Getting outside in all weathers – something for the weekend 38

I am as guilty as others at looking out of the window and thinking of things that we can do inside to escape the weather rather than embracing the weather and getting some fresh air.  So I am dedicating this week’s something for the weekend to getting us outside and encouraging our children outside too.  In many parts of the UK it has been the wettest winter on record and often March and April can be pretty wet too, but I am determined to get us out and about. Ways to encourage kid’s outdoors  

windsock-collage

Please take 2 minutes to watch this 9

Hair straighteners literally transformed my life.  It is split into two era’s life before straightener and life after straighteners.  I now have manageable hair.  However, I would not want the to transform the life of any child. Did you know that  hair straightener burns among children has doubled in recent years and they now account for nearly one in ten burns. Keep your children safe If you use hair straighteners, follow the Electrical Safety Councils top tips to make sure that you, and your children, stay safe from electrical burns: Keep hair straighteners out of reach of children – Children’s skin can be 15 times thinner than that of adults so it’s important more »


Tips for a good bedtime routine 34

We have been round and round the block when it comes to bedtimes.  We have been remarkably lucky with Maxi, he has always been a dream when it comes to bedtime and goes to bed and to sleep with little or no fuss.  However, to make up for this Mini has been a challenge, well from turning two years old! I am please to say that at seven he is now really good at going to bed and much better at getting to sleep, so I thought I would share some of the things we have done to make this as easy as possible.

Top view of little cute girl sleeping with teddy bear

colouring hats

Colouring on Fabric 18

One of the things that we love to do as a family is to sit and colour in.  I find it really therapeutic and have some adult colouring in books, so I don’t feel left out when the boys are colouring.  Crafting as a family doesn’t have to take lots of equipment or even lots of time and this is a great activity for fitting in to small amounts of time. When I saw Tidny Fabric at Ikea I knew it would be perfect for family colouring sessions.  It is great to get it out of the cupboard and set it at the table for times when we all need to more »


Simple drawing and art – Something for the weekend 35

This week has been filled with a nasty vomiting bug, which has really taken us back to basics in The Mad House.  We have done a lot of reading, watching movies and simple art and drawing.  So I decided to concentrate on that for this week’s something for the weekend.  We received an amazing gift pack from Australian company Smiggle, who have just opened up a store at Westfield and it included a fantastic scratch book, which is what inspired this weeks activity, make your own scratch paper.

simple drawing

cath giveaway

6 Gifts Mothers Definitely Do Not Want on Mother’s Day + Cath Kidston Giveaway 250

Mother’s Day is a special time of year where we celebrate everything that our mothers have done for us over the years.  From changing your nappy to helping you put money into your children’s savings account and, these days, listening to all your worries and woes, your mum has been there for you through it all, so she deserves something special to remind her just how important she is. We suggest you read this list and avoid these items at all costs or you can expect to have one disappointed mum on your hands this Mother’s Day.


Exploring sense of smell and taste 18

When I was pregnant I seemed to have such a heightened sense of smell and have passed that on to Minimad. Maxi has been under the weather lately and noticed that when his nose was blocked foods didn’t taste the same or as strong, so I thought we would explore this.

smell-and-taste-facebook

fingerprint heart cards

Fingerprint heart valentines cards 20

I have to say that as a couple MadDad and I have never really been in to celebrating Valentines Day.  Mainly due to the fact that it is our wedding anniversary in March and we tend to celebrate that much more than Valentines, however, since having the boys things have changed. It seems that they really want us to celebrate valentines, they have made fingerprint


Something for the weekend – The pompom edition 26

I loooove pompoms and so do the boys.  we find making them something of an addiction especially with these Pom-Pom makers.  It really is super simple and something that my boys can do all on their own and is a great way of using up scraps of wool.  We find making them really therapeutic and something that we tend to make them on an evening when we are all sat around chatting together.  These makers are really simple for children to use, just take a look at the video below of Thinly Spread’s Bonus Boy aged five making a pompom. How to make a Pompom

racing pompoms

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Are you supporting Sport Relief – Dial for Davina Day 19

