We will go on and on about this, but reading is fundamental. We have read to our children from Day 1. We have not stopped. At a minimum, we read 2-3 books to each of our boys every night before bed. They love it. Every single minute. Is it easy to fit into a working parent's schedule every single day? Of course not! But it means the world to our boys so we figure it out.
There is a tremendous amount of value from the time we spend reading. The first, and most obvious, is that they learn to read and want to learn new things from the beginning. Our boys love reading! They go to bookstores and libraries and pick up books for us to read to them and buy.
The second benefit is that they gain a thirst for knowledge. They want to read. They want to learn. They ask questions. They think about all kinds of things that we as parents would never think to ask. And the more we read to them, the more the questions become detailed and are well thought out - not just "why?"
Another benefit is simply spending quality time together. We have preached time and again about family time and being present. What better way to spend time with your children then reading to them and then tucking them into bed? They enjoy the routine and enjoy the time with mommy and daddy.
There are undoubtedly many more benefits, but these are the ones that jump out at us. Our routine has been the same since Day 1 - bath, books, bed. It is some of the best quality time a parent could ask for and some of the best that a child could be given. We love reading to our children and will continue to do it for as long as we can. The impact is clear. They love to read. They want to learn.
We recommend that you do it for your children. But you should also do it for yourselves. It is worth every minute.
As any parent can attest to, entertaining a child or children can be a challenge. When our children are babies and are still exploring it is fairly easy to entertain them in between naps. A few toys on their mat or some blocks and they are good to go for a long time.
It is when our children get older that it becomes more and more challenging. Our youngest is still okay with staying home for the day. He would prefer to be out and about but that is not always an option. Our oldest, on the other hand, needs a change of pace otherwise cabin fever turns into the Tasmanian devil and the wheels come off in no time.
When we can take them out of the house the activities are fairly standard - museum, park, splash pad, friend's house or an indoor playground. When we are stuck in the house because of weather or illness, the creativity must kick in. We are not creative enough to compete with this guy "Doting Dad Uses A Projector To Dazzle His Daughter ,7, With Dinosaurs Outside Her Window." Kudos to him for going that far and making the rest of us look bad while he does. But we try. And try hard. Our sons love a fort or rocket ship built out of couch cushions and pillows and blankets. They love a homemade obstacle course. They will swim for hours in the pool (not creative but great for burning energy). We color with them. We read with them. We are always looking for new (and affordable) ways to keep them entertained.
We are still very much of the belief that screen time should be limited to non existent. Occasionally we let our boys watch Daniel Tiger or Bob The Builder but we try to make that a last resort. Our oldest has an iPad but he only uses it for educational games. And he hardly even asks for it (so little that it may actually not even be charged).
When the day is over all we want is to see our children smile and be happy. So if it means getting on the floor and building legos or pretending to be captured or playing mini basketball on hands and knees then so be it. While the saying is "Happy Wife, Happy Life," it can be applied just as easily to our children. And it should be.
Life Hack. Giving medicine to children can be a difficult task in and of itself. We put the days and times in our family calendar so we can remember when it’s time for each dose. Sometimes we there is so much going on that we do not always remember if we gave our boys the last dose. To help you remember put a simple chart on the bottle and check it off after you prepare each dose. Once the chart is full you know you have given your child all of the prescribed doses.
#thedaddyslife #lifehacks #lifehack #chart #medicine #helpfultips #family #child #remember #memory #dontforget
Loveataly is a must try! An absolute must!
Our family loves to eat. We love food. Good food. While South Florida has its spots and is known for the weather, the food is not the reason to live here. So when we find a restaurant that is good we get super excited and scream it from the rooftops. Loveataly is one of those places. It sits quietly in North Miami at 2216 NE 123rd St, North Miami, FL 33181.
The moment you open the doors, this family welcomes you right in. Sit wherever you like. The food is authentic and scratch made. There is not a single meal, let alone dish that we have eaten that has not been extraordinary. Yes, we understand the bar is being set high. Deservedly so. Whether it's the wine, the pizza, pasta, or whatever you eat you will smile with each bite.
If you like good Italian food, you must give this place a try. We will not put our hands in someone else's pocket, but the prices are very reasonable in our opinion. The hardest part about eating there is deciding what to eat - the last dish was delicious do we want it again? Do we try something new? What do we try? No answer is wrong as you cannot go wrong there.
The only recommendation we have is to go hungry and wear your thanksgiving pants...
Our boys are eaters through and through. Our oldest learned fairly quickly to be clean about it. Our youngest does not share the same interest.
So in order for us to protect our kitchen table from the daily all out warfare we call mealtime, we needed some help. It came in the form of Neat Solutions Table Toppers. They come in a few different colors and are made of silicone and are BPA and PVC free which is important to us. They are light and easy to clean. When the food or spoon or dish or cup gets lands on the placemat it does a fairly good job of protecting the table. Obviously it cannot help when our son launches something across the table. And it cannot stop our son from lifting it off the table and tossing it along with all of the crumbs and mess he left on it.
