buying a family car? top 5 things to consider

You’ve decided it’s time for your family to enjoy life. So you’re looking at cars with room for car seats, luggage and little Johnny’s soccer gear. Congratulations!

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But before you head out to the Edmunds dealership, there are some important things you need to consider first because buying a family car is different from buying a vehicle that you drive by yourself.

Here are five things to consider before you buy a family car:

   1. Will You Be Sharing Your Ride?

Those wheels aren’t just for your new soccer star; they’re for the whole team! When you have multiple drivers sharing one vehicle, it’s important that everyone is on the same page about what the car needs to make everyone’s life easier. 

   2. How Many Car Seats Fit?

Car seats are becoming very specialized these days, so finding one that fits in your vehicle is important – but finding out which ones can fit may require some trial and error. If your infant car seat is too wide for the middle of the backseat, you’ll be forced to install it on one side, which could affect your roominess. If the child safety seat doesn’t fit well in either position, bringing a convertible car seat or booster might help ease your concerns about compatibility. You can purchase these before the infant carrier is outgrown, then just switch it out as necessary.

If you plan to have a second vehicle for your older children, remember that you can use it as their main car seat as well as your primary one. This way, there won’t be any question of which seats will work in the new family car.

   3. Cargo Capacity

Cargo capacity is important if you need to transport lots of gear and/or passengers on a regular basis. Suppose multiple people will be lugging sports equipment or cargo; the more room, the better. For example, more passenger space may seem like a luxury, but it can come in handy for days at the beach with extra wet suits, towels and cooler bags.

   4. How Much Room is Left for Cargo?

If you live in an area where you won’t be able to rely on public transport, you’ll need a car that can handle transporting more than just passengers. Sometimes, cargo space is even more important than passenger space because you will be using it for school projects, groceries and other items that don’t fit as nicely as your child’s booster seat.

  5. Fuel Efficiency

Fuel efficiency can affect your budget in a big way, so it’s important to consider it when making a purchase. Even if you live in an area where carpooling or public transport are more reliable options, fuel costs will add up over the years.

Bonus Tip: Safety

Safety is another important consideration when buying a family car – it’s not worth sacrificing for cost or fuel efficiency if safety is an issue. Fortunately, modern safety features make driving around town with your little ones safer than ever.

There You Have It

As you can see, there are a number of things to consider when buying a family car. It’s worth taking the time to look around and find one that fits your needs perfectly!

** This was a contributed post.

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happy birthday, geo

This week is my husband’s birthday!

This one is especially special because we get to celebrate it with a newborn baby. This may very well be our last, so I hope that you are able to get in all the snuggles!

Happy birthday to a wonderful dad and husband. Hoping this next year around the sun will be just as memorable as the last.

Emory

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making sure your home is safe for your climbing baby or toddler

We all know that we have to baby-proof when a baby comes along. It is pretty much common sense. It keeps our homes safe, but more importantly, our children.

But what about when you have a climber?

Yes – that is right. A climber. You might have the next mountaineering legend on your hands. How old they are when they start to discover the joy of climbing up on your couch, the windowsill, the kitchen sides or even scaling the stairs when your back is turned depends entirely on your child. Some will do it as soon as they are crawling or bum-shuffling, others wait until they are confident walkers. Some children are not naturally climbers and this is not anything to worry about either – as long as your child is reaching most of their milestones, such as their 8 month old newborn development milestones – there really is no problem if they do not climb everything in sight. Of course, if you are worried about your child’s physical development at all, reach out to your doctor or child health professional.

If you are blessed with a baby climber though, you may be wondering how on earth you are meant to keep them safe from harm while also allowing them to explore and have fun. Here, we share some tips to help you with making your home safe for your climbing baby or toddler.

Image via Unsplash

Super tall baby gates

If you have a younger climber, investing in a set of tall baby gates can be the difference between them staying downstairs where you left them and finding them at the top of the stairs. Opt for stair gates that have vertical bars and no horizontal footholds for them to get onto.

But you should also consider removing the baby gates

Yes, we know this completely contradicts the previous point, but once your child gets to a height where they are able to even attempt climbing up the gate, it is a good idea to take them off. They are incredibly useful for smaller kids, but once they learn to get up and over those, they can be more dangerous than having them on. It is particularly important to take any off at the top of the stairs, to stop them from climbing over and taking a tumble all the way down.

Secure tall furniture to the wall

In fact, secure any furniture that you can to the wall. Bookcases, media centers, shelving units, drawers, dressers and even wardrobes can seem like great fun to a wannabe mountaineer, but they are also very easy to pull over. A heavy bookcase landing on top of a toddler is not a scenario anyone ever wants to experience. Furniture anchors and straps are easily available online and are relatively easy to fit. It really is not worth the risk of not doing it.

Move the ladders and step stools

Ladders and stools are really useful to have around, especially if you are on the short side. There is no need to be climbing on chairs or tables to reach that mug or plate. However, imagine how much fun they are for kids that love climbing?

In the same vein, take care if you have older children with bunk beds or high cabin beds. Children should be at least five before being up on the top bunk. If you do have younger children around who may be tempted by the ladders, consider buying a ladder guard that slides over them when they are not in use.

Think about drawer handles

This is one you might not have thought about, but drawer handles make excellent footholds for a mini mountaineer. If you have a particularly adventurous child, you might want to consider removing them for a while until they have grown out of the climbing.

