The *BEST* School Trousers we have tried…. ever

I do not say this lightly, but I think I have found the holy grail of school uniform.  The BEST school trousers ever. The best school tousers We were asked to review some school uniform from BHS and I have to say that we have been delighted with what we received in general, but more than that we were blown away by the school trousers. What is so special about BHS School Trousers?  You might ask.  Well let me spell it out for you.........
  1. They have reinforced knees - yes how amazing is that, no more patching holey knees for me.
  2. They do a slim fit - I have a super slim child and these look ace on him.  No more flappy trousers!
  3. They do different leg lengths - At last someone has realised that kids come in different heights.
  4. They are different fits on offer including slim, skinny and generous fits.
  5. They have adjustable waists.  Does anyone elses childs slim out when they shoot upwards?
These trouser have stood up to both my boys and they decimate school uniform and I am delighted to say not only are they practical, but the skinny fit looks amazing on Maxi.  He loves the fact that he can be an individual with a different style of trouser to all the other kids in his class. The BEST School Trouser we have tried.... ever
Leave Your Comment »

Encouraging independence in kids over the summer

My boys are eight and nine and this is our third summer of the Bored Jar and also the third summer that I have given them more freedom over the summer to. Now I am going to admit that it isn't always plain sailing and that the boys have pushed boundaries in the past, but we all thrive from trusting each other. Encouraging independence in kids over the summer

Our rules for a #Freerange summer

Set clear boundaries - The boys have areas that they are not allowed to go to on their own, they also have areas that they can only visit together or in groups. Set clear expectations and time limits - Both the boys have watches and can tell the time.  If they are not back on time, then they are sanctioned.  The Watch Hut has some fantastic kids watches. Make it easy for them to get in touch with you - and no I don't mean give them a mobile phone!  Kids do not need mobile phones. We used walkie talkies when the boys were younger and I make sure I have mobile phone numbers for their friends parents.  I also ensure that the boys know our numbers.
free range summer As they boys have got older, more and more of their friends and peers have freedom too and it is not unusual to find 12 boys playing in our garden or making loom bands in the conservatory.

Set home rules and make sure they are kept

I have a pretty open door policy and also keep the kids and their friends hydrated with water, squash and icepops.
  • You must close the door behind you (we have a dog)
  • You respect my rules in my house
  • No electronics after six pm
  • You get toys out, you put them away
  • No playing upstairs
Leave Your Comment »

Pinterestingly – Pins I’ve found interesting this week #4 – The start of the summer holidays

NewPinterestinglarge392 Friday marked the last day of term for the minimas and I have been busy preparing for our summer.  We are pretty freerange over the summer and I am a big believer in not over scheduling the boys or myself. But I find that the cleaning definitely takes a back seat, so I have been looking for cleaning hacks that can make our lives easier and get the boys involved more. kids choresclean your room   Cooking is another thing that I want to ensure we do more of as a family over the summer break and after speaking to the boys teachers the one activity that they recommended that we keep up over the summer is writing.   The boys read a lot in their everyday lives, but I want to incorporate writing more. cooking campsummer writingmake writing funMusic with math So these are my favorite pins this week, what are yours.  Do leave me a link to your pinterest account below in the comments. Visit Jen Walshaw's profile on Pinterest.
Leave Your Comment »

Ultimate summer activities lists and bored Jar lists

We have been using an I'm Bored Jar for the last two years now and I wouldn't be without one.  With the summer holidays coming now is the perfect time to put together yours.

Make a Bored Jar

  You can really use any jar or container that you have in the house.  I used a kilner jar that we had in the kitchen and cut out a some paper to make a label and also a tag to make it all pretty! Ultimate summer activities lists and bored Jar lists

Print this years summer activity list (with over 150 activities)

Click to download this years Ultimate bored jar in PDF format bored jar list 1bored jar list page 2bored jar list page 3bored jar list page 4 bored jar list page 5bored jar list page 5

Previous years Activity lists

So rather than hunt down all my previous posts, I wanted to share with you our previous lists, just click on the image and you will be taken to the post. ultimate bored jar activity list   Ultimate Spring Bored Jar Activity list 100 summer activities

 Great Summer Activities from around the Web

  Over 1000 activities for over the summer
We printed our activities this year on vivid card 220 gsm from Viking Direct using our new HP Envy 5510.  I was really impressed how easily it printed on card.
Leave Your Comment »

