Building Your Family Home

Family silhouettes in nature.

Building Your Family Home

There was a time that building your own home was the norm. Indeed, it was a rite of passage that helped usher young people into adulthood and allowed them to create a solid physical and emotional foundation for the family. However, as society has developed over the centuries and populations became more centralized into cities and urban areas, the work of home building shifted to professionals. The situation is not much better today; that not only is it unusual to build your own home, but only around 65% of the U.S. population even owns their house.     

That doesn’t mean to say that building a home for your family isn’t possible. Whether you are set to create your dream home, or just a starter house to get yourself onto the first rung of the property ladder, there are some good reasons to engage in the process. That said, there are also significant challenges along the way.  

Let’s take a look at some of the key pros and cons of building a home rather than buying an existing property. What are the potential stumbling blocks? How can you approach the process to ensure success?

Safety

When you’re considering building your own home, some thought needs to go into the safety aspects of this endeavor. After all, your main concern when finding any home — whether you buy it or build it — is that it provides a secure and reliable roof over your family’s heads for years to come. It’s important not to proceed until you are confident in this area.   

Expertise plays a role. If you are not 100% confident that you have the skills and knowledge to build a safe home, you shouldn’t undertake it on your own. In most cases, you don’t need the safety licenses that professional contractors need, but it’s important to remember that professionals are licenses for a reason. It demonstrates they know what they’re capable of creating safe building projects. An option here is to lead the project as the general contractor and bring on qualified subcontractors for elements you’re unsure of. However, this can certainly get expensive, particularly if you make mistakes along the way that need to be repaired.  

On the plus side, leading your building project means that you have a personal hand in making sure that your family’s safety is forefront throughout the process. If you live in an area prone to problems, you can make certain disaster-proofing is present from the get-go. Unlike buying a house, you can also be sure that potentially hazardous materials haven’t been used in its production. If you buy a home that was built in the 20th century, for instance, you might find that asbestos had been used for its insulation. This mineral, which had been commonly used in construction, is known to lead to mesothelioma and other non-cancerous respiratory illnesses. Building your home from the ground up means you aren’t potentially exposing your family to such hazards, and you don’t have to go to the expense of having them removed.  

Environment

The more we learn about the planet we live on, the clearer it is becoming that some of our activities can be detrimental to the environment. As such, when you’re making your decision as to whether to build or buy a home you have to consider the extent to which this could be harmful. Certainly, construction utilizes a lot of raw materials, can put pressure on local exo-systems, and on an industrial scale counts for around 38% of global emissions

This is where buying an older home can be appealing. There is no additional consumption of resources, and you are unlikely to disrupt habitats when clearing the land. Even if the property isn’t quite up to your family’s preferred standards, undertaking some renovation isn’t generally as negatively impactful as building a home from scratch. 

That said, though a construction project isn’t the most sustainable, there are ways that you can mitigate the issues. There is a growing trend of using reclaimed wood as part of the home construction process. This is material that has been salvaged from older buildings but is still a viable raw product. You can apply it to the structural elements of your home, along with decorative touches such as fireplaces and furniture. Building your own home also allows you to design it for maximum energy efficiency, utilize environmentally friendly insulation and building materials, and even install solar power throughout the building to allow for long-term sustainability. 

Value

It may well be the case that you are intending to build the kind of home that you can spend the rest of your days in. Something you can pass down to the following generations of your family. However, life is rarely that straightforward, and your circumstances and plans might change. As such, it’s helpful to consider whether a home you build yourself can represent a valuable investment should you need to sell it in the future.

The good news is that this generally tends to be an area in which starting from scratch can be preferable. Newly built homes tend to be more attractive to buyers than those which are older and have fewer modern conveniences. This means that you may be more likely to see a profit on your family home than if you spend time trying to sell one that has been around for decades. However, you do need to weigh this potential profit against the possibility that it might cost you more to build than it would to buy.  

Another advantage is from the experience that you’ll gain through the process. You’ll understand precisely what goes into designing, preparing, and constructing each element of your property from the ground up. As such, if you decide to sell you can be in a good position to undertake any renovations that could make your property more valuable to buyers later on. It also means that you can cut down on the time and cost of getting someone else to do the renovations, allowing you to capture the window of opportunity for the best possible sale. 

Conclusion

Building your own family home can be a rewarding experience. But it’s important to take time to consider whether your circumstances might mean it’s better to buy an existing property. With investment, commitment, and some research you can create a property that not only suits your family but acts as a valuable investment.

