Add up your monthly income (take home pay, not gross income). Don’t forget bonus pay, alimony or child support, dividends and interest, or public assistance. If your take home pay isn’t consistent, take an average for the last ten pay periods.

A simple Christmas math activity is to draw several Christmas trees on the board and then put the numbers from an addition, subtraction, multiplication or division operation jumbled up in each tree. The pattern for the operation is then written under the tree.

OThrow a “first day at school” party. Invite the kids in your neighborhood for a first day at school party. The kids who already experienced going to school can share their stories to your child so he will know what to expect. Decorate the party venue with school posters from a printing company to create a first day at school atmosphere. You can give your guests eco-friendly notebooks and pencils as party favors.

As a parent set a good example and don’t smoke. Remember the chances of your child lighting up greatly diminish if the parents or care-givers are non-smokers.

If you want something a bit more laid back and perhaps a bit more inexpensive, you can always go camping. There are a few different ways to go about this. You do not have to pitch tents and cook over a campfire if you do not want to, though that is certainly an option. There are campgrounds everywhere, and some have cabins for rent that make camping a bit easier while still having the great experience of being outdoors and spending time together as family. Some companies offer RV rentals, which can be great as well. These options can be the most relaxing choices for summer family vacations.

Remember to help your kids make up some carry-along snacks if they have after school activities. You can help them fight the urge to eat out of a vending machine. Consider crackers, pretzels, granola bars, muffins or healthy cookies. Make sure to pick stuff that will hold up well in a locker all day.

However, if the parents do not get along well enough to talk about the kids, splitting the child’s time between them may not be practical. After all, the parents will have to share information about the child’s welfare to make his/her adjustment to constant change comfortable. Split custody may work for some kids. But, it can be hard and confusing to others, and should only be done with parents who understand the risks and benefits of the arrangement.

Solution: Get all leadership trained. More and more training is available, free of charge, to unit leaders through the internet. Leaders can get one on one help by attending the district’s training classes with live face to face contact with experienced leaders and trainers. Attending roundtable meetings help new leaders learn from the expertise of more seasoned leaders.