Posts Tagged ‘parenting’

As a blogger, I spend quite a lot of time on social media and over the different platforms, see lots of pictures and stories of various children.

Recently joining Instagram, it got me thinking if sometimes we’re responsible for over sharing.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with sharing your lives and pictures with a wider audience, especially when blogs revolve around the family , and are enhanced by funny stories, pictures, or craft activities or whatever.

I post photos of my two on my blog, but it’s always back views, or partially obscured faces for privacy reasons.

Something like this when we went castle moat exploring.

exploring castle s

As well as never mentioning names.

Pictures of children fast asleep in their beds oblivious to the fact that they’re being pictured and put on the internet for others to see, or of  bathing babies etc.

The worst we ever had to contend with when growing up was the fact that mum or dad would whip out their camera and take embarrassing photos of you and put in the photo album to bring out in front of future boyfriends/girlfriends to embarrass the hell out of you.

Today’s children though have a bigger nightmare – the fear that their mum and dad may be uploading pictures of their tantrums, or discussing their toilet habits or whatever.

You just need to look at the immensely popular blog (and now book)  Reasons My Kid is Crying to see my point.

Sure, it’s hilarious, I’ve had a good laugh at some of the tantrums on there (they’re funny because they’re so completely true! )

Do all the toddlers know and understand they’re being put up for adult’s entertainment though? Could be quite embarrassing when they come across it in later life.

Ditto with all the sleeping babies sucking thumbs (“M’uuuum! I can’t even sleep in peace without you showing everyone!”) or baths.

What goes online stays online, as they say.

Are you an oversharer? Or am I an over thinker?! :-)


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According to today’s Daily Mail, Prince George will be celebrating his birthday with a Peter Rabbit themed party when he turns one this week.

With his grandparents running a party items website, I suppose it makes perfect sense that they’d throw a party for him complete with a theme.

What better way for a one year old to celebrate than with a fun birthday, bright tablecloths and games?

Some might argue that at the age of one, you don’t really know what’s going on, so what’s the point in a party – isn’t it really for the parents?!

I suppose they might have a point, as my now 10 year old started to fall asleep in his high chair halfway through the birthday tea.

At least he managed a little bit of cake before face planting and pushing up zeds, leaving the rest of us to party in his absence as he napped.

I think suitable themed parties at one are great though, and Peter Rabbit is an excellent choice.

Here, it was a Winnie The Pooh tea party for the now 10 year old, complete with Winnie the Pooh cake, table cloth, paper plates, etc. (We skipped on games though. He’d only have tried to eat the pass the parcel. Being one and all.)

The now 7 year old had a Tigger themed party when he turned one. Being a little party monster, he managed to stay awake through all of his.

Again, Tigger cake, napkins etc. Not to mention party bags with things like chocolate buttons or bubbles in (for the parents to blow for them, of course :-) )

It’s all good fun.

Over the years, the 10 year old has had Winnie the Pooh, Fimbles,  and Thomas The Tank Engine themes before progressing to soft play parties when the nursery and school years were reached and class parties took over from little tea parties.

The 7 year old has had themes including Tigger, and Bob the Builder.

Little Prince George will have a great time at his, and it’s great to see even as a Royal you can have a classic, childhood tea party for your birthday.



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As we live in a smallish house with not much outdoor space, it came as a bit of a surprise when the 10 year old said “can we have a dog?!”

He’d never expressed an interest in owning any pets before, so it was a bit out of the blue.

I think all children at some point love a pet of their own to look after, and he’s obviously no exception.

I remember having a goldfish called Goldie when I was little (very original name, there!)

After pointing out that maybe a dog wouldn’t be practical in our house as they need more room, we thought about other pets that would be a better option.

As children who have never owned a pet before, we thought of ones that would be easier to manage than big dogs who would take a lot of looking after (walking every day, pooping it’s scoop :-) ) etc.

Which is where I mentioned my childhood goldfish.

I used to love sprinkling fish food in for little Goldie and watching him swim round his bowl.

We thought fish may be a good first pet, as they could easily help to look after them, and even small children could help feed the fish.

You’d need a good tank or bowl to keep them safe in, and if you did want to go down the little fishy route, All Pond Solutions  have some great ones especially for children with a seahorse or surfing design.

