Chaos cleaning for busy Mums 23

Housework, cleaning and organisation, hate it or love it, the one constant is that it has to be done and seen as I can not afford a cleaner it mostly falls down to me.  In the past we have gone from control freaky clean, to total mess depending on my mental state!  Now we are somewhere in between.  The house is not always clean and tidy, but it is lived in and can be tidied in a flash. Want to know my secret? Today I am going to let you in to my tips for what I call a chaos clean.  You know the manic clean that you have to do more »

chaos cleaning tips for busy mums

Create your own monster fingerprint cards

Fingerprint Monster thank you cards 24

Do your kids send thank you cards?  The MiniMad’s send thank you cards their have made every year.  Last year it was thumbprint Robin thank you cards, this year it is fingerprint monster thank you cards. We love giving fingerprint monster cards as they encourage people to get creative and add their own monsters to the blank fingerprints.  Plus these are easy to make, if you have smaller children they can just do the fingerprinting and you can add the rest. How to make fingerprint monster thankyou cards


The benefits of team sports for kids 17

Maxi is a junior football player and he has been with his football team from when he started playing as an under 7. He has been training since he was four years old. We are so lucky that his team mates are a great and they are a wonderful team, but being in a team is a great experience for him and he has learned a lot. The benefits of team sport for kids  

maxi football young

Christmas 2015 Collage 2

Christmas 2015 11

Part of the reason I blog is to record the moments, to be able to look back on them and to cherish every single moment. This Christmas has been a quiet one for The Mad House, but wonderful and very family centric. The older I get the more I realise that the joy I experience is really bound to the boys having fun and my family unit and dear friends that I hold dear.


New Years Resolutions and Intentions for Families 11

This week we have been concentrating on our thoughts, dreams, feelings and goals by planning our resolutions and intentions for the New Year.   This is a great activity for all the family. New Year Resolutions for Kids

new years resolutions and intentions for families

2015 paper hat

New years wish crackers 5

My boys adore crackers and our homemade crackers were such a hit, we decided to make a variation for new Year, so here you have our new years wish crackers. Instead of jokes, these crackers each contain a wish we would like to come true in the coming year. We also filled them with festive confetti and of course a paper hat, We customised our hats with 2015. Make your own New Year’s Wish Crackers


New Year paper plate countdown clock 1

Do you celebrate the New Year with your children? As my boys are getting older they are starting to be involved in our New Years celebration and I thought that a paper plate countdown clock would be great fun to make and use. What you need:

New year countdown clock

three of five toys to local childrens

Christmas, it is all about the presence not the presents 1

The older I get the more I realise that Christmas is not all about what you give or get, but about being there with your family. This was compounded with a health scare and even more when my mum died at Christmas four years ago.  So now MadDad and I focus on our presence rather than the presents. Growing up my dad always told us the following rules and this is something we have tried to instill in our children.


Cornflour dough tealight holders for Solstice 3

We live in Northern England and during this time of year it is dark and we love to light up our home with candles and decided to make some cornflour dough tealight holders for Solstice.  Maxi decided to make them in the shape of the sun to celebrate the shortest day and welcome the lengthening of the hours of sun we would receive. We used our white clay recipe, which is really easy to make, so much so that Maxi made it himself and once the dough had cooled down we used cookie cutters to shape our tealight holders.

corn flour dough tea light holders

white dough

White clay dough. Corn Flour dough, a fab alternative to salt dough 3

We have made corn flour dough before, but using salt, however, I was keen to find a different recipe with more of a smooth texture that was a bit more malleable for the boys to use. We have tried Nurturestore’s 2 ingredient white dough  and love it, but we also tried the following white clay recipe and the boys decided that this is their favorite go to salt dough replacement. How to make white clay:


Be inspired to cook with your kids and win an eBay voucher 4

I hope that my previous post about crafting with your kids this Christmas inspired you to get creative with your kids.  Now for part two! So what else I am inspired by at this time of year, well if you are a regular reader then it will come as no surprise to you that it is getting kids in to the kitchen and creating with them, baking making and having fun. Creativity is part of my make up.  It runs through my veins and has since I had the boys.  One of the biggest things I want my kids to remember is having fun making things.  I also want to to have more »

gingerbread house making

AM_Keys

Holidays are coming – Give a little happiness 11

Holidays are coming, holidays are coming, holidays are coming, its always the real thing…………… You know when the Coke advert comes on that Christmas is on it’s way and now even the Coke lorry tours the country.  We have never seen it, but Cass from Diary of a Frugal Family has. This year however, I have to say that I adore Coca Cola’s new advert, has made a big impact in The Mad House.  The mini mads are forever to be found singing “let’s make someone happy”.  Have you seen it?


Robin Thumbprint Mugs 4

Every year we make fingerprint mugs for the teachers for Christmas.  In the past we have made Reindeer mugs and flower mugs, pigs, caterpillars and bees.  This year we decided to do Robin’s like last years Robin cards.  These Robin thumbprint mugs are so simple to make and really effective for kids of all ages.   How to make Robin Thumbprint Mugs

Mug painting

win GIGASET QV830 8 Tablet - 8 GB, Black

Great gifts for Bloggers 280

Bloggers we are a fickle bunch and we seem to have a gift list as long as your arms, well the ones I ask do, so here is our great gifts for bloggers list curated by Mum in the Mad House.


Great gifts for Dad’s 16

Men can be difficult to buy for, so I thought I would share with you some of the things that Husbeast has had and loved.  Some of these recommendations are of things we have received to review, some of them, things that we have bought and he has loved. So here are the Mad House’s guide to great gifts for Dads. Tools

karcher

Great gift ideas for Mums

Great gifts for Mums 75

When I was younger I would have got really upset at receiving something for the house as a present, but no it thrills me to get something that I want! I also have found that the older I have got the more expensive my tastes have become!  Below are The Mad House’s guide to great gifts for Mums. Great gift ideas for Mums   Smellies


Putting together a Christmas Eve Hamper and other Christmas Eve Tradition 16

One of our Mad House traditions carried over from my own childhood is new night wear on Christmas Eve so that we always look smart in the photo’s on Christmas Eve. Christmas Eve is a magical time, full of excitement and awe and we have a Christmas Eve party each year with my best Friend and her four boys, so it is a wonderful time in The Mad House. For the last five years or so the boys have been given a mini hamper on Christmas Eve Morning for things to see them throughout the day.

christmas-eve evelves

paper christmas tree

How to make cake case Christmas trees 17

Christmas is a great time for encouraging kids to get creative and a great way to do this is to present them with an #invitation to create.  These Christmas trees decorated with cak cases are so easy to make and can be adapted for kids of all ages.   How to make Cake case Christmas trees


One pot wonder – Beef and ale with crispy dumplings 101

We are big fans of winter cooking and one of the best things about the cold weather is the change to come home to a fab home cooked meal and one of our family favorites is Beef and ale with crispy dumplings.  It is something that both MadDad and I remember fondly from our childhood and thankfully the boys both love it too. How to make Beef and ale with crispy Dumplings

beef and ale with crispy dumplings

father christmas letter

Making the most of the magic 2

One of the highlights of having children is getting to re-live the excitement of Christmas. That magic and mystery that gets lost somewhere around the dawn of our teenage years is suddenly back and it’s so much fun to experience it again, this time as a parent. It feels imperative to make the most of it while it lasts, as with all the fleeting joys of childhood. What would Christmas be without the wonder of it all? With so many fond memories of our own Christmases back in the days of innocence when we believed in Father Christmas and his team of loyal elves working away in the North Pole, there’s more »