Money and Marriage!!!

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After viewing several readings via the web it is clear that money, marriage and divorce are linked and not in a good way. Per certain articles, the earlier the financial arguments begin, the higher the chance of divorce. I did not read any articles that discussed if couples actually sit down prior to marriage to discuss finances and what impact this would have on the divorce rate. In my opinion, your upbringing plays a significant factor on how you spend and save money.  Naturally, this upbringing spills over into your adult life and marriage. I suggest that regardless of your upbringing, once in a committed relationship as far as finances and others topics are concerned compromise….compromise…..compromise is key. Sitting down and coming up with a plan with your significant other that you both can both live with is an excellent idea.  My husband and I do have different views when it comes to money. He wants to save for a rainy day…..me, I want it now. Again,  compromise has played a significant factor in our money situation. Compromise and the trust that the plan we came up with is what is best for our family. During our earlier years of marriage, it was necessary to save and I was not as laxed as I am today with my spending. Early in our marriage, we devised a savings plan and stuck to it. We are not rich by any means but we are okay. Over time our plan has changed to fit our needs and wants as the years have passed by.  My husband will always be saving for when the rainy day comes and oddly, I am fine with this.  Find what works for you and your significant other and stick to it. I have included a link that discuss 13 money tips for married couples. The most important thing to remember is that you are a part of a team and are working together to enhance your family.

 

http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/mutual-funds/slideshows/13-money-tips-for-married-couples

 

Surviving Christmas as the Non-Custodial Parent

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Christmas can be the most difficult time of the year to be without your child. Seeing all of the Christmas decorations and Santa’s in the malls, kids running around being festive about the holiday season can leave you feeling overwhelmed and depressed. Every parent wants to see their child wake up Christmas morning to open their gifts, so what can you do if your child will be with their other parent?

My first year was very difficult without my son, but since then I have learned three key things that have help me deal with this transition.

1. Celebrate Christmas early or late.

My son taught me that the date is not as important as the time spent at home. This year we had Christmas early. We plan a day when he was able to wake up early in the morning and open all of his gifts. He had all of his favorite meals and we played all day with his new toys. If you were not able to celebrate early, it’s okay to plan something for your child when they return home. It’s never too late to celebrate.

2. Volunteer.

It is exciting to put a smile on someone else’s face. There are so many people who don’t have anyone in their life to care for them, or have lost a love one and the holiday season can be extremely difficult for them to get through. You can start be contacting your local shelter, senior citizen homes or church. It always great to give back to those in need.

3. Pamper yourself.

Don’t be afraid to take time out for yourself. You can treat yourself to massage,  manicure or pedicure. Go see a movie that you been waiting to come out. If you not able to spend a lot of money, stay home and fix your favorite meal, watch your favorite program or sit quietly and listing to some music or read a book.

You have to find time to fine tune yourself so you can be a better person to yourself and your love ones.

 

Faith, Family, Friends & Fun

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God has blessed me to have such an awesome family.  Just to think about the many blessings he has bestowed upon us is actually overwhelming sometimes.  From the time that my girls were babies up to now, I have to admit that I have enjoyed being a family man.  We are always doing something together. It doesn’t have to be “BIG” all the time. To admit, most time we are doing little things such as; riding around site-seeing (some call it; being nosey), going to the mall, getting a bite to eat, sitting outside enjoying the night air, catching a movie, or just sitting at home getting on each others nerves. Oh yes; we do that very well.  Life was designed by God in that we would first have a relationship with him (Faith) and then build a relationship with our (Family) and others (Friends).  While we are developing these relationships we make it our business to have (FUN)!  There is nothing like a family that first loves God, then is willing to go all out having fun while sharing their lives with others.  For those of you that have families; you should cherish it. For their are many individuals who go through life looking for the family oriented lifestyle and never find it. I am constantly praying for these individuals that God will somehow fulfill their emptiness.  But for you all that have families; find time to have fun together.  Stop spending all your time alone doing what you want to do as if you are single. Stop let things such as your job, people, bills, or even yourself hinder you from spending good quality time with your family.  You only live once.  Because we have no idea what turns life may take, it would be wise to start investing good quality time in your family.  That’s right; Faith, Family, Friends & Fun!!! What a wonderful combination.  Get on board and start living the life!

