Practical Ways To Create The Perfect Bedroom Play Area For Your Child

Designing kids’ bedroom play areas are always fun and essential. This is because this is where your kid sleeps, relaxes, has fun and expresses themselves. Although it is always practical to consider the future use of the room, there is no harm in being a little creative with your decoration.

So, if you intend to create a unique bedroom play area for your kid, these tips will help you make the perfect room where your little one’s personality can shine through.

How Do You Make A Playroom?

Your kid’s playroom can be anywhere in the home. Just because the home isn’t spacious enough doesn’t mean it can’t be fun and cool for the kids. So, if there isn’t any extra space for a play area, you can create a bedroom play area. This simply means that you design the bedroom so that it can be used for both sleep and fun.

When it comes to a play area, the amount of space isn’t much of a factor; what is important is that there is an area dedicated to their play. Play is important, so space is essential. This space should be colourful, comfortable, and decorated to stimulate their little imaginations. There are a few aspects to consider while creating the perfect bedroom play area for your child, and they are the following:

Safety First

In a play area, kids will run, jump, climb, and no doubt fall a lot too. So, first, it is crucial to consider your child’s safety while creating and furnishing a play area. If you are installing anything on the walls or ceiling, like a swing, for example, you should let an expert handle it rather than do it yourself. You should always ensure that your kid’s bedroom play area is safe to play in and land on.

Consider The Age

Creating a bedroom play area for a toddler is different from making one for a young child between the ages of 2 and 10. Therefore, age is an essential factor to consider while creating a bedroom play area for your kid. You need to create a space in line with their level of intelligence and age. Kids of 5 years already have a personality of their own, so you can get them involved in the process and make the room interactive for them.

Think Outside The Box

The best bedroom play areas have a little more imagination to them. Opting for the traditional children’s bed is easy. However, going for something more special like the Children’s Bed Shop makes the bedroom play area more than a room with just a bed; it becomes your kid’s favourite room. So, a touch of creativity will undoubtedly benefit your child’s bedroom play area, particularly when it comes to decorating, furniture, and children’s beds.

Make A Divider

When using the bedroom as a play area, use modular flooring or bright carpet to differentiate the bedroom from the play area. This serves as a way to “zone” the kids’ play area and create some visual separation from the rest of the bedroom. It also helps your kids know where it is okay to leave their toys.

Use Kid-Friendly Furniture

Certain types of furniture should not be used in a children’s play area. Glass and sharp-edged tables should be avoided since they are easily shattered and can be dangerous to children.

Avoid stool-style chairs or any furniture that can be easily climbed on when your child is young to prevent them from falling and injuring themselves. Good alternatives are small beanbag chairs, floor cushions, and giant plush animals.

Add Layers

Another way to enhance your child’s play area is by adding layers. To add layers, you can go for rugs. However, you should go for a synthetic rug that is easy to clean and durable. There are various fun designed rugs, so you will no doubt have multiple options to select from.

Make Use Of The Built-In Storage

Making storage a priority when designing your child’s bedroom play area is critical. Simply put, you don’t want all those toys lying around, and your children will outgrow some of them, so you’ll need a place to store them. This can be accomplished using open shelving. With that, you can use boxes to hide the toys and display books in front of them in the open. Use lower shelves so your kid’s favourite books will be within reach.

Think In Themes

When creating a playroom for your kid, you need to consider a theme for the space after getting the fundamentals sorted out. Children have unique personalities, and their play areas should be decorated accordingly. If your kid is of age, allow them to inject their personality into the theme of the space.

Play With Colour

Colours are visually appealing to everyone, especially kids, so you should get creative with them. They can be crucial in early development, so consider brightening your kid’s play area. However, ensure you go for colours that will complement the theme and general look of the room. Make use of more of your kids’ favourite colours, if they have one, or go for something eye-catching.

Create A Chalkboard Wall

With a chalkboard wall, you don’t have to be afraid of your kids colouring the walls. Chalkboards are erasable and washable, so your little one can doodle their hearts freely without being reprimanded, and with this, you don’t have to worry about kids going wild on the walls.

Focus On Play

When it comes to keeping kids occupied in a play area, you should realise that you’ll need a lot of activities and toys because children are easily bored. As a result, design your child’s bedroom play area so that they can sleep, build, play, and study.

