Beat The School Holiday Boredom With These Creative Ideas

The school holidays are great because they give us more family time. Who doesn’t want more family time? The only issue is that being stuck at home so much can lead to boredom, and as any mom knows, boredom usually leads to squabbles between the kids, which you don’t want. There is nothing worse than being trapped in a house with kids who are picking fights constantly with each other.

The key to beating off school break boredom is to keep your kids occupied as much as possible. Obviously, this is a task that is often easier said than done, but if you are smart about it, it is possible to beat school holiday boredom. The answer to preventing your kids from getting bored when stuck at home is crafting.

That’s right, arts and crafts are a great way to prevent your little ones from becoming overly bored while on school break. Like the idea of doing some arts and crafts projects with your kids? If the answer is yes, then read on for all the best creative art ideas for keeping your kids busy while stuck at home.

Photo source

Lino printing

Give each child a piece of lino, a pen, and a lino cutter. Ask them to draw a design onto their tile, or to draw it on paper first and then trace it onto their tile if they would prefer. Tell them to be creative, and pick whatever design they like to draw. Whether they opt to draw animals, patterns, or people, it doesn’t matter – let them be as creative as they like. Once they have drawn their design, show them how to use a tile cutter to cut it out. Then, once they have finished cutting, give them each paper, card, or a piece of material to print their design onto. Invest in a selection of different printing colors, so that they can create all manner of print designs, from black and white ones to ombre colored ones.

Do crayon art

Got any crayons laying around the house that never gets used? Well, now you can put them to good use! Give each child a piece of paper and a white crayon, and ask them to draw a design on it – remind them that they won’t be able to see it. Then, give each child a watercolor paint palette and ask them to fill the page with a range of colors. As the paint crosses the wax from the crayons, it won’t stay, meaning that the pattern will be visible against the areas that the paint has taken to.

Tie dye

Whether you use white t-shirts, blankets, sheets, or towels, it doesn’t matter; you can make some incredible pieces of art with tie dye. Twist whatever material you are using into any shape, apply rubber bands to it, and dip into your dye. Remove from the dye, twist the garment until all the water comes out of it, and then dip in fresh water, and squeeze it out until the water runs clear. Remove the rubber bands and place on the washing line to dry. While the item is drying, you should be able to clearly see the pattern that has been created.

Mosaic making

Do your kids love to collage? If the answer is yes, then mosaic making could be a great art project for them. All you need is some plywood boards, mosaic tiles, glue, and grout. Show your children what mosaics look like and ask them to create their own designs, reminding them to ensure that the tiles are stuck close together on the board. For sticking the tiles down, cordless glue guns could work well, just as long as your children are old enough to safely use them. Once the glue has dried and all the tiles are in place, help your children to cover the entire design in grout, making sure that all the gaps are filled, followed by wiping the tiles clean of grout.

Salt dough

Salt dough is a cheaper alternative to molding clay that works just as well. Mix together in a bowl, two cups of plain flour, one cup of salt, and one cup of water, stir the mixture together until a dough forms. Knead the dough, before splitting into portions for each person. The dough can be sculpted into any shape before being placed in a hot oven to bake until hard. Once cooled, the salt dough can be decorated with paint, before being covered in PVA glued to seal it.

There you have it, an array of creative craft ideas for preventing school break boredom.

Responsibility Rundown: Becoming The Cornerstone Of Your Family Unit

Flickr

Responsibility is a funny word, and it brings with it many different feelings in many people. To teenagers, it likely looks like the most frightening word there is. To adults or even the elderly, it looks like a daily accepted reality. Responsibility is what makes life meaningful, and as you get older it is heaped on you in no small amount. However, it needn’t strangle you. If you maintain yourself and your stress well, gaining responsibility will shape your character for the better.

But how do you become more responsible, and what does that mean to you? Well, for a large majority of people who are asked what their responsibility is ideally directed towards, many people will say ‘family.’ Helping out or looking after a family member is responsibility in loving action, to the point where carrying it out might not even feel like a sacrifice in itself.

That is a lucky feeling to have, because as you get older, your familial responsibility shifts onto you. Parents who get old and are less capable to help you slowly become in need of help. Children who slowly turn to adults need less physical maintenance from you and more spiritual and intellectual guidance. Your spouse largely goes through their own career issues and a functioning marriage will mean both people have to serve as the bedrock of support.

