Things to Look for in a Childcare Centre

If you decide to put your child in a childcare center, you surely know how important it is to choose the right childcare center. Hopefully, this is where your child will spend the next few years – you certainly don’t want to confuse them by moving them to a new childcare too regularly. This is where they’ll make friends, learn skills, and start to develop their personalities. But how do you know when you’ve found the right childcare center? What should you look for? Keep reading as we discuss just this.

Location

It’s no help finding the perfect childcare center if it’s a few hours away. You need to find a childcare center close to where you live and work. Firstly, because it will save you many hours in traffic. Secondly, and most importantly, because it will allow you to reach the school quickly if there’s an emergency. Finally, this will allow you and your child to get used to the area and get to know people who live there. You should look at centers closest to you before searching for ones further out. For example, if you live in Sydney, start by looking at centers in Sydney.

Safety

Most parents agree that safety is the most important aspect of a childcare center. You might be wondering how exactly to know if a center is safe. Start by looking at the physical aspects: is there decent fencing? Are the playgrounds and classrooms child-proof? Then look at things like how they monitor who enters – do parents get keycards, or can anyone just walk in? Finally, if you know any parents whose kids are in that childcare center, talk to them about their experience. This is likely to get you the most accurate information.

Resources

Look, a childcare center doesn’t need a bunch of fancy, high-tech equipment and toys in order to teach your child. That being said, they should have a variety of methods of teaching, as children learn in different ways, and they require various methods of mental and physical stimulation. You can also ask them about field trips and what a normal daily schedule would look like so that you can ensure that your child is getting a well-rounded education. Also be sure to ask about what meals they serve each day – if possible, you should choose a center that offers nutritional meals.

The Teachers

Your child will spend a lot of time at their childcare center, meaning they will spend a lot of time with their teachers. It is therefore important to make sure that you trust them. Feel free to ask about their qualifications or experience. You can also ask them what they would do in a specific situation. The last thing you want is to reprimand your child for something, only to have them say, “But my teacher says it’s okay!”. A good teacher can make a huge, positive difference in your child’s life. Similarly, a bad teacher can have a severe negative impact.

Updating My Custom Doll House

Updating My Custom Doll HouseThis is a picture of the house halfway through being built.

You may remember that I posted some years ago now about the doll house that my Nan and Grandad built for me when I was a child, and how I planned to renovate it. Well, life well and truly got in the way and it has, unfortunately, lived in my mother-in-law’s loft since then. However, with the summer holidays getting close, I’ll have a lot more time on my hands and I’ve decided to make it a priority. Here are some of the things I plan to do:

Wallpaper

When I first started planning the renovation, I had thought about going to my local DIY superstore and getting sme wallpaper samples to use. However, it turns out that dolls house wallpaper is actually a thing! It can be bought by the sheet and is self-adhesive, with much smaller print which looks better on the little walls.

Floor Coverings

Most of the rooms are carpeted and in great condition, but on the surfaces which aren’t carpeted, I plan to use some really funky checkerboard floor tiles that I’ve seen. They’re perfect for a small floor and will give the whole house a nice updated look and I can’t wait to see what the finished effect will look like.

Roof Repairs

As I said in my old post, the roof tiles are individually cut out of a teracotta colours lino to look like the real thing. I don’t want to retile the while roof as that would be an enormous job, so I plan to find something which is as close to the original material as possible and patch the roof up where it needs it. I’m hoping to get it looking back to its original glory, but I’m nowhere near as skilled as my lovely Grandad, so I just hope I can do him justice.

Me with my doll houseYes, that is tiny me!

Curtains

The curtains that my Nan made for the doll house are still pretty good, but the fabric is a little dated and could do with some modernisation. Thankfully, I’m fairly decent with a sewing machine and I can do a good job of updating all of the curtains and soft fabrics in the house. I’ll probably choose a fabric which co-oridinates with the new wallpaper so that it all goes well together.