Final Thoughts

To create the perfect bedroom play area that your kid will love, try focusing on what they love to do the most—for example, creating a place where they can colour, paint or create crafts if that’s their interest or a beautiful dressing-up corner for your little princess or prince.

A play area is said to be perfect when your kids get to engage in their favourite fun activities while also expanding their imagination. Now that you have these ideas, you can get started on designing the ideal bedroom play area for your child.

How To Keep Older Family Members Comfortable This Winter

Many people don’t like winter very much. The weather is cold and dark, and the days are much shorter. It can cause seasonal affective disorder (SAD) or, at the very least, make people feel down. Spring is something to look forward to, for sure.

The winter can be even harder to deal with if you have to take care of elderly family members. People who are older tend to have a weaker immune system, thinner skin, and more fragile bones. This means that they are more likely to get bugs, feel colder, and break bones more easily when it is icy outside. Keeping all this in mind, here are some ways to make sure your older relatives are comfortable this winter.

Photo by Egor Kamelev

Find A Care Home 

Even though not every elderly will do well in a care home, for some, it is the best place to go, and winter may be the time when you and they both realise it’s time to start asking questions about where the best place for them really is. 

If their own home is hard to keep warm, costs a lot to keep up, and could be dangerous, finding the right care home is a great idea. You can be sure that if they live in a care home, they will be cared for, kept warm, and won’t have to deal with any dangers. No longer does winter have to be a scary time. As we said, this won’t be the right move for everyone, and it might be seen as somewhat extreme, but for some, it can help immensely. 

Keep The House Warm 

One of the most essential things you can do for an elderly loved one is to keep their homes warm throughout the harsh winter months. The first item to inspect is the boiler – is it operating properly? If this is the case, you can set a timer to turn on the heating before your older family member gets out of bed in the morning, keeping their homes warm. If the boiler isn’t working right, it should be fixed so that it works as well as possible; it might even be worth replacing it, especially as there are grants available. Speak to the experts at All Seasons Energy to find out more. 

You can also inspect the insulation in the loft and all over the house. If the insulation needs to be fixed or replaced, you should do it right away because you will lose a lot of heat if you don’t.

Keep Healthy 

During the winter, your elderly loved one will also need to get some physical activity done. Moving about for at least 30 minutes a day, even if it’s only for a few minutes at a time, is considerably better than hunkering down in front of the television and doing nothing. Your elderly loved one’s degree of fitness and mobility will determine how much exercise they can participate in. Since it may be icy outdoors, it’s best to stay indoors and work out there. 

You must also make certain that your loved one is dressed in layers. As the heat is contained between the layers, it is considerably better at keeping people warm than bulky clothing. When it becomes too hot, people can take off some garments to feel more comfortable.

Everything You Need to Make the Big Day Extra Special

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Planning a wedding? Chances are, you’re well aware just how much work is going to have to go into this process to bring things together and create an event to remember. There are countless different types of weddings out there, so choosing a theme or style of wedding to start with is a gargantuan task, never mind all of the processes and decision making that goes into making your dream a reality. But don’t fret. Here’s a guide that will outline some of the key features you need to take into consideration and arrange to get your big day off to the best start possible.

Wedding Planners

The first decision you should make when planning a wedding is what help do you need? Would you consider hiring a wedding planner? This comes at a cost, but will see a professional who knows all the tricks of the trade bring everything together on your behalf. The alternative is to take DIY approach and tackle each element of wedding planning yourself in your free time. They key factors here tend to be cost (and whether you have the budget or would rather invest the wedding planning fees into other elements of your day), as well as the time you have available and how hands on you want to be in the planning process. There’s no right or wrong answer with this one. It will depend entirely on personal circumstances and preferences.

Partnership and Compromise

Remember that this is a big day for two people – both you and your partner. You need to make sure that you’re both happy with any decisions being made when you plan. Seeing as you will both have different preferences, interests and priorities, it’s likely that you will both have to compromise in some areas to make sure that the day is magical for both of you. While one or the other may take charge with planning, both should have equal say in what goes on for the day itself.

