156 results found for: family

15 Ideas for Autumn Family Fun

With the weather getting colder and wetter, we find ourselves looking for indoor ways to keep everyone laughing and having fun. So switch off those televisions and celebrate the harvest with some good clean family fun.

How to make an Owl family

Make this cute little hooty owl branch to decorate your Harvest table or just to liven up your home this Autumn. What you need: Pine Cone(s) Worn, smooth wood or branch (make sure it can sit evenly on a table top as it will form the base) Felt (preferably brown and orange)  googly eyes feathers in natural colours Craft Glue (PVA works well) Scissors What to do: Lay the base wood or branch so it […]

What are your Family Christmas Traditions?

A friend recently had a Facebook status asking for ideas about starting Christmas traditions with her 2 year old son. So I literally spewed all my family traditions into her post and then thought that it was a good idea to write them  in a post for all of you.  Traditions for the month of December Buy a few Christmas themed stories (or borrow from your local library) and snuggle up each night to enjoy […]

Family Favourite Victoria Sponge Cake

The Victoria sponge or Victoria sandwich cake was named after Queen Victoria of Great Britain. It is believed that she enjoyed a slice of the sponge cake with her afternoon tea. Often referred to simply as “sponge cake”,  a true Victoria sponge would only contain raspberry jam. As the cake became more popular, whipped double cream or vanilla cream was added as a delicious addition. The jam and cream are used to sandwich two sponge […]

How to Organise a Family Movie Night

Family Movie night can be such fun! Snuggling up on the couch in front of a warm fire and munching on popcorn and snacks is a fabulous way to spend cold, dark, wintery evenings. Once a month is a good frequency to aim for and makes it special as it is not a common occurrence. How to organise your Family Movie Night 1. Choose the theme: Animated Scary movies Adventure Comedy Animal 2. Choose the […]

Woburn: Enjoying family time together

Our weekend in pictures…  A formal Jazz themed fiftieth birthday party at Woburn Hotel, and a trip to Woburn Safari Park.

Organise your ‘no electronics’ Family night

Nights in together don’t have to be big fancy affairs! We try to do one a fortnight, on a Friday so that if we run a little late for bedtime it doesn’t affect school the next day. You don’t need to over think the activities or food. The point of having a family night is to spend time together away from distractions of electronic gadgets and toys. Pull out those old battery free favourites and […]

Family Activities

fullmypageheader Family Activities Ideas for fun family activities to do together. Create family traditions and memories, tips for celebrating Christmas, Halloween, Easter and other special days. Tips on what to do outdoors with little ones and the whole family. lineicon-android leftno-repeat;left top;;automywhitecolor:#ffffff;

Toddler recipes

Recipes for Summer Salads, Vegetables and Light Lunches – Edition 01 Summer Salad and Veggie Days are here! Here’s a bunch of easy summer salads and vegetable dishes to get rid of the winter blues that are at long last, fading into the distance. Read more about our Summer Salads, Vegetables and Light Lunches here.   Smoothies and Milkshakes Recipe Collection – Edition 01 Smoothies are a great way to ensure a quick and healthy […]

9 Top Tips for Potty Training Success

Sooner or later our babies grow up and become toddlers. One of the developmental milestones we are faced with is potty training, transitioning from nappies to pants, and learning to use a potty and ultimately a toilet.

So I’m the guinea pig?

“Mommy, how come these little ones get away with things that I couldn’t when I was their age?” is the usual complaint of the eldest children. This is symptomatic of the next “batch” of siblings – a boy or a girl who arrive about ten years later.

Healthy Bedtime Routines for a Happy Child

Bedtime routines and rituals are very important for most children in establishing positive sleep patterns and in developing a sense of security and stability. In this article, you will learn how to make bedtime a lot easier, as well as find tips to promote connection and calm with your child at the end of the day.

Raising Happy Kids

We all want our little ones to grow up happy. Here are some positive suggestions to help yours do just that. Read our top 5 happiness boosters and get started today …

7 Reasons To Use Cloth Diapers Rather Than Disposables

The first 2 plus years of a child’s life are lived in diapers. Raising a baby has many wonderful rewards and some challenges. As parents we sometimes are just concerned with finding convenient ways to be a great parent. One thing that we don’t always consider is the impact that the diapers we choose for our baby have on the health and comfort of our baby, the positive impact that we can choose to have […]

Tips on Photographing Kids

By SFXsource Children are rarely shy of the camera, and they are a lot of fun to photograph. Start thinking like a child before you begin. Let simple things inspire you, and be awed by everything. Below are tips to help you take amazing photographs of children.

Change: how do children cope?

Most of us do not enjoy change or new unfamiliar situations. Children are far more comfortable when their day to day lives are predictable and repetitive. Starting with potty-training, moving out of their cots into big beds or the arrival of a new sibling, there are major changes for your toddler to face. Following these tips will surely make things easier for parents and children alike.

Encouragement is the Seed of Success

What kind of parent are you – an encourager or an intimidator? The encourager stresses working towards a certain goal. The intimidator stresses winning. For this kind of parent, “It’s the results that count… not the effort, not the intentions.” And what results! Useless deaths. You have heard about graduating college students resorting to suicide for not graduating with honours in a family of medalists or in another case, for failing to graduate at all. […]

When Does Spoiling A Child Start?

Spoiling a child takes time. It consists of a series of early life decisions and events which parents or guardians make for young children. The course of these early life decisions can eventually develop a child’s preferences: his or her way of reacting toward individuals around him or her, study habits, eating habits, and social skills. Even before the child is ready, today’s children have too many options.

Great Expectations – Do You Expect Too Much From Your Kids?

Parents naturally want their children to be the best, whether in academics or extra-curricular activities – or both! Young kids especially find happiness in pleasing their parents and would do almost anything to garner their approval – from doing simple chores and creating pretty artwork, to accomplishing more ambitious feats like winning in sports or beauty pageants. But how far can we push our little ones without breaking their spirit or setting them up for […]

Noise at Bedtime…Good or Bad?