There’s something quite therapeutic about watching fish swim round and around, too. I may have to try sitting in front of  fish tanks and watching the fish swim round next time they’re winding each other up.

“Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming along…..”


This post is in collabation with All Pond Solutions.




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It’s now June, which means  it’s that time of year again when school children troop out onto their playing fields in their P.E kits to skip rope and race each other.

(Not competitively you understand. Oh no.)

This is also accompanied by the school’s annual request for helpers, where they need suckers willing parents to help herd the children onto the fields, show them what they should be doing, and generally just make themselves useful.

The request always brings me out in a cold sweat and I can usually find a shoelace to tie or something urgent and/or interesting outside that needs my immediate attention.

Don’t  get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t WANT to help. It’s just the thought of being in charge of a whole team of small people and being a RESPONSIBLE ADULT brings me out in hives.

Heck, I can just about manage to organise me and my lot, without a whole army of other small people to contend with.

They’d probably call me Mrs So and So as well. Which would be another whole level of freak out, as I’m not old enough to be a Mrs So and So.

That’s the mother in law’s name, not mine.


No. I’d much rather be on the sidelines, cheering on instead from my own little comfort zone.

How about you?

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When I got a text message from school earlier this week asking pupils not to bring in loom bands, I had the sudden realisation I was old when I realised I didn’t have a frigging clue what a loom band WAS.

That’s the epitome of being old,isn’t it? Not knowing all the newfangled crazes , and what the kids are collecting this week and next.

Or what, or indeed who (pop bands) they’re into.

I had to ask the small people when they came out of school what they were. I’m still none the wiser. Something to do with interlocky band things that you can make pretty plastic coloured wristbands with. Or something.

I wouldn’t know. It’s all Panini World Cup album stickers in this household. Or Match Attax cards.

It doesn’t matter what decade you were born in, it seems there’s always some trend or craze to participate in.

When I was at primary school, it wasn’t loom bands. I remember these. Yes, and I’m fully aware I’m going to reveal my age now. Oh well.


Grolsch bottle tops

Remember these? If you were a Bros fan, you used to glue Grolsch bottle tops to your Doc Martens. We went to Haven last week. At the 80′s music  quiz, the Funstar announced the answer pronounced as “It’s Broh’s. I think. Don’t remember them.” No. It really isn’t. Good grief. You know you’re old when the Funstars are about 15 years younger than you and they know bog all. Sheesh.


Garbage Pail Kids


Who remembers collecting these? They were all the rage in the primary playground, and I can remember taking them in to swap. They had charming names along the lines of Puking Pete, or Adam Bomb.

They were far more up my street and appealed to my sense of humour.

garbage pail


So I suppose whatever age you are there’s always going to be something you collect and drive your teachers loopy with. For us, it was Garbage Pail card swapping in the middle of the playground.

Today, it’s apparently Loom Bands. Whatever they are.

What did you collect?





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The World Cup’s about to kick off this week, and I’m about ready to go into hiding for the duration while the football mad members of the household talk about nothing else.

The 10 year old wants to know whether he can stay up and watch all the games. Yes, son. You can stay up and watch the ones that are on at a reasonable time, but as some of them are on about midnight due to the time difference, that would be a big fat NO and get yourself to bed.

There’s still school to go to, and the zombified look from being up all night won’t be conducive to a good learning environment.

I’ve resigned myself to the fact that every other word uttered over the next few weeks is going to be a football related one. so apart from hiding in another room while football’s on and commiserating with all the other football widows online, I’ve decided I might as well try and make it a bit more fun.

Just to make life a bit more bearable and stop myself from glazing over whenever the ‘f’ word is mentioned.

For example:


Whenever your home country is playing (in our case, the United Kingdom) theme your dinner to whichever team you are playing against.

So, for example, if England are playing against Italy, then you have yourself an Italian themed feast. Pizza, pasta, gnocci, etc.


It’s also an excuse for me to find lots of yummy recipes and ideas on Pinterest for inspiration.


World Cup party ideas board


Italian Food board


See, I can find the bright side of weeks of football tedium.

Are you a football widow?

Share your tips for making it more fun in the comments box below.







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It’s half term this week, and if you’re anything like me you’ll be looking for free things to do with the small people due to lack of cash.

