Electric Golf Trolleys – are they worth it?

When playing golf it can be quite hard work to carry about 14 clubs, golf balls, a flask and whatever else you have with you on your back. Golf should be fun and one way to make it easier on yourself, especially as you get older is to look at buying an electric golf trolley. They can even be programmed to followed you around the course.

Before you go out and buy one we want to help you make an informed decision. There are many things you need to look out for before spending you hard earned money, such as, battery life – how long does it take to charge the battery and how long does the battery last? Some trolleys have features such as battery indicators which will help. Also, how heavy is the trolley? If you have a small car, this is something you need to consider.

Speed is also another important factor. You need to be able to control the speed of your trolley. Some come with just a basic one speed motor, where as others have plenty of different speeds. Also, with speed, you need to look at the brakes. You don’t want your trolley running away down a hill (I’ve seen it happen). You can also get remote control trolleys which is great as you can send the trolley ahead in front of you.

 

 

 

 

20 decorating tips to make you home look great with each changing season

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It’s hard to decorate on a budget, as many homeowners worry about spending money on a wreath or wall art that’s only on display for a few months out of the year. Some people give up on seasonal decor, but others seem to embrace it. What secrets does this second group know that the first doesn’t? We dug in to find out.

The secret to amazing seasonal decor is finding pieces that can work year-round with a few changes. For example, LEDs through Christmas Lights, Etc can be adjusted to create a cozy glow during the holiday season, and then offer a warm welcome to guests during the summer. The lighting stays up during the year, but the ambiance changes and sets the scene for your decor.

Along these lines, taking steps like moving your furniture around to create an open floor plan, and adding accent items like pillows or centerpieces are easy ways to transform your home for the season. It’s even better that these items are relatively inexpensive and easy to store when they’re not in use. While you should never underestimate the power of light, take advantage of the power of smell to set the mood in a room. Walking into a space with a wonderful holiday smell created by a candle is the best way to get into the mood for the season.

These are just a few ways to revolutionize your room for the year. Keep reading to learn more than 20 decorating tips to use as the seasons change.

Paint your dream

Painting is the most inexpensive and quickest way to change your world in no time. The dramatic change caused by painting has huge impact on your room as it shines and changes your mood. Even a few inexpensive furnishing look great when you have the right backdrop.

Choose a theme

Find the right theme for each room regardless of whether you come across some ideas in interior magazines or if you have some color scheme in mind. It’s certainly the beginning of your interior plan. The internet will show you through a few DIY options.

Shake things up

Check out few awkward room arrangements online. A few surprising arrangements can do wonders as you move things within and outside your rooms.

Draw the spotlight on your home

Your homes are bound to look a prettier, bigger and brighter when the light gets reflected via mirrors. A few online tutorials might guide you in this regard.

Take a few snaps

Take a few shots and include them in photo frames if you aren’t able to buy expensive larger pieces of art work or if your wall has more pace to be filled out. Form a large group by hanging them in your walls.

Add more of greenery

Achieve a sense of style and life by including a few live houseplants to a room. It helps add more greenery to your room and proves quite inexpensive too. Even the roots are an object of attraction, so you must choose a vessel that looks clear and pretty.

Decorate with plates

Hang various wall art pieces and plates in your bedroom, living room and kitchen. A certain color palette that matches your room can help it get brighter and look bigger. All you need to make sure is that the decorative plates match the texture of your walls and exceed your expectations.

Include attractive fabric

Your slipcovers and thermal curtains will acquire a simple but attractive look with flat sheets. You’ll find a few DIY methods of creating placemats that reflect joyous patterns and live colors.

Use your personal items

You’ll find so many items in your closet that can be rearranged to improve the look of your rooms. You might need to add some decoration and view things with a creative perspective.

Try an act of disguise

Put things in disguise if you can’t replace them. Hide an unpleasant view with a touch of fabric and cover the stained carpet with a rug.

Hunt for the treasure

Gather attractive candles, crystal show pieces and picture frames by visiting the dollar shop in your locality. Your décor can be matched with painted furniture and fabric collected from quilts.

Make things shine!

You might be wondering how to magnify the appearance of your rooms. By cleaning the surfaces and windows, make them sparkle as if they’re new! It makes your rooms look more spacious.

Bathing options

Utilize throw rugs, shower curtains, window treatments and towel edging that make your bathroom look well coordinated and softened. The fabric must live up to your sewing skills.