Should you encourage your child to fall asleep and stay asleep in a silent environment? Do you tiptoe round after bedtime? How much noise is too much? Can noise help my child to sleep? There are many reasons a small child could be fussy or unable to sleep, including illness, over-stimulation, or something as simple as either too much noise or too little noise. Before altering their sleeping environment, take a moment to evaluate just why they […]

What is digital baby scrapbooking?

By Louise Wilkenhal What is digital scrapbooking? It means creating a personalized digital book for your baby. This digital book captures precious memories of your baby’s first moments.

Lose Pregnancy Weight Fast – 5 Bad Habits to Quit

  A new mom stranded on an island with no food would naturally lose the pregnancy weight fast because of the lack of food. Although there are many factors that affect and contribute to being overweight, the one factor that stands apart from the rest is FOOD. Food by itself is not the problem. The real problem is our unhealthy relationship with food and lack of knowledge about the food we buy and fuel our […]

7 ideas for Outdoor Summer Fun

Summer is the perfect time to get out in the fresh air and have healthy fun with your toddler. In this article will be sharing some ideas to help you burn of that seemingly endless supply of energy as well as to create opportunities for physical development.

Lego Duplo Product Review

Here at ToddleBabes we recently had the pleasure of sampling some of the new Lego Duplo sets. We randomly selected a few of our readers and the generous folks at Lego Duplo sent out either the new Polar set or Police set to those lucky few. The response from all the families has been fabulous and all agree that these wonderful toys should go onto a must buy list for your little ones. From the […]

10 Ways to Beat Summer Boredom

Summer is here and with it comes the school holidays. Children are home and most likely getting bored. So, what do you do for those weeks that are not planned as the annual family holiday? How do you keep them busy and yourself sane? Fear not, you can beat summer boredom.

Before you Book: Holiday Checklist

Most of us take our annual family holiday when the sun is shining. We go caravanning, hiking, to theme parks or holiday abroad. Sometimes we are disappointed in the accomodation we have rented or with the venue in general because it does not live up to our expectations. With that in mind, here is a simple checklist which could help you make a more informed decision when booking your child friendly family holiday.

Water Warnings

Keeping your little ones safe around water is a top priority. It only takes a small amount of water and a moments lapse in supervision for the unthinkable to happen. Here are some things to think about when enjoying those watery fun times with family and friends.

Perfect Play Dough

Age group: 6months+

All I Really Need To Know…

…I Learned in Kindergarten … (a guide for Global Leadership) All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sandpile at school.

Lentil Shepherd’s Pie with Cheese Mash

A really hearty pie with a difference that your family will love – and easy on the budget as well. Vegetarians will love it too.

Incy Wincy Spider & Little Miss Muffet

Nursery Rhymes Series Part 1: We have decided to do a series of activity and crafts articles to help you and your toddler make the most of the Nursery Rhymes we all know and love. Here we are looking at two that refer to spiders: Incy Wincy Spider and Little Miss Muffet.

Glass Painted Tea Light Lantern

Why not reuse some little glass jars and turn them into these  glittering glass painted candle holders! This is really quick and easy for kids to do and they look gorgeous all lit up. Make a few and give them away to family and friends as gifts… Age group: 2 years+ What you need: A small glass jar (jam or babyfood jars work well) no lids needed Craft wire in your choice of colour Glass paint […]

Let’s make Flowers

Flowers are such fun to make and children find them really satisfying. Whether you are making them to celebrate the arrival or spring, as gifts for someone special, for a special events or just because you can, I have included a variety of different types and styles in this post. There’s even a rather special flowerpot activity to put your creations into or to plant a real bulb or some seeds in. 

6 Sorts of Spiderwebs

Have some fun with Spiders. Enjoy creating these  webs with your little one.

Winter Warming Pumpkin Soup

Try this wonderfully warming feel-good soup. Simple to make and sure to please the whole family!

Fireworks Safety and Etiquette

Fireworks are lots of fun but they can also be very dangerous. If you are not planning going to an organised fireworks event but rather to have fireworks of your own, make sure that you tell everyone involved all about keeping safe. Remember, remember the fifth of November, Gunpowder, treason and plot, We see no reason, Why gunpowder treason, Should ever be forgot! Follow these simple rules for a safer and happier Firework night!   […]

7 Step Easy Chalk Fireworks Drawing

Fireworks of all kinds are used to celebrate Guy Fawkes and New Year’s Eve as well as many other celebration days.  They can be designed to burn with coloured flames and sparks including red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple, and silver. Firework displays are common throughout the world and are the focal point of many cultural and religious celebrations. Large public professional displays are fun to attend and take the stress out of organising one […]

Christmas Sales Shopping Sanity Savers

With Christmas and the New Year sales fast approaching, there’s no avoiding the shops especially if you like a bargain! But if you can’t avoid taking your little ones with you, here are some tips on how to make your shopping trip a little easier and more enjoyable for all.

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Nursery Rhymes series Part 1: We have decided to do a series of activity and crafts articles to help you and your toddler make the most of the Nursery Rhymes we all know and love. Here we are looking at Twinkle Twinkle Little Star.

8 Affordable Ways to Use Celebration Trees

You know how at the end of  Christmas, when you’ve taken down the beautiful Christmas tree that has brightened up your home, everything suddenly looks bare and sad? I always feel that packing away the decorations and taking down the tree is quite a depressing end of the festive season ritual. But what if we simply left it up all year and repurposed it for other celebrations? What if we could use it to observe […]

Snowstorm in a jar

Use a few simple items to create magical miniature winter scenes in old glass jars. These make cute gifts for friends and family too.

Pumpkin and Bacon Tagliatelle

Use roasted, diced pumpkin and fried strips of lean bacon to create this delicious autumn meal.

