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Mamma Musings

Mamma Musings

Resources for home school parents and teachers

As a lecturer and parent there are some questions I get asked quite a lot and most relate to the same topics, for example I do extra work at home with my kids aside from school, did I myself do a lot of additional work outside school to get to where I am today and also are we a screen free house?!

While watching the snow outside, the fire is on and temps are in the minus figures, I decided to write this post to answer some of those questions are serve as a useful guide for parents who may wish to have some rainy day activities or even some screen free activities. In addition for teachers, there will be some great tips here for resources to aid you in the classroom also.

First up the easy question – screen time. Yes we do allow screen time but it is limited and closely monitored. I does have lots of educational apps and shows so there are certainly some benefits. As the old adage says “everything in moderation”

Turning to the issue of additional work…. for me personally yes my parents did actively teach us outside of school using resources they either purchased or passed between families doing similar in our locality. In the 80’s it wasn’t quite as easy to log on and download resources, themed or topical worksheets.  I guess the answer to the next question wont be a surprise, yes we do additional targeted work with our kids, but critically we make it fun. For example, when we went to Tromso, Norway – we spent time teaching the kids all about the culture of the area, the language and of course the Northern Lights.

Resources we love

Reading is big in our house and the kids love a trip to the library to select books, we aim for some fiction and some topical factual books, for example at the moment we are reading about countries in the World Cup and about the host country.

In order to keep the kids engaged and it being fun we also utilise a online an online subscription-  Teacher Club Card known as Creative Fabrica. This is really wonderful and you will never get bored of the vast range of fonts, AI art and downloads. In summary for as little as $2.99 a year (yes you actually read that correctly) you can access more than  10 thousand digital teaching resources.  You can also cancel at anytime with that particular subscription you  can download 5  digital downloads a week, that’s a huge 260 digital downloads a year.

A huge positive for me as an educator is that Creative Fabrica truly supports teachers – 100% of teaching subscriptions fees are paid to teachers. It really is worth a look and a trial whether you are a teacher, a home-school parent or even a parent looking for some additional activities to keep your kids entertained on a rainy day or screen free day.


Creative Fabrica Website

Pic Credit: Creative Fabrica


You can thank me later 🙂 Do let me know in the comments below if you have tried it and let me know what you think.

Note: This is a collaborative post 







Mamma Musings

Tips For Going Back To Work After Having Children

working mum

Pic Credit: Pexels

Tips For Going Back To Work After Having Children

If you have just been on maternity leave, it can be a real struggle heading back into work. You are likely in two minds, with part of you being pleased to get back into doing what you used to do and having adult company, while the other half of you is wondering just how you will cope without your baby by your side all day. It’s important to remember that both of these feelings are completely normal for every parent that is heading back to their job after having children. To help you ease back into it, we have put together some top tips for going back to work after having children.

See if there is any additional training you can do to brush up when you go back 

When you have been out of work for a while you can find that you feel a little rusty. This is why it could be a good idea to see if there is any training you can enrol yourself in to brush up on everything. There are many types of training out there including virtual and on-premises, Speak to your employer and see what they can recommend for you.

Get into a routine at least a week before you go back to work 

When you are staying at home all the time it can be easy to not have much of a morning routine. Once you are heading out to work, it is important that you get a routine in place to help you all settle in. Make sure you try and wake up at the same time that you will need to be up for work and have a trial doing the morning run such as breakfast and getting dressed. If you will be dropping your little one off at nursery or to a relative to look after them, practice how long this will take you and when you will need to be there in order to be on time for work.

Capsule wardrobe 

This may sound like I am stating the obvious but getting a capsule wardrobe in place before you start will reap rewards. You don’t want to be stressing every morning about what to wear. For me it consists of well cut trousers, a mix of shirts and satin type blouses and critically good footwear, you cant go wrong with sock boots or knee high boots they are both classic and timeless and ideal for any time of the year. In addition I keep my jewellery minimal so that it goes with pretty much any outfit. This for me helps take the stress out of morning when im trying to get myself and baby out the door.

