RE/MAX 440
John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

7 Kinds of Toys to Avoid This Holiday Season

November 10, 2014 2:10 am

As leaves begin to turn and pumpkin patches spring up on every corner, it is a clear sign the holidays are approaching—and with them, the annual predictions of toys that will be ‘hot’ this season.

But full-time Mommy April McCormick, who blogs on parenting for first-time Moms and Dads, suggests (with tongue only slightly in cheek) that certain types of toys should be strictly avoided if you wish to maintain a peaceful household:

Toys that make annoying noises—Kids love them, but the police car or fire truck that belts out screeching sirens on command may have a hidden agenda designed to send parents to the loony bin.

Toys with sensors that go off when you walk by—Try sneaking out of your child’s room after a marathon effort to get him to sleep when some watchful robot in the corner of the room senses your footsteps and bleeps him back into wakefulness.

Toys with teeny tiny parts—If they don’t end up in your child’s mouth or in the dog’s mouth, they will surely turn up to inflict mighty pain every time you step on them barefoot.

Toys that are part of a set or collection—Warning: you will then have to buy every style, color and special release in the collection and then look out for the next hot set of collectibles.

Ride-on toys your kid can’t manage alone—Do not buy a trike or bike until she’s old enough to ride it on her own. Otherwise, you risk major back pain from leaning over for hours at a time until she is able to master it.

Children’s books you do not love—Better pick one you won’t tire of. If it becomes his favorite, you will be asked to read it a minimum of 10,000 times.

Toys that require assembly of more than three parts—(Think Barbie’s Dream House and related.) Three pages of instructions you can’t make sense of is enough to drive you to drink. Sometimes the empty carton the thing came in is more fun than the toy, anyway.

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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Five Steps to Finding Your Philanthrophy

November 10, 2014 2:10 am

(Family Features)—Whether it's the busy mother who spends her weekend volunteering at a local women's shelter or the young girl raising money for hungry children thousands of miles away with her lemonade stand - women who do good deeds are everywhere.

In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, women continue to volunteer more often than men across every age group and educational level. With so many devoting their time and energy to giving back, it's easy to find and learn from the many female mentors hard at work in your own community.

While the enormous generosity of an accomplished philanthropist may seem inconceivable in your own life, there are countless ways to give back. Here are a few ways to offer your time and talents for the good of your community and beyond.

Start small
Taking on a volunteering opportunity can be daunting - especially with so many charitable groups to choose from. While other obligations may keep you from giving as much time as you'd like, remember that every hour you can give is appreciated by everyone involved.

Look locally

A great place to start the search for volunteer opportunities is in your own back yard. From the animal shelter down the street to the local food pantry, helping out in your area strengthens community involvement and also helps you meet others and build contacts that could help you down the line. Check out the many online resources available that fit potential volunteers with opportunities that exist in their areas, such as volunteermatch.org, volunteer.gov and serve.gov, as well as many others.

Find meaningful jobs
Be sure to take some time to think about your own personal interests and hobbies before searching for volunteer opportunities. Do you have any social issues that you feel passionately about? While your daytime job may not allow you to pursue such passions, a volunteer position may be the ticket.

Make it a group effort
Do you have friends and family members who share the same interests and willingness to help others? If you do, gather them up for one of the many opportunities that exist for groups. This not only allows each member to experience the gift of volunteer work, it also builds camaraderie among the group.

Balance your obligations
While you may wish to jump into your new endeavor right away, be sure to review your schedule carefully before overcommitting yourself. Many organizations will allow you to work a limited schedule and gradually build more hours over time until you are more comfortable or available.

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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