K.I.S.S.

Treat your windows and bedding with solid colors. Your style and mood can experience a swing when the accessories are replaced with time.

Kitchen makeover

Your kitchen counters, knobs, floors and cabinets can be transformed entirely with the help of paints. Things can last for long when you utilize quality sealer and primer. Compare the older photos to know the difference.

Add a sense of style

Your valuables and possessions are often meaningless when you can’t use them effectively. You must know how your bookshelves can be styled. Apart from being inexpensive, it can be fast, simple pretty.

Family tree

Make the most of your black frames by arranging group pictures in gallery style. Hang photos of your loved ones close to each other as if they’re forming a group. Ensure a variation in sizes to make things look more attractive.

Welcome entry

Make sure that the gateway to your home yields that welcoming comfort for visitors. You may choose to place a cozy chair, a chest or some other furniture that goes one well with your entrance.

Alternatives to sewing

In case you aren’t aware of sewing, visit a local craft store for picking an iron on hem tape. Use your iron for creating a rod pocket!

Get personal!

Your rooms are bound to look livelier and feel more interesting when you include some vacation discoveries and picture within a frame and place your personal items all around.

 

 

Invest in a Safe, Weather-Resistant Trampoline for your Backyard

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If you are looking to install a safe, fun, and weather-resistant trampoline for your kids to enjoy this summer, you should be aware that not all products out there are created equally. The traditional models you may remember playing on as a child put thousands of children in the hospital every year. You may even remember some of those injuries yourself, from slipping through nets and hitting the ground to landing on a thin foam mat between you and a hard metal frame.

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One manufacturer today has developed a frame that is actually located beneath the jumping surface, using composite rods to support the trampoline. One of the most dangerous features of a traditional spring trampoline is the exposed metal ring that encircles the jumping surface. This frame can be the cause of serious injury if a jumper falls onto it head- or bottom-first. New outdoor equipment developed by the manufacturer Springfree Trampoline employs flexible materials to create a support structure that eliminates many common injuries. The hidden frame lies beneath the jumping surface and holds the canvas up from below so that there is no risk of collision. Remember, the best Springfree Trampoline is resistant to UV rays, weatherproof, and has been thoroughly tested and approved — as well as lauded by awards bodies around the world. Try looking for The US Family Choice Award, a sign of a safety-conscious product, before making a purchase.

This new design works by completely re-engineering the trampoline, eliminating the horizontal springs that support the jumping surface. These heavy, metal coils can easily become exposed by sliding mats and they are capable of pinching or crushing extremities. Besides completely eliminating these coils, this design is supplemented by SoftEdge mat that helps prevent jumpers from injuring themselves or others while they play. Their unique safety net, called the FlexiNet, is another feature that improves upon the safety of older trampoline designs. The FlexiNet guides jumpers to fall inwards instead of outwards, protecting them without any risk of falling through or toppling over. It completely surrounds the exterior of the trampoline and it is supported by a set of strong rods that bend outward on impact. The net captures wayward jumpers, preventing them from any injury and guides them safely back.

Trampolines are a fun addition to any backyard but don’t be surprised when the day comes that your child doesn’t seem quite as eager to go out and jump around as they used to. That’s where the tgoma game system comes in – a tablet-based game system which incorporates a variety of games that use the jumper’s movement (through sensory input technology) to play. The app offers games like Fruitant and Alien Stomp for children and teen players, and tgomaFit for teens and adults, although these are only three of many available games.

Thanks to Springfree’s truly inspired series of safer trampolines, you and your family can now enjoy those summer months without worrying about anyone getting hurt. Maybe you’ll even decide to sneak a few jumps in too when no one is looking; the FlexiNet stretches far enough to safely catch a full-grown adult. There’s no reason trampolines can’t be fun for parents too.

Driveways Made To Last

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Natural Granite Gives A Sophisticated Look Yet Is Incredibly Hard Wearing

Granite is the most-hard wearing, but also the most expensive material for a driveway. But reclaimed materials can bring granite into anyone’s budget.

Most of us can see the attraction of granite for construction of a driveway, path or patio. The material is remarkably durable, but this means it is heavy and expensive. Many people think that the cost of purchasing it and the skills and equipment needed to properly construct it make it an impossible dream.

However, an additional benefit of granite’s almost indestructible composition is that reclaimed granite setts are readily available and make an ideal material for driveways, paths and patios.

