Monday, 30 June 2014

Three Good Times to Go Nude

As I like to pretend I'm living in the 1940s 80% of the time, I'm a fan of that "badge of courage", red lipstick. It makes me feel womanly, confident, don't care-ish. But it can be high maintenance. And there are times when I want to be less full-on. Paradoxically, these are the perfect times to go nude.
A nude shade says "I have made a bit of an effort". While I tend to go barefaced most of the time anyway, if I do succumb to war-paint, it's often the full works - eyeliner, mascara, lipliner - the business. If I'm wearing blusher, I'm really serious. 

Monday, 23 June 2014

Feed the birds from a milk container

A bird in our garden is An Event. We see a sparrow, we call other members of the family to come and look, by which time it'll have probably flown off. Our green-fingered neighbour, Ms Radio, has invested in a Proper Bird Seed dispenser, with positive results. So it made sense, when the King and Prima were off planting flowers at the nearby Millennium Green with other community-minder souls, for Secundus and I to make a bird feeder out of junk. 

Create your own no-cost bird feeder - adult help/ supervision required - with the following items:

An empty milk container, with top

String, long enough to make a loop for hanging your feeder where you want it to be, such as on a branch or from an unused hanging basket bracket.

A marker pen

Scissors (no running with scissors!)

Friday, 30 May 2014

How Can Little Fingers Help Get the Family Fed?

A guest post by Angela Esnouf of Creating Order From Chaos

Getting nutritious meals on the table every day can be a chore, especially if you’re trying to do it all by yourself.  The clean up afterwards can be a drag as well, particularly when you have other important jobs to take care of, like bath and story time, homework supervision or household chores.

As someone who helps people create order from their chaos, one thing I tell all my clients is “D is for Delegate”.  Delegating meal time tasks to the little ones in your life not only helps you get things done, it teaches them vital self care skills, teamwork and promotes a family focus.  Don’t underestimate what your little ones are capable of.  Here’s a list of meal time and kitchen tasks that can be delegated with ease (depending on your child’s age and abilities):

Wednesday, 21 May 2014

Change Your Mind About Coral

Readers, I am not one for wearing make-up on the beach. We have a week away in Northumberland every year, and my beach essentials include a down jacket and a wind-break, not a wide-brimmed hat and a sarong. There is no concern about bikini-line tidiness or over-consumption of cocktails by the pool. There is no pool. There's the North Sea.

Decisions we make on holiday include things like whether to pack the hand-held blender (in order to continue to disguise vegetables in our meals, for the sake of the Evacuees) and where best to build a sandcastle. I don't need outfits that will take me "from beach to bar". I may well not need any sunglasses.

Monday, 19 May 2014

Do you have a 1970s' attitude to sunshine?

If you grew up in the 1970s, you might, like me, feel that summer hasn't really started til you've got a bit of sunburn. Although I am very keen to protect Prima and Secundus from the harsh rays of the 21st Century sun, I do have a tendency to skimp on sunscreen myself. I like my freckles and I wear my watch-mark with pride.

Picking up a leaflet recently at my local Superdrug store made me wake up to the fact that I need to change my attitude. After years of criticism from my mother for being so pale and indoorish, I understand why I equate "tan" with "healthy" but I ought to look after my own skin just as much as my children's. According to Charlotte Fionda, of Skcin (the national skin cancer charity), "one blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a person’s chance of developing melanoma in later life.”

Skcin recommends Superdrug’s Solait suncare range to help protect skin from sun damage.  Here are some top tips from Superdrug and Skcin to help parents and carers keep our children safe this summer - make sure grandparents, in particular, are aware, as sun protection may not have been a high priority for them in the past.
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