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Educational Play with Schleich I'm a big fan of learning through play. Unforced educational play. I'm not a teacher and I don't want to be. I want my children to naturally learn whilst they are having fun. When I was contacted recently...

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Say Eh-Oh to the new Teletubbies toys! There back!! Teletubbies made a joyous return to CBeebies last year, and this year marks the launch of the new range of toys. As you know I was sent a box just before Christmas, and today I can finally...

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Travel: Ox Pasture Hall Hotel, Scarborough Last weekend Nana and I took a rather lengthy journey north for a night away at the Ox Pasture Hall Hotel in Scarborough, with Little Dude in tow. The Ox Pasture Hall Hotel is a luxurious country hotel...

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A Place To Enjoy My Garden I love my garden. I love the fact that I have a garden, especially with the recent gorgeous weather we've been having. Whilst I have a pretty compact garden, there's a lot going on out there. Plants, fruit...

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Cuddles With Ben Cohen Some days I have a really difficult job. Days like this for example. *Ahem* That rather nice young man is former rugby player Ben Cohen. Ben is a bit of an expert when it comes to cuddles. He has...

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Guest Post: 5 Ways To Make The Most Of Your Weekend With Your Kids

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Days Out, Guest Post, Home & Lifestyle | Posted on 29-05-2013

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For many parents, the pressures of working life during the week means that the days seem to fly by without having enough time to really enjoy being with the kids. This is why it is essential to make the most of free time at the weekends and to have as much shared time as you can.

Of course, it can be tempting to get other things done that you need to do and let’s face it – there’s never enough time to strike everything off of that list. But it really is essential to make sure that the real joys of family life don’t get lost in the rush to fit everything else in.

Juggling simple things like doing the weekly shopping and trying to have a few moments to yourself can be difficult to fit into the time you have but the really important thing is to enjoy family life for all it has to offer.

So here are five ways to make the most of your weekend with your kids:

1. Make time

The best thing to do is just to make time to be together. This means you need to put other things on the back burner and actually give your full attention to spending time as a family. So turn off the smartphone, stop checking emails and enjoy the offline world.

2. Plan ahead

A little planning is a good thing and living in the UK it’s a good idea to have a back up that doesn’t rely on the weather playing ball! This is where spending time in your own home can be the best idea of all.

3. Make a mess

Kids love nothing more than making a mess, whether intentionally or accidentally! Messy play is LOTS of fun but accidents do happen. This is where having hardwearing and easily cleaned furniture such as a leather sofa comes in really handy – beautiful and practical at the same time. Just remember to relax – I got a biro stain out of my leather sofa this week using a baby wipe!

4. Try something new

You don’t always have to stick with the same old tried-and-tested methods of entertainment. Break out and try something new. You never know, you and the kids might discover a new love.

5. Have fun

Ultimately, the way to make the most of a weekend spent together is just to have fun in whatever way you can so relax, smile and let the good times roll.

This is a guest post submitted on behalf of Sainsbury’s. If you want to make the most of your weekend family time with your kids a leather sofa can be a great idea to help stop worrying about spills and stains. Check out the full range on the website.

 

Guest Post: What Does Mum REALLY Want For Christmas?

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Guest Post | Posted on 13-12-2012

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What does Mum really want for Christmas?

With the festive season being one of the busiest times of the year for parents, what does Mum really want for Christmas? Expensive jewellery? Perfume? A new car? Most mothers probably just want the big day to go without a hitch! Happy children, delicious food and the joy of everyone enjoying their presents as the family relaxes would probably be enough to satisfy mothers up and down the UK as Christmas looms juts around the corner.

Christmas is a special time for children. Jumping on the bed at 5am asking if Santa has been yet, the sheer thrill and shriek of delight as they open their presents, singing and munching on yummy food are all part of the excitement. But it takes a lot of work in the build up to Christmas.

After all the planning, putting up the Christmas decorations, budgeting and saving for presents, Christmas shopping, wrapping presents and either cooking or assisting with the cooking – it is no wonder that Mum is exhausted before even sitting down to Christmas lunch! Then once the meal is over, keeping the kids amused until they go back to school in January while trying to work can be a significant challenge.

While Christmas is a very special time for everyone, if Mum is doing a lot of the work behind the scenes to make everything perfect, maybe some great ideas are needed to make Christmas easier and less stressful, why not find out more here.

Perhaps all Mum really wants for Christmas is to be happy, to have a happy family and for a chance to relax and recuperate herself after a busy year? This is something that all the family can help with and if Mum has been the one doing a lot of the work to make the season magical, why not help to make things a little easier? Thanking her for all of her efforts is not a great deal to ask for is it?

Christmas is always more fun if everyone joins in so everyone should play their part in the festivities – help with the shopping, offer to help with food preparation, come up with gift ideas, write out some Christmas cards, put some of the decorations up and put them away carefully after Christmas – anything that helps to make the season go more smoothly!

Your Mum may have spent most of the year preparing for Christmas, so try making her Christmas just as perfect by thanking her for everything she has done!

Book Review: “A Passion For Baking” by Jo Wheatley

Posted by SussexMummy | Posted in Book Review | Posted on 06-07-2012

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I love baking. It’s something I’ve enjoyed doing since I was little and used to “help” my Mum in the kitchen. Now I’m a Mum myself finding the time to bake does prove tricky. I can’t wait until Little Man is old enough to join in, though I don’t look forward to cleaning up afterwards! When I do find the time – usually at weekends when Daddy takes over – there’s nothing I enjoy more than whipping up a cake or a batch of biscuits for my little family to enjoy, and this book is perfect for doing just that.

Available exclusively at Sainsburys for a bargain price of £7.99 “A Passion For Baking” is the debut book from the winner of The Great British Bake Off Jo Wheatley. Whenever I get a new cookbook – and yes, I own a ridiculous number – I flick through it immediately to see what stands out for me. After a few moments of flicking through the pages of “A Passion For Baking” I was salivating. Not only does this book contain loads of recipes that I actually want to make, but the photography makes me want to make them right now! Page after page of beautifully photographed food, either as a completed bake or as partial ingredients, makes this book a visual feast. My personal favourites are the photos of the Mini Mississippi Mud Pies and the Raspberry Torte. But this book contains so many recipes which I can’t wait to try out on my family.

For Fathers Day this year we had Jo’s American Pancakes with some fresh fruit. My Husband and I have been to the USA twice – once when we’d been dating a year, and again for our honeymoon – and on both occasions visited New York. Our main memory from these visits is the food – mostly the sheer size of it – but specifically the breakfasts. Nothing started the day better than a stack of pancakes, more often than not with maple syrup and some crispy bacon. Jo’s American Pancakes are JUST as delicious, and brought back amazing memories. They were light and fluffy, and super easy to make. I can see them being made again and again in our house for years to come.

Baking conjures up so many memories for me, and I look forward to making lots of new ones with my Little Man, and this book.

“A Passion For Baking” is out now, and available from Sainsburys.