Best Things To Do With Your Family During The Coronavirus

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The family is like a ship in which we sail on the ocean of life. And during a pandemic, it became like an ark in which we save the most important thing — life, health, children. How to swim out of this period without losses? We will give you some ideas on what to do with your family and how to organise family life during corona.

Make an action plan

A) Plan for the entire period of self-isolation

Having a route makes travel predictable. Having plans reduces anxiety, gives a sense of control over what is happening.

The minimum plan during this period: just quietly go through it, remain safe and sound.

Maximum plan: take everything from life!

Use all the possibilities of this period: study online, make money online; develop online (visit virtual exhibitions, performances, etc.), use the emerging time for creativity, etc.

B) Action plan for every day

A certain regime, daily routine set the desired rhythm, relieve idleness, boredom and anxiety.

An example of a routine: getting up, exercising, having breakfast, distance learning for school children, remote work for parents. Dinner. Daytime sleep of babies (the rest — optional). Housework. Time for a walk, games, creativity. Dinner. Joint viewing of films and cartoons of your choice (online walks to museums, online travel). Reading together. Preparation for sleep. Sleep.

You don’t need to have a rigid attachment to time. But there is a certain sequence of things. It gives a sense of predictability and security.

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Cleanliness and order: ways to clean up with your kids in a fun way

Let your home — your main living environment in this time of crisis — give you a feeling of comfort, cosiness and reliability.

It’s great if all of your family crew members are involved in cleaning. It is important to talk about the need to clean up more during the period of self-isolation. And that mom really needs everyone’s help.

Each family member should have his own work scope.

Children are children, they love to do everything playfully. Make a cleaning quest for them. You can catch an enemy agent with them — dust with the help of a secret weapon — rags and a vacuum cleaner. Children put scouts — things from other rooms — in their places or help refugee things to return home.

You can be the employees of the cleaning company, who are tasked with laundering a room. The reward is gratitude, generous praise, as well as “goodies” in the form of a joint viewing of a funny comedy, ice cream, etc. The game turns cleaning from a boring obligation into a fun, interesting activity.

Chat! How to interview each family member

In the hustle and bustle of everyday life, many household members become familiar strangers to each other. We manage to take an interest in the thoughts of loved ones only at a superficial level. “Did you eat? Did you do your homework?” – these are the questions that parents most often ask children.

The best thing about quarantine is that we are placed in conditions that facilitate closer communication with loved ones. Common meals, communication, hugs bring you very close.

And there are also games that help you become closer and dearer. Try those that consist of a joint discussion of questions about the inner world of each other. For example, about dreams, about a funny incident from childhood, about favourite games or favourite activities, about best friends, etc.

You can ask questions in different formats:

interviews ( use a cucumber or banana as a microphone. Pass it around. Everyone who takes a bite answers the question); fishing (put pieces of paper with questions in a hat. Each one pulls out a “fish” for himself – a question. Or you can attach paper clips to pieces of paper – and pull questions with a magnet on a rope); hot chair (one person sits – and everyone else asks him. It turns out in the form of a mini-press conference).

Get moving: 

In order to get out of the period of isolation with the least damage to your health, it is very important to include physical activity in your daily routine.

How do you get inspired to exercise at home?

Children are charged with the desire to practice for a long time after watching films (for example, “Faster, Higher, Bolder”) and cartoons (“KungFu Panda”) on sports topics;

It is interesting to work with coaches and fitness instructors (fortunately, now there is access to training videos);

You can arrange a competition in the number of steps, giving each household a pedometer for the day in turn;

The simplest thing: turn on incendiary music and dance together!

Day of records: everyone demonstrates their favourite physical exercises, achievements in strength and dexterity, flexibility and speed. Applause to all champions!

Fun competitions will not leave anyone motionless. For example arm wrestling with dad, jumping rope, standing on one leg, tennis with a balloon, etc.

Don’t forget about the importance of fresh air. Go for a walk, play volleyball outside or go biking. There is no child that doesn’t love bikes. And if you don’t have enough bikes for the whole family, it’s great that you don’t have to go to the store, but order from Bicycles Online.

Win! What heroes to take an example in self-isolation

Despondency, fear, anxiety are the enemies of this period. But there are remedies that are important to apply. In crowded places, we wear a mask to protect ourselves. It is also important to filter information, protecting yourself and loved ones from panic viruses.

Help the children see the good times every day. Create little joys and a festive mood. Share with each other what you liked about that day in the evening, replenish the family piggy bank of joys.