Guestlist

Sure, the big day may be about the two of you. But for most people, the wedding is about their guests too. It’s about sharing this special moment with those who are nearest and dearest to you. Make sure to choose your guestlist and send out invites as far in advance as possible. This will ensure that people have plenty of notice and will maximise the chances of people being able to attend. Remember, attending a wedding can mean guests need to book time off work, arrange childcare and perhaps arrange transport and accommodation if they are travelling for the event.

A Schedule

Different weddings will have different elements. Some people prioritise the ceremony. Some will prioritise the reception. Some will want certain elements of the day that won’t appear in others. A good way to ensure that everything that is important to you fits into the day is to create a schedule. This will give you a good idea of how the day will go, as well as what can reasonably be achieved within the time you have.

Hopefully, these key areas will stand out in your planning process, helping you to make your big day as special as possible.

Helping Your Child Grow The Social Skills They’ll Need In Life

Everyone needs social skills. It’s how we navigate the world of people around us, it’s crucial for most kinds of work, and it can help us grow a network of friends and family that helps us maintain our happiness as we get older. However, many parents have noticed that getting their kids to socialize is becoming a little more difficult. There are fewer neighbourhoods, it seems, where there are plenty of kids of the same age to get out and play together, often due to the fact that parents have to spread out to where they can find work. Digital technology, of course, is playing a role in keeping us more glued to screens, as well.

If you want to make sure that your child is growing the social skills, as well as the healthy social circle, that they need, then here are a few tips to help you do that.

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Help them get into hobbies

Children get it easy, it might seem. They don’t need to find a shared interest or a point of reference to get along, they often just need to start playing with each other. That said, having that shared point of reference certain can help. You should look at some of the hobbies you can try with your child and, from there, see if there are any organized hobby groups that your child can become a member of. Whether it’s sports, arts, or something else, it’s a great way to make friends no matter the age. Having that kind of structured social space can also make it easier for you to meet other parents, which can lead to things like arranging playdates to make the social circle a little easier to grow for your child.

Organise supervised playdates

You don’t need a hobby or activity group to start looking at organised, and playdates. From an early age, you should reach out to other parents you might know with kids of the same age. There are even networking sites like Meetup that are used to arrange playdates between kids, but you should always take the time to investigate yourself to make that any you consider passes the sniff test. Playdates are a great way to get your child in a safe environment where they can test their social skills and practice with adult supervision. It might not always go well, but if it doesn’t, you just try again.

Consider getting them into education early

There are a lot of benefits when it comes to early years education like preschool and nursery, such as helping your child get more used to the educational environment, as well as developing their literacy and numeracy skills early to ensure they don’t fall behind. However, the social benefit of having them surrounded by children of their age while making sure that there is also an adult there to supervise and make sure that everything goes okay should not be underestimated. Look at facilities like Aurrum Kids and how they not only take care of your children’s educational needs, but foster a space that encourages children to get along, make friends, and develop the social skills that they will need. These kinds of establishments can be especially useful for those who might not live near other families or children, making up for a dearth of same-age interaction that can make later socializing tough for your child.

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Help them come out of their shell

If your child is shy and doesn’t quite know how to make friends at school, it might feel to them like the first step alone is confusing and daunting. However, while they might always be a bit shyer than their friends, that doesn’t mean that it’s an immutable characteristic. You can help them make the first step. You can do this by, for instance, simply practising with them. You can pretend like you’re a child at school and engage in a little roleplay, encouraging them to approach you and talk to you for the first time. Teaching them things like simple introductions, how to invite other children to play, and demonstrating what friendship looks like can help them grow a little more confident about trying it out for themselves.

Take note if there’s a sudden difference in their behaviour

Perhaps your child has been putting themself out there already, socializing with other children, making friends, and playing with no problem. If there has been a sudden change in behaviour and they are suddenly becoming more shy and isolated, then it might be worth looking at why that’s the case. Take the time to gently gain their trust and encourage them to open up to you and that it’s safe to talk with them. Bullying is unfortunately a factor at almost every age. You can help them navigate the issue, or you can also see if a counsellor like those at Relationships Counselling can help them navigate any problems like anxiety or depression, which can affect children of all ages, not just adults. We don’t like to think of our children being in distress like this, but it’s better to be aware of the possibility rather than acting like it doesn’t exist.

