142 articles Tag Family

Loving Liverpool After Lockdown

If you’ve read this blog before, you’ll probably know that as a family, we’re big fans of Liverpool. Obviously, the main love is Liverpool FC, but we’re also in love with the actual city of Liverpool and the people who live there. Husband and I often joke that we’d feel way more at home in Liverpool because of the politics and attitudes of the people up there and we’ve even sat and trawled through Rightmove, fantasising about a move to the North West where housing costs are so much more affordable.

Travelling right now is out of the question (we’ve barely left the house since this time last year!) and we certainly won’t be going anywhere until it’s totally safe. We can’t wait for lockdown to end so that we can visit our spiritual home again, and this in mind, I thought I’d put together a little list of some of the places that we’re planning to go:

Anfield

Anfield Stadium, Home of Liverpool FCI mean, come on, this one was a no-brainer, right?! Husband has been to Anfield to watch Liverpool play many times but I’ve only been once and I was pregnant with BB at the time, so I’d love for us to go back as a foursome and watch a match. There is NOTHING in the world like the sound of The Kop singing You’ll Never Walk Alone to make the hairs on the back of your neck stand up.

World Museum Liverpool

World Museum Liverpool

The World Museum Liverpool is the oldest of all of the museums and galleries in Liverpool and is famous for its great collections, its history of innovation and the family-friendly experience that it offers. From science demonstrations to a packed aquarium, this is something that all four of us would absolutely love.

Mersey Ferries

Mersey Ferries LiverpoolHave you even been to Liverpool if you haven’t taken a ferry ‘cross the Mersey?! Aside from the fact that the boast themselves look like something that Paul McCartney saw in an LSD-fuelled dream, the Mersey Ferries have been an iconic way to see the shores of Liverpool for decades. Plus, with an adult return fare costing less than £4, it’s a cheap and cheerful way to kill a couple of hours in the City.

Knowsley Safari

Knowsley Safari LiverpoolI’ve gotta admit, as a family we’re suckers for a zoo or safari park and being in lockdown has made us really miss visiting this sort of attraction. As well as the car safari, which has wolves, tigers, giraffes and more, there’s a foot safari section of the park which is more like walking around a zoo, so you get the best of both worlds. I know for a fact that we could lose a whole day wandering around somewhere like this!

That’s the list so far! Have you been to Liverpool? What was your favourite thing to do there? Do leave me a comment with any recommedations below, I’d love to hear from you. In collaboration with Hotels.com, but all views are my own.

Fun Ideas for Renovating Your Child’s Bedroom

Traditionally, kids’ bedrooms have been decorated blue for a boy and pink for a girl. But what if you want to move away from gender stereotypes and go for more adventurous décor inyour child’s bedroom? This opens up a world of opportunity to create something unique and magical.

Here’s some fresh ideas to get the creative juices flowing.

Go for bright, invigorating colours

Bright colours are generally frowned upon in adults’bedrooms, but with kids’ rooms the rules are more relaxed. It’s easy to paint the walls in exciting colours but what aboutadding colour to the ceiling or floor? They’re usually kept in neutral colours, but they don’t have to be.

Paint the ceiling with a starry or cloudy sky or go bold with one vibrant colour.  You’ll need a step ladder and long armed roller to make it easier to paint, but other than that it’s fairly cost effective to do.

Modern vinyl flooring has created the opportunity to addbright colour to the floor, with lots of child-friendly options. For this idea there’ll be vinyl flooring fitting costs, but it shouldn’t be any more expensive that fitting a new carpet.

Use pattern and shapes

The use of pattern and shapes in children’s bedrooms can be particularly effective in creating a new bold style.  Try painting large squares, circles and triangles across the four walls, or thick stripes that stretch the length of the room.  All you’ll need to achieve this look is some contrasting paint colours and a few rolls of masking tape. 

You can easily complement this with stripey or geometric bedding and curtains.

Create a theme from scratch

Creating a theme in a child’s bedroom needn’t be difficult.  You don’t necessarily need to buy a whole set of matching items from a shop to create a theme.  