These are a stylish alternative to block paving and unlike man made products, they actually improve with age. Thus, your new granite driveway will instantly blend in to a mature property and will not stick out like a tagged-on afterthought.

What is Granite?

Granite is a very hard, heavy igneous rock. It is composed of a minimum 20% quartz, with a “grainy” texture, from which the rock derives its name. Its strength and durability have always made it a popular construction material for roads, paths and driveways, but traditionally, these same qualities that make it popular also make it expensive to work with. Its weight and strength mean that transporting and cutting it to given shapes and sizes can be awkward, laborious and time-consuming.

In addition, granite naturally occurs in massive formations, requiring difficult and specialist cutting process to extract it.

All of these factors drive up the cost of buying granite “new,” although for some, its long-term sustainability helps to justify the initial cost. Even acid rain, which can cause permanent damage to other driveway materials, has a negligible impact on granite.

Cobbles and setts

The original “cobble” was a rounded river-washed stone, which later gave way to the larger and more regular rectangular shaped “‘sett.”’

The use of cobbles dates back to Roman times, and they can still be seen in many of Britain’s historic towns and cities.

Reclaimed granite setts have a beautiful natural look, yet retain their almost indestructible durability. They are still used in the streets and alleyways of many historic parts of the UK to this day.

A Granite Driveway

It is hard to imagine a more imposing and spectacular entrance than a driveway of mature reclaimed granite.

Cobbles and setts can also transform open expanses into something really special as pathways, edging and patio materials. In addition to giving a stylish look, they are of course incredibly robust and can be enjoyed by generations to come.

The sizes of reclaimed setts can vary, but as with all natural materials, this lack of uniformity is what can make them special. Variations in the depths can be corrected within the bedding process to ensure a safe and level surface for wheeled or foot traffic. And with some artistic inspiration, variations in length can lead to a superb look, lending charm and character to your driveway, path or patio.

With all of this coming at a fraction of the cost of modern block paving, it is hard to imagine how people could consider anything else!

The Boy Scout Lessons You Still Need Today

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Since scouting began in 1910, more than 110 million Americans have participated in the Boy Scouts of America. Scouting.org reports that in 2013 alone, Scouts earned over 2 million merit badges, and nearly 57,000 Scouts earned the coveted Eagle Scout rank. Former Scouts include 18 governors, 191 members of Congress, 36.4 percent of West Point cadets and 181 astronauts. Scouts go on to become leaders in other areas of life because the lessons scouting teaches are valuable life lessons.

If you’re a former Scout, you learned many lessons you probably apply to many areas of your life without necessarily realizing it. Pausing periodically to refresh your memory on what scouting teaches can help you be better prepared for many situations that come up in everyday life, in outdoor adventures, and in emergencies.

Preparation for Survival

“Be prepared” sums up a fundamental lesson in scouting which applies to many adult situations. Scouts learn to apply it when camping, where it comes in handy for tasks such as packing a backpack, pitching a tent, building a fire and cooking food. A mindset of preparation also puts you in a position of strength when tackling challenges such as studying for school, job hunting, financial planning, starting a business or building a house. Being prepared also makes you better equipped to handle unexpected emergencies such as first-aid situations, auto accidents and financial crises.

To prepare for emergencies, remember the STOP strategy: Stop, Think, Observe, Plan. Stopping to take a deep breath reminds you not to panic. Think and use your brain instead, remembering the survival strategies you’ve learned. Observing enables you to size up your situation, whether it involves handling outdoor variables such as terrain and weather or other situations such as health or financial emergencies. Planning then empowers you to prioritize your needs and develop a strategy to handle the situation intelligently.

Getting in the habit of planning can also help you avoid getting into emergencies in the first place. For instance, Boy Scouts know that safety comes first when handling firearms. A Boy Scout knows instinctively that guns should be stored safely in a proper gun safe. This makes a home owned by a former Boy Scout less likely to become the scene of a home shooting accident tragedy.

Do Your Duty

The Scout Oath teaches to do your duty to God, country, other people, and your own physical, mental and moral well-being. Taking this oath seriously and putting it into practice entails a huge range of applications, from keeping your body in good shape to becoming a leader in your civil and religious community.