This is a lot of responsibility to take on, and it can seem frightening at first. All of a sudden you might wake up one morning and realize that you are the most capable ‘authoritative’ member in your extended family unit. Many people still feel like a young adult in their mind, no older than in their early 20’s, so being told that you have now fulfilled the shoes of your parent can be a hard pill to swallow, at least initially. But it needn’t remain this way. As mentioned before, it can imbue your life with meaning.

Follow these tips to become even better in this new role you find yourself in.

Flickr

Respect 

Being a stable cornerstone of the family unit doesn’t give you the right to dish out authoritative advice to everyone in the family. Of course, you can provide strong guidance and heavy encouragement or discouragement, such as convincing your nephew to just try that one last time at passing his law exam before he gives up.

However, you should realize that your family unit is a shifting, dynamic entity, filled with many variant personalities that need to walk their own path. The beautiful part of a family unit is that it consists of a group of different people who all share the love of the unit, even if they have slightly different values or tastes. Shower your respect on your family members, even if you don’t fully approve of their choices. Of course, if these choices are harming themselves or others, that is another consideration entirely. But a career change, a marriage change, or moving to a foreign country should never be impeded by you as the family head. 

Finance 

Giving your presence to all problems is probably going to be forced on you from now on. If a relative is ill, it’s likely that you will be called to offer advice and help out. This can take a toll on your schedule and finances, so be sure to be flexible.

You don’t have to attend every family emergency depending on its seriousness, but you should make an effort to do what you can. For example, if lacking funds to help cater for a family member while they are ill or staying with you, taking out alternative finance methods could be worth it in the immediate moment. Staying the cornerstone of the family unit is an exercise in staying reactive and open to situations as they arise. To fuel this, you might need to dip into your rainy day fund. Try and build an amount of savings that can be applied to these issues to help you smoothly get through them.

Backing 

As the head of an extended family unit, it might be worth trying to defer some of that responsibility onto other shoulders. For example, if your parent recently passed away, delegating some of the responsibility to one of your siblings to the funeral effort will not make you any less competent in your role.

It means that you bring the family together, and make sure that everyone has each other’s back. Call regular family meetings and make sure everyone is on the same page when it comes to large life events, such as throwing anniversary parties or getting your child baptized. A tight family unit should always be there for one another, and willing to help out with each others problems.

Summer Time Is Camp Out Time!

When you’re a parent, stretching your budget during the summer in order to take your family on vacation can sometimes not be an option. There is a little bit of competition on social media to be the best parent ever by spending lots of money on things like Disney World, adventure parks and flights across the continent. However, the kids won’t remember the cash that you’ve spent on them but rather the time that you have committed to them having a good time. That’s why so many people opt for camping; tonnes of fun and all the memories for a small price tag. But what are the things that you need to get covered?

Picture Credit

Find A Good Pitch  

There’s no use in going camping if you haven’t got a location to go and camp in. It’s fine to do it in your back garden, but for those who are travelling further afield, a bit of research before you set out is definitely important. You can always look online for great places to go – at least then you will be able to read reviews of people that have been there before you to get a better picture. There are pitches available now which have hookups to running water and electricity, as well as having other amenities on site such as play parks, water parks, showers, additional toilets and bars/restaurants. With the boom in camping taking off, it’s no wonder that campsites have been extending what they can offer the general public.

Camp In Comfort 

Don’t be put off the idea of camping by memories of discomfort from when you were younger – it’s evolved so much in the past decade. You can buy airbeds from Choose Mattress which will be able to fit inside your tent and provide you a great place to sleep without waking up with back ache. There are sleeping bags online which are filled with both down and polyester to keep you at a constant temperature the whole night through – so no more waking up due to spikes or drops in temperature. Additional comforts can be bought such as stoves, fairy lights and even rugs that are specifically designed to go in certain tents – the limit is only on how much you want to spend.

Photo Link 

Make Sure Your Tent Is Reliable 

The last thing that you want when you go camping as a family is for your tent to fail. Regardless of how new it is, a quick test in your garden is all that you need to do to determine that you have got everything that you need to create a successful trip. It’s always a good idea to buy spare tent pegs, especially if you’re not familiar with the ground that you are hammering into; it’s so easy for them to get bent out of shape. There are more sturdier tents that you can buy made out of canvas, such as the bell tent, which will last for years if taken care of properly.

Help Your Kids Move Into Their First Home

It’s always a difficult and emotional time when your first kid moves out of the home to gain their independence. That might be to go off to college, but chances are they won’t come back after this. Instead, they’ll start looking for their own home and their own place to live. This can mean renting a place or buying their first home, but they will definitely need your help to do this. Here are a few steps you can take to ensure that they don’t have any issues getting their first home.