Help them cope with stress and worry

Even if there isn’t anything particular at the route of it, most children are going to express some concern about their social standing and their relationships at some point. Here, it’s your cue to listen, to be empathetic and, when possible, to offer advice on how they can help navigate their friendships. Helping them express their emotions in a safe and healthy way with you can make them less likely to express it in ways that might harm their social relationships, as well.

The problem of increasing difficulty in socialization is not just a problem that affects children. It’s one they will have to navigate as they grow older, as well. Providing the social education and opportunities that they can use now, however, can help in future, so keep the above tips in mind.

5 Tips On Picking Out A New Family Car

Starting a family is scary enough with everything going on, and car trouble is not something that you want to have on your plate. Having a suitable car to match your needs is going to be important and will save you a lot of headaches as your children get older. It’s important to recognize that the car your pick isn’t just about what you like anymore or how fun it is to drive, it’s about how well it’s going to suit a life with your family – which is fun in its own way!
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Think about safety

First of all, any car that you buy for family use should be safe to drive and be in. different cars come with different safety features, and you want yours to be as safe as possible. Newer cars will typically come with more modern features, making them easier to put your trust into, but there’s a lot you can implement after your purchase just to make sure. Think of things like blindspot cameras and mirrors. 

Consider how much space you need

If you’re starting a big family, then you’ll want to make sure you’ve got room for everyone, as well as any belongings that you’ll be taking with you when you’re traveling. You don’t want to be cramped into your car when you have to be on the road for long journeys, so think about what you might find comfortable with up to 4 or 5 passengers.

Cost-effectiveness

Family living can be quite expensive, and you don’t want the car you choose to be a majorly stressful addition to your monthly costs. Consider how much it costs to buy the car, as well as how much it will cost to actually use it. If you’re making daily trips in it, then you don’t want to be paying out a fortune on fuel. Check the fuel efficiency before you make that purchase.

Car seat compatibility

While your kids are young, they’re going to need to be in a car seat whenever you’re driving them somewhere. Some cars aren’t shaped or big enough to fit car seats, and that’s going to be a serious problem on the road. Whichever car you decide to buy, make sure that it can fit car seats – you can always change it up for something else once your kids are old enough to go without the car seat.

Overall quality

This is something that you’re going to be relying on to get your family from place to place, and if you try to buy the cheapest option out there, you might not be seeing the quality you need. You can check out Edmunds for some deals that might fit your price range.

You don’t want something that’s going to let you down frequently, or break down when you’re in traffic. It’s not safe, nor is it cost effective – so you’re better off spending big so that you don’t lose out later on.

15 Hobbies To Try This Summer

Looking for some fun new hobbies to try this summer?
Photo by Dakota Roos on Unsplash

Here Are A Few Great Ideas To Get You Started!

Take up gardening.

Gardening is a great way to get outdoors and enjoy the summer weather. Plus, it’s a relaxing hobby that can yield beautiful results.

Learn to cook.

Cooking is a useful skill to have, and it can be really fun too! There are plenty of resources available online and in cookbooks to help you get started.

Pick up photography.

Photography is a great way to capture memories and special moments. You don’t need expensive equipment to get started – even a basic point-and-shoot camera will do the trick.

Get into nature.

If you’re looking for a hobby that will get you outside, consider hiking or bird watching. There’s nothing like breathing in the fresh air and taking in the beauty of nature.

Take up an active hobby.

Summer is the perfect time to get moving and try out a new active hobby. There are endless possibilities, from biking to swimming to tennis to joining a golf camp.

Learn a new language.

Interested in learning a new language? There are plenty of resources available online and in libraries to help you get started. Who knows, you may even be able to practice your new skills on your next vacation!

Start stargazing.

Stargazing is a great way to relax and appreciate the night sky. All you need is a clear night and a pair of binoculars.

Collect something.

If you’re looking for a hobby that you can do indoors, consider starting a collection. Whether it’s stamps, coins, or seashells, collecting can be both fun and rewarding.

Try your hand at crafts.

Crafting can be a great way to express your creativity. You can try tons of different crafts, from knitting to painting to scrapbooking.

Take up a musical instrument.