During this challenging time, it is very important to discuss with children the experience of coping with the difficulties of parents and grandparents. Tell them how you and your family won, coped, how you fell, but got up. Research confirms that the experience of ancestor victories becomes a pillar in the hour of trials for their descendants.

You can study with children how literary characters (for example, Robinson Crusoe) and living people (for example, astronauts) overcome the difficulties of isolation. Let their experiences inspire you to hold on and not give up.

You can discuss the goals, destinations of your family boat. What are you aiming for? What will you do after self-isolation? Will you appreciate things as simple as living with friends and family, walking and travelling more?

You can make a dream collage with the whole family – outline your goals with the help of pictures in terms of health, communication, finance, education, travel, etc. Such a conversation can help teenagers with a great desire to start studying (for example, to learn a new language, which is definitely needed when travelling abroad).

Conclusion

During this tough period, it is important to channel anxiety into action. During the war, people helped each other a lot, sharing even the little that they had. And now we can share words of support, sympathy, optimism with our friends and family. Stay in touch with them. Call your parents more often. Don’t isolate yourself mentally.

We wish your crews solidarity! We wish you to emerge from this period safely and sound, loving and happy!

Family Time: Awesome Hobbies You Can Share With Your Kids

Spending time with your kids is always full of new memories you will use to “embarrass” them in front of their friends. However, nothing can replace those moments and you will always feel as though they grew up too quickly. Instead of waiting for the perfect time to have family time, you can be more proactive and create your own.

Hobbies are one of the gratifying and easiest ways to have not only fun but also spend quality time with your family. Kids love the new and interesting stuff, and it won’t take you long to find something that will interest you all. In order to help, we prepared the list of possible hobbies you can share with your kids. So choose one and make those memories every parent likes to share at social gatherings.   

Take lessons together

There must be something you think you missed to learn when you were a kid. Having kids is a perfect time to make up for that perceived lost time. For example, take language lessons together or attend a drawing class. This will give you a unique opportunity to not only learn something new but also teach your kid how to be a responsible student.

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Some other fun experiences could be to learn how to make origami or pottery class since kids like making stuff. However, whatever you choose make sure your child is interested to learn since otherwise, it will only be a one-sided amusement.  

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Grow plants in the garden

If you have an outdoor space, turn it into the garden and start planting together with your kids. They like getting dirty and you can even get them gardening tools specifically intended for kids. You will both spend an amusing time choosing what to plant and how to organize your garden.

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This is also an educational moment when you can teach them about food and importance of environment in human life. Digging the soil will help them release the energy and observing the growing process will make them feel important

Explore nature

Going on hikes is not only healthy but will also give you the chance to talk with your kid away from the city chaos. Nature is maybe a usual choice for family time, but it is always full of options and opportunities.

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You can play sports on the lawn or jog in the park, as well as having a picnic time during weekends and start a family tradition. You can show your kids the meaning of nature in human life while allowing them to dazzle you with their imagination about faraway lands among the greenery.   

Fun time with music

If you know how to play an instrument, don’t impose it on your kid, but rather let them get to know all the choices together with you. First off, introduce them to the instrument. For example, visiting piano sales with a child is an enjoyable way to show them what it’s all about. Watch concerts with them or take them to one.  

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Turn it into a family thing to regularly attend certain concerts and musical happenings. If you want, you can also learn to play the same instrument with your kid. That would take this family time hobby to a whole different level and make the experience more memorable.

 Start a collection together

Kids like to collect things like napkins and toys. This is a wonderful occasion to wake up the child inside and start a collection together with your kid. It’s never too late to be geeky, so team up with your kid and start some interesting collections together.  

There are also fairs and festivals dedicated to certain collecting interests, so you can go there together, have fun and expand your collection. It’s always nice to meet fellow collectors and it will only help your child and you bond even more.

In the end

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The most important thing you have to do before starting a hobby with your kids is to listen to them. They will already show interest in certain things and you can help them broaden their knowledge by being supportive. Additionally, sharing a hobby will also teach you more about your children and make you, even more, a part of their growing up.

 

Family Handprint Artwork

This is really great. A little work to plan it all out and this could be a great addition to your wall – and a sure conversation piece. First get a tracing of each persons hand and cut out. Lay them in a pattern on stretched canvas. How many colors will you need? Whats your background color? How do these colors co-ordinate with each other? .. with your home decor? Is it going to be a gift? Here the colors are painted – but you could cut circles from fabric, wall paper, construction paper. You could also place each persons name under hand print. I would also create a date.