T20 Blast – A real fun day out

Both the minimads are sporty boys and love playing and watching sport. I am one of those odd women that loves Cricket. I remember going to watch the local team play with my Grandad (the cricket club was at the end of our road) and I loved sitting next to him and watching and learning. Top tips for getting the best out of T20 Blast with kids When we were invited by The England Cricket Board to attend a local T20 Blast match we thought it would be a great introduction to the boys of cricket, albeit a much short, more fast paced match and we were right. For those not in the know T20 is a shorter version of a day match.  With only 20 overs per side.  1 over is 6 balls.  On average it takes about three hours. The beauty of T20 is that there are lots more fours and sixes and also more people caught out in a shorter time.  It is like a match on fast forward.
The Natwest T20 Blast is a fast paced, big hitting, all-round entertainment package both on and off the pitch, involving some of the world’s top cricketers. With a quicker format and more lively game night experience, the Natwest T20 Blast experience takes on a modern twist and signifies the start of summer
We went to see Durham Jets hamer Derbyshire Falcons and it was a great afternoon.  Yes we got a little wet, but that didn't dampen our spirits.

Top tips for getting the best out of T20 Blast with kids

  1. Take a picnic.  Fod at the stadium is expensive. We packed a picnic and grazed throughout the match
  2. Get their early - parking at Durham is inexpensive at £2.30 and close and by getting their early we got a great car parking space and got to look round before the game started (which is called stumps) and got good seats
  3. Take clothing for all eventualities, we had hot sun and rain within minutes, so make sure you take waterproofs, hats, suncream and a blanket.  Don't take an umbrella they drip on other people and you cannot see over them if sat behind someone with one.
  4. Take binoculars, the boys loved being able to see a little better and binoculars are great for this.
  5. Stay at the end and get the players autographs
  6. Grab the noisemakers and cards for waving when 4 and 6's are hit
Leave Your Comment »

Fab home made ice lollies and popsicles for kids – Kids in the Kitchen

Fab home made ice lollies and popsicles for kids We have a rule in The Mad House, which is that we do not partake in the ice cream van, this means that I have a freezer drawer full of ice lollies and we love making homemade ice lollies or popsicles.  I never throw away nearly out of date juice or smoothies as they make fab lollies, Just like Kate at Crafts on Sea. mixed berry lolly They are also a great way to get your kids to eat more fruit and veg (yes veg) if you have fussy eaters and you can tailor them for your childrens tastes.  My two also love them when they have sore throats. Ingredients
  • Spinach (or other green)
  • Berries (if you have fresh great, if not frozen ones are perfectly fine)
  • Liquid - coconut water, yogurt, juice or water
  • Sweetener (if required) - we use date syrup, but honey is great too
  • Blender or food processor,
  • Ice lolly moulds or paper cups and lolly sticks
  • Blend the spinach with some coconut water first, I use about a bowl of spinach to a bowl of mixed berries.
  • Add the berries and blend.  I use frozen a lot of the time, they are cheaper and just as good.  I let them thaw for 5 minutes before blending them.
  • Add coconut water to get the right consistency for you.
  • Taste and add sweetener as required.
I get about 20 lollies from a £1.50 box of berries.
Tip: We sieve the berries once we have blended them as my boys are not fans of seeds.
Mixed berry and spinach ice lollies
Variations:  soft fruit is great for ice lollies such as banana or mango.  You can use any sort of liquid, such as soy or nut milks and coconut milk is delicious with strawberries or pineapple, peach, vanilla and greek yogurt.
If you are looking for some more inspiration take a look at these: easy DIY popsicles, home made smoothies and freeze the leftovers,  fruit and yogurt popsicles, three ingredient strawberry pops, simple juice lollies  I am definitely making these avocado and kiwi pops. and Center Parcs have some great tips too.
Tip:  If you make your lollies in a multiple mould, take them out and pop them all in a bag in the freezer one they have frozen, this way kids can help themselves easily and you are not trying to get them out whilst they wait impatiently!
lolly cup
Tip: when giving kids lollys give then a cup to put them in when they want to put them down, it saves finding puddles of melted juice everywhere!
‘I’m a Center Parcs Family Blogger and visited Whinfell village with my family. If you want to enter to win a place as a wildcard winner just go to the challenge page to find out how 
Leave Your Comment »

Win a Febreze #DriveHappy Road Trip Kit

According to a recent survey commissioned by Febreze, a bad smell tops Brits’ list of turn offs when getting into someone’s car. I know that I hate a smelly car, but with two boys and a dog it can be hard to make sure my car smells clean when there is football kit in the boots and a dog on the backseat! Febreze wants to make sure summer family road trips run as smoothly (and as freshly) as possible. To do this, Febreze has created a #drivehappy Kit.