Helping Our Children Make Good Choices

What can parents do now to prepare their kids in the right direction towards thinking for themselves and making good (or better) choices? Experience tells us that prudence can be realistically achieved not at seven (age of reason) but by the age of eighteen.

The Magic of Hugging

How This Simple Act of Affection Yields Major Gains in the Child’s Health, Disposition, and Overall Development. In a November 2005 issue of the “The Straits Times”, a leading Singapore daily broadsheet, there is a report on Singaporean scientists’ ongoing efforts to find a way to transmit ‘cyber hugs.’ “The team is thinking of a wireless pajama suit for children,” says research director Adrian Cheok, “which would use the Internet to adjust pressure and temperature […]

Say Good-bye to Clutter

 Anyone who knows me, knows how much I hate an untidy, cluttered home. Infact I can be quite obsessed so much so that my husband often remarks on how I like our home to look like a “showhome”. Yes, I’ll admit, it gives me a sense of calm and pleasure when everything is in it’s place and all is neat and clean…

Best Secrets to Getting and Staying Organised

Each area of your home provides you with a unique form of comfort. Comfort and clutter cannot co-exist. Clutter and mess only serves to bring unbalance and will dampen any good spirit. It stands to reason that, give up the clutter and bring in the peace of mind. As soon as you have a designated space for all of your items, you are better organised. This is the first step and the most important step. […]

The Importance of Storytime

Most babies and toddlers love books. They are often funny, bright and colourful, with loveable characters. But there are many reasons to read books that are less obvious. Take advantage of these less obvious reasons for reading to them.

How to Encourage Reading in Children

How do you know what types of books to choose for your baby or toddler? What can you do to encourage and foster a love of reading? Below I discuss how you can choose the right books, activities that encourage reading and family fun ideas that everyone will enjoy whilst making reading a focus. 

A Father’s Rights to Paternity leave

Working Families launches “Take Up Top Up” Paternity Leave Campaign. The survey reveals that 4 in 10 fathers don’t take paternity leave because they can’t afford it and some employers still deny fathers their rights to paid leave. The charity Working Families has launched a new campaign to raise fathers’ awareness of their rights to paternity leave and to encourage employers to “top up” statutory pay to full pay for the two weeks of leave. […]

TEN Common Parent Food Mistakes

Often we as parents, worry about how much or how litte our toddler may be eating. Here are some common mistakes parents make when it comes to food.

Promoting Healthy Eating in Children

Every parent wants to ensure that their child is healthy. How do you do this? How do you go about getting your toddler or small child to enjoy healthy eating? Here are some simple do’s and don’ts to adhere to!

Light & Fluffy Pancakes

Why are these so light and fluffy? It’s the whipped egg whites. Beat the egg whites as you would for meringues and fold them into the batter.

Recommended Books for under 4’s

To give you a hint about what books are available for toddlers, I have searched through recommended lists and asked some mums for their toddlers favourites. This is what we came up with:

Humpty Dumpty

Nursery Rhymes series: We have decided to do a series of activity and crafts articles to help you and your toddler make the most of the Nursery Rhymes we all know and love. Here we are looking at Humpty Dumpty.

12 Awesome Songs for Spring and Easter

Music is present in many areas of our daily lives. From live musical scores in theatre to television, mainstream movies, a celebration of worship through song, special holiday and celebration songs, and a variety of ceremonial services, singing and music play a significant role in our culture. In our homes, music can become part of our family—a natural part of our daily interactions and lives.

Green Bean and Almond Salad

Soon it will be possible to start eating outdoors again. With that in mind we will be including some salads to try alongside your BBQ or picnic lunches…

Gampa Bruce’s Chocolate Mousse

This quick recipe works like a charm and tastes fabulous! It is alcohol and egg free and yet is deceptively simple to make. It is sure to get you many compliments!

Rocky Road Bars Recipe

All this month are looking at recipes containing chocolate. These yummy bars are great to make with your toddlers and will vanish before they have even cooled!

Chocolate Peanut Butter Drops

Mmmm, yummy chocolate and peanut butter….read on to find out how to make these delicious treats!

How do you celebrate Earth Day?

What better way is there to get your little ones thinking about our planet than by filling a week with activities about it. We have put together some practical ideas to help you teach your toddlers about looking after the environment.  Earth Day is a day designed to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth’s environment and is held on April 22 each year.  It is similar to World Environment Day. Earth Day falls during spring in […]

Ten Ways to Be a Better Dad

We thought we’d look at Dad’s and how they can be better in their roles as parents. Father’s have an important role to play in the lives of their children. Here are some tips for helping you be the father your children deserve.

9 Play ideas to get your 0-12 month old moving

Ever wondered what you could be doing for your littlest ones to help them discover the joys of movement? Here are some age appropriate play ideas for learning about moving and space and figuring out what their bodies can do.

Fussy Eaters and how to put a stop to it!

Fussy eaters can be a worry, especially if your child refuses to eat. BUT it is worth knowing that it is extremely rare for a child to starve themselves! In this article we will be looking at practical tips that you can try to make stress-free mealtimes. Parents with difficult, fussy children at mealtimes are not alone. To have stress-free mealtimes, you should avoid rough playtime and snacks before meals. Present food in fun and interesting […]

Chocolate Rum Mousse

Here’s a rich chocolate mousse to treat all our adult readers…we also have a kid friendly , alcohol free version so come and take a look!

