"Make sure that what you are doing and striving for is going to be worth any sacrifices you will have to make along the way. If it's a relationship, job, anything in life."

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

A very special shout out!

Today is my big bro's birthday!  Happy Birthday Kenny!!!
To honor my awesome big brother I wanted to post this.  Here he is with my little munch a few years ago at the dinner we go on with my aunt.  He is as good a bro as he is an uncle... She loves Uncle Kenny!
Happy Birthday Ken!
We love you!
Chris & Quinn

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Tuesday’s Tip: Listen to your kids

            This tip I’m sure I will post later and later as Quinn grows up but for now she is only 3 ½ and I would say starting to listen to them when they are young is a good idea.  When I say listen I really mean when they are talking to you don’t just think you know what is best and ignore what they are saying.  When Quinn is feeling hungry or thirsty she tells me.  Sometimes after we eat I take what she says and have to debate if she really is hungry or if I think she may get sick but I always listen and take in what she is telling me.  The other night we lost power at my house and I went upstairs and got Quinn.  The fans were off so I took her down stairs and we sat on my front porch and cooled down.  She told me she was hot and didn’t like to be sweaty.  I took what she said and let her relax with me and cool down. 

            The issue sometimes is parents just think they know what is best and do what they think is best.  Sometimes yes parents know best but if a child feels sick or is hungry or not well they will tell us.  If we ignore this then if something were to happen we would feel horrible for they have tried to tell us.  We can’t always think we know what our kids need even if they are younger.  We have to listen to the warning signs and not just think we know best.  If your little ones are tired they tell us and we have to hear and take this seriously.  Sometimes at night Quinn tells me her tummy hurts and after a drink of water she is better.  Finding out if they are really sick or not just takes time and you have to just asses the situation. 

            Listening to our children especially starting at a young age is good because they then feel we are taking them seriously, which we should.  When our kids know we are listening to us they feel they can come to us.  If we don’t show we listen they will stop telling us and trusting us.  We have to give them respect even at a small age they wouldn’t tell us something if they didn’t mean it.  Well maybe depending the situation but we as parents use our judgment.  Were not going to keep giving them treats just because they say they are hungry… After Quinn tells me something I take in what she wants or is requesting and then I act on it.  I figure out if it is something to look into or if I have to maybe explain that what she is asking is heard but that I have to advise against it.  I love the fact that she tells me things, how are we supposed to understand what they want or feel if they don’t talk to us.

As our kids get older we will figure out a good give and take role and they will come to us with questions and problems.  They should, you never want your child growing up and afraid to come to you.  If they are in trouble you don’t want them to get hurt or be afraid to come to you.  You want them to feel comfortable talking to you and expressing what they need to say.  So starting to listen to them now will only help this.

Either way as your child grows up don’t be afraid to hear what they have to say and listen to them.  They are probably telling you something easy like they are hungry or tired or want to go outside and play.  Communication I feel is still one of our biggiest area’s of improvement between our entire species.  The way we talk as a people and how we just listen or not.  Couples, parents, friends co-workers.  We really have to work on our communication as a whole.  I think if we start now when our kids are little it will show them when they get older to communication and listen to others and then their kids one day as well.  Just remember you don’t have to do everything they say!  Then they will get spoiled and we don’t need that.  The ages of being 2-7 they are going to push to see what they can get away with.  Well they will always do this!  Not until they are older will they know how to work us!!!  But life is about learning and our kids are just learning how to work us, its just life… 

So listen to your kids and hear what they have to say.  Take in what they say and figure out if it is something you can agree with or if you have to veto their request…

Life’s about checks and balances…

Always Remember,
You are never alone…


PS Sorry this was posted Late!  

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

A midweek break

On a day like today... I think we all would have liked some nice cold air...
I use this pic for today, stay cool and get lots of water!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Tuesday’s Tip: Letting your little one be more independent…

            As your little one grows they will want to do things them selves and start to let you know this!  I am still learning but am trying to find a good balance of helping Quinn out and letting her do things she can do.  I guess we never really learn we always need help.  My parents still help me out when they know I need it, even when I think I don’t!  As she grows I notice how she can do things with out me even asking.  Like now all I have to do is open the door and she can climb in, or when we get home she takes her shoes off and goes in the family room by her self.  There are lots I still have to do yes but I am so impressed as she gets bigger
            I guess where we end up is where to step in.  Well besides when we have to for safety I guess we just as parents have to play it by ear.  I also did a lot of my learning by just hearing her say “I can do it daddy!”  I know then she means business.  But she will always ask for help when she needs it which she should, you should always ask for help when you need it.  As we play or draw or color I step back more and more and watch her.  I notice the things I used to do like help her color she can do on her own now.  She also likes to have alone time when she plays.  I remember this when I was growing up.  Sometimes when we play I step back and clean or get dinner ready, giving her space to play on her own and learn.  When we go anywhere, like I said I just have to open her car door and then when she is set I can just strap her in. 

