Sunday, 13 December 2020

5 easy Christmas crafts to make with kids


*This was originally posted in 2018 but thought I'd repost for all those crafty types! 

It's Christmas! Well, nearly! I wrote a post a few days ago on some of the things I want to do in December. One of the things I listed was spending some time getting crafty with Pip. I asked fellow bloggers for some easy craft ideas and have compiled a short list of 5 easy Christmas crafts to make with kids!

5 easy Christmas crafts to make with kids


1. Christmas Pom Poms

Pom-poms have to be amongst the most enjoyable things in the craft world. They are easy to make, simple to attach to each other and can look incredibly effective. They can be made in so many sizes and colours. - Jo, A Rose Tinted World. Read Jo's post on how to make a wreath, gardland and ornaments all from pom poms!


2. Christmas Wreath Paper Crafts 

We made some Christmas accordion wreaths from the template on Mrs Mactivity. "There’s a black and white plus a colour version. It’s really easy and good for fine motor skills too" says Emma from Mrs Mactivity. If you need more inspiration look at these free svg files that help with designing festive crafts, perfect for wreaths or any other paper displays.


3. Salt Dough Decorations

Salt dough creations are so easy and fun for the children to make and then paint when fully dry. I love ones that keep memories alive like this one of my 7 year olds little hand which we made when she was 3 and goes on the tree every year. Emma, The Money Whisperer


4. Santa/Snowman Toilet Paper Roll Craft 

These are easy to make with kids. Follow simple instructions on these two posts from Rim, Curious & Geeks: Santa – an easy toilet paper roll craft & Snowman Toilet paper rolls: Christmas crafts for kids.
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5. A 3D Christmas Tree Decoration

Last year I made this 3D Christmas tree decoration with Pip when he was 4 years old. It can be made as a standing or hanging tree and was very easy to make. All your need is card, scissors, decorations/glitter and glue!


Lastly, if you want some Christmas card design ideas pop over to Su's blog post at Ethan & Evelyn!

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Thanks to all the bloggers who contributed their ideas to this blog post. I hope we've given you some inspiration! Happy Christmas crafting!

* This post contains a sponsored link.

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Friday, 4 December 2020

10 ways to lead a healthier and happier life


This year has been a strange one, hasn't it! With COVID-19 and a change in lifestyle, some things in 2020 feel like they have lasted a lifetime. I originally posted this blog article back in 2018 and have edited it for today because I feel that now more than ever, living a healthy lifestyle is crucial. With mental health issues on the rise due to the pandemic, it's more important than ever to take care of your health. For me, working full-time from home over lockdown and combining that with home-schooling for several months left little time for anything else. Saying that though exercise and healthy food can be incorporated into any routine. Here's a little reminder of ways to live a healthier and happier life. 

1. Eat healthy nutritious food with plenty of fruit and vegetables
Obesity leads to a higher risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, strokes, type 2 diabetes and some cancers including breast cancer and bowel cancer. Studies also show obesity can lead to low self-esteem and depression. It is much easier than you think to cut down on sugars and processed foods and replace with healthier and fresher alternatives full of the recommended 5 portions of fruit and veg a day. For example, the BBC Good Food has a wonderful section on quick and healthy dinners. If you have kids (or even if you don't!) try making these healthy sugar-free banana, coconut and raisin flapjacks, yum!


2. Drink water
Unless I’m exercising this is the one I sometimes forget especially when working from home! The NHS advises that those in the UK should drink at least 6-8 glasses a day to avoid dehydration and so the body can function effectively. Other health benefits include assisting in weight loss, boosting the immunity and increasing energy levels.

3. Everything in moderation
Eating healthily is very important. But so is enjoying life and constant calorie counting or strict dieting is not healthy either. I believe the motto 'everything in moderation'. As long as most of your lifestyle is active and healthy it's fine to enjoy that chocolate cake once in a while! Life is too short after all.

4. Exercise
From losing weight to increasing energy levels, exercise has so many benefits! The NHS recommends adults aged between 19-64 should aim for 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity each week. This includes anything that will raise your heart beat such as brisk walking, cycling or even mowing the lawn! For those who are more active, vigorous aerobic activity includes running, swimming, cycling fast, tennis, football, rugby, aerobics, the list goes on! As well as all the health benefits for lowering risks of coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cancer, osteoarthritis, depression and dementia, exercise simply makes you feel better! Spending time outside in the sunshine is an instant mood improver too! For running inspiration see these top tips for new runners.


5. Ditch bad habits 
This goes without saying but leading a healthier lifestyle means ditching the takeaways, eating well, reducing screen time, not smoking and taking care of yourself. There are so many alternatives these days and these offer huge benefits to the health of your body as a whole. Sometimes taking a step back and looking at the ways you may be overwhelmed can be a huge help and prevent the bad habits. 

6. Sleep
Any parent will know the importance of a good night's sleep! There are so many health benefits and I'm sure everyone will agree that sleeping well makes a big difference! Having a comfortable environment with little noise and a good mattress are ideal!

7. Regular health check ups

Being healthy means taking care of your body. Getting regular dental check ups and sight tests are important for your overall health. If you have a certain health query see the doctor. Even think about having a full body check up including things like a regular ear check with Auris Ear Care.


8. Meditate!  
I’ve been practising meditation regularly for years now and the benefits are huge. It is difficult to describe and works for people in different ways. It has changed the way I think about certain situations, how I relate to people and how a short morning meditation can change my entire day. The more I meditate the bigger the effect. An article on Live and Dare blog shows 76 benefits to meditating including decreasing depression, reducing stress, improving focus and ability to work under stress and increasing psychological well-being. The full list is on the site.

9. Reduce screen time 
We live in an age of new technologies and most of us can easily reduce our screen time! A study published in JAMA Pediatrics show that limiting screen time means children sleep longer resulting in a lower risk of obesity, perform better at school and health and general well-being improve. Reducing screen time gives more time to do all of the other things mentioned in this blog post.


10. Have time to yourself and do the things you love
We all need time to ourselves, to recharge and unwind. There are several health benefits to spending time alone Have a relaxing bath without distractions or go on a trip for a chance of scenery! Whatever it is, enjoy it! Spending time with those you love and generally being inspired by people and things around you can also have huge uplifting benefits. Do something creative every day and something out of the ordinary. Learn to do the things that make you happy! 💛

*This post contains sponsored links. All words and opinions are my own.
Images: Pixabay 

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