It can even save lives, as former scout Wes Siler recalls. Siler recounts how his Scout training enabled him to save a choking victim in a pub by using the Heimlich maneuver. He’s also helped drowning victims and car accident victims by applying what he learned in Scouts. Some might regard such actions as heroic, but to an Eagle Scout, these are just examples of doing your duty. In nonemergency situations, the same commitment to duty comes in handy, whether it involves doing your fair share of work at your job or taking charge of organizing a family camping trip.

Live up to Scouting Values

The Scout Law teaches the 12 points of being trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent. As with the Scout Oath, applying this has many practical applications in adult life, from being a trustworthy employee at work to respecting the natural environment out of reverence towards God. The Scout subsidiaryLearning for Life puts these principles into practice with programs that hone these character traits along with confidence and social skills to prepare youth for career decisions and leadership roles. Another way you can hone these skills and apply them outdoors is by volunteering to assist with your local BSA council.

Practicing the Outdoor Code

The Outdoor Code teaches Scouts to respect the outdoors by being clean outside, careful with fire, considerate and conservation-minded. One application of this that applies for both scouting and adult camping is leaving a campsite the way you found it after you’re done camping. Extending this principle into other areas of life implies being conscientious of how your lifestyle affects the environment around you. Whether this means conserving energy, cleaning up your campsite, or picking up around your house, the Outdoor Code represents a set of principles that Scouts of any age can put into practice.

 

 

Tips on a Stress Free Moving Experience

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Buying a home is a big deal for most people and something they have strived to obtain. Although buying a home can be very rewarding, it is not without its fair amount of stress. In order to get into your new home, you will have to move all of the things from your existing residence. For most people, moving is a very stressful situation that they usually try to avoid at all costs. If you do it right, moving can be a simple experience. Here are a few tips to use when trying to have a stress free move.

Packing in Stages

The first mistake most people make when trying to move is they will neglect following any type of schedule for their move. The best way to get your things packed and ready to go is by staging your home and packing one room at a time. This will allow you to keep your things together and to avoid missing or breaking things along the way. The time and energy you put into doing this the right way will be more than worth it in the end. Make sure you are labeling everything as you go to reduce confusion when it comes time to unpack them at the new home.

Find a Great Self-Storage Unit

Another very important thing you need to do when trying to make your moving stress free is to find the right self storage Calgary‏. By having one of the units at your disposal, you will be able to put your unwanted goods in there until you can find out what to do with them. Usually, you will have a number of different units in your area to choose from, which means you will have to find out more about each one.

Hiring Professionals for Assistance

Yet another very helpful way to make your moving experience even easier is by finding a reputable professional to give you a hand in packing and moving. This will allow you to save some time and money in the process. Before you hire any moving company, you need to make sure you do some thorough research on each company. The more you can find out about a company and their past dealings, the easier you will find it to make the right choice. By taking your time and weighing all of your options, you will be able to make the right hire.

At Safe Self Storage, you will be able to find the services you need to get your move done successfully. They have many years in the industry and know what it takes to get the job done the right way the first time around.

Gadgets and Home Entertainment

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If you have a home entertainment center or want to install one, you have plenty of options to consider. The last several years have yielded many exciting technologies in home entertainment, from big-screen TVs suspended from the ceiling to single touch screens that integrate all of your home entertainment control settings. The most difficult part of the process could be choosing which gadgets and other technologies to use. Exploring some of the most recent trends in home entertainment may help you to decide which ones may be perfect for your household.

Television Trends

The television is one of the top features of any home entertainment room. One of the top trends in TVs is the ultrathin television. Some TVs are even thinner than smartphones. The appeal behind this trend may be the fact that such devices take up less space than the bulky television sets of the past. Additionally, the newer, thinner TVs look sleek and modern, and they can complement the interior of your home beautifully.

Another trend in televisions is choice of placement. Maximizing space is one of the primary design issues in many homes, so positioning a television wisely can help to maximize the room that is available. Some TVs are suspended from the ceiling, while others can be mounted on a wall.

Remote Controls

Universal remote control devices are as popular as ever. Such gadgets save space, and they also save you time that you might otherwise be forced to spend hunting for several remote control devices in your home. Some of the latest gadgets of this type enable you to perform several functions at one time, such as turning on the television, turning on the cable, and tuning the TV to the optimal input simultaneously.

One recent trend that seems likely to continue to evolve is the universal remote with an organic light emitting diode (OLED) screen. Such a device typically provides you with a setup wizard function; so getting started with the gadget can be simpler than you might think. You still have access to the control buttons that you’d use on any universal remote control device, but you may have more programming options with a device that has an OLED screen.