#DriveHappy Road Trip Kit

I have a #drivehappy Kit to giveaway, which includes (Please note that some prizes may vary, for example the travel pillow and travel games may be subject to change)
  • Febreze CAR Vent Clip to ensure your car smells fresh.
  • A backseat organiser to keep your car neat and tidy.
  • A £50 supermarket voucher to stock up on travel essentials (snacks, tissues, etc.)
  • A CD of top driving songs you can car-aoke to on your road trip.
  • A travel pillow so you can catch some much needed Zzz’s.
  • A universal car charger to keep you connected on the go.
  • Travel sized games to entertain you and the kids on the journey.
The Febreze #drivehappy Kit was inspired the official Febreze Road Trip!  This summer, three members of the British public have been handpicked to embark on a European road trip. Throughout the trip the drivers will have to perform a series of unexpected challenges which will cause a bit of a stink! After they perform a smelly challenge their car will be ‘Febreezed’. They'll then pick up surprise passengers who will have an opinion on the air freshness in the car. These passenger approvals will dictate the next part of the journey for the driver. If they approve, the drivers will get a totally fresh experience, if not they will pay a stinky price!  The road trip started last weekend at the Goodwood festival of speed.  You can follow the road trip and all of its episodes on the Febreze Youtube channel. To be in with a chance of winning, all you have to do is watch the video above and leave me a comment below to let me know which of the Febreze celebrities hands the drivers their challenge envelope at the end?  You can also get additional entries using the rafflecopter entry:
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Leave Your Comment »

Pinterestingly – Pins I’ve found interesting this week #3

I have had a couple of weeks off Pinterestinly as real life has been getting rather busy! So what have I been pinning this week.  Well it is the boys last week at school, so I have been pulling together some activities for the summer break   floating ball catapuly  filn nightsummer spinesummer ideas I would love to know what you have been pinning, leave me your pinterest details below.  Oh and if you want to follow me, then I am
Leave Your Comment »

Leather lace-on shoe mustaches

lace on leather mustache for soes I am a converse girl, have been since school and just because I am the wrong side of forty doesn't mean that I am going to stop wearing them! I have been doing projects with my Cricut Explore and have been thinking about what I could do with leather when I had a POW moment and decided to make some leather lace-on shoe mustaches for me and the minimads.

 Cutting leather on the Cricut Explore

I uploaded an image of a moustache and inserted two circles, which I resized to 0.2 inches and then placed them when I wanted the holes for the laces to be and welded them to that place, but clicking on all the images. tash3 The Cricut Explore is proving to be a ninja cutting machine and has managed with everything I have thrown at it so far and this was no exception.  I set selected the cutting material in the menu and changed the dial to custom. I used a deep cutting blade and the leather cut really easily as you can see from the video.

Leather lace-on shoe mustaches

Shoe mustaches mini I am really pleased as to how these turned out and would be as simple to make with just a stencil and scissors. Materials:
      1. Leather (I got a scrap pack from Ebay)
      2. Crop a dile (I have this kit - Crop-A-Dile Punch Kit)
      3. Eyelets
shoe moustache collage I used the Cricut Explore to cut the leather and the holes and then added an eyelet to them with the crop a dile to finish them off. I am really pleased with them and even more so is Mini. Minis show tashes 3.
Leave Your Comment »

How to make a Capri-sun pencil case

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. Capri sun pencil case We are busy "dumping the junk" in The Mad House.  We have noticed that when the boys grab junk food that we suffer the consequences in their behaviour.  We needed to find a drink that I could freeze and pop in lunch boxes over the summer for football camp, so wanted to give Capri-sun a go. We visited our local ASDA and decided to try the Capri-Sun Fruit Crush as part of our #CollectiveBias shop, it is fruit juice and spring water and no nasties.   I can safely say it went down well and neither of the boys had a reaction to it - yippee! caprisun But I was left with the cartons and wanted to use  them, so I decided to make a pencil case with them (we are all about reuse, reduce, recycle here thanks to Bob the builder! How to make a Capri-Sun pencil case

How to make a Capri-Sun pencil case

  Surprisingly Capri-sun pouches are really goof doe sewing  and this pencil case took me around 30 minutes last night. caprisun pencil case how to It is also great for a beginner to make as the zipper goes in before you close the case.  I used washi tape to hold the pouches together before sewing them and it made it so easy to do. Now we have to buy more Capri-sun as both the boys want a pencil case and this time they are going to sew their own. 3.
Leave Your Comment »
Page 6 of 125« First...45678...203040...Last »

Follow Mum In The Madhouse




My other sites


Read all of my Reviews here

Cricut Love



mumsnet bloggers network