Locks on cabinets and cupboards

We all know when we have a baby on the move to secure cupboards that are low down to stop little hands from getting into cupboards that they shouldn’t, but we often forget about this as they get bigger. A toddler could climb on the toilet or the side of the bath and reach for the toiletries, medicine cupboard or cleaning cupboard. They might get into your makeup and redecorate your walls with your favourite lipstick, or empty the DVD cabinet and post them through the letterbox. You do not have to lock away everything, but consider what and where they can reach, and the hazards they may pose to your child.

Locks or catches on kitchen appliances

Serious danger awaits climbers who learn how to open household appliances like the washing machine and dryer, as well as the refrigerator and freezer. Installing locks or at the very least catches that deny them entry will put you one step ahead of them. There is nothing quite like a toddler who has discovered the joy of opening and closing the washing machine or tumble dryer, but you do not want them in danger, so do it as soon as possible.

Put covers on the door knobs and handles

The next best solution is to physically keep your climber out of areas with doors, since baby gates may not be able to restrict him or her.

Every handle should have a knob or handle cover on it, and doors should always be closed while exiting a room. This is particularly important for the bathroom, kitchen and utility room – ad definitely any doors leading to the outside of your home.

Keep tables clear

The truth is that you are going to have a hard time keeping your climber away from your table.

The only way to keep your kids from hopping from chair to table is to remove all of your chairs. However, for the vast majority of families, this would be a drastic and highly inconvenient step.

An alternative is to ensure that there is nothing on the table that could tempt them or increase the risk of their actions when they are up there. Tablecloths, glass dishes, and other decorations should be taken down until your child is no longer in this phase.

Consider how safe your stairs are

Depending on your child’s age and the design of your stairwell, this may take a different form.

Is it possible to teach your climber how to go up and down safely in a way that they can understand? Whether or if your stairs are carpeted is an important question. At the bottom of the stairwell, is there concrete, wood, or carpet? Is it possible to install a baby gate that is tall enough to keep your youngster away from the stairs? Consider all of these elements and devise a strategy. No matter how careful you are, it may be necessary to restrict access if the stairwells are too dangerous to use. However, it is possible to teach certain climbers to utilize stairways, so keep this in mind when weighing the risks and rewards.

Create a safe space for them to climb

You are never going to stop them from climbing, so the next best thing is to create a spce for them to climb. You can buy tri climbs which are safe, indoor climbing frames to encourage safe physical play. Other alternatives are to give them lots of time at play parks or in the garden on climbing frames, which allows them to do it safely.

** This was a contributed post.

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recipe: cozy winter soup

Ingredients:

4 tbsp oil, any
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
4 cups vegetable stock
1 cup coconut milk
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 large yellow squash, cubed
2 cups Basmati rice, cooked

Steps:

1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium. Add the garlic. Chop the onion and add it to the pot. Next add the vegetable stock, coconut milk, and lemon juice. Continue to cook over medium. 

2. Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the stringy bits and seeds. Scoop out the rest, cubing it and adding it to the soup. Cook for approximately 20 minutes.

3. In the meantime, cook the Basmati rice and set aside. Once the vegetables are cooked through, you can add the soup to a food processor or blender. Blend until smooth.

4. Return the soup to the pot. Stir in the cooked rice until completely combined. Serve warm.

Emory

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new year, new home?

 

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It’s the start of a new year and many of us are reflecting on areas of our lives we want to improve on. The pandemic over the course of the past two years has made many of us reflect on our living spaces. Some of us are now working from home, so need extra space for desks and other office style equipment. Some of us have new jobs and want to move. Some of us have realised we want to be closer to friends and family. Some of us have simply had time to reflect on our properties and have decided we want something different. Whatever your reason for considering a new home for the new year, here are a few areas of focus that you can take into consideration. Hopefully, they’ll help you to find something that works for you!

Considerations

There are so many things to consider when choosing a new home. Some will hold more weight than others for different people, so here are just a few to take into account to get the ball rolling.

  • Area – where would you like to live? This is the first step you should take, as it will allow you to begin your property search. Do you need to be close to work? Do you need to be near schools for children? Do you want to be close to friends and family? Would you like to live in the city or a more rural area? These types of questions should help you to find a location that you’re happy with.
  • Property size – how big does your home need to be? Would you be fine in an apartment? Or do you need a home with separate rooms and living spaces? If you’re buying, it’s generally best to go bigger than your current needs if you think your family may be growing in the near future.
  • Aesthetics – how a property looks can determine how much you like it. Do you want something new or older? Modern or traditional?

Once you have an idea of what you’re looking for, you can use reliable real estate sites like Compass to get your property search started.

Remember

Moving isn’t necessarily the only option. Sure, if you want to move location, then you will have to move home to achieve this. But if you’re considering moving because of things like outgrowing your property, wanting more natural light or wanting more or fewer rooms, you could always consider renovating the property you’re already in. This is a great option for those who love their current home and don’t really want to leave and those who have children who they don’t want to disrupt. Sure, renovations can mean having work carried out in your living spaces for a while, which isn’t always ideal, but it’s a good way to make the property you’re already in better fit your needs and preferences.

These are just a few suggestions that could help you find the living space of your dreams. Hopefully, some of the information will come in useful for you and make all the difference! You’ll be in your new home before you know it.

** This was a contributed post.

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  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to four (two on earth, one in heaven, and growing another). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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