It Doesn't Get Better Than This -->

Stories of the trials and triumphs of a mom and her little boy.

Heather is a winner of Top 25 Single Moms - 2012

Between raising your children, working, and managing your home, how do you carve out time for yourself?

I have to be "on" 24/7. But anyone might lose it if they never had time for themselves. I'm lucky to have a little boy who seems to understand that, most of the time. I play my guitar, and he loves to listen. If I want to put everything down and just watch a movie, I let him have a vote. If I want to read a book, he gets one of his favorites and sits next to me. It's a pretty sweet deal.

What's your favorite thing to do with your children on the weekends or other free time?

He just got his first bike for his 3rd birthday, so it's been pretty fun helping him learn how to ride. Letting him go wild at the park, or run free to find treasures on my parents' 7 acres are also high on the list.

What responsibilities or chores do your children have to help you around the house? (Please share the age of your children if you feel comfortable doing so.)

My son is 3, so he is just getting the idea of cleaning up. But he's been great at taking his own dishes to the sink after dinner, dumping any scraps in the garbage first. He "helps" take out the garbage, though he can't reach the dumpster. If I promise to help him, he makes a how-fast-can-I-do-it game of picking up toys. And after grocery shopping, I always ask him for his help and give him the lightest bags. Really anytime I tell him how much he's helping me he's very eager to do so.

What's a great source to buy formal clothing for children?

Heather Weingartner

The ideal source would be to borrow. After all, young children will only wear formal attire once, maybe twice, before they outgrow it. If any friends or family who have children a bit older or of the same age have kept their kiddos' formal wear, take advantage (and return in excellent condition, of course). If it's an occasion you'd like to have the attire to keep for yourself, for sentimental reasons or to pass down, it never hurts to shop consignment first. Goodwill and Salvation Army have high standards for the clothing they will sell, and always a variety. Ross, Kohl's, JC Penney, and Old Navy are great chain stores to save a little, while Children's Place, Gymboree, and locally owned boutiques are generally more pricey but have a lot of style.
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