            I think the first time I was surprised was one day I came down stairs and saw Quinn had both her shoes on and was all ready to go.  I usually put them on her and she did it all by her self.  I couldn’t believe how cute she was and I was so impressed!  As the time moved on I noticed her doing more and more like getting up and off her chair at the table, using her fork and spoons and not just picking up food.  Her memory has increased so much as well.  If we loose something she starts looking in places she thinks they maybe.  We lost buddy this past weekend and she found it in her room!  I really though for sure it was some place else.  Being someone with a bad short term memory I was so excited she found it!  She goes up and down the stairs with out any issues or problems. 

            Independence is a very big part of life and we all want to feel we don’t need help.  We all want to feel we can go though life and do everything everyone can.  We learn as we go that is not the full case!  Quinn is going to be 4 this year and being 3 she has grown independently, more than I could imagine.  Being a single dad I know I don’t get to see her as much and that still to this day is one of the hardest aspects of where I am but again I just have to adapt.  Some pointers would be to just talk to them.  Ask them if they need help, or call out “you doing ok?”  They will let you know, if they are having difficulty they will also reach out.  Sometimes you will have to take the lead and step in as well.  

            So no matter your Childs age see how their independence grows.  I’m sure for anyone with teenagers you will know…  I can’ imagine what is in store for me then!  I guess that’s why I just spend as much time with her now as possible I know when we grow up we steer towards our friends.  Seeing our family when we can, but that my readers is another blog for another day…  Play and observe your child, as they grow up and become for self aware and independent help them grow.  Help them do more things and teach them how to do things on their own and show them.  Kids are remarkable and amazing you will be surprised how fast they can learn and remember.

            So remember they are growing up and yes one day they won’t be your little one forever.  Let them grow and learn how to be independent they will enjoy this.  Also remember you’re their parent and you can always help them out. J     

Always Remember,
You are never alone…


Monday, June 18, 2012

Back in the Pool!

     This past weekend with Quinn was amazing!  Im leaving out Fathers Day because I want to post about that later this week.  I don't have all the pictures as well.  I know I am also due to tell you about the last weekend trip with Quinn as well so I have to do that as well but summer time I usually show down on my blog post.

     Friday Hughey and I went to Nutcracker with Quinn to have our fish fry!  We had a great time and dinner was perfect.  She has so much fun when we all go out.  Hughey and I get to catch up and also play and talk to Quinn.  That night Hughey had another place to be so Quinn and I went home to relax and chill.  We watched some TV and then she was upstairs to bed.  Later that night she came down because she couldn't sleep.  She was so cute I love just spending time relaxing with her.

     Come saturday we got up and had breakfast.  Then just relaxed a little and took our nap.  Later that day we went to Hughey's for some swimming.  Beckey, Hughey's sister in-law was over with Joel and Kyle.  She is Tim's wife.  Tim and Becky have been good friends of mine for a long time.  Her kids are about Quinns age and the all got along so well.  Quinn loved it and she did so well!  We swam around and Quinn jumped in my arms off the side!  She loved the pool and this summer she will be taking lessons.  I can't wait because I will probably take her to the pool more often this sumer!  We took a snack break and got back in the pool again.  I just laid in a pool chair and she just chilled on my lap as we floated around as she just enjoyed the water and chilling with daddy.

     After we had dinner!  Hughey cooked cheeseburgers, I brought so sides and dessert.  Becky brought some great sides and salads!  After we had some ice cream and then let the kids play!  We cleaned up and then went home.  Hughey stopped over and we watched some TV.

     The weekend was great and I can't wait to just talk about Fathers day!  I hope everyone reading this had a great fathers day!  I will be putting the post together the next few days and have to get some pics over to me still.  The weekend over all was great and i am ready to start the new week.

As I said earlier my post my not be as frequent only because it is summer so I will be relaxing more and spending more time outside!  
I hope you enjoy the pics!

You are never alone...

Friday night, she was out cold!

The pool!

Here we are!  Daddy needs a tan.

Kyle jumping in!

Joel getting ready to jump in.

Here she is, I think?

Just chilling...

Becky and Kyle

Becky and the kids!

Dinner Time!

Just being kids...

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Thursdays Tip:Free Fun Clinic’s!

            Sometimes it’s easy to find fun free clinic’s to bring your child to do great activities for free.  I work part time at Lowe’s and we do a couple a month.  They are free and the kids love them.  They get little glasses and an apron and hammer to use and make all sorts of different things.  I usually take one when I can and have saved them up to start with Quinn soon for rainy days.  She is about that age and can start doing little projects with me. 

