How to Manage Gun Ownership Responsibly as a Parent

Gun Owner

There are a number of valid reasons to own a gun. From target practice and hunting to protection and more, you could easily find that owning one can provide the combination of joy and peace-of-mind that increases your overall quality of life. Whether you have long owned a gun or are considering purchasing your first, you’ve likely taken the time to consider the fact that firearms in a home with children does pose certain risks that must be taken into consideration.

Kids are curious, and it’s not uncommon for them to explore firearms simply because they are shrouded in so much mystery. There are a few things you should be doing to ensure yout right to bear arms and duties as a parent don’t clash.

Talk to Your Kids

The most important thing you can do to employ proper gun ownership as a parent is to talk to your kids. We often fail to give them credit for their ability to take responsibility. Rather than just telling them to leave your guns alone and increasing their curiosity, let them know exactly what can happen when they’re played with. In fact, it can even prove beneficial when you take them out for supervised target shooting if you feel they’re mature enough to do so. You should also prepare them on  what to do if they ever encounter a gun without adult supervision such as:

  • Keep their hands off the gun
  • Flee from the area.
  • Make an adult aware of the situation.

While it can be valuable to teach older children more about firearms, if you have younger children, it’s important that you keep your guns out of reach. Use your own common sense to gauge your child’s ability to fully absorb the realities of the dangers guns pose before you allow them to engage in use.

Purchase a High-Quality Gun Safe

Stack On Gun SafeMost of the time your gun won’t be in use. That’s what makes it so important that you take time in figuring out the best way to store gun. People have long used a number of methods such as hanging them on the wall or placing them in a closet. While this makes it more difficult to get into the wrong hands, it’s still highly possible.

When you invest in a high-quality gun safe, however, you get the peace-of-mind of knowing that your gun is safely tucked away. Thanks to technological advancements, you can now take advantage of special features such as electronic locks that are much easier to use. Best of all, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get a quality product. When you take time to read reviews from real customers, you can locate a quality safe that both meets your expectations and offers the specific features that work best for you.

Educate Yourself

Educate YourselfIn order to be a good teacher, you, yourself, must be educated. When it comes to gun responsibilities, you must ensure you know your gun like the back of your hand. Just a few things you should do to ensure you fully understand each firearm you own include:

  • Carefully read the instruction manual
  • Be aware of how to safely open and close the gun action
  • Know how to properly remove ammunition

In order to pass knowledge onto your kids, you must first possess it yourself. By taking the time to enlighten yourself, you can better ensure you know how to talk to your kids about gun use and safety.

You Can Own a Gun With Children in the Home

Guns have a bad reputation, especially in this day and age. With the ability to quickly share information no matter where you are in the world, we see some of the most horrible scenes play out before our eyes. However, it’s easy to overlook the fact that these types of situations aren’t the norm. In fact, gun owners very rarely have to use their gun as they can inflict the fear necessary to avert problems such as burglaries and attacks simply by brandishing one. Just a few other interesting facts you probably didn’t know include:

  • There are around 270,000 civilian firearms in the United States.
  • Nearly a quarter million sexual assaults are avoided using guns.
  • Three in five felons polled reported they’d they’d leave armed victims alone

It’s clear to see that owning a gun can put the power in your hands when it comes to the safety and well-being of your family. While the risk of accidents will exist, you can significantly minimize your chance of experiencing these kinds of problems when you employ these helpful tips. You can own a gun with children in the home. It just takes a little action on your part to ensure you’re a responsible gun owner and parent.

Keeping Firearms In A Gun Safe And Out Of The Reach Of Children

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Our children are the most important things in our lives. Every day, they are exposed to germs, bullies, car accidents, viruses, and honestly the list is endless. Keeping them safe and out of harm’s way is one very important job that we have when it comes to raising our children. We obviously can’t keep them safe from every tiny thing, but we can try our hardest to keep them away from what can hurt them the most.

Vaccinations

Child Vaccination

Vaccinations are a hot topic these days. There are a certain amount of parents around the world that are against vaccinating their child because they don’t think it’s necessary and that it just causes more harm than good. Personally, I’m pro vaccination and here’s why.

All vaccines are carefully reviewed by doctors and the federal government to ensure they are safe. They are meant to protect children from illnesses and complications of diseases that could have easily been prevented by a vaccine. These diseases can result in:

  • Amputation of an arm or leg
  • Limb paralysis
  • Loss of hearing
  • Convulsions
  • Damage to the brain
  • Death

Everyone has their own beliefs, which is fine, but vaccines can protect your child better than no vaccines from measles, mumps, whooping cough, and other diseases that may be brought over from foreign countries.

Guns

This is another hot topic. Guns are becoming an increasing problem here in the United States. At the end of 2015, 265 children had gotten ahold of a gun and shot themselves or someone else by accident. This is an alarming statistic, but a preventable one.