Furniture

This is the one area where I may choose to outsource and buy replacements for the furniture, instead of attempting to make my own. Aside from having nowhere near the skill of my grandparents in this area, I don’t have the tools OR the space to do this type of work, so I’ll hit eBay, Facebook and maybe Freecycle to see if I can source a whole house worth of new furniture that way.

Five DIY Tips for People With Zero DIY Skills!

Despite the fact that we live in rented accomodation, Husband and I like to do as much as we can to make our house feel like a home, and we’re both pretty happy to get stuck in when it comes to DIY. As well as doing our best to keep the house and garden looking nice, our landlady also sometimes looks to us for basic maintenance to the property and it’s generally something we’re happy to do.

There are, however, a few things which are a little beyond our skillset, so with this in mind I thought I’d share some tips on how to improve your home when you don’t want to (or can’t!) do major works:

Stick-On Tiles

Stick and Go TilesTiling is something that takes a fair amount of skill, a whole lot of time and a number of different materials and tools. It’s not an easy job and it’s something that can easily look rubbish if you get it wrong as there’s not a huge margin for error. However, there is such a thing as Stick and Go Wall Tiles, which can be stuck directly over any size tile, or straight onto the wall and require zero cementing or grouting! Perfect for a DIY project!

Vinyl Wrapping

DIY Vinyl WrappingIf you don’t want to replace your whole kitchen, or simply don’t have the budget to upgrade, using vinyl to “wrap” your units can give you a fresh look with little outlay. It’s not the easiest thing to do and does take patience, but the effects can be absolutely brilliant and can massively modernise the look of your space. It’s also WAY less distruptive and less messy than ripping out units to replace with new, and it’s also better for the environment as nothing ends up in landfill!

Adhesive Strips

If your lease prevents you from drilling into your walls, this can mean that you’re unable to put curtains up, no hanging pictures and definitely no shelves, which can be a real drag. Pictures, shelves and soft furnishings can make a major difference in how homely your house feels, so we recommend using adhesive strips like Command strips to put things on the walls instead of nails and screws. There’s a huge variety of different strips for different things and you’d be surprised just how much weight some of them can hold.

DIY Patterned Walls

patterned wallsIf you fancy having patterned walls but really don’t like the thought of wallpapering, there are other ways to create DIY patterned walls. From using a laundry basket to create polka dots to masking tape to make geometric patterns, you can create a completely unique, bespoke design which will look really effective, without spending hours trying to line up sheets of wallpaper.

DIY No-Sew Curtains

No Sew Boho Curtains DIYMaking new curtains for your home might seem like a really daunting task if you aren’t a confident sewer, but it’s actually a lot easier than you think, and you don’t even need to sew a single stitch! There are lots of hardy fabric glues and adhesive strips on the market that allow you to hem fabric and attach curtain tape, as well as an internet FULL of tutorials, showing you how to do it.

Five of the Fanciest Addresses in the UK

While I’m a good socialist and don’t feel the need to be stinking rich, I’m also a HUMAN and often have wandering thoughts about where we’d live if money was no object. I do love a good rifle through the pages of Rightmove, and let’s face it, it’s a lot more gratifying to look at huge, fancy houses than your average two-bed semi in Reading! With this in mind, I thought I’d show you some of the fanciest address in the UK:

Harley Street

Fanciest Addresses Harley StreetPhoto by Dimitry B on Unsplash

While it might not be famous for its residences, Harley Street is probably one of the best known addresses in the UK, and it’s DEFINITELY one you want to visit if you’re having a medical procedure. If you’re off for an ENT appointment and you have to go to 150 Harley Street, you’re going to be very happy to see that address on your letter! It’s been associated with medical practices since the 19th century and today has around 3000 people working there.

Royal Crescent

If you’re going to talk about fancy addresses in the UK, you can’t ignore a road called ROYAL Crescent! The famous row of houses is in Bath is considered one of the greatest examples of Georgian architecture to be found in the United Kingdom and is a Grade I listed building. Although some changes have been made to the various interiors over the years, the Georgian stone facade remains much as it was when first built.