Be gentle with yourself

The first few days and even weeks are always going to feel strange, so try not to be too hard on yourself. Give yourself time to get used to the new routine and way you structure your days and if you find it stressful try to remember this is normal. Focus on making the most of the time you are with your family and give yourself some down time when you can relax too – it’s going to be tough getting back into work especially at first! I am a few months post the return now and trust me it does get easier, but you do need to make sure you take care of yourself too.

These are just a few top tips for going back to work after having children. It is always going to be a big step, but soon you will find you get into the swing of things and juggling life just as you used to. Have you recently headed back to work after maternity leave? How did you find it? Do you have any tips for Mums?

Note: This is a collaborative post

Mamma Musings

Easier Ways To Move Home

couple moving house

Pic Credit: Pexels

From time to time, it is necessary to move home, and when that time arrives, you’ve got to make sure that you are aware of the best possible way to do that. This is not always obvious, and you might find that it requires a lot of work and patience, but on the whole it’s important to make sure that you are doing it right. In this post, we are going to discuss some of the ways you can make moving home a lot easier. You should find that all of the following are really helpful for that, so they are worth considering.

Hire The Right Vehicle

What vehicle you use for moving your items is really important. For one thing, you need to of course make sure that there is enough space in the vehicle for your belongings, as otherwise it won’t be much use. But you shouldn’t have too much space either, because that can be unwieldy to drive and operate. On the whole, you should also aim for a vehicle that has easy access for loading and unloading, so it might be worth looking to for an example of that kind of vehicle.

Pic Credit: Pexels

Early on in the process, long before you have moved home, you should spend some time decluttering the home as much as you possibly can. The more items you get rid of, the better, because it will just make it so much easier to do everything right on moving day. It can be hard to get rid of certain items, of course, but it is nonetheless something that is absolutely worth doing if you want to ensure that you are moving home in the best way possible. So try to be strict with yourself, and you should find that it helps.

Get Professional Help

As we all know, there are also lots of professional movers out there that you can make use of, and you might want to consider getting in touch with some of them if you are keen for the moving day to be as straightforward as you would hope. With the right professional help on your side, the day will be a lot easier and go a lot smoother, and all for a usually quite low cost. So that is definitely something that you are going to want to think about if you are keen on making this experience a lot easier.

Time It Right

Finally, make sure that you are choosing an appropriate time for your home move. There is a lot to be said for getting this right, because it makes a huge difference to the experience of moving home on the whole. You need to make sure that you are not busy at work, for instance, and that you generally have the mental room to be able to move home when you need to. So think ahead on this, and it should make a huge difference to how you move home and how well it goes.

Note: This is a collaborative post

Mamma Musings

Looking To Tie the Knot at Sea? Here’s What You Need to Know!

boat wedding

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Weddings at sea can be the ultimate romantic experience. The lapping waves, the unsurpassed views, and the San Diego skyline all combine to provide the perfect setting. A beautiful bride, a handsome groom and you are on your way to a romantic dream come true.

If you are planning a wedding, consider the latest trend of merging the wedding ceremony with a trip at sea. Basing your day out of beautiful San Diego, your wedding will be an occasion no one will ever forget.

1. A Perfect Theme

Tieing the knot at sea gives you the perfect nautical theme. Whether you choose something lighthearted and fun, or want your scheme to be more refined and elegant, a wedding at sea makes planning your colors and decor easy.

2. An Intimate Guest List

Choosing a wedding at sea means your guest list is necessarily intimate. You will be able to give the people closest to you a luxurious, intimate experience they will never forget.

3. Surprisingly Affordable

A wedding at sea can be surprisingly affordable. All-inclusive boat wedding packages can allow you to stay within your budget and still have a dreamy day.

4. Magnificent Setting

Celebrate your love with views of both a beautiful horizon and a dramatic San Diego skyline. No restaurant or wedding hall can compete with that.

5. Share an Adventure

Pic Credit: Pixabay

A boating trip is an exciting adventure; an outing at sea with your guests allows you to share the magic of an already joyful celebration.