Going Retro While Staying Current

Overall sales of both vinyl records and digital music continue to thrive. At least one company has now combined old and new technology. One device enables users to stream music and play vinyl records. This could be the perfect gadget for a family that consists of several individuals in various age groups.

Audio and Video

One of the main reasons to have a home entertainment center is to create a memorable audio and video experience in the comfort of your own abode. The latest technologies seem designed to deliver that experience to you and your guests. A surround sound system is still one of the best ways to achieve high-quality sound. When you install speakers behind people as well as in front of them, the result is optimal sound quality.

Trends in video continue to offer a variety of benefits to consumers. Ultra high definition resolution provides viewers with an exceptional visual experience, and having as much as 4,000 pixels of horizontal resolution can make you and your guests feel as though you are watching a TV show or movie in a commercial movie theater.

Regardless of your particular needs, paying attention to the latest trends can help you to create the home entertainment room of your dreams. Whether you want to install an entire sound system or are simply looking for a remote control device, you can probably benefit from using the most advanced technology available. Once your room is complete, you and your guests can sit in comfortable seats and indulge yourselves in hours of entertainment at home.

The special sibling: why every parent has a favourite child

The special sibling why every parent has a favourite child

Before we get into the detail of the article, I really want to thank the team here for letting me post here with them.  It means a lot to be able to get something published for my Careers Business Blog at great site like this.

Experts believe that favouritism in families can cause lasting psychological damage – for golden children and the rest

My parents were hardly unique in having a favourite offspring. For my father, it was Steve — a selection made mostly on the basis of primogeniture. “Heir apparent” was the term my father used, and while I didn’t know what it meant, I was pretty sure that it didn’t apply to me. For my mother, the favourite was Bruce, the youngest. It’s one of the worst-kept secrets of family life that every parent has a preferred son or daughter — and the rules for acknowledging it are the same everywhere: the favoured kids keep quiet about their status, the better to preserve the good thing they’ve got going. The unfavoured kids howl about it like wounded cats. And on pain of death, the parents insist that none of it is true. The larger the family, the more acute the problem — simply because there are more aggrieved children.

Reference: connect4design.co.uk

Studies back this up. In one at the University of California Davis, researchers assembled a group of 384 adolescent sibling pairs and their parents. Overall, the study concluded that 65 per cent of mothers and 70 per cent of fathers exhibited a preference for one child — in most cases, the older one. But just because favouritism is everywhere doesn’t mean that it’s as easy to understand as it seems, or that there are universal truths about which kids will be tapped as the best-loved. “My mum didn’t like my older sister and did like me,” says Roseann Henry, an editor and mother of two girls. “Everyone assumed I had it great, except that my sister tortured me pretty much all the time — and really, what affects daily life more for a kid: the approval of a parent or the day-to-day torment of an older sister?”

If the parental habit of assigning different values to different children in a single brood can cause such pain, it’s a wonder that it ever became such a firmly established part of human nature. As with so much else, the favouritism impulse begins with the parents’ own survival needs; the biologically narcissistic act of trying to replicate themselves through succeeding generations. This impels mum and dad to tilt in favour of their biggest, healthiest, prettiest offspring on the theory that those kids will be more reproductively successful than others. It’s the same strategy that drives the crested penguin to kick her smaller egg out of the nest and the black eagle mother to watch idly while her bigger chick rips her smaller one to ribbons.

Humans, however, do bring more to the game. Compassion — a feature that is seen a lot more commonly among our species than among any other — is more likely to be at work. But so are some practices that we share with non-human species. In her elegant book,Mother Nature: A History of Mothers, Infants and Natural Selection, the anthropologist Sarah Blaffer Hrdy cites work conducted with coots. Unlike other birds, coots don’t pour most of their parenting efforts into their strongest chicks, but spread the care around in the hope of maximising the number of offspring that survive. In case the mothers forget which chick is the youngest (coots do all look remarkably alike), nature provides an unmistakable cue in the form of a bit of fancy red plumage on the babies’ heads. Mothers will deliberately steer extra food to the reddest head in the bunch, reckoning that that baby needs the most care. Perhaps my mother was no different.

