Amanda Henderson and Nursery Safely (Guest Post)

Once again, thank you Amanda for today’s guest post regarding safety in your nursery! A very informative read. And something that will assist all parents with small children…

Setting Up a Nursery: Budget-Friendly Tips

When you’re expecting a baby, it’s important to think of the best ways to save money. After all, having kids is expensive! You also want to ensure that everything you choose for your child is safe and will help him learn and grow while he stays healthy; however, merging all those things can sometimes be difficult. When designing a nursery for your baby, you want to choose items that will help carry your child through several stages. This way, you get more bang for your buck. 

Fortunately, there are many things you can do to save money while designing the nursery of your dreams. The key is to start looking for deals before you make any purchases. Many stores offer discounts and coupons that can help you save while getting everything you need for the baby. You can also set up a registry, which will keep you organized while getting you a discount on the items that are left on the list after a baby shower or other celebration.

Scout Out Deals

Start looking for the best deals on all the things you need for the nursery as early as possible. You can use savings and promo codes for various online retailers, and daily deals from Amazon and weekly ads for Target offer additional ways to save money. The key is to keep your eyes open for ways to keep your budget in check while getting all the things you need. It’s also important to pay attention to reviews; for example, if you decide you want to go for a space-saving mini-crib, you need to know which ones are perfect for your child and your nursery.

Also, make repairs to the room as needed, and don’t be afraid to call in professionals. For instance, if the window in your nursery could use some TLC before the baby arrives, budget around $290 and call in a window specialist to make sure the job is done correctly. Search for “window repair near me” online and use Angi to help you decide which pro to call.

Invest in Items That will Grow with Your Child

It’s a good idea to invest in things that your child can use for years to come; for instance, buy an infant seat that can be converted as your little one grows and, as Mother.ly notes, learning toys that have more than one use. There are many options on the market these days, from bathtime tools to bouncy seats, and each one has pros and cons. Do some research before making any decisions, and read reviews on sites like Amazon so you can see what other parents have to say — especially with regard to safety. When you’re ready to purchase something, use sites like Honey to help you keep those costs down.

Saving money on toys and essentials can allow you to invest more in nursery decor items like wallpaper. You can visit a website like Spoonflower and purchase made-to-order wallpaper in just about any design you wish. You can also look at ideas for wallpaper designs for the nursery if you’re feeling overwhelmed by all the options. While there are many “universal” designs that are suitable for all ages, you can pick removable wallpaper (either a smooth or woven fabric) in a design that represents a specific stage of your child’s life (e.g., newborn), then simply replace the wallpaper with a different design as your child grows.

Start a Baby Registry

Setting up a baby registry will help you get all the things you need for your child’s nursery without spending a ton of money. Make sure you add small and large items so that your friends and family will have a good variety to choose from as far as price range, and ask the store about discounts on things that are left on the registry afterward. You can even set up a baby registry through retailers such as Walmart to help everyone save a little money.

Make Sure Everything’s Safe

It’s important to not only find the right toys and equipment for your baby’s educational needs but Mayo Clinic suggests also finding the right items for his safety. Think about more than just the things you’ll use every day; consider window blinds, outlets, cords, and other hazards that can be easily taken care of. 

Baby-proofing the nursery is imperative and doesn’t have to cost a lot; look online for the best safety items for your needs and price-check at a couple of different stores.

Setting up the nursery of your dreams doesn’t have to break the bank. Start with a little planning, and look both online and in-store to find the right items for your needs. It may also be helpful to check on the items you want around the holidays, as many stores will have major discounts during that time. With some preparation and a little help from friends and family, you can build the nursery you’ve always wanted and have it all ready for your little bundle of joy.

Amanda Henderson (Guest Post)

getoutwiththekids.co.uk

How to Survive Winter in the Age of COVID-19:

A Parent’s Guide.

As a parent, winters were long, cold, and painful well before the pandemic hit — but there were still plenty of opportunities to take the kids to museums, indoor theme parks, and movie theaters. But now that winter is on the horizon and we’re in the midst of a pandemic, many parents are wondering how they’ll survive the cold weather months ahead while being cooped up at home with nowhere to take their children. Andi Webb from Diary of a Gay Dad shares some survival tips for parents in the sections below. 

Prepare Mentally

Winter is fast approaching, and it’s important to begin your coronavirus preparations now if you haven’t already done so. The earlier you can begin to prepare for the difficult months ahead, the more mental control you’ll have once you and your kids are officially cooped up indoors for the winter. Parade recommends thinking about what worked and didn’t work for your family when COVID-19 orders were first issued last winter — and then beginning your preparations from there. 