Benar Headland

Fanciest Addresses - Benar HeadlandYou could easily be forgiven for looking at this picture and thinking that it’s somewhere on the California coast, but actually, Benar Headand is in Wales, and is home to the most expensive protery in the whole of the country. A quick search on Rightmove shows that you’ll be unlikely to find a property right on the headland with change from £1.5 million, so you better start saving if you ever want to live there!

St. Georges Place

St George's Place, York

Although much of the UK’s super expensive property is located in the South and South East, that doesn’t mean that the North doesn’t have its fair share of swanky pads. St. Georges Place is in York and is considered one of the city’s most exclusive streets. It’s located close to shopping and entertainment as well as transport links, and while there are houses at the more affordable end of the spectrum, several houses are worth upwards of two million quid.

Sandbanks

Sandbanks Peninsula

Once described as “the fourth dearest place on the planet” Sandbanks in Dorset is still an ultra desirable, ULTRA expensive place to live – but look at the images and you can see why! It looks like the UK’s equivalent of Star Island in Miami and the most expensive addresses for sale at the moment have an asking price of offers in excess of TEN million pounds! Talk about swanky!

Five Ways to Improve Your Hearing

Having had glasses since I was 11, my eyesight is something that I’m very conscious of taking care of. I have regular eye tests to make sure that I have the correct prescription and try to limit screen time to avoid eye strain. However, in recent years, it’s also occured to me that I probably need to think about my hearing.

I often put the subtitles on as I realise I’m struggling to catch every word and although I don’t think I’m quite ready for hearing aids yet, a youth spent at gigs and in noisy clubs has probably done me few favours! With this in mind, I thought I’d take a look at some ways that I can naturally improve my hearing, and ‘m sharing some of my ideas so that you can benefit too.

Ear Wax Microsuction

Many people ignore the fact that cotton buds are actually really bad for your ears, and far from helping to clean your ear canals, they can actually cause ear wax to become impacted, which really affects your hearing. One way to deal with this is with ear wax microsuction – it’s a gentle, clinical way to remove ear wax which will improve your hearing and your ear health.

Headphone Usage

You know those warnings that come up when you try to turn your volume up when you have headphones on, telling you that it can damage your hearing? Believe it or not, they’re true! (sarcasm intended…). Using headphones at high volumes for prolonged periods can have a profound affect on your hearing so try to listen without headphones when you can and limit your volume if headphones are a must.

Quit Smoking

I know it seems like everything is a reason to quit smoking (I mean, seriously though, how many more reasons do you need?!) but smoking can drastically increase your risk of hearing loss – by almost double.

“That’s because blood flow and oxygen are crucial to maintaining healthy cells in your inner ear, and both are hampered by nicotine and carbon monoxide. Smoking also irritates the lining of your middle ear and disturbs the normal function of your Eustachian tube.”[1]

Think About Vitamins

There are a number of vitamins and minerals which are linked to good ear health, such as folic acid, magnesium, zinc and B vitamins. Obviously, the best way to make sure you get these is through a balanced and healthy diet, but if you feel like you might be lacking something, adding a good multivitamin supplement to your diet could be really beneficial.

Have a Hearing Test

Just like eye tests, hearing tests help you to keep abreast of your health and will help to identify any early signs of hearing loss. Hearing tests are cheap, quick and painless and will let you know if you need a little help with your hearing. You might think you don’t need one, but as with everything else, prevention is better than cure, so get your ears looked at before you have a serious problem.

4 Ways To Reduce Stress & Enjoy Life

Pexels

Life is short and each day is a gift. Therefore, you don’t want stress holding you back from living life to the fullest and enjoying your days.

There are four ways, in particular, that will help you reduce stress so you can put a smile back on your face. When you feel good you’ll be happier and won’t let every little issue that pops up get to you. These ideas will help shift you into a better place and allow you to get back to enjoying your life and being someone others want to be around.

