What to Tell Your Kids When They're Left Alone in the House

Looking after the kids is an imperative for any responsible parent. So obviously, child safety tops their list of priorities. However, certain situations require you to leave the house with no option to bring the kids with you. For most parents, the thought of leaving their child at home and alone conjures up a variation of possible scenarios, these scenarios often rest on the negative side of things. When such situations come up, it is best to know the things you must consider to ensure the safety of your children. Because you can’t always avoid these kinds of situations, but you can always prepare for them in advance. You best take note of some child safety tips so that when you do leave your children at home, you know that they are safe and not in harm’s way. But before you do, you should first know if your child is in fact ready to be left home alone.  

Are we allowed to leave our kids at home alone?

This question is tricky, because there is no concrete limiting instructions for when you can leave your child at home. The act seems to be dancing on the verge of the division between neglect and independence. On the one hand, you don’t really want to have your child spend the day alone in the house, but on the other hand, you know there’s something you have to do outside and it could be the chance for your child to learn some independence. But it’s not as clear-cut as we want it to be. The focus then should not be on the parent, but more on the child. When you, as the parent, are deciding on what to do, consider your child first. Is he or she ready to be left alone in the house? Can he or she manage to spend a day or just a couple of hours with just him or herself? Evaluate your child’s maturity before making a decision. Measure your child’s capability to be independent, judge by age and character. You as the parent should know when your child is ready to be left alone.

Boy Coming Home After School


How can you tell if your child is ready?

Though it sounds so easy to make sure your child is ready before deciding on leaving him or her alone at home, it isn’t really an easy thing to do. Today, usual criteria employed in seeing if your child is ready for a taste of independence are beginning to grow faulty. What with young children learning to do more things in the house and older, young adults still latching on their parents for support, such as the case of Rachel Canning who filed a case against her parents, demanding for support for her college years. But to see if your child is ready to be left alone, you first look at his or her age. It is a universal rule that children below 5 years old cannot be left alone at home and that ages 16 and above should know their way around the house enough to manage it in cases when the parents are away. So if your child is under or above those age limits, then you know what to do. If they however, rest in the middle part of the bracket, you can proceed to the next step. Ask them about the idea of being left alone. Most kids under 10 years old aren’t comfortable with having the house for themselves and most kids from 13 to 15 relish the idea for the wrong reasons. So through asking them about the idea of being left alone, you get a clearer picture of what you should do. If your child shows signs of apprehension or worry with the idea, don’t push through. In the end, you would still be the judge; it’s just best to know their take on the matter as well.


Things to put in mind when you’ve decided to leave your child at home

When you finally make a decision and you choose to leave your child at home for a couple of hours or a day, here are a few things you should consider to keep them safe.

Make sure your child is aware of the situation. Let them know that they are responsible for the time being and let them know what time you are most likely to come home. In this way they can gauge on their own the amount of time they’d have to spend alone and see if they can handle it.

Let’s face it, the top scenario you fear when thinking of leaving your child at home is the thought of burglars. It’s a legitimate fear and not an impossible one at that. But you can do your best so that it remains just that, an imagined scenario and not a real one. If you are really worried about it, set-up home alarm systems. IP communicators and IP surveillance cameras will help you keep track of your child through wireless access portal that can be optimized for video streaming. Alarm monitoring services and home alarm systems are available in alarm system stores present in different cities. Today’s technology allows you to keep watch of your children even when you’re away. So if this fear is the one hounding you and stopping you from leaving your child at home, then now you know what to do.

Healthy Moms: Teaching Kids Early


Getting kids to eat their veggies can be a huge challenge for us moms. I know with my kids it was and sometimes is an uphill battle. We started choosing a healthier lifestyle after the birth of our 3rd. He is 5 now, and my other two are 10 and 8. Because we started this process when they were young, they have embraced our lifestyle today. But it hasn't been easy. With our youngest, "green smoothies", or we called them "muscle smoothies", worked best. He didn't like salads at dinner and rarely would eat the veggies served with dinner. I felt more confident that he was getting his nutrients from the smoothies we made. Calling them fun names like "green slime," "muscle smoothie," or "smoothie to grow" made it fun for him. I let him choose the ingredients… we start with a banana, then add apple, carrot, and spinach or kale. Add a little unsweetened almond or coconut milk and blend!  We also can sneak some hemp seeds or flax seeds in there too. He loved throwing the ingredients in the blender!

The USDA is now saying we need to have 7-13 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. How many do you think we can actually get our kids to have? I know we work really hard at this, but realistically, get 6-7 servings each day.

I've heard of the recipes where you "hide" the veggies in food. This is smart to some extent, but a healthy goal for us moms should be to incorporate raw veggies into their bodies. When we cook down vegetables, we lose some of the enzymes and phytonutrients that actually benefit their immune system and developmental system. A couple foods are actually healthier cooked such as potatoes and tomatoes, but most are healthiest in their raw form.

A fun way to sit down with your kids is to divide foods into 3 categories. Have fun with your kids and make a buffet of food. Let them divide out the food into the 3 areas.

Green Light Foods:

Enjoy these foods all the time! These foods help you "GO!" and grow.

Fresh, local veggies like carrots, celery, broccoli, peppers, tomatoes Nuts and seeds Whole grains like brown rice and quinoa 100% whole grain breads Fresh juices and smoothies Hummus & bean dips

Yellow Light Foods:

Proceed with caution. Only eat these foods sometimes! These foods aren't all bad, but if we eat them all day long, we will go "SLOW"...

Bottled juices Sugary yogurts Baked chips and crackers Restaurant foods Meat and Dairy

Red Light Foods:

Try to avoid these as much as possible! These foods make you "STOP" and slow you down. They make you feel weak.

Donuts Pastries Fast food Soda Candy Chips Foods you're allergic to

Basically, when you walk around your grocery store, if you start in the produce area you'll notice the perimeter is Green and Yellow light foods, and the middle is mostly Red light foods. Take your kids to the store with you and have them help you shop for the "Go" foods!

Try this little exercise out sometime with your kids. Even young toddlers understand this because they watch your car stop, slow down, and GO! Train them up early and by the time they're my kids' age, they will seek out those foods on their own! I'm so proud of my kids' choices, especially my oldest. She shares her knowledge with her classmates every day.

For more tips and health information, please check out my site Share some of your thoughts below on this exercise and how it worked for your kids!