For example, to create a pirate theme you could paint the room sea blue, hang a large Jolly Roger flag on the wall and paint a toy chest to look like a treasure chest.

Add a playful feature

Kids’ bedrooms are not just a place to sleep, they are often used as a space to play and learn. So why not add a playful feature to enrich your child’s room?

Go big with a bed that looks like a treehouse or install a mini-climbing wall. Or keep it simple with a play-tent, swinging chair or chalkboard wall. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box!

4 Qualities to Look for In a Moving Company

If you are moving into a new house, you wouldn’t be able to move all your stuff without hiring a moving company. Movers exist so that you can transfer all your belongings from your old place to the new one safely and without any inconvenience. A good moving company wouldn’t let your stress about anything and will take over the moving process so that you can sit back and focus on more important things. However, when it comes to hiring a moving company, the process is a bit tricky. There are plenty of movers out there, and choosing the one that is best suitable for the job can be complicated. That is why it is highly recommended that you do plenty of research before hiring a moving company. In this article, I have mentioned a few qualities one must look for in a mover before hiring them. Let’s take a look:

Excellent Reviews

The first thing you should look for in a moving company is good reviews. If the company is rated well by its customers and people have shared their good experiences openly, then you shouldn’t hesitate to give it a try. Luckily, we live in a modern world where you can access reviews for any business online. To read the reviews about companies you have shortlisted, you can simply go to their website or check their social media pages. Also, you must not just check the overall rating; you should also read the detailed reviews to get an idea of the kinds of services they provide. If the majority of the reviews are positive, then you can move on to the next step.

Experience

This is something most people don’t even pay attention to when they are hiring a mover, but that is not how it should be. A good moving company also has plenty of experience in the field and are experts at what they do. A mover that has been active for several years would have definitely learned a lot from their mistakes and would have improved their services over time. They know what things to avoid and how to handle tricky situations when they are faced with one. Your belongings are always safer with an experienced mover compared to a moving company that is just getting started.

Licensed and Insured

Another important thing you must keep in mind before hiring a moving company is whether they are licensed or not. A company that is not licensed is not legally allowed to move your possessions from one place to another. They might be cheaper than the other moving companies, but all they will do is cause trouble for you. Make sure that the company you are hiring is licensed but the relevant authorities and has a trained team of staff working for them. Apart from that, a good mover also has excellent insurance coverage, which can pay for the damages in case of an accident. You must never go for a company that doesn’t have insurance coverage because if anything gets damaged during the process, you won’t get any compensation.

No Hidden Rates

Another quality of a great moving company is that they have no hidden rates and will tell you upfront how much they charge. There are plenty of movers out there who only tell you about the hourly rate they charge, and when it comes to billing, they will add all sorts of extra charges in the receipt. So, it is highly recommended that you go for a company who are upfront about their extra charges and are not fooling you in any way.

My Nostalgic Music Playlist #MemoriesInMusic

My Nostalgic Music Playlist #MemoriesInMusicIf there’s one thing which is sure to evoke a lot of memories, it’s hearing a particular song which reminds me of a specific time in my life. Some of those memories are so strongly linked to the song that it can actually remind me of how I felt when I was hearing it, way back when. Chums, the online-fashion retailer have recently created a campaign to search for Memories in Music to help people bring the happier days back to life. With this in mind, I thought I’d share some of my most nostalgic songs for you:

Rhiannon – Fleetwood Mac

When I was 6, my Mum and Dad split up, and my Mum and I moved in with her parents for a while. We shared a set of bunkbeds in their small second bedroom and although it was cramped, I was happy. Mum had job in a bar and I’d sit with her in the evening, watching her get ready, listening to her music – the smell of hairspray reminds me of this, too! Mum had her stereo and a load of vinyl in our room, and one of her favourite bands was Fleetwood Mac (she had a bit of a Stevie Nicks vibe going on in the late 80s!) and Rhiannon reminds me so much of this time.