6. Easier Planning

Whether a  yacht charter San Diego or an all-inclusive boat wedding, planning is easier at sea. Photography, music, food and dining arrangements are easy to make with the help of Next Level Sailing.

7. Natural Beauty

Whether your wedding is scheduled for daylight hours or at night, nature provides an extraordinary backdrop. You and your guests can enjoy the natural beauty that the water provides no matter what time of day.

8. A Unique Ceremony

Getting married aboard a ship is out of the ordinary. Your event will be dramatic and exciting, and unlike any other wedding your guests have ever been to. Booking the best dinner cruise San Diego has to offer will create the opportunity to plan an unforgettable event.

9. Amazing Photographs

Your romantic wedding in the middle of unsurpassed natural beauty will give you amazing photographs to cherish for the rest of your life. With the ocean and sky for a backdrop and the stunning San Diego skyline in the distance, your photographs will be stunning.

10. A Great Party

Without concerns about traveling between ceremony, photography and reception sites, your wedding can offer you and your guests a great party. When your wedding is at sea your ceremony slips seamlessly into a celebration. Guests will have nothing to worry about besides having a wonderful time celebrating your big day.

There are many great reasons to consider having a wedding at sea. Experienced professionals at Next Level Sailing can help you create the romantic wedding of your dreams.

Note: This is a collaborative post

Mamma Musings

Ways To Teach Kids About Money – And Why It Matters

Pic Credit: Pixabay

One of the best ways to teach kids about money, it’s value and relevance in everyday life, is to include them in daily money activities, starting as early as possible.

Children often have a hard time understanding money, including the concept of earning it and paying for things. Our modern, cashless society makes money even more abstract. 

Make it Fun

Playing games with or about money makes learning lots of fun, and few kids dislike games. You could go for familiar board games such as Monopoly or introduce them to online games with money as the theme.

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Mamma Musings

How to Keep Your Kids Busy During the Holidays

One of the biggest challenges parents face during the holidays is keeping their kids entertained. It can be tough to come up with new ideas, especially if your children are already bored of the usual holiday activities. This blog post will discuss several ways to keep your kids busy and entertained during the holiday season!

How to Keep Your Kids Busy During the Holidays

Create an obstacle course

This is an excellent activity for kids of all ages. You can use household items to create an indoor or outdoor course. If you have younger children, make the obstacles easier. For older children, you can make the course more challenging.

children having fun in the snow

Pic Credit: Pexels

First, you will need to gather some materials. You can use anything you have around the house, such as chairs, tables, blankets, pillows, and so on. Once you have gathered all of your materials, it’s time to start creating your course! Here are a few ideas to get you started:

  • Use furniture to create a maze that your child has to navigate through
  • Set up a series of challenges that must be completed in order, such as jumping over a pillow or crawling under a table
  • Time your child as they complete the course and see if they can beat their previous time
  • Make the course more difficult each time they complete it

This activity is sure to keep your kids entertained for hours!

Plan a family adventure

The holidays are the perfect time to plan a family adventure. This could be anything from camping in the backyard to visiting a new city. Talk to your kids about what they would like to do and make a list of activities that everyone can enjoy. If you’re stuck for ideas, there are plenty of websites that offer adventure holidays for families.

If you have older kids, they might enjoy planning the trip themselves. This is a great way to teach them responsibility and give them a sense of ownership over the holiday. Plus, it’ll free up some time for you to relax! Once you’ve decided on your destination, start booking accommodation and tickets. Make sure to leave plenty of time for spontaneity – after all, part of the fun of an adventure is not knowing what’s going to happen next!

Get creative with arts and crafts

Arts and crafts are a great way to keep kids entertained, especially on rainy days. There are endless possibilities when it comes to art projects, so you can let your kids’ imaginations run wild! If you’re stuck for ideas, there are plenty of resources available online. You can also take a trip to your local craft store for inspiration. Some simple ideas that your kids will love include:

  • Painting rocks or leaves
  • Making paper aeroplanes
  • Creating collages from old magazines
  • Drawing pictures of their favourite holiday memories

Crafting is also a great opportunity for quality family time. Sit down with your kids and make some holiday decorations for the home. You can even frame their artwork and hang it up as a permanent reminder of this special time.

