Hobbies and Interests You Can Encourage Your Kids to Take Up

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All children need to have hobbies and interests. These are vital during their formative years, and will help to shape the people they become. It’s healthy to have interests to help explore feelings and emotions. Your kids will eventually reach that age where their personalities start to shine through. And by this point they’ll have developed their own particular set of interests. It’s at this stage they’ll want to start taking up hobbies.

This is where you need to be careful. Remember that your kid’s hobby should be what interests them, not what interests you. But at the same time it’s important to help them choose the hobbies they want. So, you need to give some thought to the kind of hobbies and interests you can encourage your kids to take up. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Sport

Sport is always a great hobby to take up. It’s fun, exhilarating and great for health and fitness. Sports are particularly important for your kids when they’re young. This is because playing sport teaches children about winning and losing. It makes them aware that you need to work hard to get results. And it also teaches them that it’s important to work as a member of a team as well as an individual. Certain sports will also require children to be tactical and analytical. This improves their brain function and development.

Gaming

Now, yes, it might be unhealthy to have your children gaming too much. But in the right doses gaming can be a healthy hobby for them. It helps develop brain power and coordination skills. One of the best things about gaming as a hobby is that your children can enjoy it for free. You can find many online resources such as playberry.com that offer thousands of free games. Of course, you need to be careful if your kids are gaming online. Make sure you put parental controls in place, and you screen the kinds of games the children are playing. But, with the right restrictions this is a healthy and entertaining hobby for your kids.

Music

An underrated hobby these days is learning a musical instrument. Because technology has taken over the world this has become the principal focus. But there’s still something to be said for the art of learning a musical instrument. If your kids show an interest in this, be sure to encourage it. Music is a fantastic way for children to channel their anger and emotions. They can learn to express themselves and explore their creativity through music. Again, don’t push them into it if it’s not something they want to do. But, if they’re interested make sure you encourage them one hundred per cent.

Remember that you need to encourage your children to pursue their hobbies and interests. But you’ve got to make sure you never force them into things they don’t want to do. This can damage their enjoyment and perception from a young age. Instead, help and support them so they can push themselves towards hobbies of their own choosing.

How to Give Your Kids the Ideal Bedroom

Decorating the house is a big task, especially if you’ve just moved in and need to do a complete makeover. And the hardest room to decorate of all is your son or daughter’s bedroom. If you get it wrong, they won’t be afraid to tell you about it!

There are a few things you can do to make sure you don’t get the design wrong though. Just use your common sense and think about what’s best for your child. Here’s how to make sure you get the ideal bedroom for them!

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Let Them Have Their Say

You might think that your children are too young to have a say in the home decorating. But, think about it, it’s their bedroom, and they’ll be the ones using it every day. At least if they have a say in the decorating and help choose the colours, they won’t’ be able to complain so much.

That doesn’t mean you should hand them complete control, just let them be involved in the process. This is especially helpful if you’ve moved house to a new area and you want to help them settle and become invested in their new home.

Make it Comfortable

Everyone needs their bedroom to be somewhere for them to relax and feel comfortable. This also applies to your kids. It’s no good having the room look great if it’s not functional and comfortable.

Get some big bean bags for them to sit on and get a new mattress for their bed, and you’re sorted. Making a room comfortable isn’t hard work, it’s just about finding the right items at the right price.

Don’t Be Boring

Your child’s bedroom is going to be the place where they learn, play and ultimately, grow up. That’s why it’s so important to get the design right and not let it become boring and nullifying.

Be imaginative when you’re thinking about what to do. It definitely shouldn’t be dull and boring. Make it lively and bright, you want them to have fond memories of their childhood bedroom when they’re older.

Make it Adaptable

The big problem with coming with a design for a child’s bedroom is that children grow up, and their interests change. You don’t want to decorate the bedroom and then have to do it again in a few years time.

To avoid this, you should steer clear of designs incorporating popular characters from films and television shows. These are the kinds of bedrooms that go out of date and out of fashion very quickly.