Mmmbop – Hanson

Anyone who knows me well knows that I was a MASSIVE Hanson fan when I was younger. When Mmmbop came out, I immediately fell in love and even to this day, I feel transported back to a really happy time when I hear it. My whole bedroom was covered in Hanson posters, including the ceiling, and I used to spend Saturday mornings sitting by the TV with a blank tape in the VHS, waiting to hit record, just in case they came on the telly!

Rewind – Craig David

When I was about 15, my friends and I would spend every Friday night at “Intrigue”, an under 18’s Nappy Night, located in an old bingo hall. We’d get dressed up in what were, looking back, some rather over-the-top outfits (a powder blue lace dress, white Wonderbra and a white feather boa was a personal fave, and NO, my mother did NOT know I was going out dressed like that!) and feel like we were going to a proper nightclub. UK Garage was massive around this time, and this song was a particular fave…still is, if I’m totally honest! It’s like my guilty music pleasure.

Everlong – Foo Fighters

I’ve loved Foo Fighters since the first time my friend Steven played The Colour and The Shape to me, back in the late 90’s, but Everlong has always been my favourite. When Husband and I met, one of the things we immediately bonded over was music, especially Everlong. We’d been together just a few months when we saw Foo Fighters play in Hyde Park on the day after my 22nd birthday, and it’s been something that brings back amazing memories ever since.

God Only Knows – The Beach Boys

Another song that is special to Husband and I is “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys. When I was around 9, my family and I lived in a house which was just down the road from a second-hand record shop and it became routine for me to go there on a Saturday morning and buy a record. I started collecting vinyl and Pet Sounds was a personal fave. In those early days of our relationship, when we’d sit and talk for hours, learning about each other, I found out that Husband was a huge Beach Boys fan when he was a kid too. Back in September 2016, we were lucky enough to get tickets to see Brian Wilson perform at a local venue, and it was one of the most amazing experiences that Husband and I have ever had – it’s something I’ll remember until I’m old and grey.

What are your #MemoriesInMusic? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.

Helping Children Through a Divorce

Helping Children Through a DivorceIf two people no longer wish to remain together, that is their business. Divorces can, at times, be messy and complicated. A couple who once felt nothing but love and admiration may now only feel resentment and spite towards their former other half. It is known for individuals to get hurt quite often during the divorce process. 

Yet, in all this, it can sometimes be the children who bear the brunt of the pain of their parents’ lost love. Child custody rights when filing for divorce can be one of the issues that causes the most friction, particularly when children are made to feel like they must choose between one parent or the other.

Whether you are one of the parents, a relative, or even a family friend, there are multiple ways in which you can help children get through the divorce process with as little trauma as possible.

Offer to Babysit

If you are an outsider in the divorce, looking after the child while the parents are at a mediation, or in court itself, can take a weight off of everyone’s shoulders. This way, children do not have to be exposed to the divorce process, and parents can take some time to decompress afterwards to limit the amount of emotional strain that their children are exposed to.  

Fun activities during this time can also help to take the child’s mind off of how their world has been disrupted, which can be great for their wellbeing. 

Open Conversation

Communicating with children can be key. Their parents may be struggling with their own emotions and stresses and, therefore, be less available to the needs of their offspring. This can be a crucial time for other trusted adults to step up and be there for these vulnerable young people. Building trust and opening communications regarding the children’s thoughts and feelings can help them to work through their feelings in a safe and healthy way. 

Keep Bickering Away

If you are the child’s parent, you may be concerned about how your upcoming divorce is affecting them. One of the crucial ways of limiting their distress is to avoid discussing the divorce around them. Likewise, ensure that you and your former partner do not speak ill of the other around the children, as this may put them in an uncomfortable position. 

Unless there is a legitimate reason for doing so, such as a parent threatening or endangering the child, there is also no reason that they should be privy to the real reason behind the divorce. A child does not need to know about any adultery, or other marital issues, and relationships between both parents and their children should be maintained wherever possible. However, you shouldn’t just brush it under the carpet – explain to them what is happening in the simplest form and ensure they know it’s not their fault.

Going through a divorce can be stressful for anyone involved, but it is crucial that children are protected from as much of the emotional turmoil as possible. Likewise, it is key that they are reassured, as often as they need, that they are not at fault, and that they are loved. 

