Sunday, July 12, 2015

Chores and Mom Bucks

Noah will be 9 in a couple months. I can’t believe how old he is getting so fast. He has so many new interests which I love, he also still loves LEGOs. He is definitely old enough to do chores too. We sat down one day together and created a job chart based on what we both thought he could do every day. Most of the stuff on it is daily things he should be doing anyways. Some of the items on his chore list are things like brushing his teeth twice a day without me having to remind him, picking up his toys and a couple weekly chores that he has to do as needed like emptying the dishwasher and putting away clothes.  The most important “chore” he has I think is having a happy attitude. He is a great kid but sometimes he gets grumpy or he tries to push the limits.  We also agreed that he would receive an allowance for successfully completing his chores each day.

He receives what he calls mom bucks. I thought that it was fair because it will start to teach him about money and spending. He has to use his allowance for new toys, new books or new games. I will give him an occasional treat but most of the time it’s his responsibility to pay for it. He is also learning about making good choices by not blowing all his money on something silly. I do have the right to say no on occasion. Once he wanted to buy sea monkeys with his allowance and I was the mean mom and said no way Noah J!  If I know we are going somewhere special, I will have him save his money because I know he will want something to remember the trip to the aquarium or wherever it may be.

Noah also came up with the idea of having a catalog of things he can buy with mom bucks. Some of them are extra computer time, getting to stay up later, having a movie night, and extra dessert. I totally love that he came up with that so he isn’t always getting something tangible. It also helps on the extra junk we bring home from the store. He has actually decided not to buy things on his own. He is also learning that once it’s gone the money is spent. He seems to be more responsible and he is more aware and determined to get his chores done now. It makes my job easier and I am not constantly stepping on toys all the time.

For chore ideas based on your child’s age check out this post about Kids and Chores.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Keeping Noah Entertained in the car this Summer

Noah has been traveling by car since he was two months old when we went to Virginia Beach. He is a great traveler. Most of the time he sleeps or reads but sometimes like everyone else, he gets bored. I have to come up with things for him to do. When he was two he started saying wanna go down the road, wanna go down the road over and over. It was pretty annoying, it was his very own version of are we there yet? I made the mistake of telling him about saying that few weeks ago, so now he thinks it’s funny to say it. Since we travel a lot I am constantly looking for and creating road trip games we can play. He isn’t too big in to music, which is something we listened to a lot growing up. He loves to play I spy with my little eye. I try and make it hard by saying I spy with my little eye something that’s pink and have it be my mom’s nail polish as we often travel with her. If it’s too easy it’s no fun! I like to have games where he has to think.

We also play twenty questions but Noah is still getting the hang of that game.  Noah has my love of mad Libs so we play Mad Libs. We also like to start a story and everyone tells part of it. It usually is completely silly and random.  I love Noah’s imagination. Noah also loves animals and one thing I used to do when we were in the car was point out different animals. After a while he would point them out or if it was somewhere we drove by often he would say comes the cows or comes the horses.  He also thinks it’s funny to say that now. It was so funny because when we were driving in to California, they have an inspection station and we all convinced Noah that he was livestock because he asked about the inspection station. Every time we would go through the inspection point he would bend down. I thought he was being silly, but he really thought he was livestock because he wasn’t sure what it was.  I am so glad he has such a great sense of humor. It’s so important to keep kids entertained in the car while you are traveling long distances. I hope Noah will have great memories of road trips growing up like I do.

I was recently reading an article about great road trip games and learned some new games to try out with Noah.

Planning your Vacation Online

I do almost everything online. I work online, I shop online, I pay bills online, I even have ordered groceries online. I have even started planning vacations online. I don’t take online vacations though, that would be silly. I like to book hotel rooms online because it is easier and safer in my opinion than calling on the phone. I seem to also be able to find better rates online since there are so many sites you can now book from. Some are dedicated to finding the cheapest rates available by searching all the deal sites. I really enjoy saving on my trip. Most of the places we drive to are far enough away that we have to stay in a hotel on the road. Unless we are visiting family, we also stay in a hotel at our destination. Even when we go visit certain family we sometimes stay in a hotel for space reasons.

Before everything was online and there were apps and websites for everything, you used to go to places like AAA to map out your route. They would give you books and maps and even plan your route for you. Now we can do it online, and we no longer have to look for maps or bulky books with directions.  You can just plug it in your map app and you are good to go.  Travel agents used to be the one who planned the bulk of everyone’s trips. You were planning a cruise or a trip to Disney World, you called your travel agent. Now we are our own travel agents.  We handle all the planning ourselves through booking online, tracking our own routes and even review sites where we can find out what’s great and what is not.

There are many great sites that will help you plan the perfect road trip. Be sure to read this article about planning your car trip online.