            Free things like this are a great way to get you and your child to bond!  It is cute being at work and hearing all the little hammering as the parents help put together the project.  Most places that do this don’t demand much time and are great to just get you in the store to see other ideas as well!  I think its great that Lowe’s and other companies around the country do this for free.  I know it also brings in business but it is cool of them to offer this.  Finding these free clinics isn’t hard you can search for free things to do on line, or next time you are in a store like Lowe’s or a craft store ask them if they do something like this.  It will give your child and you something to get out of the house and away from the TV. 

            Once you start building you can collect your projects and your child will be excited to see all the ones you did together.  When Quinn walks upstairs she see’s all the coloring and drawings we do and she loves pointing them out saying she drew that or colored that.  Doing projects with your child isn’t just about bonding its about them being excited about the completing of something.  Finishing something they started and accomplished is a great way to build self esteem and motivate them to be proactive when they get older.  Growing up my parents took me places and made sure my brother and I were both very active. 

            In this economic state we are being careful how to spend our money and it can be difficult.  Sometimes Quinn and I even stay in or take walks to save on gas.  Places that provide free fun things to do get people out and not afraid of stores for fear of asking that dreadful question… “How much does this cost?”  Stores provide free services to get people in their stores but also it gives good PR. 

            If you can’t find anything free for some reason you can always go to public parks or other places that have free fun things to do like play and just enjoy having time with your child.  I find if Quinn and I spend a few hours a day just making sure she is playing then I find she always sleeps much better and isn’t just running around the house cause she is bored. 

            Take sometime to search for free clinic’s and different activities around your town or city and always remember a walk or park visit will always make them smile!  For you single parents if there is something that is going on when it's not your weekend you can always go in and just ask for a free project and then do it on another weekend!  That's what I am doing with Quinn.

Always Remember,
You are never alone…


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

An Early Mid Week Break

Hey all!  My Tuesday Tip is getting moved to Wednesday this week.  I wanted to share a pic from the past!!!

Next time I have computer troubles I'm calling Quinn!!!

Thursday, June 7, 2012

A little internet issue but I'm back!

So the past week my internet was not working, well some sites did and others didn't work so it was a mess.  I was on the phone with apple for an hour and a half, then I had the internet reset.  After that it didn't even work.  So I called back and one more time had it reset.  Well it got set and finally it was all set around midnight!  Well one of the sites I couldn't get to was my blog!  So I am behind in my post and just wanted to say I am here and will be back on tack probably after the weekend.  I have to still tell you all about our adventure last weekend!  The munch and I had one heck of a weekend...

Hope all is well!

Always remember.
You are never alone...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Tuesdays Tip: Avoiding unhealthy snacks

          Quinn has been thinking she is a funny girl lately by telling me at every meal she wants cookies and chips.  I would get upset because I don’t want to mess around all day.  I just learned to explain that chips or cookies are treats and we can have them every once in a while.  Usually I will give her one cookie or a few chips at lunch.  When she eats her chips she ask for more and I have to explain she has to eat them slowly or wait till after she eats her sandwich.  I try not to even have chips in the house but they make a good snack if friends come over.  It is always polite to have something to put out.  Plus it’s hard to get food that won’t last because of my busy schedule. 

            As far as pushing healthy foods that will come.  As I got older I realized that eating healthy is something you have to do to avoid being overweight.  Also with all the health risk inside your body you don’t even see.  I’m not about to post about I feel America is overweight but I also don’t feel this.  This country is, it’s a fact!  But I’ll save that for another day.  Being a child who has to go to two parents homes I’m sure she is getting used to knowing what parent will give her what and allow what rules to be bent.  Being the single dad who really doesn’t see her I feel bad when our time comes so yes sometimes we snake more or more treats are given.  This has to be looked over closely because I can not become the fun home or the place where she can get away with anything.  For now I have some tips for you parents to try to use when your children are asking for snacks that they don’t need right at the moment…

1)    Tell them they are asking at a bad time.  For example if they want cookies for breakfast you tell them that it’s to early for sweets.
2)    Give them choices of healthy alternatives.  Fruit, crackers, or different things like that.  If you give them an option they will have to use one you offer. 
3)    Explain what a snack and treat are and that they can ask but they have to understand they are for special times.  Also explain that when they eat them and they are gone, they get no more…
4)    Try not to have much junk food in the house, then you have none to offer.
5)    Eat healthy as well.  If they see you eating fruit or veggie sticks they will want to try it because kids want to mirror us.
6)    Try to be proactive and let them know you are not going to cave if they get ups or ask a lot.  If they get very upset, give them a time out.  Remember one of the biggest obstacles in parenting is kids are going to try to get their way.  They have to realize they can’t, it will make them better adults if they understand and realize everything can’t go their way…

I hope some of these tips work if you have any new ones or others please let me know!  As Quinn comes over she knows I do have some treats I keep in my kitchen but she also understands they are for snack and special times.  Being a single dad who sees her only a few times a month yes I do usually have a snack or two when she is with me but as a parent I also have to instill rules and boundries.  Making my job that much more difficult…
Always Remember,
You are never alone…