1.    Exercise

Exercise and daily physical activity are some of the most important activities you can do if you want to reduce stress and be happy. Break a sweat to help you reduce anxiety and stop your mind from racing. Mix up your workout routine so you don’t become bored easily and are challenging different muscles. You’ll not only boost your mood and mental health but you’ll also get yourself into good shape so you feel confident about the way you look. Your clothes will fit, you’ll have more natural energy, and you’ll be enjoying life more.

2.    Get Outside

You can reduce stress and enjoy life by spending more time outside. Being outdoors in nature is an excellent opportunity to release tension and negative emotions and refocus your mind and energy. There are many activities you can do such as using your tractor to tackle some yard work or you can take your boat out for a cruise on the water. In either case, you should check the red diesel price per litre so you know how much you’ll need to spend to power this type of equipment. You’ll quickly be enjoying life as you soak up the sunshine and breathe in the fresh air as you work or play outdoors.

3.    Spend Quality Time with Friends & Family

It’s also important to maintain and nurture your relationships if you want to be happy and feel less stressed out. Being social will make you smile and you’ll likely soon be laughing when you’re hanging out with good friends or your family members. Call a friend up to get coffee or to go shopping or have a movie and game night with your loved ones. Get out of the house and socialise so that you can boost your mood and enjoy life.

4.    Find A Hobby  

All work and no play will make you feel anxious and overwhelmed. Therefore, reduce your stress and start enjoying life by finding a hobby you can do in your free time. For example, maybe it’s playing sports, learning photography, or painting and being artistic. It doesn’t matter what hobby you pick up as long as you find it pleasurable and it makes you feel good about yourself. You may even discover new talents or abilities you never knew you had and might consider turning your hobby into a career one day. Have fun learning and growing and challenging yourself in new ways.

Tips for Busy Moms: No House Helps

Moms have a lot on their plates, probably more than men have in their briefcases. How do you manage a home without going insane? Good organization is critical. If you are a busy mom feeling overwhelmed, take a minute to read through these tips. They will make your life easier.

Meals

Nothing is more exhausting than daily cooking. What immense efforts were made for a meal that was then quickly swallowed! But offering healthy food to your family is well worth the time. Use these tips.

Frozen foods: Stock up on frozen foods. They are picked at full maturity, stored at the best time of freshness, and they will save you precious time: no need to peel them! 

Meal planning: Plan your menus for the five evenings of the week. Indeed, it is not preparing a meal that takes the most time. It is choosing what to cook! Last-minute decisions about meals are not just time-consuming; they can be stressful.

Cook on weekends: During the weekend, spend half a day cooking. Prepare as many dishes as possible for the week, which you will store in the refrigerator or freezer. When you get from work in the evening, all you have to do is reheat them and add the final touch (a fresh sauce, parsley, etc.).

Shopping

Make a shopping list: Make a shopping list of the products you need regularly. You will hang it on the refrigerator. Whenever you / the nanny / your husband find that something is missing, update it. When it’s time to go shopping, refer to it. It will save you from unending trips to the store during the week.

Use home delivery: Take advantage of the stores’ delivery services. As long as you group your purchases, the amount of the bill will surely entitle you to free delivery.

Shop online: Shopping online can be a bit more expensive. Butyou save the cost of the car trip, and you save yourself a lot of effort. A shopping cart for four people weighs at least 30 kg. Think about the strain on your back when you load and unload!

Cleaning

Pace yourself: It’s not about cleaning everything thoroughly every day but about keeping your home consistently tidy and clean. Clean that uncluttered kitchen table, dirty sink, a stained floor as soon as you notice that they need cleaning.

Use the right products: Most of us are don’t have the time to clean. So finding a cleaning product that speeds up the work can significantly save your time and effort. The right tile cleaner, for instance, should be tough on stains and gentle on the tile surface.