Overall it is a good product that serves its simple but important purpose. The price is quite reasonable (click here to see) and it is reusable which is nice - otherwise we would be buying 10 per day the way our son eats...
Our boys are about two and a half years apart in age. They could not be more different if they tried. Yes, they come from the same gene pool and depending on whether they are next to mommy or daddy will depend on who they look more like. That is where it ends.
They are both smart, very very smart. One is intellectual, the other has street smarts. One likes music, the other likes sports. One likes to build and learn, the other likes to demolish. One is careful and cautious, the other throws caution to the wind and dives head first. They are both good eaters. One exhibits control, the other acts like he has not seen a meal in ten years. They are both good looking, cute boys (I know we are biased, but this is from strangers on the street). One has lighter features, the other has darker features.
We definitely wonder how they are related given they are so different. Then we watch them play - our youngest follows the older like a puppy dog. He wants to do what he does. He wants to play what he plays. He wants to read what he reads. He is doing his best imitation of his older brother in his own way. He observe him and mimic his behavior again and again. Our oldest does not always want or like all of the attention he receives from his younger brother, but we explain to him that he simply wants to spend time with him and learn from him.
Imitation is the finest form of flattery...
If you are a member of our community, you know how important education is to us. We want our children to have all of the opportunities to learn and grow and find their passion. When we come across a book or game that helps our children hit those goals we like to share it with our community.
In the past we have talked about the Kidlo app and how amazing it is. They have now added a math section which continues along the same path of ingenuity and entertainment for your children. Our oldest enjoys it and we recommend it.
As a member of our community, you have the chance to try it out for free by following the steps below:
Download the app: https://itunes.apple.com/ us/app/preschool-math-games-fo r-kids/id425126773?ls=1&mt=8
- Go to 'Grown Ups' section in the app (The wheel icon on the home screen)
- Tap on the 'Discount Code' button
- Enter this code: thedaddyslife
- Voila, you will have access to the limited offer.
When we mentioned that our older son was going to have surgery to put in Ear Tubes, Adenoidectomy and Tonsillectomy, we heard everything from that’s routine surgery to prepare for the worst week of your life. What we have learnt is that our son is a very strong 3 ½ year old who fights through the pain but, at the same time, he went through a major surgery and he needs time and space to recoup. Here are some of the tips we would suggest for you if you find yourselves speaking to the ENT’s surgical scheduler…
1- Bring applesauce with you to the hospital. They may/may not have popsicles for post-op and your kid may/may not want to eat one. Our son came out hungry and the popsicle was cold (surprise surprise, ice was cold!) and he wanted more food anyway.
2- Our wedding gift Margaretville Margarita Maker makes for a great ‘snow cone’ machine. Shaved ice, crushed ice and icees/snow cones are great sources of cold and hydration.
3- Stock up on Tylenol and Ibuprofen (Motrin or Advil – we are told they are the same, but seems the Motrin has the edge) and, put them in the fridge.
4- Put everything in the fridge! Vegetable packets, applesauce, meds, etc.
5- Though we are anti-screen people, download movies! Tons of movies!
6- And, enjoy the intimate time with your little one.
Since we are past One week post-op today (and low on sleep), we may have missed a few things here but these are some that we did not read everywhere else.
As we have mentioned before, our son is a HUGE fan of the Dr. Brown’s Soft-Spout Transition Cup and since he is so good with this particular cup, we have been trying to diversify.
When we saw the Boon Snug Spout, we could not resist. Wow, how convenient do these look! The mom and mom-to-be who designed these bright colorful ‘spill-proof’ cup lids really considered size for carrying, dishwasher cleaning and fun but they did not consider that they are difficult to fit on cups and that our son has no interest in using them. Instead, we have managed to use more paper towels for cleaning up all the water and milk that have spilled out.
Please do not misunderstand our review, we are not tossing the Boon Snug Spouts yet as we will try them again in a month or so, but for now, we still stick with our trusty Dr. Brown’s Cup.
The words are simple. Please. Thank you. You are welcome. Excuse me. These are words we hardly ever hear at all when we are out in public. So much so that the words stand out when someone actually says them to us.
We work hard to teach our boys to have manners. We encourage them to say please. We encourage them to say thank you. We encourage them to say excuse me. It does not take much effort and it shows courtesy and respect. Or perhaps it does take a lot because no one says it when I hold the door open or when I ask for something and say please.
People will bump into us in an aisle as they try to forcibly pass by but will not say excuse me beforehand or apologize for bumping into us. I do not understand why manners have fallen to the wayside but they have. It makes it harder for us to teach our boys to be polite when the gesture is not reciprocated at all.
We encourage it because it is the right thing to do. We want our boys to be polite. We wish more parents would share the same belief as they would be polite and encourage their children to be the same. This would snowball and be a positive impact on a society that has lost its way. With technology there is less and less human interaction but the little we have should be respectful.