When Should I Discuss Sex With My Children???

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The bible lets us know that children are gifts from God.  No matter how they are conceived, they are still God-given gifts of life.  When children are born we see them as one of the most beautiful sites ever.  Just to hold them in your arms is such an unexplainable feeling.  We know that as long as they are in our arms, they are protected and secure. Protecting them becomes our number one goal.  We want to protect them from everything, which by the way is impossible.  Although it may be impossible to protect them from everything, we can protect them from some things.  One of the best ways to protect our children is through communication.  Yes, you guessed it, talk to them.  Talk to them about what?  Everything!  This includes sex!  Most parents will talk about everything else but sex.  With the growing epidemic of sexually transmitted diseases and HIV, this should be the most talked about subject at home.  Some will agree and others will disagree.  As for the parents who agree, the next question is WHEN?  When should I discuss sex with my child? What is the appropriate age?  Frankly, there is not an appropriate age to have this discussion.  Base the timing of the discussion off the maturity level of the child along with your judgement as a parent.  So now the question arises; what or how much should be discussed?  The answer is EVERYTHING and EVERYTHING!  Remember if you don’t communicate with them about sex, they will eventually become informed in ways that you never could dream of.  Moreover, they may find out “from or with” someone you may not want them to.  So let’s make it our responsibility to keep our children informed of the truth when it comes to subjects of this nature.  Afterwards; when the time comes, your children can make an informed and educated decision concerning themselves and their involvement in sex.

She Deserves to be Celebrated!!!

FFC image for Mothers Day

I am not one who is big on traditions. Celebrating the traditions of man can be mentally, physically, spiritually, and financially draining. Although I try not to get caught up in traditions, there are some traditions that I do celebrate. For example; today happens to be mother’s day. I firmly believe that the mothers of this world deserve to be celebrated. For most mothers, her job is never done. If she is not working a professional job, she is at home nurturing. There are some mothers who do both. She either comes home after work or is at home doing the cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, bill paying, educating, nursing or doctoring, ironing or laundering, and most importantly, she’s constantly praying. In addition to all of this; she still finds time to be sexy for her husband, take care of him, and give him some loving. Oh yes! What a woman! What a mother!  When you have a wife or a mother who exemplifies such a character, one does not mind celebrating such a tradition. So during this season, let us not overlook our mothers. Celebrate and praise her! Show her how much you love and appreciate her! After all you only get one…

Let’s Get Him Involved in Our Family

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I remember growing up with five brother and three sisters.  We lived in a four bedroom home in a little country town of North Carolina.  My father worked from sun up till sun down to provide for us.  My mother was a home-maker.  Yes, she made the home what it was.  Although she did not work in the corporate world, she worked constantly around the clock caring and praying for us daily.  My siblings and I never “missed a beat.”  We always had food to eat, clothes to wear, transportation, and a home to live in.  Don’t get me wrong; we had our struggles too. Sometimes we would hear our parents discussing and sometimes arguing about how we were going to make it.  If someone asked me today, how we made it, I would have a one word answer. God! It was nobody but God!  You see my parents were believers of faith.  They just believed if they put their trust in God, everything would be alright.  We sometimes thought our mother was crazy. She would always be praying.  She would pray in the morning, at noon, and through the night. Of course this was not literally but it was often.  She prayed without ceasing.  She prayed that God’s will be done in her marriage and with our family.  I must admit that we all turned out okay. Five out of nine of us made it through college. Most of us got married and raised families. But the greatest miracle was that we all are born again Christians. What am I trying to say?  I am trying to say that no matter how tough your life gets. No matter how tough the struggle in your marriage, with your family or on your job gets.  You can always come out on top. If we can learn to include God in every aspect of our life, though it may look dim and dark at times, we can be victorious.  Make your mind up today that you will give Christ a chance to walk with you through your tough times. If you get involved in His life, He will get more involved in yours. You and your family’s effort plus God’s involvement equals winning! You will never know until you try…