Playing a musical instrument is a great way to relieve stress and have some fun. However, if you don’t know how to play an instrument, plenty of resources are available to help you get started.

Join a sports team.

If you’re looking for a way to meet new people and stay active, consider joining a local sports team. From soccer to softball to basketball, there’s sure to be a team that’s perfect for you.

Volunteer.

Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community. Plenty of organisations could use your help, so find one that aligns with your interests and get started!

Learn about fashion design.

Fashion design is a fun and creative hobby that can yield beautiful results. If you’re interested in learning more about fashion design, plenty of resources are available online and in libraries.

Paint your own pottery.

Painting pottery is a relaxing and creative hobby that anyone can enjoy. There are plenty of pottery studios where you can paint your own pots, plates, and other ceramics.

Make your own jewellery.

Making your own jewellery is a great way to express your creativity. You can use all sorts of materials, from beads to wire to stones, to create unique and beautiful pieces.

Talking About The Tough Stuff With Your Other Half

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There are some conversations that are difficult to have – pure and simple! We all experience them at some point in our lives. There are those topics that everyone finds difficult, for example, divorce. But there are then topics that you may find difficult whereas someone else would not. The topic being discussed does not really matter in terms of how you approach such a situation. It is all about being prepared and having the conversation in the right way. With that being said, continue reading to discover some pieces of advice for having tough conversations with your partner. We hope that this will help you to address any issues you are having. 

Stay optimistic – No matter what you are going to be discussing, it is important to stay optimistic. It is easy to feel like the situation is hopeless. However, when you do this, you can easily start interpreting everything that your partner says with a big dose of pessimism. Don’t feel like the situation is doomed. If you have this attitude, you will never get to a resolution.

Do not bring up things that happened in the past – One of the biggest mistakes that people make when having difficult conversations with their partner is bringing up past issues that are irrelevant to what you are discussing right now. When people get heated, they start bringing up things for the sake of point-scoring, and this is never a good idea. Your conversation will not end up being productive if you take this approach. In fact, you will probably find that you only end up having an argument, and so you will take steps backwards rather than taking steps forward. Therefore, it is imperative to make sure that you stay focused on the tasks at hand. What is the issue you are discussing? Stay focused on this, and do not simply start bringing up things that are irrelevant. You need to work toward something productive rather than simply arguing for the sake of arguing.

Do your research first – If you are discussing a big change in your life, for example, sending a loved one to a rehab center or having no more children, you need to do your research before diving right in. If the latter is the case, you will want to explore the different options available, so that your partner has the full picture. Coming into a conversation without any of the facts or information can be a recipe for disaster.

Choose the right time to talk – There definitely is a right time to talk. Make sure that you are both feeling refreshed and that you are ready to discuss the task at hand. You should not discuss important issues while the television is on in the background. You also need to ensure that your minds are free to discuss the issue in question. If you have had a very stressful day at work, for example, or your partner is dealing with work stress, it probably does not make sense to bring up other issues right now, as they may not end up being productive. Instead, make sure you set aside a specific amount of time to talk about the issue in question. Moreover, make sure that you actually focus on the discussion and nothing else. 

Agree on common goals – Another tip for having a difficult conversation with your partner is to have common goals. This is important in any sort of negotiation. After all, the outcome is going to be a lot more satisfying if all of the people involved deciding on what they believe is a set of results that is acceptable. It is vital, nevertheless, that you do not enter into a discussion with an outcome that is predetermined in your mind.

Decide what battles are worth fighting – You can agree to disagree on certain issues. You are not going to be on the same page with everything, and that is okay. You need to think about what battles are worth fighting. Moreover, identify any differences in agreement that really don’t matter when it comes to the overall issue and the end goal.

Try to leave “but” sentences out of it – Another tip for ensuring that conversations go as smoothly as possible is to try and leave sentences with “but” in them out of it. A lot of people try to soften the blow of bad news with the word “but” however, this means you raise someone’s hopes up before the “but” and then bring them down, and so it is not always a great way to go about it. 

Recognise when outside help would be beneficial for you and your partner – Last but not least, we would definitely recommend that you consider seeking outside help if and when needed. Some people are unable to resolve issues on their own. This does not mean that you are never going to be able to resolve the problems, though. A bit of outside help can go a very long way. You will have someone who is trained in helping people with relationship issues. You will also have someone who is objective and will not take sides. This can help you to really get to the bottom of the issues you are experiencing so that you can move forward in a productive and effective manner.

