Jen Walshaw


Football crafts or Soccer Crafts 10

These football crafts or soccer crafts for my US readers are brought to you in conjunction with MandMDirect.com.  For those of you that don’t know, I have two football mad boys.  Maxi is a defender (and a very good one at that) and plays in a team and has since he was five years old.  His team is an ace bunch of lads who now play in Division one and finished in the top half, which is great for a team that started out in division four.   At the moment with the Euro’s on my house is everything football, when they are not watching it they are playing it.  So more »


Over 101 Ideas for Summer Activities for Teenagers – in conjunction with Goodfella’s Romano Pizza

Over 101 Ideas for Summer Activities for Teenagers is a paid collaboration with Goodfella’s Romano Pizza. As my boys are getting older I am finding that keeping them entertained over the summer is getting more expensive and it appears that I am not alone in finding it pricey,  A study by Goodfella’s Pizza discovered that during the six weeks summer holiday parents spend an average of £127 a child to stop their offspring becoming bored.  “I’m Bored” is one of the phrases that I have banned here, in fact over the years I have used it to my advantage with our Bored Jars.  So I have partnered up with Goodfellas and their more »


2 Ingredient Fromage Frais Silly Putty – #FeedTheirPlayfulNature 2

2 Ingredient Fromage Frais Silly Putty is a paid collaboration for the #FeedTheirPlayfulNature campaign sponsored by Munch Bunch Organic.  Mini always has a packed lunch for school and I am always on the lookout for something to add to his lunch box and were delighted to see that Munch Bunch Organic comes in pouches perfect for lunch on the go.


Free Father’s Day Cards and Printables

I do love a freebie and even more, I love a homemade card, so if you combine the two you have free father’s day cards and printables and you are on to a winner.  Over the years I have had some fabulous cards and printables designed and I wanted to round them up so you can see them all in one place.


Things to consider before bringing a dog into your family home 4

Things to consider before bringing a dog into your family home is a paid collaboration with Drontal to highlight the importance of using worming treatment every three months (Drontal is something we use, so I am delighted to be working with them). We are big pet lovers in here in the Mad House and love having Alvin as part of our family. However, bringing a dog into your home is something that really needs to be considered very carefully.


Keep It Classy – Frugalist Guide to Staying Fashionable on A Budget

Any man can look his best without having to spend thousands of dollars on clothing. It all comes down to the strategy you have when it comes to clothes shopping. It is a general misconception that you have to earn a lot in order to look impeccable. On top of that, you don’t have to wear designer clothes to look classy and polished. Still, you can incorporate some new habits. Before we talk about that, note that your expectations should be realistic when your budget is limited. It’s true – you can stay fashionable on a budget, but it’s not as easy as it would be if you had a higher more »


Father's Day Gift Guide

Father’s Day Gift Guide 7

I have a friend that always buys the best gifts.  She is a gift fairy and someone that I aspire to be.  There is a real knack for buying the perfect gift, a gift that will be loved and used. I have partnered with Braun to produce this Father’s Day gift guide to help you no matter what his style find a Father’s Day gift that he will use and love day in and day out


Subway NFL Flag – A fabulous inclusive sport for children

This is a paid collaboration in association with Subway UK & Ireland. Did you know that American Football is the fastest growing sport in the UK? I certainly didn’t. That was until I started researching it after being invited to the Leeds regional NFL Flag tournament sponsored by Subway™.  I had a fabulous afternoon watching four schools battle it out for their chance to be part of the National tournament.


Make your own Jelly Bean Watercolours (Taste Safe) 1

Do you have a little one that likes to put everything in their mouth? Well, these jelly bean watercolours are a great sensory activity that is totally taste safe. Sometimes it can be challenging when you want to do an art activity when you have kids of different ages to find something suitable. Maxi always loved painting and mini did too, however, he always put his hands in and then put them in his mouth.  This is a fab solution and also a great way to add some science in for older children as you can talk about how you can make the colours darker by adding more sweets and less more »


10 Ways to Make Your Bedroom A Sanctuary 3

Make Your Bedroom A Sanctuary is a paid collaboration with Vaulia. One of the things that has always been important to me, more so since having children is making our bedroom a sanctuary.  I don’t hide the fact that I suffer from insomnia and that it has become so much worse since having children.  However, there are a few simple rules that can turn a bedroom into a haven and mine is my go-to place when I want some peace and tranquillity. Yes, my bedroom is a sanctuary for me and using these simple tips you can make your bedroom a sanctuary too.


Red, White and Blue Layer Cake 3

Not only is it The Royal Wedding this Saturday it is also the final of the FA Cup and our patriotic Red, White and Blue Layer Cake is a super simple make perfect for any celebratory occasion. The secret to making a great Red, White and Blue Layer Cake is to use gel food colouring. that way you get a fabulous colour but also a light sponge with great taste.  I am going to admit that this is a very rough and ready cake and it would also look fab with less icing as a naked cake. Red, White and Blue Layer Cake Ingredients for the cake 375g/13oz butter or margarine softened to room temperature 375g/13oz more »


Chicken Sausages and Roasted Vegetable Traybake 304

Chicken Sausages and Roasted Vegetable Traybake is a paid collaboration with Richmond Chicken Sausages.  I was lucky enough to attend the launch of Richmond Chicken Sausages last week and after trying our some fabulous recipes using them cooked by Angelica Bell (who won celebrity Masterchef) I came home inspired.  They were truly delicious and have 30% less fat and 20% fewer calories (find out more on Richmond Foods Facebook Page).  I was really impressed with the fantastic taste and could see straight away how they would fit into our family menu plan.


Crushed Jersey Royals – Cooking with Kids

The first Jersey Royals usually herald the start of the BBQ season here in the Mad House and we are delighted to be working with Tesco to share with you our Crushed Jersey Royals recipe using Tesco Jersey Royal New Potatoes now that they are finally in season. You have the Beast from the East to thank for the season starting later this year! Tesco Jersey Royals are delicious, earthy and nutty and one of the traditional foodie signals that Spring has arrived.


Dealing with Tween Sleep Issues and Simba Mattress Review

Mini has always been a challenge when it comes to sleep and now as a nearly 12 year old it isn’t much different, but I thought it would be worthwhile sharing with you our tips for dealing with tween sleep issues.  We have tried everything over the years and can firmly say that some things work better for us than others. Mini is a much nicer child when he has had sufficient sleep. We also wanted to share with you how using a Simba Sleep Mattress has made a big impact on Mini’s quality of sleep and why.


Crealy Meadows with a tween and teen 7

We were invited to Crealy Meadows over the Easter holidays for a 4 night/5 day break in one of their luxury lodges.  After a long and wet, cruddy winter I thought we all deserved some Devon sunshine and some time reconnecting as a family. Plus the last time we had been to Crealy Adventure Park the boys were about 7! However, I am not going to beat around the bush the boys at 13 and nearly 12 would be quite happy to stay at home and play fortnight all day on their Xbox! So how did our trip go? Read on to find out…


Body Positivity – Has it become an issue of privilege? 33

Are you bikini ready and body confident? I’m really struggling at the moment with body positivity. Having gone through a double mastectomy and failed reconstruction, I was always going to have issues with my changed body. However, it has really come to the fore this spring with the influx of social media campaigns declaring that all bodies are beautiful. A large number of these campaigns are run by people who I would consider to be attractive women of an average size. Of course, all women are prone to body insecurity. But I can’t help but feel that when an average-sized woman is presented as the champion of fat acceptance, it totally more »

Body Confidence - Has it become an issue of privilege?