Flickr Picture

Give Them A Loan

If you want to make it as easy as possible for your kids buying their first home, you should think about giving them a loan. This must be treated as a gift payment, otherwise, it can be taxed to death. When you give your kids a loan, it means they’ll be able to put down a larger deposit on the property. In doing so, they should be able to open up some of the better mortgage deals on the market. This is going to make the house easier to pay off. The only issue you’ll have to deal with is that it might take a little while before they are in a position where they can pay you back. However, the benefit is that it provides some financial levity to your kid.

Kitting It Out

One of the other financial issues when buying a new home is kitting it out, as you probably already know. The answer to this problem is to recommend that your kid rents rather than buys appliances. By doing this, they can reduce the overall cost of setting up their home and instead pay it little by little. Most kids will probably be unaware that appliance rental is even an option, so you’ll have to recommend this too them.

Tips to Help Kids Move into First Home

Buy it As An Investment

Of course, there is another way that you could help your kids financially when they are buying a new home, and that’s to buy it yourself as an investment. If you do this, then you can charge your kid rent, making money off the property while still giving them a place where they can live independently. If you do this, it’s important to remember that the home will still be your kid’s not yours. As such you can’t tell them how they should use it, except in a way that a landlord would guide their tenants.

Price Check Services

Last but not least we all know how carefree the young can be. This means that it’s highly unlikely your kid will remember to price check the different services that they use when buying and moving into their new home. As such, you should do this for them and ensure they get the best deals on the market. Otherwise, they could end up wasting a lot of money simply by not finding the right price.

I hope this guide helps you in aiding your kid when they are moving out of your house and into their own home.

 

Five Pregnancy Problems You Might Not Be Aware Of – And How To Treat Them

There are few things that are as challenging to your body as carrying a baby and giving birth to your child. Not only can it be a strain in pretty much every area of your life from your relationship to your finances to your emotions, it’s also extremely physically difficult. Everyone already knows about morning sickness and a constant need to pee when you’re pregnant – but what are some other symptoms that you should be prepared for? Here are a few things you might be feeling…

Swollen feet

Especially if you’re pregnant over the summer, swollen feet might be an issue for you. This is mostly because of water weight, and they usually end up going down after your baby has been born – although this isn’t the case for every woman, so don’t start buying any heels in preparation for your post pregnancy life! If you’re experiencing the discomfort of swollen feet, make sure that you soak your feet in cool water when you get home from work and that you wear comfortable, supportive shoes at all times.

Image source

Hyperpigmentation

When you’re pregnant you might suffer from discoloration on your face – look up facts about melasma if you want to find out more. This can take the form of brown marks on your face that can make your complexion look dull and sallow – which definitely isn’t the pregnancy glow that you were promised and can have a rough effect on your self esteem. Change up your makeup routine – apply a lightweight BB cream every morning and make sure that you keep moisturising. If you want to distract from any discoloration, go for a bright lipstick that pops.

Image source

Depression

We’ve all heard about postpartum depression, which a lot of women suffer from – but prepartum depression is also a huge issue that simply isn’t talked about enough. If you’ve had to come off your usual depression medication during pregnancy, make sure that you talk to your doctor about it, and be kind with yourself – take time out when you need it, schedule time to relax and to hang out with your friends and do what you love. Remember that the way you’re feeling is valid, but that you can change it if you want to speak to a medical professional.

Image source

Stuffy noses

Twenty to thirty percent of women experience stuffy noses during pregnancy – as if you needed to feel as though you have a permanent cold to add to the other extensive lists of unpleasant symptoms that you’re going through! This is caused by high amounts of estrogen that make your nasal membranes swell. Talk to your doctor about whether you can use decongestants or not.

Image source

Dizziness

Finally, a lot of pregnant people experience dizziness thanks to all the changes that your body’s going through and the stress that you’re under. Make sure that you wear a bump on board badge to guarantee you a seat on public transport, and allow extra time when you’re going out so that you can take time out to sit down and rest without worrying.

 

 

Teaching Your Child About the Value of Money

Having children can be extremely expensive. In fact, it’s estimated that in the United States, the cost of raising a child till they are 17 is roughly $233,610. If that number isn’t enough to make you reconsider, then perhaps the sleepless nights, diaper changing and crying will make you think twice about having kids. However, it goes without saying that the parents that stick with it all the way find a new sense of purpose in life, and children can bring untold amounts of joy to your life. Sadly, the cost is still a problem and money is something that not everyone has copious amounts of spare.