The pattern of parents with crossgender preferences in their kids — the dad who’s all but helpless in the face of his daughter’s charms, or the mum who adores her eldest son — is more common than we may think, as the psychologist Catherine Salmon discovered in a 2003 study published in the journal Human Nature. “I asked subjects to list which child in the family was their mother and father’s favourite,” she says. “Overall, the most likely candidate for the mother’s favourite was the first-born son and for the father, it was the last-born daughter. You would think fathers would favour their sons, but there is a tendency for them to dote on their little princess. Meanwhile, mothers tend to dote on their first-born sons.”

As a rule, first and last-born children have a better shot of being at least one parent’s favourite than middle kids do. “If you have a child who is different for any reason — especially being the only girl or boy,” Salmon says, “that child is going to get extra attention and investment. This takes away from the negative aspects of being in that disadvantaged birth-order position.”

Whichever child becomes the favourite, once the patterns are established, they’re awfully hard to break. Still, favouritism does have some flexibility to it, depending on what are known as family domains — the different venues or situations in which family members operate: at the dinner table or on the soccer field. And the shifting locales can lead to shifting preferences. The sporty dad who favours his athletic son may be driven to distraction by the boy’s restless energy when it comes time to read a book. When dad is looking for thoughtful parent-child bonding he may thus turn to his daughter. Over the long course of an entire childhood, the son may still come out on top, but the daughter will get enough emotional nourishment that the overall disparity may not wind up being terribly significant to her.

You can’t do much about your gender or your birth order, but you can learn to make the most out of the niche that you’ve got. The non-favoured daughter who talks film with her movie-loving mother may have come by her own love of the cinema naturally — or she may have come by it strategically, knowing that was one way to win some extra maternal attention. In this sense, kids are a bit like tree leaves, sorting themselves out so that they grow in a shaft of light not blocked by the leaf above. Sons and daughters learn to game the system on a more day-to-day basis too, flipping blatant favouritism to the shared advantage of all the siblings — deploying the “favourite” to ask for the things that they all want.

While all the siblings can reap small-scale benefits from such ploys, the larger issue for psychologists — to say nothing of parents themselves — is what the long-term damage of favouritism may be. Not all psychologists agree, but as a rule their advice to parents is simple: if you absolutely have to have a favourite — and you probably do — at least try to keep it to yourself.

Clare Stocker, a research professor in developmental psychology at the University of Denver, has amassed evidence showing that unfavoured children may turn their disappointment not only outward, in the form of aggression toward the first-tier brother or sister, but inward, in the form of private emotional turmoil. She studied 136 sibling pairs from one western US city and its suburbs and found that kids who felt less loved than other siblings were more likely to develop anxiety, low self-esteem and depression. Some of the subjects would begin exhibiting behavioural problems. That would lead parents to crack down on them, only widening the apparent gap between the kind of treatment mum and dad were meting out to them and the kind being lavished on the favoured child.

Patricia East, a developmental psychologist and researcher in the department of paediatrics at the University of California San Diego (and an identical twin), stresses that the parents’ goal should not be to treat all of their kids identically. That’s not only impossible, it’s unwise, since every child has a particular temperament and set of qualities that have to be dealt with in particular ways. Rather, the objective should be differential but fair treatment that, East says, plays well to kids’ unique qualities, their emotional optimism, their happiness. “It would be ideal if parents recognised these things and parented according to the individual child’s aptitudes and personality.” Attention to particular strengths can be paid around the home. It may be impossible not to get frustrated at the child who is not a natural student and forever tries to dodge homework, but it’s not impossible to balance that with applause for the same child’s woodworking gifts or fashion sense.

The damage that can be done to an unfavoured child throughout the long slog of childhood is easy to imagine and understand. Harder to fathom are the ways that the best-loved son or daughter can suffer. The biggest risk may be that when you spend your early life enjoying the huzzahs of your parents, you may be unprepared for a larger society in which you’re just one young adult out of many. There’s nothing wrong with a puffed-up child learning a little humility — indeed, it may be essential to social and professional success. But what happens when favoured kids don’t learn it? What happens when an outsized ego resists being brought down to size?

Favoured siblings have other burdens to carry well before adulthood — among them, a sense of guilt. One of the best things about favouritism conflicts is that they usually fade in significance as children grow older. “Usually”, of course, is not the same as always, and childhood resentments may never be entirely forgotten. Life issues, such as which child becomes the caretaker of aged parents or which is bequeathed most in the will, can often become occasions to refight old wars. Still, in the best of circumstances, even those battles can be fleeting. For every sibling bond damaged by parental favouritism there are many more brothers and sisters who make it to adulthood with their love — and their humour —intact. Even into middle age, my brothers and I — including Bruce — continue to try to coax our septuagenarian mother to concede that Bruce was her favourite son. And honouring the code of maternal omertà, she continues to deny it.