Chocolate & Strawberry fondue

Personally I don’t need any excuses to eat either chocolate or strawberries, so this decedant dessert is perfect for me…and I’d wager, some of you find the combination very appealing too!  What you need: 150g plain chocolate (dark or wholemilk) broken into pieces 200ml thick cream 15g butter 1-2 Tbsp Cointreau or Grand Marnier 1 large punnet of lush, ripe strawberries, long-stemmed if possible What to do: 1. Place the chocolate, cream, butter and Cointreau or Grand […]

Incredible Chocolate Chip Muffins

This recipe makes around 12 delicious muffins so you will probably need to double it to keep everyone happy. Why not use it to make Muffin baskets for friends and family this Easter! What you need: 2 cups plain flour 1/2 cup white sugar 3 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup milk 1/3 cup vegetable oil 1 egg 3/4 cup chocolate chips 3 tablespoons white sugar 2 tablespoons brown sugar What to do: Heat […]

Banana Chocolate Muffins that are quick and simple

Banana and chocolate are a great combination, so why not try these scrummy banana chocolate muffins as an alternative to the usual chocolate muffin? OK, so the picture definitely does not suggest a healthy muffin as I have icing and a bit of chocolate on top, but I have been trying to cut a bit of refined sugar from our family diet and so recommend that you use erythritol or xylitol as a sugar replacement […]

How to make Super Slushies

Here’s a great chilly slushies recipe for your family to enjoy outdoors on those warm sunshiny days! What you need: 1 package of unsweetened powdered drink mix, any flavour 2 cups of water 1/2 – 3/4 cup sugar 4 cups ice What to do: In a blender, combine powdered drink, water and sugar.  Blend. Add all the ice and blend. Pour into cups, add a straw and enjoy on those hot summer days.    

What’s it like being a three year old?

The three-year-old is full of wonder and spends a lot of time watching, observing, and imitating. Their days are filled with busy exploration of their world. Become a part of this world by joining in and trying to understand what makes the average 3-year-old tick. Below we look at the characteristics of your toddler and include some helpful ideas and tips to enjoy this time together.

How to make Personalised postcards

Going away on holiday? Before you leave, get out the paints and get messy. Make these lovely postcards to send to friends and family far and near. Postcards Age group: 1 year+ What you need: Large piece of plain card (or cheat and buy ready cut plain postcards) paints sponges, brushes or fingers scissors or paper trimmer What to do: Have your toddler decorate the entire sheet of cardboard with patterns created through sponging, fingers […]

How to teach Numbers and Counting

Have you ever wondered how to go about helping your child get to grips with the basics of numeracy? Here I cover some ideas for teaching your child about number and early stages of mathematics.

19 ideas to help develop Literacy in 0-4 year olds

Simply talking, singing, playing sound and word games, reading, writing and drawing with your child are easy ways to build a firm literacy foundation. Your usual everyday activities, like going to the shop or library, as well as those special treats –like museum or zoo trips – all provide opportunities to develop literacy.

Sticky Chocolate Brownies

Get baking with your toddlers this holiday and make these incredibly simple yet scrummy brownies… So yum, they may not even have enough time to cool down before they disappear! Chocolate Brownies What you need: 1 2/3 cups sugar 1/2 cup butter or margarine 2 tbsp water 2 bars (4 oz) unsweetened baking chocolate, broken up 2 eggs 1 1/2 tsp vanilla 1 1/3 cups flour 1/4 tsp baking soda 1/4 tsp salt 1/2 cup […]

Whiffy Sniffy homemade paints

You know how you get stickers that you can scratch and sniff?  Well here is my version of  fun and smelly homemade paints! Well technically it’s not homemade paints, but altered paints since you use existing paints but turn them into smelly versions. That sounds odd, but what I mean is that you can make the painting session one that stimulates your child’s sense of smell by adding powdered drinks to the coloured paints to […]

A-Z of holiday activity ideas

For many parents, the idea of six weeks of summer holidays is terrifying. How will you keep your children amused and happy? What can you do to make sure they are entertained and busy? Here are a few simple holiday activity ideas to get you started! Holiday Activity A:  Aquariums, Art Gallery, Activity centres, Acting workshops/classes, Animal farms B: The Beach, Baking, Bowling, Ballooning, Badmington, Boat rides, Balloon games C: Camping, Climbing centres, Children’s centres […]

Banana Recipe Cream Pie

This yummy fruity banana recipe is perfect for the summer while Strawberries are in abundance…try it with other berries too! Preheat oven to 375° F. PASTRY 1 1/3 cups flour 1 tablespoon sugar 1/2 teaspoon salt 4 tablespoons chilled butter, cut into pieces 3 tablespoons chilled vegetable shortening, cut into pieces 4-5 tablespoons ice water Combine flour, sugar, and salt. With a pastry blender or two knives, cut in the butter and shortening until the […]

How to make a Hand print Hedgehog

Hedgehogs are adorable. Out in the countryside where we live, hedgehogs are a normal part of our world. There are even miniature signs warning motorists to slow down for hedgehogs crossing the roads and our community page on social media posts messages asking residents to leave water and dry cat food out for them. We thought it would be fun to celebrate this little creature through crafts.  In this activity, you will be making a […]

Children’s 12 Days of Christmas Countdown

I’s only Twelve days until Christmas. Here are 12 fun things to do with your children. One for each day from now til Christmas Eve. Let the Christmas countdown begin! Pick and choose the order you’d like to do these activities…have fun and may your Christmas be a blessed one. Click on the crafts below to see how to make them… Here’s a cute and easy way to get your littlest ones involved in making […]

Halloween Safety Tips

Good ideas fromAmazingMoms.com – to which I have added my own points. Combine dressing up in costumes with free candy and you create a kid friendly holiday! Although Halloween is a favorite holiday for children it does come with it’s own unique dangers that all parents and caregivers should be mindful of. With a few basic Halloween safety measures your family can have a fun and safe celebration!   Make Halloween Costumes SAFE to wear To […]

Rainy Day poems

Now that the rain keeps falling, I thought you may like to learn some fun and funny poems about rain with your toddler RAIN, RAIN, GO AWAY Mother Goose  Rain, rain, go away, Come again some other day, Little Johnny wants to play.  Rain, rain, go to Spain, Never show your face again I’m waiting for a rainbow I’m waiting for a rainbow I’m waiting for the sun.  I’m waiting for the rain to stop. […]

19 Festive ideas for making your home magical this Christmas!

Here are some great Christmas decorating ideas to make this Christmas just that more special for your kids and family.

