Traveling With a Toddler – 5 Tips to Keep You Sane!

Traveling can be taxing and difficult on its own, nonetheless, traveling with a toddler. In order to ensure a good, fun, and happy trip, here are a few helpful tips!

1. Bring A Special Bag

My daughter is currently obsessed with Dora and Diego. So in preparation for a recent trip, we purchased a Diego backpack for all of her toys. Not only was my daughter thrilled with the backpack, but she was also able to wear it while traveling, so freeing my hands for something else!

2. Pack Lots of Toys and Drawing Supplies

Being prepared is the key for pleasant travels. You can never have enough books, coloring books, crayons, stickers or toys for a toddler. To make sure that it's really special and new, start buying supplies in advance. That way there is extra excitation and eagerness to read a new book or use new crayons. A great place to find inexpensive and small items is the Dollar Store.

3. Bring the Favorites

A great tip I learned from a season mom is to start putting away favorite toys before a trip and then re-introduce while traveling. Not only are the kids excited to see the toy, but you already know they will happily play with it!

4. Do not Forget The Snacks

Food and drinks are always a necessity while traveling. Juice boxes and goldfish are an essential; however, bringing new items may also work. Try making trail mix and have two bags … one for the trip there and one for the way home. And be prepared, if you are flying, security may seize your opened containers. I found that they allowed my daughter's sippy cup with juice, but that might not be the case at all airports. Bottom line, have a "plan B" in place!

5. Maintaining A Schedule

Although you're on vacation, following your typical schedule and routine can be comforting to a toddler. If your child is use to taking a daily nap, do everything in your power to maintain that schedule. Otherwise, you could be vacationing with a cranky and unpleasant child … which is not relaxing or fun!

Traveling with a toddler can be lots of fun, but be sure to plan ahead. Be prepared and expect the unexpected! If you can roll with the punches, everyone is sure to have a great time!

Oh My – Traveling the Yellow Brick Road to Employment

This week I posted a researcher / admin job on Craigslist. Within 90 minutes I had 75 resumes. Here are 14 things that came to mind when reviewing responses to my listing:

  1. Put your employment objectives at the top of your resume but make them about serving your employer not about YOU. Employment is not about you, it's about an agreement to deliver services for $$.
  2. It's not a good idea to have typos in a resume. I rejected those immediately.
  3. Write in complete sentences and check your grammar and punctuation.
  4. Put a greeting with some info into the email. With 75 resumes there was no way in heck I was going to read a resume without an introduction.
  5. Remember to attach the resume.
  6. At least try to match your qualifications with the job description. Please.
  7. Do not write about your interest in learning to do the job. I need an assistant not an intern.
  8. Do not suggest you would love to work in my organization and know all about it because, you do not: It's Craig's List, I'm under cover!
  9. Include references.
  10. If you have a new job every three months, explain yourself.
  11. Respond early. I opened the emails in chronological order and some early responders where eminently qualified.
  12. Do not send a sexy seductive picture (yep, someone did that).
  13. Do not make me guess your abilities. There's too much competition. You have to make me want to hire you based on your qualifications.

It's tough to make the transition from one field of work to another (eg, retail to administration). Think about how your old / current job keep you the right skills for you new job and explain it in a cover letter. Be creative yet honest.

5 Reasons Women Love Romance Movies

Since the beginning of cinema, romance movies have been well loved – predominately by women. Today, when a new romantic comedy or drama hits theaters, it's the perfect excuse for a ladies' night gathering. Many men (and even a few women) have amazed what it is about this genre of film that draws women in. Here are 5 reasons women love romance movies.

Women Love Getting In Touch With Their Emotions

Women are emotional beings, and not only do they have no issue displaying their emotions but many do not mind having those emotions drawn out of them. Sometimes it just feels good to have a hearty laugh or let the tears flow while watching others go through the ebb and flow of finding love, falling in love and losing love.

Women Prefer to Watch Rather Than Read Romance

Okay, so this is not true for all women (but what statement is?). However, with the busyness that consumes the daily lives of most women, many prefer watching romance movies to reading romance novels. It's less time consuming, equally entertaining -or more so for some- and equally emotion spurring.

Women Love Using Romance Movies to Hint At Men

Women love watching romance movies to throw hints at the men in their lives as to what he should or should not be doing in their relationship. Some women will watch the movies alone while making notes or with their guy and having him take notes. Yes, a woman wants a man to chase her when she storms out after a fight, to serenade her from below her bedroom window and of course, to whisper sweet cinematic lines in her ear that give Tom Cruise's classic "You complete me" some serious competition.

Women Relate to the Characters or Plot

Some romance movies are just plain happy -and women may love those too- but some women love the more realistic films, the ones they can painfully refer to. Typically, stories of lost love and young love spark emotions in women and bring up old memories but women can appreciate the way the film made them feel and even relish in the memories.

Women Want to Be the Characters and Live the Plot

So, what's the number one reason most women love romance movies? The Fantasy, of course! The happy ending is what every woman wants and few get to live in real life. It's a nice escape from the reality of real life relationships for 90 minutes!

Lowering Child Support Payments Through Unspecified Vacations

You want to pay the fair amount of child support and spend as much time as possible with your kids. Easy, right? Unfortunately, no. It can be very difficult for divorced parents to agree on a child custody schedule that lets them both enjoy their children as much as possible. Usually there is a custodial parent who has the kids most of the time – and the non-custodial parent gets to spend some time with them and pay child support. The non-custodial parent may feel completely helpless about getting more time with the children and he / she may feel like there is nothing they can do to lower the child support payments. Fortunately, there are things a non-custodial parent can do to gain more time with the children – and if they spend more time with the children then the child support payments generally go down. One way to do this is to use unspecified vacations.

Let's start with a fairly typical child custody arrangement. The child visitation schedule is set up so that the non-custodial parent has the children every other weekend. Since the children are most often with the custodial parent, the child support payments will be large. With this visitation agreement, the non-custodial parent has about fifteen percent of the customs time. Negotiating for unspecified vacations, however, can increase this time.

Unspecified vacations are general periods of time set aside in a visitation plan for one parent or the other without any specific dates attached. A typical order would read: "Father may take a vacation with the children each year of up to one uninterrupted week two times per year and must notify Mother of specific dates thirty days prior to vacation." This means that Dad gets two separate weeks a year when he can take the kids – and he can do it whenever he chooses. Attorneys generally use this type of unspecified vacation when parties want the flexibility to go on trips – but not at the same exact days and times each year. Also, it's useful for parents who simply want more vacation options or are uncertain about plans for summer break.

So, the smart parent will look through the calendar and choose vacation times that will maximize the time with their children. The parent should choose the weeks when they do not already have custody of their children. A parent can also look into purchasing a child customs software that will calculate the best time for them to schedule the vacation. We scheduled two of these vacations with the scenario used before – and the percentage time shot up to eighty percent. This is a double bonus for the non-custodial parent. You'll get to spend more time with your child and, since child support payments are based on the percentage of time spend with the child, your child support payments will decrease. And, there's the obvious fact that now you get to take your kids on vacation whenever you want during the year. So, take the money you save in child support and you're on your way!