With this in mind, I thought I’d put together a list of places that’s free to get into. (Love those types of places!) Take some sandwiches and drinks with you and it’s even cheaper as you don’t have to pay expensive cafe prices.




Royal Armouries, Leeds

Home to the UK’s National Museum of Arms and Armour. Go along and see items such as weapons, and suits of armour from different periods in history.


Bradford National Media Museum

Learn all about the history of TV and all media such as the internet. Get behind a television camera and ‘film’ your own scenes.


National Railway Museum, York

Great for any train enthusiasts!


Brimham Rocks, Harrogate

Great if you’ve got climbers! Beautiful setting, with natural rocks jutting out in a picturesque setting.


Thornes Park, Wakefield.

A lovely park, with not only a park, but a great walk through some trees.

As you can see, there’s some brilliant branches for climbing!

up a tree


Cycle the Solar System

If you like cycling (and what better time to do it when Yorkshire’s about to cheer on the Tour De France?!) try this fantastic route. Not just any boring old cycle path, oh no.

Here, you can cycle the solar system and see all the different planets on your way.

The route makes its way between the village of Riccall between Selby and York and ends up in York itself.


Whatever you decide to do this half term, there’s bound to be something that takes your fancy.


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When I was a teenager, the only thing that would have got me out of bed on a weekend would have been an earthquake physically tipping me out of my slumber and onto the floor.

With no seismic movements though, I’d have quite happily lay there until two o’clock in the afternoon, only moving just in case it was actually possible to meld into the bedcovers and become part of the bed itself.

On a weekday, though? I was perfectly capable of getting out of bed because I had a little something called school to go to. The alarm would go off, or I’d get told to ‘get out of your  pit!” by exasperated parents if I ignored said alarm and bashed it to snooze instead until the last minute. (Hey, I still do that now.)

Which is why I have absolutely no sympathy for the poor little darlings at one school who are allowing children to ‘start their lessons in the afternoon so they all get a lie-in.’

Hampton Court House in Surrey is pushing back school start time until 1.30pm until 7pm as research has apparently found that students learn better if they are allowed to wake up naturally by their own body clocks and not artificially awoken.

Aw diddums, they need their sleep. Where does it end with pushing their days back then? If it was rolled out to other schools and we all took this approach, you’d be bound to get some who take the proverbial as they just can’t be arsed getting up full stop, never mind starting after lunch as it is.

That saying you can’t please all of the people, all of the time would come into force for this situation.

Not to mention they’re going to be in for a hell of a shock when they leave the cosseted walls of the school and enter the so called real world.

I can’t imagine many employers would be as tolerant as their previous teachers and wouldn’t put up with them rolling up for their first job somewhere after noon.

They’d have to get their backsides out of bed around 7am in the morning and they’d presumably still be in their teens when they got a job.

Less pandering. They’ll thank you for it when they enter the world of work and something called real life – as that 7am alarm clock will startle them out of their complacency.

What do you think? Good idea or not?


One school opens later for teenagers


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up a tree



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Keeping the children amused was easily achievable about twenty or thirty years ago, as they were happy to be out all day in the fresh air, climbing trees, and running about.

Happily content with their lot, there were no distractions such as the internet, the Wii, or ds consoles.

Okay, there was the Nintendo Gameboy if you were a kid in the infancy of the nineties, but they were brand new and not commonplace like they are now.

The two small people of this house are like chalk and cheese. The 10 year old is happy to be out as much as possible, and could kick a ball about all day.

The 6 year old does like playing out, but left to his own devices would quite happily sit in front of his DS console for hours or watch dvds.


Which is all well and good, but a bit of balance is needed in there too and some fresh air and exercise thrown into the mix.

It doesn’t help that the longer children seem to spend on their game consoles, the grumpier they get when they have to come off. Or they’ll answer you with monosyllabic grunts as they’re too busy trying to make Mario race around a track in his car, or Sonic jump for golden rings or something.

So, ‘screen time’ in this house has been limited to half hour bursts with running about doing outside activities in between.

A hark back to the simpler times of no consoles may be a step too far, but it makes sense to restrict their usage.

Do you limit screen time or let them go on as much as they like?

Or notice a change in behaviour after they’ve been on a while?


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