How to Make homemade Christmas presents

Making beautiful Christmas Gift in a Jar presents is fun, inexpensive and very unique. The kids (of all ages) can really get involved with this and make Christmas giving even more personal and special. Gift in a Jar mixes can be made using almost any type of basic recipe.  Depending on the type and quantity of the mix, you could even use colourful coffee mugs, wide-necked bottles, etc.   It goes without saying that whatever […]

Rich Hot Chocolate Mix in a Jar

This yummy chocolate is just what is needed for the cold winter days.  Make a jar ahead of time to for your family to enjoy, or as a special treat for visitors. It also makes a super simple and tasty gift for teachers, neighbours or impromptu guests. Attach some mini marshmallows or other small chocolates to the jar too and make it an even more perfect present!   Hot Chocolate mix What you need: 8 […]

A Christmas Stuffing…with a difference

Fruity Apple Raisin Christmas Stuffing 3/4 cup of minced onion 1 1/2 cups of chopped celery 1 cup of butter 7 cups of soft bread cubes 1 tablespoon of salt 3 cups of finely chopped apples 3/4 cup of raisins 1 1/2 teaspoons of crushed sage leaves 1 teaspoon of thyme leaves 1/2 teaspoon of pepper In large pot, cook and stir onion and celery in butter until onion is tender. Stir in about 1/3 […]

Taming a Tough Toddler at Bedtime

Be consistent about bed times and waking times. Your toddler is more likely to respond positively if he’s used to a specified schedule. The earlier your child’s routine is established, the easier it is to put them to bed without incident. Make the activities the same every night, and make the time before bed quiet and peaceful. Whether a parent tells the child a story, provides a bedtime snack, puts in a short video, or […]

Start the New Year Organised!

A good balance of your time is needed for work, goals, recreation, and relaxation. Take a close look at your daily routine, examine your findings and come up with a plan. Be prepared to follow your plan and with this, you can become better organised.

8 Tips for Making Reading Fun for Children

Little children love books… so take advantage of their natural interest and get them into the habit of reading . Here’s a quick guide to getting them started.

Easy Autumn Leaf Bunting

Autumn is a lovely transitional time of year when the fresh colours of summer give way to all things red, orange, golden and brown. I adore how the landscape changes and how the leaves glow in the sunlight. Decorating for autumn (or Fall for those readers in the US) can give your home a warm and cosy feeling just as the nights draw in and the weather chills. It is also the time when we […]

Australia Day – 26th January

What is Australia Day about? Australia Day, celebrated on the 26 January, is the anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet of 11 convict ships from Great Britain. It also marks the  the raising of the Union Jack at Sydney Cove by its commander Captain Arthur Phillip, in 1788.

Encouraging Your Child to Read

Little children love books… so take advantage of their natural interest and get them into the habit of reading . Here’s a quick guide to getting them started.

The Importance of Parents and Carers in Developing Communication

Being with others in a social environment helps children to build relationships and develop the ability to participate fully in society.  Babies and children need to be with people who they trust and feel nurtured by to enable them to become skilful communicators. Since they learn from parents or carers-those whom they trust and have connected within a warm and loving relationship- it is important to encourage this interaction.

Didi’s Easy Christmas Cake

  I make no apologies, this Christmas cake has been in print for over 21 years.  I have been making this cake since 1994. Over the years I have adapted it to our taste. I choose a weekend when I know the family are at home and make sure that they all take turns in mixing and making a Christmas wish.  It heralds the start of the Christmas festivities and the spices fill the house […]

Does Reading Make Children Clever?

In our world, there have been some exceptionally brilliant minds, and many of these individuals learned to read at a young age, usually by 3 years old.  Here are a few examples:

How to Make the Joy of Christmas last

After the excitement of unwrapping all those gifts on Christmas morning, how can you make the thrill of  all those new items last? Organising your Christmas toys This article explores the different ways in which you can organise your child’s toys so that they never get bored of them.Decide what categories you would like to divide the toys into. Some of the categories I have organised my children’s toys into include: By toy type: lego, […]

Tips for Moving to a new house with children

Read here to find out how to move home successfully with toddlers,  how to prepare them for the move and getting them to help. Moving is a stressful experience for all family members. Children can show this stress in a variety of ways. This article deals with how to alleviate or eliminate some of the stresses for your family.

17 Top Tips for Creating a solid early Literacy foundation for ages 4+

Have you been wondering how to create or provide the opportunity for literacy development? Do you know that there are really simple and effective ways to do this in your own home? This article gives you tips and ideas which will enable you to do this.

How Early Reading Influences Later School Performance

Do you know what’s wrong with our children today? The problem is that the powerful brains of our healthy children are rarely challenged by complicated thoughts. Instead, they’re further dulled by television and video games. By teaching children to read early, you open up an entire new world of learning and imagination for them. It enriches intellectual stimulation and provides access to new and rich sources of information. The bottom line is that learning to read […]

How to Teach Letter Names and Sounds

  So, you want to teach your child to read, but before a child can learn to read, he or she must first learn at least some of the letters in the alphabet, their names, and the sounds that they represent. To be able to read, a child must be able to recognize the letters, know the sound of the letters, and be able to recognize the letters quickly and say the sound without hesitation.  […]

Teaching a Child to Read at an Early Age

Did you know that 38% of grade four students have reading abilities below the lowest basic level as determined by the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP)? The NAEP is the only ongoing survey of what students know and tracks their performance in various academic subjects for the United States. In their report, the NAEP found that 38% of grade four students had reading achievement below basic levels, with a basic level reading score being […]

Here’s How to Make Reindeer Food

Are you tired of the usual carrot left for the reindeer? Tired of answering the  “Do the reindeer come inside to eat the carrots?” question.  The “why do we only leave one or two carrots when there are so many reindeer?” Well this is how my family feed the reindeer. A few quick and easy store cupboard items and you’ll have magical, sparkly reindeer food.

