantra that all adults (and Smurfs) seemed to further convince us of, during that Ecto Cooler drenched decade:

You are special. You can do anything you put your mind to.

You become anything if you truly belief in yourself.

And then I graduated college and got a real job. And then I got married. And then I had kids.

Responsibilities and reality started kicking in, and gradually, I felt less and less special. Less of the good person I always believed I was. Less of the hard worker I assumed I was. And just not quite as special.

Yeah, all that Lucky Charms marshallowy goodness talk… turns out it was all fluff.

The real world doesn’t work that way. The real world wasn’t as easy to win over as I expected it to be.

Instead, I actually have to prove myself on a daily basis to compete with the free market, even if that struggle is not obvious in my weekly highlight reel on Facebook.

The real world doesn’t care if I think I’m a good person, a hard worker, or special.

What does it even mean to be a “good person”? Compared to whom? Compared to the people who are better or worse than me at certain things? Compared to an ax murder or compared to a missionary in a 3rd world country?

What does it even mean to be a “hard worker”? Compared to whom? Compared to everyone who shows up to work and does their job too?

What does it been to be “special”? Even as a kid, I started realizing that if everyone is special, then by default, we fundamentally cannot all be special.

Instead, here’s the truth that I officially had taught myself by age 34; when life finally started making more sense to me:

It’s not about being a good person, a hard worker, or special. Because all of those things are just relative to everyone else around us.

And if I live my life thinking that I truly am a good person, a hard worker, and special, then ultimately, I’m more likely to believe that I deserve things in life.

That is one toxic word.

Deserve.

It’s always a red flag when I hear someone say it now.

A person who thinks they deserve something is going to feel entitled. When they don’t get those things they think they deserve, they will become disappointed. And when they become disappointed, they will blame other people; not themselves. And when they blame other people, society just isn’t going to take that “victim” seriously.

In the end, the victim creates a reputation and lifestyle that causes them to miss out on opportunities than others are now given instead.

Because what it’s really about is being the most dependable and available person. Not the good person, not the hard worker, not the special person.

What it’s really about the person who’s willing to do those tasks that no one else is able or willing to do.

It’s really about being the creative person who’s willing to take risks and introduce more efficient and effective ideas.

So yes, it’s true.

I’m not a good person. I’m not a hard worker. I’m not special.

And I use that to my advantage.

 

15 Tools Every Homeowner Should Own Guide (By Guest Blogger, Mike Knapczyk of Chicago Metro Home Inspections)

There’s nothing more satisfying than solving a problem on your own, especially when it comes to repairs around the house. Doing it yourself not only provides you with a sense of accomplishment and builds your self-esteem, but it also can help you save a lot of money compared to hiring a contractor — so you can focus on other important financial matters for your family. However, it takes more than the willingness to roll up your sleeves and get your hands dirty to be a true do-it-yourselfer. You also have to make sure you have the right tools for the job.

Although some household repair projects may require specialized tools, many of the most common household DIY projects can be accomplished with a set of basic tools. That’s why it’s in the best interests of any homeowner to keep a rudimentary toolbox around the house to handle any projects that might pop up. There are 15 tools that every homeowner should have on hand in case of emergency. Some are obvious, but others might be ones that homeowners wouldn’t know they would need until they actually need them.

For example, it’s common knowledge that you need a hammer for driving nails, screwdrivers for driving screws, and a set of combination wrenches and adjustable wrenches for handling nuts and bolts. Not everyone would think of a torpedo level as a necessary tool, but it’s essential for ensuring a shelf or picture is hung on the wall correctly. Slip-joint pliers are useful for gripping worn-down bolts or other hard-to-hold objects. Caulking guns are indispensable for sealing cracks and joints, and duct tape will help hold objects together until you can find a permanent solution. Wire cutters will come in handy if you need to do any minor electrical work around the house; while a hacksaw can handle cutting through copper pipes for a plumbing project. No matter what type of project you’re taking on, safety goggles and a respirator or breathing mask will help protect you. Finally, a flashlight is a crucial item to keep in any toolbox because most household problems happen in the dark.

Review the following list of 15 tools every homeowner should have and make sure your toolbox is ready for the next DIY project in your house.

Author bio: Mike Knapczyk is Owner and Operator of Chicago Metro Home Inspections, and provides home inspection services to the Chicagoland and Cook County areas. Knapczyk is involved in every aspect of the business and has much experience in the home inspection industry.

15 Tools Every Homeowner Should Own Guide from Chicago Metro Home Inspections