Do I Need a Family Lawyer?

Happily ever after. Just look at those three words. Few people ever get to say them and mean them. For most people, statistically speaking, marriage and civil partnerships are the fastest route to relationship breakdowns and separation. When this happens, worlds can be turned upside down and entire lives can be uprooted – people can find that they must relocate and start again, and where this person was not expecting a breakup, the sharp change in situation can be difficult to deal with. Add things like division of wealth and child custody into the picture and we can soon start to see how not every couple can manage these things alone.

This is where a family lawyer comes in. The family lawyer can direct how to split possessions and money, and can give an understanding of ‘grounds for full custody of child’. Let’s look at how family law may be relevant to you.

Prenuptial agreements can resolve issues before they occur

Prenuptial agreements are contracts. Both parties must read and sign the contract prior to entering into a marriage or civil partnership (other contracts called post nuptial agreements may also be available once the marriage or civil partnership has already taken place). The purpose of the contract is to distinguish the individual rights and responsibilities expected of each person in the event of a breakdown in the relationship.

The ‘prenup’ contracts could cover a range of situations, starting with unique things such as who gets sole possession of an object with sentimental value, to the much more serious issues of the division of wealth. In any case, the contract exists to serve as an expedited route to separation, meaning that if each party adheres to the terms set out in the contract, a faster and smoother break up can be achieved.

Of course, things change over time, and sometimes there may be further debate over certain parts of the contract that may not hold especially true years down the line, but in general the prenup can open the door to a new life much faster than if a prenup were not undertaken.

Child custody rights 

Child custody battles can be ugly. Where a breakup has been emotionally charged, one parent may attempt to muddy the waters of child custody or visitation rights by suggesting the home provided by the other parent is not suitable. This can mean one parent may go weeks without contact with their children, essentially on the grounds of false claims.

A family lawyer can direct a separated parent through the custody rights battle and try to regain contact between the parent and their child on legal grounds – meaning that the parent who is being difficult will have no legal grounds to keep the child away.

5 Reasons You Need to Hire a Family Lawyer

If you have not hired a family lawyer and you think you might not need one in future either, then you may want to reconsider that. Life is unpredictable, and you can suddenly find yourself standing in a place you will require some help from a legal counsel. Having a family lawyer on your side is always a good thing. People go through numerous ups and downs in their life, and having a lawyer that you trust around you in such time is no less than a blessing. People hire family lawyers for numerous reasons, let’s take a look at the most common ones:

Preparing A Will or Trust

No one likes to think about their death, and it is ok to do that because living in fear of death hasn’t done any good to anyone. However, death is inevitable, and there are some decisions we must make before our time comes. Not everyone is lucky enough to plan their finances before their demise. So one must appreciate the chance and do it as soon as possible. You don’t want your family to go through the hassle of courts or internal conflict when it comes to asset distribution. A family lawyer can help you devise a will that they will share with your family after your demise. That way, your family doesn’t have to worry about anything, and everyone will get what they deserve.

Divorce

When it comes to divorce, it mainly depends on the couple how they handle it. Some couples agree on things mutually, but and some just cannot find common ground. In the latter scenario, things can get ugly sometimes, and if you don’t hire a lawyer early on, your case can become weak. Things like assets distribution, child custody, and child support can become an issue in court and can drag on for years. Having a skilled attorney on your side will make sure that you get what you deserve, and no one gets wronged in the entire process.

Child Custody

Divorce will lead to a custody battle between you and your ex, and things can get uglier here. Most people don’t like to believe it, but when it comes to this kind of situation, your ex-partner will do everything they can to make sure that they get more custody then you. In fact, in some cases, people even go for full custody and try everything they can to make sure that you don’t get to see the child as often as you like. In such a case, a family lawyer can really help you take control of the situation.

Family Building

Whether you are planning to get married or are thinking of adopting a child, a lawyer can help you build your family as well. When you are getting married, your lawyer can take care of your prenuptial agreement and can make sure that both you and your spouse are making the right decision. Also, if you want to do the noble deed of adopting a child, you will need your lawyers to help. Adopting a child involves a lot of paperwork, and you have to go through a screening procedure. Your family lawyer can make sure that your application for adoption gets approved.