Allow for Creativity and Learning

You should always be looking for ways to add ways in which your children can be creative and learn in all aspects of their life. This should also be applied to their bedroom. It can be as simple as mixing educational elements into the design or adding some educational toys. They have to be fun too though. Otherwise, they’ll just be ignored!

If you follow these simple tips, your son or daughter will have the ideal new bedroom in no time.

 

Mums, Here’s How You Throw The Perfect Children’s Party

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Every year the pressure is on. It’s birthday time for the little ones and they want the best birthday ever! You’ve got to top last year and control a crazy group of kids that are getting older and older. We’ve all been there, and when you get it right, there’s nothing better. The smile of joy and laughters of happiness from your children are worth every second of planning. I’ve been through my fair share of birthdays, and I like to think I’ve perfected the art of kids’ parties! Today I’ll share some of the secrets that have helped me other the years.

Theme – The all important theme is the defining point of the party! Every year I try to do something new and always get the children involved in the decision. A theme makes everything more exciting. They can explore their imaginations with a pirate party or a spaceship party. Last year we threw a pool party which the children loved! Follow the link for more information on throwing your own pool party. One classic that always works is the Disney themed party. Everyone can dress up as their favourite Disney character.

Invite your family – The children’s friends should come first, of course. But, this is a little trick I picked up not so long ago. Invite plenty of your own family and even some of the other mums and dads. You can rope them into helping out with games and food. Hehe! It’s a cheeky trick but it really helps spread the work. You can ease the burden of looking after 20 hyperactive children!

Birthday cake – The cake is the centerpiece of the party. My kids love nothing more than a special themed birthday cake. Actually, they love ripping the icing off the cake a little more! But, a superhero or Disney cake will put a huge smile on their face and their friends. Most of these fun cakes can be bought from the supermarket. But, if you’re feeling really adventurous, why not try and make one yourself. I suggest doing a couple of trial runs if it’s very intricate!

Music and games – Children are more than capable of getting lost in their imagination. They’ll play happily and run around for hours. However, I always find it a good idea to organise the day a little. I separate it into organised games so that I can stay in control. All the classics are fantastic here. Try musical statues, pass the parcel, sleepy lions, or make up your own! Sleepy lions might even give you five minutes of peace and quiet! It’s a good idea to keep some of their favourite music on the stereo all day too.

Favours – The kids love nothing more than running home with a little gift. I like to make little party bags with something to remind them off the day and a piece of cake. A good trick is tying the favour to the theme. So, if it’s a pirate theme they can all go home with an eyepatch, or pieces of eight chocolate.

When it comes to your kid’s parties, let your imagination run wild. It’s their day, so make it special!

 

Tips For Busy Mums: How To Keep On Top Of Your Housework

As mums, we always put our little ones first. It’s just a natural instinct to take care of our children’s needs before our own. But sometimes it is important to make some time to do the things we want and need to do, such as the cleaning, for example.

Being a full-time mummy is no easy task, there is always something that needs to be done. Babygrows to wash, nappies to change or chores to do, sometimes it can feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day.

Childcare tasks aside, what about the housework? As a busy mummy, how on earth can you keep on top of it all?

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To help you keep on top of the housework, I have put together some simple tips below.

  1. Don’t go to bed with a messy kitchen

No matter how exhausted you are, never go to bed with a dirty kitchen. Trust me, in the morning you will regret it.

By going to bed and leaving your kitchen in a mess, you are just making more work for yourself the following day. Ask yourself whether you have time to clean the kitchen the next morning – think about getting the kids up and dressed, fed and off to nursery / school, etc.

The kitchen is the hub of the home; it is the place where you all come together as a family. By keeping the kitchen tidy, you will find it much easier to keep on top of the rest of the house.

  1. Do the laundry throughout the week

Don’t let your laundry pile up until the weekend, do a load every other day. If you leave all your laundry until the weekend, you will have far too much to do and may struggle to get on top of it.