Final words on how to talk about difficult things with your partner

If you follow the tips that have been provided above, you can go a long way to ensuring that the difficult conversation you have with your partner goes as well as can be expected. No matter what you are discussing it is important to be prepared. Good luck! Remember, you may need to have more than one conversation in order to find some common ground and achieve your goal. However, everyone needs to start somewhere, so don’t delay in getting to the bottom of the issues you are experiencing and enjoying a brighter and happier future together.

The Best Ways To Enjoy Your Child’s Birthday Party

It’s a lot of fun to throw a party for your child and their friends. Your child will remember the celebration, but not the pandemonium or how hard you worked to make it happen – and that’s a good thing. You’ll want to enjoy the party as much (or almost as much) as the kids, but with so much to do, is this even possible? The answer is yes, and here are several strategies for doing so.

Photo by Ivan Samkov

Plan Ahead 

The best thing to do if you want to enjoy your child’s birthday party and not get too stressed is to plan ahead as much as possible. Don’t leave everything to the last minute, or you might not be able to book all the elements you want, such as a cake and a party venue. Don’t just try to wing it either; if you go for that approach, all the ideas you had might come to nothing, as you’ll run out of time. Either that or everything will happen too quickly, and you’ll have bored children to entertain. 

Have Some Help

It’s hard to plan, execute, and marshal a kids’ party all by yourself. When you try to do this, you’ll become very stressed, and your child is sure to notice. Your feelings might not stop them from having their party, but it might make memories of it seem a little flat when their main feeling is your stress and anxiety throughout. 

The best thing you can do is have someone else deal with the entire party. There are party organisers who can arrange everything. Or you can just have the experts take on certain aspects of the party, such as the entertainment or the kids party toy hire, for example. If this idea doesn’t appeal, then speak to friends and family to see what they can do to help you either in the planning or on the day itself. Or perhaps you can arrange a joint party with one of your child’s friends, and their parents can do half of the work (and cover half the cost). 

Make It Age-Appropriate 

Consider the age of the children and how restless they will get as a result of the activities you have arranged. Choose an activity that corresponds to or is even younger than their age to make it incredibly simple to do with many children. Keep your expectations of what can be done as low as possible. If you’re going to do a project, keep it simple and something the kids can do entirely on their own; otherwise, you’ll be creating a very hectic and stressful schedule for yourself. For party crafts, the simpler, the better.

For the most part, children like to play party games, dance, or hang out with their friends, and it will depend on their ages as to what is best. For a great party it’s often so simple; get some entertainment, music, and some great toys, and they will entertain themselves until it’s time for food and cake. You can relax, and everyone will have a fabulous time.

How to Help Your Kids Care for the Environment

No matter where we’re from, we all want a world where our children will grow up happy, safe and healthy. And we hope for a future where they’ll continue to thrive. So it’s only natural that we want to do our best to create that world for them. They are the future, after all.

But the phrase ‘children are the future’ is doubly true when it comes to the future of this planet. After all, the effects of our daily lives both right now and later will continue to impact it and future generations to come. So it’s crucial we teach our children how to care for the world around them as they grow.

Even though saving the environment is a serious topic, it doesn’t have to be boring. Here’s how kids can help the environment in five fun ways.

  • Go outdoors

Hearing second-hand about how beautiful our world is is one thing, but actually going out and seeing it with your own eyes is another. Taking the family out for a walk in the woods, or even just a picnic in the park on the grass, can help little ones connect with nature.

Get them to spot different plants, insects and animals, and teach them what they like to eat and why it’s important to look after them as well as ourselves. And don’t forget to add an environmentally-friendly clean-up protocol to end the day: make sure all rubbish is either put in the bin or packed away to throw away at home.

  • Get growing

Growing produce at home is becoming more and more popular, and it’s a great way to bond with your kids as well as for them to learn about where food comes from. And, best of all, everyone gets to eat the results. Here are some easy fruit and veg for kids to grow at home.