If you have guns in the home that are unprotected, now is the time to find the top gun safes you could possibly have. These are storage units for all of your firearms that can either be mechanically or electronically locked, leaving the guns out of reach of little hands.

Television Violence

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It’s hard to stop it, but violence on the television is a growing concern. No matter what your child is watching, there’s some kind of violence going on at some point in the show. When children watch it, they have a tough time processing what’s real and fake, especially if they’re under the age of 8. It has become such a problem in Canada that the American Academy of Pediatrics want primary-care providers to be in a position to counsel children on media violence.

If you think that your child is being exposed to too much television violence, there are some precautions that you can take to ensure that they aren’t becoming anxious, stressed, or worried:

  • Choose age-appropriate content.
  • Restrict screen times
  • If violence is viewed or discussed in school, talk with your child about it after school hours and reassure them about systems and laws put into place to protect against that violence.
  • Have open communication with caregivers and teachers of your child. Make sure they let you know if they notice a change in behaviour with your child.
  • Check for emotional reactions during violent media coverage if they are watching it.
  • Encourage positive TV viewing such as inspiring, encouraging, and teaching shows.
  • Address any changes in behaviour with your child’s primary care physician.

This past year has been one of the worst in many years for news coverage. It’s  not surprising that children who watch the news with their families are having negative reactions afterwards. If this is happening, limit their viewing time or don’t let them watch it at all.

Conclusion

As said earlier, we can’t protect our children from everything, but we can try our best to keep them safe from what’s in our control. Guns, violence, and germs are all things that we can control in our homes. We all parent in different ways, but we all strive to protect our kids whether we agree with laws and systems or not.

November 10, 2016

Avoiding Chaos and Organizing Your Day With 5 Quick Tips

Ask anyone, and they will tell you that they don’t have enough hours in the day. As a mother of three small children, a full-time career, and a needy husband, here are somethings that have helped me.

There is never enough time to get everything done. Part of this is because today’s working person has more piled on them than what they are capable of handling. This is a combination of career, household chores, and family obligations. However, many people suffer from a lack of organization. Being highly organized is the key to getting more done. Here are some other tips I use to make my day more productive and less chaotic.

Follow A Strict Routine

Most people who operate on a routine seem to do better than those who don’t. The body becomes accustomed to a routine. Whether you have 10 or 30 things that you must accomplish in your day, sticking to a strict schedule can help make it happen. Even my kids appreciate a strict routine.

Don’t Sit Down All Day

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There have been many studies conducted on the advantages of standing at a desk rather than sitting. Those who sit down all day long risk the chances of gaining weight. Keep in mind, their body’s joints can pay the price. A standing desk provides straight posture, which avoids back and neck issues from sitting. Additionally, when you are standing, you are more likely to bounce around a bit. Sitting makes people tired, especially for long periods of time. Many say that the difference in their energy levels and overall well-being changed dramatically when they switched from a seated to a standing desk. Some say it is easy to do some squats or other exercises while standing at their desk at work. I switched to a standing desk 2 years ago and will never go back.

Make Lists

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I am nothing without my lists. While cartoons depict superheroes, who are invincible, the real world provides a very different perspective. With all that you need to accomplish in a day’s time, it is impossible to remember it all. Make yourself lists to keep yourself organized. If you need milk from the store and go to the bank, a list will help you group things together to save time. Visualizing all that you need to do, and crossing each one off as it is done, will allow you to have a sense of accomplishment. Many people feel overwhelmed because they don’t realize how much they do accomplish in a day’s time.

Take A Power Nap or Meditate

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Some businesses have realized the helpful aspects of napping. Many have gone as far as to include a nap room at their offices. Around 12 or 1 pm, the body feels full, and exhausted, after eating. A quick nap can energize you, and it gives you the boost you need to make it through the day. A power nap can be 10-30 minutes in length. If you are not lucky enough to have an employer that believes in this “down time,” then simply use your car or a break room for relaxation. Meditation is also a great way to get rid of stress. It helps you be on your “A” game and make it through the rest of the day.

Schedule Important Things In The AM

If you are like me, you do your best work in the morning. If you need to meet with clients or have important business to take care of, be sure to do it in the morning hours. The afternoons are usually when you are feeling the crunch of unfinished daily business and exhaustion. To give a matter your full attention, handle it in the am rather than the pm.

By following these five tips, you will be on your way to a less chaotic day. Keep yourself organized, and make sure you have all your goals written down each day. It’s how I make it through my crazy life.

November 10, 2016

Sleep Regression is a Learning Curve

As a new mom, sleep deprivation becomes part of the daily routine, but there is always a glimmer of hope that one day your sweet baby will sleep through the night and you can get back to your own healthy sleep patterns. Around three to four months old, your infant’s sleep will probably regress, but don’t lose hope, this just means your baby’s brain is beginning to mature and develop sleep patterns. Sleep regression is a learning curve for both you and your infant.