Pop a load on every other day, that way you will find it much easier to keep on top of your washing. If time is a problem, put a load on as soon as you get up, go and get dressed and showered and then by the time you are ready for breakfast, the washing should be done.

  1. Focus on one room each day

If you have limited time for cleaning, focus on one room each day. For example, one evening clean the bathroom, the next do the living room and the following day do the hoovering. Top tip for hoovering, make sure you have a good-quality vacuum cleaner to use. For all the best vacuum info, you can have a look online. By cleaning each day, by the end of the week, you will have cleaned the most important rooms in the house.

By splitting up the cleaning, you will get more done and will have less to do on the weekends.

  1. Clean once the little ones are in bed

Once the little ones are in bed, instead of sitting down straight away, spend half an hour doing some cleaning. You would be amazed at how much cleaning you can fit into a short time frame if you focus it’s easy to get a lot done.

If you do half an hour of cleaning each evening, by Friday night you will have already done two and a half hours of cleaning.

Although keeping on top of the housework can seem tricky, there are plenty of ways you can get it all done and dusted.

6 Skills Mums Need to Run the Household

Motherhood is a skilled job! Don’t let anyone persuade you otherwise. Whether you’re a new mother or a mum with grown up kids, you’ll know how hard it can be to keep the household functioning properly. Here are the 6 key skills you’ll need.

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  1. Patience

This is one I might never master. Patience is essential if you want to keep control of situations around the house. You’ll find yourself repeating everything you say at least three times, probably more.

It’s not just children that test your patience either; there are a hundred things that will try to disconvenience you.

  1. Incredible Endurance

Being a mum can feel more tiring than running a marathon some days. It’s not easing trying to juggle every job that needs to be done. The kids are running around, the dog wants to go for a walk and a million other things all seem to be happening at once.

Over time, you become more resilient though. You’ll learn to take the pain and push on!

  1. DIY Skills

Things break down around the house; this is a fact of life, unfortunately. When this happens, you’ll need to be able to deal with the problem swiftly. This means being able to carry out some DIY.

Visit www.apwagner.com for the parts you need and then get a good DIY guide book if you don’t know what you’re doing. The kids won’t wait around too long for the TV to start working again, so be quick!

  1. Tight Control of the Purse Strings

Budgeting is essential for mums. Running a household is expensive, and if you’re not keeping on top of what’s going out and what’s coming in, you can quickly find yourself in financial trouble. You have to make every penny stretch as far as possible and search for offers and deal that will save you some cash.

This is a skill you learn out of habit. As a mum, you have no choice but to become an expert on the household finances. This is a transferable skill though, and you might be able to use it in a future career!

  1. Multitasking

One of the keys to successful multitasking is planning. Try to plan your days in advance as far as you can. It becomes much easier to keep all those plates spinning if you know what’s coming your way from day to day.

Of course, you can’t plan everything. This is where the job becomes even more difficult. You’ll have to learn to manage curveballs and interruptions. This will come with experience though.

  1. Persuasion

The power of persuasion is vital for any mum dealing with more than one child. When they get an idea in their minds, kids can be incredibly stubborn. It’s a difficult skill to master, but with the right approach and a bribe here and there, kids can be persuaded to look at things the way you see them.

If there’s more than one, your job becomes even tougher. They’ll either be plotting with each other against you or they’ll be fighting with each other! So, you’ll need to be able to resolve conflicts too.

 

Sorting Out The Summer: How To Plan The Kids’ Break From School

In just a few months, my kids will be off school for six weeks. The summer holidays are something that my children look forward to all year long. For most parents, though, they can be a massive stress. Finding things for your kids to do when they have a break can be tricky. Of course, you don’t want them to sit at home watching TV all the time, and so you need to make a plan for their holiday. I am starting right now. In the past, I have left things until the last minute and regretted it. This year, I have made a vow to sort out every single day of the summer holidays in advance.