I guess we are all aware of the Team Honk relay race in the blogger community, but were you aware that Davina McCall  is attempting to run, swim and cycle over 500 miles from Edinburgh to London, entirely under her own steam?  Do you know that she cycled 90 miles today? I have to say I wasn’t until I saw her pulled out of the water at windermere after attempting to swim in the frigid waters.    Davina’s challenge is all about girl power.  She is going to to go through hell and back in order to raise money for Sport Relief.  You can keep up to date with her challenge  on more »


Kids in the kitchen. My top tips for baking with boys! 19

I say boys, but really these tips are great for baking with any child.  My children have been helping me in the kitchen from when they could sit in a high chair.  I tried to involve them from a young age, even if it was just giving them some pastry to play with.  I wanted them to feel comfortable in the kitchen and be involved in preparing their food. Baking is a great exercise for children, it involves lots of different skills such as reading recipes, measuring and weighing ingredients, following instructions, motor skills (mixing), measuring time and also is a great way to connect them with the food that they more »

maxi cooking

paper plate clock

How to make a paper plate clock 22

Whether you are teaching your children to tell the time or just want a great craft activity, a paper plate clock is an excellent way to get talking about time as you make one.  Both my boys have watches and use them too.


Something for the weekend – Winter Olympics Edition 24

We are so excited in the Mad House that the Olympics are upon us again.  I love the winter olympics and it is a little known fact that Mini was named after a scottish skier!  So this week’s something for the weekend is dedicated to Olympics.

olympic crafts and activities

Animal Champion Logo

Something for the half-term holidays – let your kids become an Animal Champion! 1

February half-term is just around the corner, which means a number of parents are frantically searching for a various action-packed activities suited to the entire family.  Giving parents the perfect option to keep the kids entertained while teaching them vital life lessons, the RSPCA is launching their Animal Champion campaign – the perfect antidote the humdrum nature of half-term.


The ultimate guide to crafting with stones 30

If you children are anything like mine then they will always return form an outing with some sort of treasure.  We are lucky to live five minutes from a beach and I have to check the boys pockets each time we come home as they always have stones in them. Stones or beach pebbles are so tactile and make a great crafting and activity material and I am going to be using them for this week’s something for the weekend, so do come back on Friday to see what we have been doing with the ones they collected this weekend.

The ultimate guide to crafting with stones

Heart bookmarks 33

We are big readers in The Mad House and love books.  So when Bostik invited us to be part of their craft club and come up with something with a selection of craft things they sent us we decided to make heart bookmarks in celebration of reading and valentines. Simple glued Bookmark  

heart bookmarks for valentines day

Shape-Walk-Tree-Trucks

Something for the weekend – Heart Activities 25

Valentines Day is just around the corner and this weekend we are focussing on some heart activities which are suitable for doing as a family.  First up is our Family Heart Art.  I am a sucker for making art as a family and love things that we can display seasonally that mean things to all of us, just take a look at our family art christmas tree to see what I mean. Family Fingerprint Heart Art  


Something for the weekend – Bird activities and crafts 23

  Welcome to the first ever something for the weekend #sftw.  A regular series which I hope inspired you to make, so, see, cook and just generally enjoy family time at the weekend.  The idea is to provide simple activities that can fit into family weekend.  Bird Watching  

sftw

soupy stew

Grandma’s Chicken Soupy Stew 34

This is my Mum’s recipe and it is a family favorite with both the boys and even better it is frugal too as it uses up the chicken carcass for making the stock.  You could make it suitable for vegetarians by using vegetable stock and substituting the chicken.   If you do not have much chicken then a broth pack is a great way of bulking it out and I have to say I love adding pearl barley to mine. It reminds me of dinner round the table when I was growing up and there was always a fight for the extra dumplings!