These costs are unavoidable, but teaching your children about the value of money can be an extremely helpful way to cut down the costs of things such as entertainment and food. Adjusting your life to a baby can be difficult because you can’t exactly teach them much until they’re a little older, so wait until your children understand basic mathematics then apply these fun little events and activities in order to teach them how to manage money and how to be frugal.

Image Source

 

Search for coupons together 

With so many websites on the internet offering cheaper deals and big percentage-off signs, it’s easy to teach your children to be attracted to a bargain. Tell them all about how much money they save with deals, and browse websites like CouponSherpa.com together to not only find out about new deals and get some bargains, but to also inspire your family to save money. With some luck, your children will learn that everything comes on sale eventually, and it’s best to save money unless they absolutely need something (doesn’t happen often!).

Teach your children about budgeting 

Once your children are capable of simple mathematics, teach them the importance of budgeting. Start small by giving them a set allowance and telling them if they save the money, they can afford more things in the future. Tell them simple things, such as if they buy sweets every day, they’ll spend a set amount of money and they won’t have much money to carry over into the next week. Tell them it’ll take them x number of weeks to save up for a toy they want, and teach them to manage their allowance even if it’s just a bit.

Encourage your children to make money 

Your child might not become an entrepreneur at the age of 14 (although as seen at Entrepreneur.com it’s entirely possible!) but it’s a good idea to teach them how to actually make money and how the world works. A simple and rather cliche way of helping them make money is to set up a lemonade stand in the neighbourhood. This will teach them about what it costs to make the lemonade and the profit they make for selling them to other children and adults. This will teach them not just the value of money, but also time and how it directly translates into the money you make.

Strategies to Encourage Your Child to Confide in You

We all might fear the day our teens or tweens might not confide in us when things are going wrong in their life, or they are struggling. Some kids always talk to their parents, and have a very open relationship, while others distance themselves.

I want to do my very best that my children will have confidence in my relationship with them, that they can trust that no matter what, I will listen, love them unconditionally and be their to help them through the struggle!

Below are some strategies to help encourage your child to confide in you! These are not a guarantee, but it wouldn’t hurt trying in hopes to get them to stay open or open up to you in the future.

5 Tips for Communications Between Parent and Child

5 Tips for Communications Between Parent and Child

I think the tips below are great for starting as young as possible and then as they grow, they will learn to trust and lean on you! Granted you can’t have a deep conversation with a two year old, but you can build a strong foundation so that when the day comes, they can come to you for advice, an ear to listen, or support!

Loving and Calm

When your child, tween or teen gets in trouble, be loving and calm. Don’t just instantly get upset and begin yelling or saying how disappointed you are. Come to them in a loving and calm manner. Listen to what they are saying to you, and work through things in a calm way. The calmer you are, the more they will come to you for any situation. If they know you will get upset and yell, they will be less likely to confide in you.

Advice

Make sure that if your child comes to you to talk about any situation, feel free to give real advice. Don’t just give therapist style advice, but be a real person that they can connect with. If your child is struggling at school with a bully, don’t just rush to talk the principal. Hear out what your child is saying, and truly listen and give advice.

Be Open

Make sure your child/teen can talk to you about anything. No topic is ever off the table. Make sure they know that no matter what they can talk, even if it is embarrassing for them. Try to let them know that you always have an open door policy. That if they are struggling, get a bad grade in school, having a bad day and need to talk, you are always there. No judgement, just to listen and help them work through the issue.

Pay Attention

Make sure that you are watching their moods, and behavior. If you see they are acting off, make sure to reach out to them to see how they are. Just make sure that you are paying attention to the signs, so that if they are going through something, you ask, they might tell you.

One-On-One Time

Making sure that  you spend one-on-one time with your child. If you have multiple children, make sure to find time for each. It can be as simple as an ice cream date, just make sure they know you love and make time for them. Building an intimate relationship is a great foundation. Start this even at an early age, and continue it as they grow! Even older kids look for love and quality time from their parents.

These five simple steps can get you far in a relationship with your child. Start showing them love and support young and continue as they grow. Always tell them no matter what they can come to you, and make sure you stay calm and listen to what they are saying. Cool, calm and collected, when they do come to you, will make them feel more at ease to come to you in the future.

About the Author

Kelsey is a freelance writer for bloggers! A country girl from Kansas, who enjoys spending time with family! You can see what Kelsey has available for content in her Facebook Group.