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Find free activities online

There will, of course, be days when it is cold and miserable outside. Not every day of the school break can be beautiful sunshine. You need something that your children can do inside when the weather is poor. I have found that there are loads of educational activities online for children. Some websites have worksheets that you can print off for your children. If you get a stack of activity sheets in advance, you will always have something for your little ones to do.

Look into childcare options

It is unreasonable for you to take six weeks off from work. Most people only get 28 days holiday for the entire year. You need to save some of those days for Christmas and New Year. Few workplaces will let people take more than two weeks off at a time. If you can’t get much time off, you can always hire nannies in Melbourne to take care of your kids for a few days each week. Of course, you need to vet people before you hire them to look after your children. Find someone who your kids are comfortable with so that you know they will be happy.

Plan a few day trips

If you want to treat your kids to a few days out, now is the time to get planning them. Most of the time, you can get early bird deals online when you plan your day trips. You should look for any holiday offers or discounts so that the trip is cheap. As you know, it can be super expensive to take your children to a theme park or any other attraction. That is why it is so crucial that you plan these activities in advance.

Talk to your family

The summer is the perfect time to take your little ones to see your family. If your parents live in another city or even another country, it might be a good time to take your children to see them. Children can get quite fussy when they travel, and so you should make sure that they have loads of fun things to do on the trip itself. I am sure that your parents would love to see your kids for a while, and having them there will relieve some of your stress.

Consider a children’s course

If you want your kids to make the most of the summer, you might want to enroll them in a course. There are loads of fun things your children could learn. If your kids have a particular interest, such as music, you can find a course that will help them to learn some essential skills. For example, you might want to find some guitar lessons for your children so that they can learn to play.

If you start planning the summer break now, you will find that it is easy to cope with when it comes. You need to enjoy this free time with your kids and make sure that they have an incredible holiday too!

Essentials Every Mum Needs In Her Handbag

Over the years, I’ve learned many lessons about being a mum, one of which, is that it pays to be prepared. And, that is why I always keep everything I may need in my handbag.

From hand sanitizer to lollipops, I keep my bag well stocked with bits and bobs I may need while out and about. It might sound crazy, but with little ones running around, you never know what you might need.

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To help you make sure that you have everything you could possibly need in your handbag, I have put together this handy guide below:

  1. Hand sanitizer

It’s times like when you are in a dirty public bathroom, that hand sanitizer comes in really handy. Not only can you use it to kill germs on yours and your child’s hands, but, you can also squirt a little sanitizer onto a tissue and wipe around the toilet seat before you use it.

Hand sanitizer can also come in handy when your child somehow manages to end up touching a dirty floor or handrail. It is times likes these, and so many others, that hand sanitizer is essential.

If you are not a fan of the shop made hand sanitizers, you could always make your own hand sanitizer.

  1. Sunscreen

It is a good idea to keep a travel-sized sunscreen in your handbag just in case the sun makes a sudden appearance.

While it’s a good idea to apply sunscreen before you leave the house, sometimes plans change, and you may find yourself spending an unexpected afternoon in the sun. That is when a travel sized bottle of sunscreen comes in really handy.

  1. Small toys

This one is pretty self-explanatory, but keeping a few small toys and travel games in your handbag is perfect for keeping the kids entertained wherever you are.

Whether you are at a doctor’s appointment, out to dinner or on a long car journey, keeping some toys in your handbag can be a lifesaver.

  1. Safety harness

Once kids get to a certain age, they become too big to sit in the pushchair and instead want to walk along beside you. While this is great, if they refuse to stay close and hold your hand it can be rather worrying – what if they run out in the road or wander too far?

To keep your little ones safe while you are out and about, invest in some wrist links, and attach your child to your wrist or pushchair.

  1. Antibacterial wipes

You may be thinking why would you need hand sanitizer and antibacterial wipes, but trust me, both are essential.