Reprinted by arrangement with Riverhead Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc. From The Sibling Effect (c) 2011 by Jeffrey Kluger. The book is available from The Times Bookshop, priced £16.99, free p&p, on 0845 2712134

‘I hate to admit it but I prefer my older son’

The question “Who is your favourite?” makes me recoil with horror. But every parent knows, deep down, that they have one. After all, most of us know whether we were, or were not, our mother or father’s golden child. Often hidden to the outsider, within the walls of the family the special light that falls on the favourite child pools around them as warm and golden as a spotlight. I know this because I was my mother’s favourite, something that my two siblings have tacitly acknowledged as we’ve grown up. Her glow of favour has accompanied me through life, even though she died when I was in my twenties. My siblings — married, with multiple children — are all highly successful, professionally and personally, whereas my life is romantically chaotic and financially precarious. But every time they score another big life goal (Another wedding anniversary! Another child at public school! Another huge house!), I’ve felt smug in a quiet confidence that I had something bigger and better than they could ever achieve because I was Mum’s favourite.

Twenty years later, and now a mother to two sons, which of my children is basking in the golden light? Could I love one child more than the other? Don’t I adore them both, equally, albeit in very different ways? The truth is more complex. Push me, and even though I find it deeply uncomfortable and wrong, in the most atavistic way I’ll concede that I do have a favourite. It’s not a nice feeling. It makes me feel sick. But I’d be lying if I denied it.

Having a favourite is not the same as choosing which child I’d pull from a burning building. That’s a question I’m completely incapable of answering, although I’ve run the scenario more than once in my head. But while I literally cannot answer that, I can tell you unquestionably that my older son is my favourite. I write this from behind a cloak of anonymity, as the idea of putting up my hand and admitting that I prefer one child over the other feels like a shameful betrayal.

Look at us from the outside as a family and I don’t think you’d be able to guess which son I mean. Having a favourite, I’ve realised, has absolutely nothing to do with the amount of love and physical affection I pour on both children, nor the material gain afforded to one over the other. If anything, the opposite is true. I’m much tougher on my favourite child. I think this is because he reminds me utterly of myself, and I have a creeping suspicion that this might be why he’s my favourite.

I look at him and I know how he’s feeling. He walks into an unfamiliar scenario and I know pretty much how he’ll react. He makes a new friend, fails a test, is dreaming of a new Lego set, is angry, bored, loving, scared, and without him saying it, I understand what he’s going through because the tempo of his emotional life, his longings, fears, joys, are very similar to mine. We’re made of the same stuff physically too. His hair, skin, smell is like my own. Of course, he’s only 12, so time will change this, but for the moment, I feel he’s as much a part of me and me a part of him as he was when he was a baby. I understand his DNA.

His brother is different. It’s true to say that I admire him more. He’s charismatic and absolutely singular, easily as accomplished as his older brother. He’s unlike me, or anyone else I know. I’m more fascinated by him because he’s less familiar to me than my favourite son. I never understand what he’s thinking and have no idea about the path in life he’s taking. Does the fact that he looks like his father, from whom I’m divorced, affect the way I feel about him? Perhaps. His genes — dark hair, lanky limbs, piercing eyes — are less familiar than the blonde solidity I share with my older son.

I love my younger son deeply, and if anything I cuddle him more, pull him towards me more, linger a little longer over his bedtime story to (over)compensate, perhaps, for my subconscious feeling of loving him, if not less, then in a different way. I argue with him less than my favourite, too. When I put pressure on my favourite to get a better mark in maths, chastise him for rushing his homework, scold him for being greedy or selfish, I feel that I’m reprimanding myself, and I know he can handle it. His faults are like my own. I know exactly how much he can take, in the same way that I know myself.

I treat his younger brother with more caution because I have a less instinctive sense of how he can cope.

I feel a deeper sense of intimacy with his older brother. It’s the same intimacy that I shared with my mother. It’s uncomfortable to admit as a parent, but if you claim to love all your children equally I’d put money on the fact that you’re lying.

This post was contributed by the Tech Blog  who is a regular poster both here on their own blog.  You can catch them on twitter, facebook or even their very popular youtube channel.