Get every tool you need: Gather all the equipment you need in a plastic bin that you can carry with you. This will eliminate the need to leave one room to pick up a brush or soap in another or from wondering where you may have put the mop or the cleaning product.

Be strategic: When you tackle the cleaning of a room, proceed methodically. Update your knowledge on how to clean grout. Learn about the products and techniques that work best. When cleaning, start at a corner of the room and dust while going around until you return to the starting point. Then clean what is in the middle of the room.

Laundry

Get a laundry basket: Install a basket of dirty laundry in each bedroom or on each floor to encourage everyone to throw away their belongings. This will prevent you from stalking dirty socks under the bed and picking up T-shirts behind the toy box.

Documents

Talk to the children: Teach your children and your partner to empty the pockets of their clothes before putting them in the dirty basket. Nothing is more painful than the white paper handkerchief that we find crumbled on all the clothes or the purple bus ticket, leaving its mark on the ivory blouse!

Sort your receipts and papers, including pay slips, bank statements, reservations—separate bills from correspondence.

Among the documents to be processed, immediately deal with those which require an urgent response or which do not require more than five minutes (a check to write, a slip to fill out). Andgather the others in a file. You will deal with them later.

Good luck!

Making Money At Home For Your Loved Ones

Image 

The pandemic last year hit many of us hard for many different reasons. There are many people around the world who have lost jobs, been put on furlough, or have had to close down their small businesses during the time where people had to stay at home. 

One of the important things to try and do during these difficult times is find new ways to make money for yourself and to support your loved ones. There are many methods for making some extra money at home whether it be via a hobby or setting up a passive stream – and here we have some ideas for you to try today. 

Sell artwork 

One of the first things you can try to do this year is sell some artwork. Whether you are a dab hand with a paintbrush, delicate with a pencil, or you take amazing photographs – people will pay to have these framed in their homes as decoration. Set up your own Facebook page or an Etsy site and it will allow you to sell your work to people and make some extra money doing something you enjoy. 

Create a YouTube channel

One of the most lucrative and wide ways to make money in the modern world is to start a YouTube channel and share content with the world. When you create a YouTube channel you are able to share any type of content you want from makeup tutorials to crime stories and more. You can choose whatever subject you love and share it with the world. The great thing about YouTube is that you are able to put your video out there into the world and over time you’ll start to make passive income as people view it. It is a useful way to make money but can also become a great hobby for you to destress and enjoy. 

Trade currency 

If you are looking for a more investment focused way to make money, trading currency is a great idea. The forex market has been the most lucrative market in the world for years and recently cryptocurrencies such as Polkadot (DOT) and Bitcoin have been introduced which are growing rapidly in popularity over time. Take the chance this year to start trading on the forex market and see what a difference it can make to your income over the years. 

Take on freelance jobs 

If you have a specific skill that you want to share with the world, one helpful way to make some money this year is to join a network such as Upwork and look at signing up for freelance jobs posted by others on the site. This can be a great way to make money at your own pace when you have some free time and it will ensure that you get some income when you need it most and you won’t be tied into doing work every day if you don’t have the time. 

Consider some of these methods of making money this year for your loved ones and start to invest for you family’s future.

How To Pick The Best Sporting Activity For Your Child

Image Credit

Incorporating sports into your child’s life is an excellent idea as there are significant advantages your child can gain from being involved. The truth is that not all kids may enjoy sports since their interests may lie in other activities. However, the challenge usually comes in choosing the right sport for your child if they are interested. Like all other decisions, you take on behalf of your children, choosing the right sport is just as important. So, how can you go about making the right choice? Here are a few things you should consider.

Expose your child to several sports

The best way you can be sure you are making the right choice is by having a lot to choose from! By exposing your child to a wide range of sports, you help create various experiences for them. This goes a long way to help them discover the sport in which their interests lie. You do this by simply giving them information on sports you are knowledgeable about. For example, if you know all about rugby or soccer, you can share this information with your child to perk up their interest. Watching various matches and tournaments is also a great way to expose them to multiple sports. Doing so would also help you decipher the ones they like and dislike.