Once your fruits and vegetables have grown, you can also make simple dishes together to get your kids into cooking and being mindful of food waste. Think salads and sandwiches to get younger ones used to mixing and putting things together, and (supervised) baking and stir-frying for the older ones.

You can also grow some bee-friendly flowers together. Not only do they help support the ecosystem, but also provide you with some beautiful blooms.

  • Make recycling a game

When thinking about how to help save the environment at home, we often think about recycling first. But aside from knowing which bin to put which kind of waste in, recycling can also be a simple matter of reusing things around the house.

For example, old newspapers can be used for a papier-mâché project. Empty yoghurt pots can become seedling containers for your home-grown veggie project. A used plastic milk carton can be turned into a sprinkling watering can when you poke holes in the lid. An empty tissue box can be turned inside-out, stuck back together, and painted and decorated to become a trinket box. Take a look at household items you’d normally discard, and how your family can give them a second life.

  • Support green businesses

While older kids start learning about how money works, why not lead by example and show them that supporting more environmentally-responsible businesses? That way you know your money’s being used for something worthwhile, and your children can learn that they’ll have some power over what kinds of organisations they spend their money with.

Choose ones that actively support green initiatives like Utility Warehouse. The trading name of Telecom Plus, they have a tree-planting programme where they plant a new tree for every new customer who takes three or more of their services. Their woodland is located on Bryn Arw in the Brecon Beacons, and it currently covers an area the size of roughly 73 Wembley Stadiums (and growing). Find out more about them here.

  • Tell stories

Capture their imaginations with a great book. There are lots of both classic and new children’s books that both raise awareness about saving the environment and tell an amazing story. For example, The Lorax by Dr. Seuss, The Great Kapok Tree by Lynne Cherry, and What A Waste by Jess French.

There are also a few children-friendly movies with a green message, like FernGully: The Last Rainforest, Wall-E, and Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind. Both are great, lighthearted ways to hold children’s attention while showing them the effects humans have on the planet, and what can be done to save it.

How To Pull Out All The Stops And Impress At A Dinner Party

Whether you are celebrating a special birthday, a graduation, or simply want the chance to catch up with friends this summer, you can’t go wrong with hosting a dinner party. This is because they give you the chance to spend quality one-on-one time together in a relaxed, informal setting. 

However, this doesn’t mean that planning a dinner party is easy – as many people feel stressed at just the thought of inviting others into their home for the night. After all, you’ll want to impress your guests.

Photo by Stefan Vladimirov on Unsplash

Despite this, planning (and hosting) a successful dinner party can be a lot of fun – and here are some top tips that you can use to pull out all of the stops and impress! 

  • Choose a theme. Many people mistakenly believe that themed parties are just for kids – but this doesn’t have to be the case. In fact, themed parties can be a lot of fun for adults too, especially if they get to use their imagination a little or wear a costume. Choosing a theme is a great way to make the planning process a little more straightforward too – as you’ll be able to base all of your future decisions such as the menu, drinks and decor around this theme. 
  • Plan the menu. Given that it’s in the name, the most important aspect of your dinner party for you to tackle is the dinner. After all, guests will likely arrive hungry and ready to eat. However, it’s important that you don’t panic too much about this – meals don’t necessarily need to be fancy in order to be good. Instead, focus on cooking something that you know you do well and that all guests will enjoy. Be sure to check ahead of time if there are any dietary requirements you might need to consider. You might also want to prepare some separate dishes for little ones if they are bringing along kids (or for fussy eaters). 
  • Dust off the tableware. Hosting a dinner party is the perfect excuse to dust off the good stuff – such as the Ceramic Tableware you usually reserve for special occasions. This is because it adds an extra touch of class and sophistication to your evening, making the whole event feel that much more special. Furthemore, you’re bound to get more compliments from your guests! 
  • Spring clean (some of) your home. Cleaning your home and brushing up on your gardening is another essential step when hosting a dinner party, as you’ll want to create a welcoming atmosphere for your guests. However, it’s important to remember that you only need to focus on the areas of your home your guests will actually be spending time in – such as the living room, dining room, bathrooms and garden. This lightens your workload and will take some of the pressure off your shoulders. Once you’ve cleaned, you can also start focusing on the fun stuff, such as decorating your home for your party. For example, you could get crafty and make personalised table decor for each of your guests.