When we first heard that schools were likely to close, the first thing I decided to stock up on to help us prepare for homeschooling was printer paper, and plenty of ink. Forget toilet paper shortages, a printer paper shortage would have been a big problem for us as our printer is such a key tool for homeschooling our four children.
I will share with you a few examples of resources that you can easily print off to help keep the kids entertained and educated until their school lessons are back up and running.
If you are low on ink, you can stock up at Cartridge Save, take a look at the HP Ink Cartridges which last really well, seeing you through all of the school closures.
Getting ready for a new arrival to the family is one of the most exciting times of your life. But before they welcome little one to the world, families will face numerous decisions that will affect their child’s future even before it is born – from deciding on the perfect name, to choosing a paediatrician and making their birth plan.
One decision that has been added to the list for expectant parents is whether they should save their baby’s umbilical cord blood. According to recent statistics published by the BBC, more parents are choosing private cord blood banking than ever before, with a whopping 60% increase in cord blood collection and storage in the UK between 2014 and 2018. This number is expected to continue rising over the coming years as more families are increasingly recognising the benefits of their baby’s umbilical cord.
But what is cord blood? How does cord blood banking work? And what exactly are the benefits of saving cord blood?
I’ve teamed up with Cells4Life, the UK’s leading cord blood bank, to answer all of your cord blood banking questions and to help make one decision on your long list easier.
We can never have enough books in our house, with four kids who are all keen readers (as well as us parents!) One site I’ve been ordering from lately is Books2Door who have some great collections for the children. I find the website simple to navigate and it’s easy to find products that will suit our family.
Have your kids discovered Ricky Zoom? This colourful all-bike show for preschoolers has been showing on Nick Jr since October, and if your children have already been watching then I’m sure they will be glad to hear about the new first ever Ricky Zoom Christmas special which is zooming onto screens on Monday!
We had the chance to watch the episode ahead of it’s TV premiere and it’s a lovely festive tale, full of the magic of Christmas and all the speed and excitement of Ricky Zoom and his friends.
In the Christmas special, Ricky Zoom and his loyal bike buddies – Loop, Scootio and DJ – come face to face with SantaCycle himself on Christmas Eve. He has crash landed in Wheelford in a spot of bother, as his fuel has run out! With the help of these four friendly bikes, and a selfless Christmas sacrifice from Ricky Zoom, they manage to capture the magic of Christmas and get Santa flying again ready to deliver presents to all the little bikes around the world.
Have you heard of 44 Cats? It’s a fun TV show for young children on Nick Jr, and it has also just been released onto the POP TV Channel on Freeview, so that even more children can watch.
The series concentrates of four cats, named Lampo, Milady, Meatball and Pilo who play together in their band called the Buffycats. Along with lots of catchy music, the show has good morals for little ones as each episode has an underlying message of friendship, diversity and helping others. Each episode of 44 Cats is under 15 minutes long – an ideal length for younger viewers like my 2 year old, N.
Over October half term, we spent a couple of days in Stratford-upon-Avon, staying at the Hallmark Hotel Stratford-upon-Avon The Welcombe who had invited us to come along and try out their hotel (Ad). This was our first time in Stratford-upon-Avon, and being so close to London it made an ideal city to visit for a short break.
We found plenty in the area to keep our family entertained, and with The Welcombe having a selection of seven self catering apartments within their hotel this made it an ideal place to stay in comfort with our gang of kids. We had the space to spread out in our apartment, but also the convenience of the facilities within the hotel (the swimming pool being the highlight for the kids.) The Welcombe is a Grade II* listed 19th century neo-Jacobean mansion, so there is plenty of history and style for the adults to appreciate too!
Things to do in Stratford-upon-Avon
The Hallmark Welcombe Hotel is a short stroll or drive to the centre of Stratford-upon-Avon, where you can find lots to see and do. Of course, Stratford-upon-Avon is home to William Shakespeare and this is a huge draw for tourists. When you visit the town centre, you can’t miss all of the landmarks such as Shakespeare’s birthplace, family homes, school and theatre.