Look out for signs of enthusiasm

Perhaps, your child is already interested in a specific sport. To be sure of this, you would have to be mindful of the sports they seem to be enthusiastic about. Children tend to express their interest in something by talking about it. A lot! Listen to your children talk to figure out which sports they prefer. They may speak excessively about plays, strategies or follow games closely. They may also form bonds with other children who play that sport or share an interest in it. However, you would need to be flexible in this regard. This is because your child may express interest in a “non-traditional” sport such as mixed martial arts or gymnastics. Whatever sport they show interest in, find ways to support and encourage them.

Consider your child’s physical traits

Is your child tall? Perhaps they have long legs? Or, are they stout? Your child’s physical appearance can play a role in what sports they could enjoy playing. For example, your slim and short child may be better off being into athletics or basketball. However, do not let their physical attributes hinder them from participating in sports they are interested in. You should also consider their skills, strength, and temperament. These attributes would be a significant determinant of whether your child should join individual or group sports, the nature of the sports they would excel in, or their overall attitude towards a sport.

Although you want to help your child make the right choice, it is vital to offer support than to force them to join a sport. Therefore, use these factors to hear your child out and not force them.

Can I Find Love After A Separation?

The pandemic has taught us a lot about ourselves. But it’s also been a revelation for a lot of couples. Some have seized the opportunities to fall back in love again. Others have discovered with horror that they’d grown too far apart to carry on with their dreams of a happy ever after. It’s no surprise that many relationships have emerged or dissolved during the many periods of lockdown.

Yet, when you’ve spent many years in a long-term relationship with your partner, it can be devastating to consider a separation. Thankfully, a lot of couples who have chosen to go separate ways during the pandemic have managed to do it on friendly terms. So there’s one less thing to stress about as you ask yourself the big question: Will I find love again after a separation?

Can I Find Love After A Separation?

Unsplash – CC0 Licence

You are in charge of how you feel

There’s a big difference between finding love and being in a relationship. If you focus too much on finding someone to prove to yourself that you are worthy of love, you may end up settling down for something that doesn’t make you happy. There’s no secret: If you are insecure about it, you’ll struggle to find the confidence to hit the dating scene again, as per a previous article on http://www.mumstheword.me. When you start to find happiness in who you are, you find it easier to follow your heart than your fears. While it doesn’t mean that you can’t do some work on yourself. You may want to get fitter or stronger, and that’s great. However, make sure that you’re doing it for yourself and not to impress your future date. If you let self-esteem issues and self-doubts guide you, they will inevitably encourage a relationship for the wrong reasons. And that’s the last thing you want in your quest for love.

It doesn’t have to be something serious 

Here’s the thing: You may be ready to have fun, but that doesn’t mean you want to jump into the next long-term relationship. When you’ve spent a lot of time in a relationship, sometimes, it’s good to enjoy your time alone before hitting back the dating scene. It’s a fantastic opportunity to figure out what you want and like. And ultimately, it doesn’t hurt to enjoy casual flirting without any engagement before you move onto more serious things. Get back into the flirting game with things such as https://www.freechatlines.com without any expectations. Or you could simply turn to chat-friendly platforms that let you reach out to people and find your voice again. Needless to say, when you’ve been on your best behaviour for years, it can be interesting to find out just how much fun talking to strangers can be.

Using it as an excuse to get back to your ex

Understandably, it’ll take some time to figure out who you are when you’re single again. We tend to define ourselves through our relationships, so it’s fair to say that you’ll have to update your social media presence after the separation. Your future partner will see your social media presence, so it’s about showing your true self rather than trying to get back at your ex.

Hoping for love after a separation is the dream of everyone. More often than not, your approach will be crucial in making room for a new relationship. Self-confidence is a game-changer, in your flirting game, in your worth, and in who you are.