A few things to cover in your winter preparations include:● How you’ll structure each day, even on the weekends. ● The types of activities you’ll plan for your kids in the morning, while you’re working, and in the evening. ● The items you’ll need to stock up on now, like board games, coloring books, crayons, and finger paints. ● How you’ll take time for yourself and your partner, even when it seems impossible. 

Get Out Your Screens

Your family’s digital screen time should be moderated during quarantine, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t let your little ones disconnect from the world for a while with online games and activities. From online multiplayer games such as Animal Crossing: New Horizons, to kid-friendly YouTube channels like Sesame Street and Ted-Ed, the digital world has been a godsend for parents and their children amidst COVID-19. 

To get the most out of your screens this winter, it’s important to eliminate any obstacles that may be present — such as old tablets or laptops and slow internet connections. If your kids will be learning or playing online while you’re trying to work, the last thing you’ll want is to hear your children complaining about a slow internet connection! However, the solution is as simple as upgrading your tech before winter officially arrives. 

If you live in the US, for instance, Verizon’s fiber-optic connections are worth looking into — especially if your kids will be playing online multiplayer games this winter. With a fiber optic internet connection, you’ll experience smoother gameplay, faster download speeds, and minimal lag and buffering. In the UK, however, gamers can enjoy fast speeds with the Full Fibre 100 from BT Broadband or Big Oomph Broadband from Virgin Media. 

Make the Most of Your Family Time

Until the world returns to normal and you’re back to meeting the demands of modern life, the best thing you can do is make the most of your family time at home. There are so many fun waysto enjoy your time together this winter, like playing indoor and outdoor games as a family, starting a new hobby, and making arts and crafts. 

If you’re looking to brave the cold this winter, some family-friendly outdoor activities include:● Skiing, snowboarding, ice skating, and snowshoeing. ● Making a backyard snow maze for your kids to enjoy. ● Shoveling snow together for the neighbors.● Stargazing, camping, and winter hiking. ● Visiting a winter farmers market (depending on local COVID-19 restrictions).

While movie theaters, science museums, and other indoor attractions may be out of the question this winter, this doesn’t mean you can’t still have fun as a family as the pandemic continues on. With a bit of planning and strategizing, you’ll reduce some coronavirus-related stress and anxiety, maintain your sanity, and keep your family happy and engaged as the snow falls and temperatures continue to drop. 

Looking for more parenting advice and personal experiences from Andi Webb? Visit his blog, Diary of a Gay Dad, or send him a message at contact@andiwebb.net!

My Final Diary Entry, At Least For Now!

It is with some regret that on the 2nd anniversary of my diary blog diaryofagaydad.net, I have to explain, that after these past 24 months of sharing the ups and downs of parenthood, my musings on this forum have (for now) come to an end. I will of course leave the archive online and intact if you ever chose to relive the ups and the downs of 2 years of parenting five small children?

A message from a fellow blogger tonight that ‘I am bored’, has lead me to the conclusion that it is now time to step away!

No pictures, no finale, no fanfare, just goodbye for now my friends…

On other social media such as Facebook, I do not post often. But if you found any part of my blog something positive to muse over (btw predictive text just flashed up ‘pissup’ lol) just search ‘Andi Webb London’ and I will surely follow you back!

The other option is Instagram of course! http://www.instagram.com/mybigcrazyfamilylife

I am certainly considering ‘Diary of a a gay Dad, the teenage years’ though 4+ years away at this point! Another time altogether, maybe it will be a great time for us both to catchup once again.

Thank you for listening these last 2 years, thank you for being there and ultimately thank you for caring. I am very happy to know you.

And for those that I am not connected to on other social media platforms, good bye and take care.

Baby Boxes of One Year Ago

Twelve months ago tomorrow we decided it was time to open up the stash of baby items that we had kept from all of the children’s ‘baby years’!

We had talked about putting together the ‘Baby Boxes’ for such a long time.

Items ranged from tiffin boxes purchased in Goa, India, to baby spoons, teething toys, pyjamas, swaddling, you name it, it was there.

If you want to smile, you might want to scroll back on my blog entries to 8th September 2019. The full length movie is around 10 minutes, but it is a real laugh. Thor excels in his unique comedy and Caleb insists that Aaliyah’s dress, a 1st birthday present is his!

But if your visit here is a fleeting one! Here is a very small snippet of what they got up to.