15 Fun Christmas Eve party ideas

When you have small children, it can be difficult to create a fun and child appropriate Christmas eve celebration. Make Christmas eve a special and entertaining one for the whole family by trying out some of these simple Christmas Eve party ideas. From gingerbread houses, to story time and movies, there is something on this list for everyone. Why not pick a few for your Christmas eve party this year? We like to start our […]

Gingerbread people

Very few poeple I know don’t enjoy gingerbread. My children like to make gingerbread,m but only if they get to use the cookie cutters and create shapes out of the cookie dough before it is baked. In this recipe, I tell you about how to make a whole family of gingerbread people and decorate them. Delicious fun! What you need: a baking tray gingerbread man shaped cookie cutter piping icing (either shop bought or homemade) […]

Put a Spring in your step!

The skies are bluer, the breeze is warmer, the flowers are blooming and cute, cuddly baby creatures are being born. Along with all these marvelous changes to our environment, it means that once again, our children have a break from school. And so, us parents find the arduous task of keeping them meaningfully occupied. But don’t panic, put a relaxed spring in your step by looking no further than our BizzyBabes and Yummy Mummy pages. To […]

10 Fascinating Facts about St George’s Day

St George’s Day is a time to celebrate the patron saint of England.  It’s a super excuse to enjoy or learn about some of England’s customs and traditions, and also to think about knights, castles, and dragons!

12 Ways to Avoid First Birthday Blues

My LO is turning one on Saturday. I have no idea what to do. I didn’t plan on anything other than a cake, a hat, balloon and a photograph (given he is not in anyway yet interested in birthdays) but people keep asking me what I have planned and look so disapproving when I say “not much”. What do you think? Do you think I’m being a bit lazy not having a party?  ~Anon Parties […]

Yummy Homemade Fish Paste

Fish paste is popular spread to put on toast. For me, it is one of the tastes of my childhood. Fish paste spread on warm buttered toast for breakfast. Mmmmm! As I grew up, adding a few slivers of tomato to the toast made it all the more delicious. When I moved to the UK, it was one of the things I missed and wanted to be able to give my children. Search as I […]

Cheese and spinach scone recipe

A modern day scone is a single-serving cake or quick bread. Scones are usually made of wheat, barley or oatmeal. Although many countries have their own version of a scone, British scones are often lightly sweetened, but may also be savoury. They may include raisins, currants, cheese or dates. This recipe has spinach as well as cheese for a lovely savoury alternative to a sweet buttered , jam and cream filled scone. The scone is […]

19 Despicable Minion Party Bag and Food Ideas

My older boy just turned 6 and for his special day he wanted a Minion Party based on the Minions from the movie Despicable Me. Here are some ideas to use when planning party bags and food for your One in  Minion party.  Tank Yu! Minion Party bag treats and favours: To make your minion party bag, take a hint from their colour. Use yellow or blue paper bags or party boxes and stick minion […]

Oatie Cookie Kit Gift in a Jar recipe

Surprise your friends or family members with a little pre-prepared cookie mix gift in a jar. Home made gifts are always well recived. I often make gift in a jar presents for teachers at Christmas time or for their birthdays. They are also super to make up ahead of time and keep int your own store cupboard for days when you feel like baking. Like having your own box mix; move over Betty Crocker! One […]

6 Helpful Hints to Easily Carve a Pumpkin for Halloween

For a brief few days pumpkins during October, jack-o’-lanterns will flicker across many countries, the happy result of wicked imaginations, fun-filled family afternoons, and lots of elbow grease. If your family is raring to carve a pumpkin this year, we’ve got the scoop on how to do it right.

Meal planning , how to get started

Meal planning – how to get started Save each week’s meal plans, especially the ones that have have worked well with recipes that have been the most popular, and you will soon be able to start using them as reference or even create a rota for repeating them. Tips for getting started: 1. List of family favourites recipes First of all, make a list of your family’s favourite meals. Get the kids involved and ask […]

20 Quick meal ideas for fussy kids

Sometimes it is just not possible to get fancy with the evening meal. Busy days at school and work mean that often, a quick solution is needed. Here are some fuss free ideas for the family to enjoy. These ideas are both simple and quick and are perfectly suited to please fussy kids. Why not try out these meal ideas on your fussy kids and see how many you are able to add to your […]

30 Top tips for fun Christmas Elf Antics

I’m always looking for ways to create childhood magic for my children. I like to keep the fun, laughter, and silliness of being young alive for as long as possible, and inviting a Christmas Elf into our home for some pre-Christmas fun and games seemed the perfect way to do this.

25 Freezer Friendly Sandwiches

  If you’re anything like me, you too will hate having to make sandwiches for your families lunchboxes everyday! Cue a busy morning of dressing, feeding and making sure everyone has everything they need for the school or work day, and making sandwiches becomes an unnecessarily stressful addition to the morning rush. And, if you ask me..it is boring and monotonous too. I find that no matter how organised I am with all the bits […]

Delicious Spicy Chocolate Courgette Muffin

Ever thought of putting courgette in a  muffin? Well you should.  As odd as it sounds, the courgette barely adds flavour, at least in this recipe it is masked by the deliciousness of chocolate. So why use courgette in your muffin then? Well, it provides a lovely moist texture and softens the muffin. You know how easily muffins can be dry and crumbly? The addition of courgette ensures that your muffin will be a treat […]

