The Gerber Life Parenting Blog

What parents want to know

With work, family and finances, modern parenting can sometimes feel like a juggling act. The Gerber Life parenting blog gives parents advice and tips to help you take on today-and plan for tomorrow. Our parenting blog offers articles on saving money, college planning, family insurance, parenting tips, living green, and health and safety. Although we may not be able to manage your retirement account, drive your all-star athlete to practice, or cook your family's favorite three-cheese lasagna, our parenting blog can provide you with ideas, advice and tips so that you can focus on what matters most: raising healthy, happy kids. We invite you to join the conversation and enjoy our parenting blog.

  1. Saving the Earth, One Aluminum Can at a Time

    Saving the Environement with Daily RecycleEstablishing a daily recycle plan isn’t just a great way to save the environment – it can also be a fun and educational activity if you get the whole family involved. Here are just a few of the most effective tips for creating a more eco-friendly world, one aluminum can at a time.

    Get Educated
    Your first step in your daily recycle plan should be to get yourself educated on where your local recycling centers are, what kinds of recyclables they accept, and what their particular rules are. The Yellow Pages is a great resource. Of course, there’s always that new-fangled invention called the internet that can get you the same information without having to hoist that hefty phone book onto your kitchen counter.

  2. How to Adopt Frugal Living Hobbies

    Frugal Living HobbiesFrugal living habits need not be unpleasant. Put some fun into money saving hobbies by enjoying some of these off hour pursuits.

    Budget-friendly Hobbies

    When your monthly budgeting efforts require tight cash controls, these hobbies will not destroy your financial plan. In some cases, they even result in saving benefits.

    Grow your own fruits and vegetables. Gardening, whether for beauty or food, is a relaxing, satisfying hobby. If you work at a stressful job, the psychological benefits are even greater. Getting physical exercise while watching your plants grow and mature is both easy on your budget and personally rewarding.

    Reading. Become a regular visitor to your local library to have access to a universe of reading material—all at no cost. If you have a strong sense of history and tradition, browsing smaller bookstores may bring you titles you’ve longed to read and own at low cost.

    Sewing and crafting. Both of these hobbies are psychologically calming and generate pride in your workmanship. Additionally, these hobbies give you the opportunity to create unique, handmade gifts, jewelry, and home décor items at a fraction of the cost of buying them—if you could even find similar items—from a retail store.

    • Cooking. You needn’t become an exotic, gourmet chef or have your own show on the Food Network to enjoy this wonderful hobby. You, your family, and your guests need to eat anyway. Trying new and healthy dishes and surprising diners with new variations on classic foods is great fun—and achieves your goal of frugal living.

    • Entering sweepstakes is a fun—sometimes, monetarily rewarding—hobby. Sweepstaking is an inexpensive—usually, free—hobby that can sometimes result in winning money or luxury items that would be budget-busters if you bought them. If you’re new to the world of sweepstakes, you’ll be amazed at the number and variety of contests available online. The only danger: You could spend most of your free time finding and entering sweeps. Beware; this hobby can easily become habit-forming and great fun.

    • Photography. Sure, photography can be quite expensive—if you want it to be. However, the many fabulous and low cost digital cameras available have made photography a hobby available to everyone. With advanced zoom capabilities in most digital cameras and no film purchase or developing costs, you can have fun with this hobby and remain living within your means.

     

    Frugal living is not only about cutting bills, saving money or restricting your lifestyle. Living on a budget is merely a good habit to adopt. Having fun hobbies that cost you little but yield great rewards, relaxation and psychological excitement is an idea you can enjoy forever.

  3. Who Needs a Life Insurance Policy?

    Who Needs a Life Insurance PolicyWhen you were younger, you may have not considered a life insurance policy. But now that you have dependents, it’s important to consider who will take care of them if you die. Answer the following questions to determine if a life insurance policy is a wise investment for your future.

    • If you are in a relationship where you and your partner both work, if something happens to one of you, can your family survive on one salary?
    • If your spouse doesn’t work and would need to find a job, would she or he be able to afford childcare costs? Is there a way you can make sure your spouse won’t need to join the workforce?
    • Families and couples can live much more frugally than a single person or a single parent with children. Could your spouse afford your home?
    • Would your spouse be able to afford funeral costs of $6,500 (the national average, according to the National Funeral Directors Association), up to $10,000 or more?

    These are all compelling questions to consider, and the answers can show you exactly why you need a life insurance policy.

  4. Tips for Living Green: Make Your Home an Eco Friendly Epicenter

    Living Green TipsHaving a recycling plan in place at your home and encouraging your place of work to participate are great ways to help make the world a greener place. But it’s only a small part of a much bigger effort that’s needed to really influence positive change. Investing in green technologies for your home is doable, and affordable. Here are a few living green tips to help make your home the greenest on the block.

    Greening Your Home Computer
    Practically every home these days has – and needs – a computer. They’ve become ubiquitous in a way that makes us wonder how we ever got along without them before. But they also consume energy, and energy consumption leads to higher amounts of carbon emission. As a first step, always be sure to power down your computer when it’s not in use. Set your computer for maximum energy efficiency by setting it to go into power saving sleep mode after a certain amount of time. You can also buy energy efficient accessories like solar powered chargers for your laptop, wireless mouse, and mp3 player.

  5. Everyday Saving Translates to “Paying Yourself First”

    Everyday Saving TipsEveryday saving on energy use means you are paying yourself first. In fact, decreased energy use is like having a savings plan for yourself. Along with helping our environment, every dollar you save goes into your pocket.

    Going Green is a Valuable Habit

    Committed environmentalists sometimes over-state their case about green living. However, if you’re living on a budget (who isn’t?), you’ll learn that making energy saving tips a habit will return dollars to you along with benefiting our environment.

    Conserving energy using simple steps will save you money in a variety of ways. The low cost of many everyday saving habits returns dollars to you over time. Here are some easy steps you can take daily.