Babies seem to have the ability to sleep through anything and then one day they won’t! At around four months old, an infant begins to develop healthy changes in her sleeping patterns and cycles between light and deep sleep. Before this change, she spent almost all of her slumber within the deep sleep phase, which is why you could vacuum or play loud music and not hear a peep from your infant. During the sleep regression stage, she might take shorter naps during the day, wake up more at night, and have difficulty falling back asleep. So, what is a tired mom to do?

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First of all, know that a child will go through many stages in their development and this is just another normal, healthy stage that won’t last forever. Well, actually, the matured sleep will last forever, but the sleep regression phase will pass. Your baby’s sleep patterns are transitioning and starting to mirror the sleep pattern of an adult. Although you are probably utterly exhausted and frustrated, you will need to find a way to survive this stage and encourage your baby’s development.

Everyone has advice about how to help your baby sleep, but you know your baby best. Continue doing your mom thing and help your infant fall asleep however you have been doing it up until this point. Keep a routine. A sleep routine may help your baby to make sense that it is time to go to sleep. The routine can include a bath, story, white noise, swaddle, rocking, or whatever works for your family. There will be time later to wean your baby from being rocked or nursed to sleep, often called sleep associations.

baby-303071_640Your baby will eventually need to learn how to put herself back to sleep once she wakes up. Most parents don’t like to hear their baby cry, but in this case you may want to give your little one some time to fuss and see if she can soothe herself back to sleep. Put your baby down when she is drowsy so she can get the hang of how to slumber without sleep associations. Make sure the room is dark so your baby knows it is not time to wake up until it is light outside. It will take some practice because sleeping through the night is a developmental and learned skill.

Be patient with yourself and your baby as her sleep patterns change and mature. The sleep regression phase won’t last forever, but the sleep tools you are giving your baby will last her entire life.

November 5, 2016

Common Blunders New Parents Make Raising Children

Being a parent is not an easy job. I have three children, and I still have not mastered the art of raising them properly. With our first child, Jesse, we did anything and everything we could to ensure that he was coddled and well-cared for. He had the best of the best, and our wallets took a hit. We thought that he had to have every gadget and gizmo out there. Of course, we were very young and had no clue about raising babies. I was only 20, and I had no clue what parents were all about.

Letting Them Stand on Their Own

One of the biggest mistakes that new parents make is rushing to the child every time they whimper. When he cried, we held him, which is a huge mistake. By the time I got to my second child, Madelyn, she pretty much could cry for about 5 five minutes before I would go to her. And, by the time the third one rolled around, Noah, well, he just kind of cried himself to sleep nightly.

child-cryingTeaching children that they need to have ways to cope starts in the cradle. Parents who continuously rush to their child’s aid will never teach them anything in life, no matter how hard they try. Even though I am only 30 years old, I still have friends whose parents cater to their every whim. It really is a bad pattern to break.

They Don’t Need Stuff

I mentioned before that Jesse had all he could ever want. Now, when he came home from the hospital, his crib was a name brand that cost over $1,000. Do you honestly think that child slept any better in that crib than one from a discount store? The thing is that I tried to show my affection by purchasing things. Parents always get caught up in the latest toys, clothes, and technological gadgets. Again, this is another pattern that doesn’t seem to stop anywhere in life. Sometimes, less is more when it comes to kids.

Showing Love

mother and babyWith my first and second child, I was all snuggles and hugs. However, by the time my third one came around, I had to go back to work to pay for all the diapers and such. I didn’t get as much time with Noah as the other two. I regretted that because I don’t feel he and I are as close as I would like. I don’t have as many hours with him, and I have learned he doesn’t need so much stuff. What many parents don’t make a habit of is telling their children how much they love them. Hugs and kisses as well as “I love you” should be said and done every day. You can’t buy your child’s affections.

Thinking Bad Behavior is Cute

Wow, this topic really hits close to home. I already told you that I felt like Noah didn’t get much of my time. So to make up for my feelings of failure, I let him get by with way more than the others. Keep in mind, this is also common by the third or subsequent child too. Noah would say a dirty word every now and again. We would laugh at his little slip of the tongue. However, by the time he went to kindergarten, his dirty words landed me, and him, in the principal’s office. He also had a habit of yelling “shut up.” He had a small lisp, and it was so funny to hear him say the “s” sound. Once again, my husband and I laughed and thought it was funny. However, his teachers don’t take too kindly to being told such a thing.

Learning To Relax

family-1016311_640What they say is true, kids don’t come with instruction manuals. Parents have to wing it. However, remembering that we are trying to mold them into upstanding citizens should always be in the back of our mind. We teach them bad habits from the cradle that can follow them through life. Most of the time, we overcompensate for our shortcomings and our childhoods, and we give them complexes and problems they don’t need. As a parent, I can honestly tell you, we need to relax. My third child, the one who didn’t get as much, is much more well-rounded, which only proves my theory. My first one, he still thinks the world should be handed to him. I guess when we get it right, they will be raised and gone.