Rich Chocolate and Courgette Muffins

  Another courgette recipe? Yes! During the late summer and early autumn, I have a huge amount of courgettes growing in my garden. I always seem to plant to many and end up with more than we could hope to eat in regular meals. I have become adept at hiding them in various recipes for baked goods. This one is a rather sneaky one as the chocolate flavour means that you don’t even know you […]

Sneaky Courgette Chocolate Cake

Hidden Courgette Chocolate Cake My children are not fans of vegetables. I’m always disguising them in foods. Grating carrots or courgettes into bolognaise sauce, finely chopping onions into stews and  blending tomatoes into a puree before adding it to sauces. I was really pleased to find a cake recipe that has vegetables hidden in it. I know my 3 WILL eat chocolate cake. I know they would NEVER suspect that there were vegetables in a […]

31 Days of Harvest & Halloween Crafts and Activities

At this time of year it is great fun to be indoors doing arts, crafts and baking. This post pulls together all the harvest/ autumn/Halloween inspired activities from this site in one easy collection! Although it says 31 days of crafts and activities, there are a lot more as some posts have loads of ideas in them too! I hope you enjoy this time of the year as much as I do and that you’ll […]

32 ‘Gained’ things since I became a mother

Last week I wrote about the 32 things I had lost since becoming a mom. This post follows up on that by mirroring those things with what I have gained in their stead. I have to say that at this point in my life, this list is by far the better one.

Decor and menu Ideas for your North Pole Breakfast

North Pole Breakfast A wonderful part of the Christmas Elf tradition is to have a North Pole breakfast . This is usually the first of December or the first weekend in December although many choose to have it even earlier if their elf arrives sooner in the year. Our family elf likes to appear during the night the Christmas tree is put up and decorated so the North Pole breakfast is the next day and […]

Fab place to visit: Oxford Museum of Natural History

When in England, when the weather turns foul, head to a nearby museum..you won’t be disappointed. We’ve had a few less than outdoorsy weather days this week and in the interests of entertaining my boys , girl child was out, in a way that does not involve screens or (what feels like) hundreds of other kids screaming around a soft play space, we headed to Oxford to the Oxford University Museum of Natural History.

Perfect Pumpkin Picking Fun

Every year about a week or two before Halloween, we go pumpkin picking. Well, technically it’s not pumpkin picking, just choosing and buying as they are already cut from the plant and left lying in a field.  This year we chose to go to Millets Farm at Frilford in Oxfordshire. They had a huge selection of pumpkins for us to choose from and we spend a lot of time agonising over which were the perfect […]

How to make an easy Halloween Trick or Treat bag

  Spending on a trick-or-treat bag to collect your Halloween treats can often feel like a waste of money. If you have not already got reusable buckets or fabric trick-or-treat bags and are out of  time to head  to the shops, you can try this  fun activity instead. You’ll be encouraging your children to be environmentally friendly by  recycling, reducing , and reusing.

Pudsey Bear ‘Be a Hero’ Children In Need Day

It’s Children In Need fundraising time and my children’s school has asked that all to dress up as their hero or a superhero for the day. My youngest was the easiest to dress as he had a choice of Superman, Spiderman and Batman in the dress up box, but my older son- he has outgrown the dress up stuff -and my daughter proved more tricky. I did not want to go and buy proper superhero […]

30 hours in the life of us…

I thought it would be fun to document a 30 hour period in our family’s life. It was fun and interesting taking my camera out and about to capture the little things. The things that normally go by unrecorded. We had a busy 30 hours with loads to photograph and enjoy together. Here’s a little look into life with my fabulous little family.

Have you got Pajama Elves?

The Pajama Elves URGENT DELIVERY by Hayden Edwards! Our family already enjoys the Christmas Elf tradition where an elf visits your home in the lead up to Christmas and gets up to tricks, funny stuff and general festive fun. So imagine my excitement when I heard about Pajama Elves! The Pajama Elves is the magical story of the North Pole elves who sew special Christmas eve pajamas to help children sleep well on Christmas Eve.

Why we Jingle all the way …

How our elf has become an important Christmas tradition: When I decided that we would welcome an elf to our home as part of our Christmas celebrations and traditions, I was met with mixed reactions from friends and family. Some reacted with a very negative response or some with ambivalence.

Decorating and painting your own Christmas Bauble

Each of my children has their own collection of decorations for the Christmas tree. Every year they are allowed to choose a new one from the shops to add to their collection. They get to hang their own decorations on the tree and one day, when they leave our family home and move into their own homes, they will have  a box full of decorations from their childhood to put onto their first tree. This […]

Hot Chocolate, Cake and Christmas trees

The Adventures of Jingle, Our Christmas Elf, Day 7 You know that cosy place when you’re dozing all warm in bed somewhere between awake and asleep? Well that is where I was when I heard the excited yelling and calls of “Mum, come and seeeee!!! Come and look what Jingle has done!” I grabbed the camera (I’m known as the “Mama”razzi -as opposed to “Papa”razzi- by friends and family) and followed the sounds of excitement. […]

6 Reasons why we love our Christmas tree

Jingle, our elf visitor, played it lo-key after his busy weekend and was found sitting at the top of our newly trimmed Christmas tree this morning.  So instead of writing about Jingle today, I’m hijacking this post to talk about Christmas trees! My 6 reasons include Family togetherness The search for the perfect tree is one of our favourite family outings. We all get dressed up in our Christmas jumpers, wellie boots and Santa hats […]

Enjoying an Indoor Snowball fight

The Adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf Day 13 Indoor Snowball Fight! Jingle was found sitting behind a huge pile of Snowballs in our lounge. The snowballs were soft, white and a little bit sparkly, in fact there was glitter lightly sprinkled on the carpet. These Snowballs were the perfect size to throw-slightly smaller than a tennis ball. He said he had brought these magical-never-melting-soft-safe-to-throw-inside snowballs from the North Pole and told us to share […]

Sparkly Jingle Bells and Christingle

The Adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf – Day 14: Our sweet and generous Christmas elf was snuggled up inside one of the stockings that are hanging from the mantel over the fireplace today. Around his neck was a super sparkly and glittery silver Christmas ornament. It was his name and it had 3 tiny bells hanging off the bottom. Jingle ‘s note asked us to hang it  in the tree so that every time […]

A Christmas Eve visit from the Pajama Elves

Well, Christmas eve arrived and was the usual flurry of activity. We attended the Crib service at church and then had our annual Christmas Eve concert at home with friends and family.