While hand sanitizer is great for cleaning your hands, antibacterial wipes come in handy everywhere. From wiping down dropped children’s cutlery to cleaning sticky faces, antibacterial wipes are essential.

  1. Mini first aid kit

Kids have a habit of falling over and grazing their knees everywhere; that is why it pays to carry a mini first aid kit in your handbag.

While you can invest in a travel size first aid kit, to keep in your purse, some children’s plasters, antibiotic cream, and wound cleaning wipes can be just as useful.

You may also want to keep a couple of sachets of children’s Nurofen in your handbag for when your little one is feeling under the weather.

Hyperactive Kids? The Complete Guide To Calming Them Down!

Sometimes, it can feel as though your kids are a whirlwind, and you are a building ready to fall. When your children become hyperactive, they can be more than a handful. Many parents find this phase super stressful, and some fail to cope with it at all. It is crucial that you stay in control no matter what your children do. They might be tearing the house apart, but you need to remember that you are the adult. The moment you lose your temper, you have lost the battle. Instead, use this guide to help you calm your children down so that you can get some much-needed rest.

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Find your inner zen

Before you do anything, you need to take control of your emotions. If your little ones have pushed you to your limits, you might be about ready to snap. If you want to take control of this situation, you need to be calm and have a cool head on your shoulders. Remove yourself from the situation and get perspective. Sure, your son might be driving you insane, but he is just a child. Try some breathing exercises until you feel ready to tackle the issue.

Limit sugary sweets

One thing that is sure to make kids hyper is sugar. Many snacks have additives and sweeteners in them, and so they are no good for little children at all. If you find that your kids get excitable after they have had snacks, you need to stop letting them eat junk. What you feed your children has a direct effect on the way they act.

Use relaxation techniques

If you want to settle your children fast, you should use some simple relaxation techniques. What will calm your children down? Some parents find that using devices or gadgets can help. Massage chairs in 2015 are much more advanced than they once were. If you put your children in the seat for just five minutes, you will notice a change in their mood. You can use these gadgets whenever you need to so that your little ones calm down. You might find that your kids enjoy the chair so much that they always want to sit in it.

Turn off any distractions

When your children begin to misbehave, you need to turn off any distractions in the house. For example, if they had been watching cartoons before they got hyper, turn off the TV. This step might sound a little harsh, but you need to do it. Your kids need to understand that their actions have consequences. If you take something away from your children and, most importantly, tell them why you are doing so, they will understand.

Start your bedtime routine early

You should begin your bedtime routine around two to three hours before you want your children to sleep. If you get your kids ready for bed when their bedtime is, you will find that they kick up a massive fuss. If you start earlier than you usually would, you have time for their tantrums, and they will still go to bed at the right time. Children are often naughty at bedtime because they don’t want to sleep. They think if they can hold your attention, they can get away with staying up late.

Battling with hyper children feels as though it is a never-ending issue. If you find that you try these steps and your kids are still crazy, you should take them to the doctors and see if they are okay. You might find that there is something else causing their moods, and so you need to know what to do next. Remember, if you persevere, you should succeed! Good luck, fellow mommy.

 

 

All Kids Should Have a Hobby: Here’s How to Help Yours

All kids should have a hobby. Way too many kids these days spend their time indoors, whether they’re on the internet or playing games on their PS4. Don’t get me wrong; playing games and browsing the internet is find in moderation. It’s just that many kids think that’s all there is to life. It’s all they care about. Hobbies can help kids to develop confidence, social skills, and a new purpose in life!

In my opinion, all kids should have a hobby. This could be anything; reading, writing, playing an instrument, collecting something – whatever. They all have amazing benefits! If your child has multiple hobbies, that’s even better. If they chose a sporty hobby like dancing, paired with an intellectual hobby like reading, you’d end up with a little Einstein for sure! But how can you encourage them to have a hobby?