Finance Protection

If you are someone who deals with financial risks regularly, then you will need a lawyer on your side. The business world is risky and dangerous, and one wrong move can put you in a situation of losing everything you have worked so hard for. Having a lawyer by your side when you are making crucial business decisions can do you a lot good.

4 Ways To Successfully Organize A Fun Family Movie Night In

Family time can either be fun or chaotic, depending on how much you prepare for it. Especially if you have kids around, you will have to factor in activities that will be appealing to all members of the family to engage them. A movie night is one of the more relaxing things to do with the family, and you can make it as enjoyable as you want with the following tips.

  • Pick a family movie ahead of time

Family movie nightImage Credit

If you want members of your family to be interested in the movie from start to finish, then it should be one that everyone might be interested in. And the best way to do this is to take some time together to pick one. Consider everybody’s interest and choose a movie that meets all the expectations to some extent; after all, no one can have it their way. To make the experience even better, install streaming apps and add ons to your devices to give you access to countless movies for free. Troypoint has some of the best to make streaming movies smooth and stress-free.

  • Add refreshing snacks or meals

It won’t be an enjoyable time without some snacks to go with the movie, so don’t be scared to go all out. Get some creative ideas for a variety of snacks and make it possible for everybody to customize theirs. The old school popcorn works very well (only those above four can have some), especially when it’s glazed. You can take it up a notch and add some pastries or drinks so that it becomes a mini-meal. Also, don’t forget the healthy options and special snacks for those who may have dietary issues. Movie night is the only time that you can eat together in front of the tv, so make it count for everybody.

  • Be comfortable

If you want to prevent fidgeting as much as possible during a good movie, then make sure everybody is as comfortable as possible. You can do this by making sure the couch or whatever you’re sitting on is spacious and soft enough for everyone. If possible, you can let family members create their little comfort zones in front of the tv. Those who will need extra pillows and blankets should get just that so that everyone’s attention will be on the movie and not discomfort. From time to time, you can ask around if everybody is comfortable but not too much that it becomes a distraction.

  • Make it a theme

Themed movie nightImage Credit

This tip works well with the kids because it makes them look forward to movie night. So consider giving them the opportunity to create costumes that they will wear while watching the movie – this makes them invested even before the time comes. It is also a great opportunity for you to combine entertainment with education as they strengthen their creativity skills. That way, they will be glued to the tv, and the chances of moving around are lowered. You can also ask them to help you decorate the viewing area before time so that they can feel like a part of the organisation process.

Road Trip Essentials for Your Next Family Excursion

Over the past few months, many of us have spent a lot more time cooped up in our homes. As the country continues to ease restrictions, many of us are chomping at the bit to get back outdoors. If you and your family are ready to pack up the car and head out on an adventure, make sure to pack the essentials first! We’ve compiled the ultimate family road trip packing list, filled with things you’ll actually need and use when you hit the open road, family in tow. 

 

  • Extra Ziploc Bags: This might seem like a random suggestion, but we promise these will come in handy in one way or another. You can use these baggies for leftover snacks, to collect various items like seashells, rocks, and leaves you find on your adventures, or even as a makeshift trash bag! They also serve as a great motion sickness bag if your little ones ever get nauseous during car rides.
  • Portable Phone Charger: Make sure you always have power to navigate, call for help if needed, and stay in touched with family and friends while on your road trip. A portable charger should be pre-charged before you head out and used to charge your phone in the event you don’t have access to electricity to charge your devices.
  • First Aid Kit: If you don’t already have a first aid kit in your car, it’s time to invest. If you do have one, make sure it’s stocked with all the essentials, and refill with anything you may have run out of. It’s always better to be safe than sorry, and first aid kits offer many of the essentials you’ll need in the event anything goes wrong.
  • Pain relievers: If your family is partaking on some outdoor time and taking on any type of trail, prepare for your muscles and joints to speak up a little, especially if you haven’t been able to get out and stay active over the last few months. Prepare with CBD topical relief that are safe for the whole family, stock up on easy travel icepacks, and bring along Tylenol. 