Celebration Ideas for New Year Children’s activities

As a child I always thought staying up late and going out on New Year was so exciting and cool. Then as a child-free young adult I got to go to all those parties and celebrations and they were as fabulous as I imagined. Then along came the kids… Have you tried to find babysitters for New Years? have you seen how much it costs? Have you tried dragging along tired children  to a New […]

Full speed ahead to the forties

So 2015 has arrived and has prompted me to think about getting older. As you do, I took a moment to do my annual stock take. What are my dreams, goals, aspirations for the year to come? This all got me looking at what has come before and thinking about what lies ahead.

How To Throw a Fabulous Gruffalo Party

I’ve never met anyone who does not like or love the children’s book The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. It has been a  favourite in our home for the last 8 years and my three never tire of hearing it over and over. I think I have read it so often as both a parent and a teacher that I can recite it verbatim. I love a themed party so when my eldest son turned 4, […]

Holiday Travel Ideas for your Half Term Break

Holiday Travel can be simple. If you are like me and you have several children, holidays in the school holidays can be a little bit expensive. However, the price I’ve paid is always worth it when I see my kids smiling and having fun. There are plenty of choices for holidays when you have a family. Some are close to home while others can be exotic destinations overseas. Holidays can be a once in a […]

6 Top tips that will help you teach your child to swim

Every child should learn to swim so that they are safe around water. If you have yet to teach your children the basic principles of swimming, now might be the best time to get started. If you are a strong swimmer yourself, you probably have loads of advice when it comes to educating your kids. Here are some top tips to help you teach your child to swim. Keeping your little ones safe around water […]

7 Reasons Why Children Should Do Chores

Parents often wonder if they should give their kids chores to do in the home. Many parents feel that it is their responsibility to manage the household. and are unsure whether it’s the right thing to do. Having three children means there is always some or other household chore that needs doing. Five people in one house means there is always laundry, always plenty of vacuuming to be done, always dusting, always dishes that need […]

Tasty Gluten free and Sugar free Pumpkin muffin

Muffins are such a quick and easy snack to make for children to enjoy. I also enjoy a tasty muffin with a hot cup of tea but eating too many can have a negative effect on your waistline! I have dieted in the past both successfully and unsuccessfully using low carb, low fat, low sugar, high protein meal replacements etc . But I wanted something different (and to be honest, easier). I was chatting to […]

ShoutyKid How Harry Riddles…

 The funniest kid in fiction is back! Follow his life’s ups and downs told through laugh-out-loud letters, emails, texts and more!   This is the first time I have read a book that is entirely constructed using emails, texts, forum discussions and letters. I admit I was a little skeptical at first, as I have always tended to go for the more traditional regular chapter books ( I’m guessing that’s more to do with the fact […]

Mean Girls are Real, even in the adult world

Mommy bullies are the worst of the bunch!   Just when you thought people could not be any more repulsive, along comes a gem like this. I belong to a mother’s group on social media and today one of my fellow mothers put this on the wall. A friend of hers, who is a new mother, was sent this horrifying letter by a mean girl (and a few of her cronies if we believe that she […]

39 Valuable Life Lessons I’ve Learned in 39 years…

Yes, I realise that 39 things in 39 years makes me a slow learner, but hey…It means I’ve had time to really ponder it all! These are the things I feel are worth mentioning. I’m pretty sure that there are many more, perhaps for another post one day…but for the moment here’s my list.

Secret Confessions: an A-Z of me!

A little look at me and who I am… Sometimes when I read blogs I enjoy getting to know who is behind the writing. I thought it might be fun to create a bit of a silly post sharing some things about myself with those of you who follow and read my musings and who I probably won’t ever get to meet in real life.

Reasons I Love (& Hate) Spring.

The winter blues are finally disappearing into the distance. Layers are coming off, skies are turning blue, birds are chirping in the trees and people are emerging from their winter isolation. I am a sun lover. I look forward to the end of winter with eager anticipation. I yearn for the Spring and Summer months to start. They are always magnificent in my mind.

Babysitter Survival Kit

Leaving your little one at home with a babysitter can be a very scary and anxiety causing event.  I know it took me a long time  before I was comfortable leaving my children with anyone other than a friend or family member. I always felt that no one would look after my children as well and with as much care as I would.I fretted over what would happen if they needed me at bedtime, would […]

Why Being an Organised Mum Can Make Your Life Easier

When you’re pregnant, people excuse you those many lapses of memory and cognitive function. They call it ‘baby brain’. When you still can’t figure out which way to turn a tap on when you’re nursing your newborn, they still call it ‘baby brain’. When you have three kids in tow, and you can’t remember which bag you put your keys in, then you may still be suffering from the phenomenon! Being an organised mum can help. […]

Why you should make Photo books for your memories.

A Photo book is a beautiful way to keep and share your memories! I am the official memory keeper in my family. I love being able to look back at images and letters and videos of family members. I keep scrapbooks for my children so that they will know about their childhood when they are older. I write them notes so that they will understand how I feel about them and have something to treasure […]

10 things I Love, 10 things I Hate

So I was doing a little stock take of life the other night. You know how it is, when you’re woken at 3am and suddenly your mind is whirling with arbitrary thoughts and ideas. None of which are useful in any way to you at that ungodly hour, but serve to ensure that you are awake til at least 6am. Anyway, I started thinking about stuff that makes me happy. The little things that bring […]