Limit the Time They Spend on The Internet

The first step is to limit the time they spend on the internet. Make sure they know exactly how long they’re allowed to stay on there, and stick to it. Don’t let them have an ‘extra 10 minutes’, as this lets them know that they can manipulate you and get their own way. Instead, tell them that it’s time to come off but they can do something else instead – enter the hobby. They’ll be way more inclined to pick up a book or a musical instrument if they can’t use distractions like the internet.

Introduce Them to Different Hobbies

Let them test out different hobbies and see how they like them. Send them to a beginner’s dance class for example, or let them try out Karate. Let them try multiple hobbies so they know exactly what they like to do. Don’t force them to do anything they don’t want to do though, or they’ll suck the fun right out of it!

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Share Your Own Hobbies With Them

If you have hobbies of your own, share them with them. Let them watch you as you make clothes, furniture, or whatever else it is you like to do. Invite them to help if they want to. Don’t expect them to have exactly the same hobbies as you though – your kids are individuals too!

Give Them a Choice

Finally, give your kids a choice. Just outright ask them what they’d like to do. When you think they’re serious about something, playing an instrument for example, you can do things like hire a tutor from bespokemusictuition.com. Then you know that this isn’t just a passing fad and you paying for their tuition is worthwhile.

Kids can feel discouraged easily if they don’t quickly make progress, so it’s up to you to encourage them and tell them how great they’re doing. They’ll soon become an expert at what it is they decide to do. Encourage them to stick at it, and make sure they know all of the benefits they can enjoy from continuing with their hobby.

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Moms: A Super Guide To Relaxing And Taking A (Much-Needed) Break

As a mother, you feel as though you need to do everything. Sometimes, though, you try to be superwoman, and that is just not realistic. You can’t do a million things at once each day. Attempting to do will mean that you burnout and lack energy. If you want to be a fantastic mommy, you need to have some time to yourself now and then. Often, parents feel guilty for wanting time away from their little ones. You should never feel guilty about that. You are a human being as well as a caregiver, and that means that you deserve some time out.

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Step 1: Find a babysitter

The first thing, you need to do, is find a babysitter. If you are a single parent, you should ask a family member or a friend if they are free for a day. If you live with your partner, you might find that they can take the kids while you have a day off. Remember, it works both ways – if your partner gives you a day off, you should do the same for them another day. Find someone who you can trust so that you feel at ease leaving your kids with them.

Step 2: Call up your best friend

When was the last time you saw your bestie? Do you remember? When people have families, their life changes forever. You need to make time for the people who you care about in your life. Every woman needs a best friend, and so you should ensure that you don’t neglect yours. Ask her whether she is free to have a day with you. The two of you can catch up and chat like you used to before you had children.

Step 3: Turn your phone to silent

This step is super important if you want to relax. If you check your phone every five minutes, it means that you will never switch off and chill out. Instead, you should turn your phone to silent. Most phones will let you assign unique ringtones to each caller. Make sure that your babysitter (or partner) has a loud ringtone, but that the rest of your phone is on silent. That way, if there is an emergency, someone can reach you. Otherwise, you get some peace and quiet.

 Step 4: Check into a spa for the day

If you want to have some quiet time, you should think about booking a spa day. You and your best friend will get the chance to relax with one another. You can book yourself some calming massages and treatments. Once you wrap yourself up in the spa towels you will start to feel yourself unwind. After a few hours in the tranquil atmosphere, you will feel like a whole new person. If you book ahead of time, you can often get special deals or discounts.

Step 5: Don’t talk about your home life

When you are having a break, the last thing you need to do is spend all day long chatting about your home life. If you find that you talk about money, housework or the kids, you need to stop. Instead, you should speak of fun and exciting things. Ask your friend what is new in her life and find out how she is these days. In doing so, you will show her that you care about her, in the same way, that you used to.

Step 6: Treat yourself (for once)

You might feel as though you need to save all your money for bills and groceries, but sometimes, you need to treat yourself. As a mom, you work super hard every day. For one day only, give into temptation and treat yourself. You know you want to!