 

  • Flashlights: Bring more than one, especially if your road trip involves camping. You can purchase flashlights for kids with straps so they can use them if they need to use the restroom in the middle of the night. 
  • Tennis balls: If your road trip will take many hours, you’ll want to take regular breaks. Bring along tennis balls that you can toss back and forth during your rest stops; this helps release pent up energy and will allow everyone the chance to stretch while enjoying a little game time. 
  • Water gallons: Bring along fresh water to refill your drinking water or rinse your hands if needed along the drive, especially if your route takes you through remote areas with few rest stops.
  • Blankets & Pillows: Your children are bound to fall asleep during the drive, so make sure they’re comfortable with blankets and pillows. While these provide added comfort during your trip, they can also be used when you reach your destination – double-duty! If you want to make things extra cozy, consider investing in some family snuggies used specifically for your car travels. 
  • Fun Backpacks: Depending on the age of your children, you may want to pack individual backpacks for each, filled with fun, age-appropriate items to keep them happy and occupied during the trip. It could mean a few books, coloring accessories, and their favorite snacks, along with any electronics they bring along.
  • Toilet Paper: If your road trip will see you going long stretches without seeing any signs of civilization, make sure to pack bathroom essentials that will come in handy when nature calls. With little ones, it can be hard to predict and plan potty breaks, so pack your car with toilet paper and wet wipes.

Final Notes

Make your next family road trip a great time for the whole crew by prepping with these must-haves. You can never be overprepared, so pack your car with the above essentials and get ready to make memories you’ll never forget.

Handmade Gifts for all the Family

Handmade giftsWhether you’re gifting for father’s day, a significant wedding anniversary, a birthday, or just because, everyone loves receiving handmade gifts, nothing shows love more than a thoughtful gift created by some of the smallest members of your family. Grandparents and great grandparents especially love receiving these gifts all year round! If they no longer live locally, sending these surprises in the post just shows them how much you’re all thinking of them, and if you have elderly family residing in care homes, these gifts can be perfect for decorating their space! 

You might miss your older family members and worry about them if they haven’t been in a nursing home for long.  In some circumstances, you may feel it necessary to contact a lawyer in regards to care given at nursing homes. If so, find out more information from a nursing home malpractice lawyer by clicking the link. 

Paintings 

One of the simplest but most fulfilling activities for your children is painting; they love the experience and family love seeing the results! For younger children, try thick-handled paintbrushes to help them learn to hold the brushes and create mini masterpieces. For older children, provide them with items to print with, so they can experiment with different textures and the print it creates. For families with gardens, get your children to paint large stones with acrylic paints to gift as decorations for yards or windowsills. 

Mugs 

Everyone has a cupboard filled to the brim with cups, but gift your family members with their new favorite mug! You can get your children to create a design onto the mug with ceramic paints to create a masterpiece that will last a lifetime or have photos printed onto the cup so they can see their grandchildren every time they have a drink. 

Baking

Perfect with a cup of tea or coffee, everyone loves home-baked cupcakes, muffins, or cookies. Let your child decorate their baking with chocolate buttons, sprinkles, and icing!

Salt dough handprints

These are brilliant gifts to capture your little one’s handprint to gift on an ornament to your loved one. Roll out your salt dough and cut out circles, then have your child print their hand in the mixture. It can take a couple of days to dry thoroughly but you can then finish the project by painting the handprint with acrylic paints. These handprints make perfect paperweights!

Key chains

A brilliant and inexpensive gift is to make key chains – we all use our keys every day, and this is a sure-fire way of bringing a smile to your family’s faces every time they open the front door. You can purchase rings relatively cheaply online and then let your children decorate string with beads. For younger children, any variety of color and textured beads will let their imagination go wild, for older children, purchase letter beads to let them spell out messages for their loved ones. 

Lastly, enjoy the design process with your child. Any handmade gifts will let your loved one know you’re thinking of them, no matter how simple the design, or small the project, this is a definite way of bringing a smile to someone’s face.