Did you know that September is Colic Awareness Month. It’s something that you probably wouldn’t even think about until you have a new baby, but if your baby does suffer from colic it can make life miserable for all involved! There is no right or wrong answer to how to solve colic, but sharing experiences with other can really help and that’s why Infacol have developed Colic Awareness Month in September as a time for parents, carers and healthcare professionals to swap stories of soothing crying babies and to offer support, solidarity and information to anyone that might be going through a rough first few months with their newborn.
If you are not sure what Colic is all about – according to NHS Choices, colic is the name for excessive, frequent crying in a baby who otherwise appears to be healthy. It affects 1 in 5 babies and tends to begin when a baby is a few weeks old. Normally, it stops at 4 months of age but can go on until a baby is 6 months old. Other signs that a baby might be suffering from colic include when that baby clenches their fists, draws up their legs and goes red in the face. One of the theories is that it is caused by trapped wind which is very uncomfortable for babies.
We are all big readers in our family, with bookshelves stacked up in every room. It’s really important for me to encourage the children in this from a young age, and one of the best ways to do this is by having appealing and good quality books around the home. However many books we have already read, it’s still always a joy to come across another great one!
The Way Home for Wolf is a heartwarming new picture book from the best-selling creators of The Lion Inside. This book stands out for its gorgeous illustrations as well as it’s positive message, and is a story that I really enjoyed reading to my toddler (as did her older brother as you can see)
The Way Home for Wolf tells the tale of a plucky young wolf cub named Wilf. He’s very stubborn and believes he can do everything by himself, even wanting to lead the pack although he is just a young cub! But during his journey, young Wilf gets left behind, finding himself lost and alone in the chill of the arctic night. In his time of need, Wilf comes across a new friend who’s willing to help.. and then another.. and then another. He soon learns the benefit of letting others help in your time of need, and realises that with the help and kindness of the other animals he can soon be guided back exactly where he wants to be – back with his pack.
Flipazoo World is a fun imaginary world including soft plushes and smaller play sets, each with a quirky and clever twist. Every animal can flip and instantly turn into another one, giving you 2 fun characters in one. We were sent some products from the range to try out, and have had lots of fun with these cute characters.
With the first week of the Summer holidays already behind us, I’ve been starting to think about the back to school preparations. There’s always a lot to get ready, but even more so this year with our eldest child starting secondary school.
The transition from Juniors (or primary school) to secondary school is a big jump, and it hardly feels like any time at all since he started in reception! There is so much to stock up on, from the school blazers and ties, to bags, shoes and stationary. I’ve found it really helpful to make lists so that nothing will be missed.
Guest post from Dave at YourCub.com Do you love to play with your children? I know I do. But many of the toys that my preschooler likes to play with will only keep me engaged for a few minutes. You’ll find that the more educational and creative the task or the toy, the longer we […]
We all need a little help keeping our kids busy during this stay-at-home period, and Bing has plenty to offer to help out families with this. As well as over 100 episodes available on iPlayer, Emmy award-winning and BAFTA nominated family favourite Bing offers pre-school children and families multiple ways to keep busy and entertained during this […]
Activity and images provided by WAHACA AT HOME Make your own Piñata Looking for the perfect way to stop your kids smashing up the house? Here’s our step by step guide to making your own Piñata. STEP 1: Assemble your equipment You’ll need flour water newspaper balloons string scissors glue paint tissue paper and lots of […]
Right now we are in unprecedented times, with households across the UK going into our second month of ‘lockdown’ due to the Corona Virus outbreak. This break from the norm can be quite stressful for children – we don’t know when this situation is going to end, when we will see our families and friends […]
In case you’re in need of extra inspiration to fill these days during the lock down, here’s a quick list from Muddy Puddles who have shared some simple ideas that will help make the most of this time… Muddy Puddles is offering NHS and other health service workers 40% off on top of their online […]
Playing with your child helps with their confidence, development and overall wellbeing. Many parents make the mistake of trying to take the control of how their child plays. However, you should let them experiment with unstructured play, which allows them to go at their own pace and usually revolves around their interests at that moment. […]
Entertaining children is one of the toughest tasks. In order to maintain their full attention, they have to be mentally and physically engaged, but the task can’t be too challenging from the get-go. Initiating entertainment and maintaining entertainment is a challenge, no doubt, but it can be done. In a time where instant gratification is […]