In conclusion, there are many ways to keep your kids busy during the holidays. By getting creative, you can ensure that everyone has a fun and memorable time.

Note: This is a collaborative post

Mamma Musings

Is it safe to breastfeed when you have silicone breast implants

breast feeding mother

Pic Credit: Pixabay

With cosmetic surgery procedures becoming more popular, and more easily attainable for the average woman, the question about breastfeeding has emerged. Breast augmentation procedures are particularly popular amongst new mum’s. It’s a great way to turn back the clock and regain that pre-pregnancy size and fullness.  But what about those women who have already had breast implants, and now face the choice between breast and bottle?  It’s natural that these women might anticipate some complications or difficulties due to the surgery.  But what is the truth when it comes to breast feeding with silicone implants

Breast feeding alone can be a contentious issue amongst mum’s. Deciding what suits your lifestyle and what is best for you and your baby are choices that only you can make.  Mum shaming and internet trolling aside, you will get advice and tips that you never asked for, and are of little use.  Everyone, it seems, is an expert and they all want to give you their opinion, regardless of whether you want to hear it or not. Add breast implants to the mix and you could well send some of these ‘experts’ into a seismic spin. Keep in mind that the decision is yours to make.  Choosing to breastfeed is just that – a choice. Only you should decide what is best for you.  You are the expert in this case, and you know what suits your lifestyle better than anyone else. 

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Mamma Musings

The Benefits of Holiday Camps for Children

There are many reasons why parents choose to send their children to holiday camp during school breaks. Of course, there’s the obvious advantages that it provides a childcare option for those who have to work throughout the holidays, but there are also various benefits specifically for children. I have teamed up with a children’s’ holiday camp in Kensington to explore further. 

Holiday Camps Promote Physical Activity

kids playing football

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Children are spending far too much time glued to digital devices nowadays, and holiday camp is a great way to encourage them to put their tech down and get moving. Lounging around, spending hours in front of the TV, is not a healthy way to spend their break, whereas holiday camp will offer various activities to improve fitness.

Children Develop a Range of Skills

When children attend a holiday camp, they are given an opportunity to develop various skills. For instance, socialising with other children who they otherwise might not have met is great for their communication skills. They will also be given the chance to practise problem solving and decision making, which will help them with their independence. 

Holiday Camps Improve Academic Performance

At holiday camp, children are able to participate in learning activities outside of a classroom environment. This untraditional way of learning is often more engaging, meaning children are more likely to pay attention and remember what they have learnt. As a result, when they do go back to school, they will have a wider general knowledge and additional skills that will help them perform well.

Children Are Given a Confidence Boost

By developing various skills and building strong relationships with new people, holiday camps allow children to feel more confident in themselves and their abilities. As a result, they are more likely to try new things and take risks, as well as approach challenges with an optimistic outlook. 

Note: This is a collaborative post

Mamma Musings

The Benefits of School Uniform for Children

Pic Credit: Pixabay

Lots of kids aren’t particularly fond of school uniform, but they actually provide many benefits that you may not have even considered. They create a sense of identity for the school, by demonstrating that each student is part of a community as such, which helps them feel like they belong somewhere. As a result, students can feel a sense of pride. 

Parents may begrudge having to spend a lot of money on school uniform at the start of term, but it actually works out much cheaper than having to fill your child’s wardrobe with different outfits for each day, especially if they want to keep up with the latest trends and designer fashion. School uniform shops often have payment systems in place to help spread the cost over a few months so that it doesn’t seem as dear. I have two boys so have been lucky I can hand them down to the younger sibling and our local parents group take donations if you wish to pass on or swap uniform jumpers etc. 

Tip: Sew name tags into your child’s uniform so that if anything is misplaced, your child has more of a chance of getting it back.

Tip: Purchase the uniform in a slightly bigger size so that your child has room to grow.

School uniforms also makes it easier for teachers to ensure all students are dressed in a smart manner so that they represent the school with pride. For my boys school the uniform is prescriptive from the crested jumper and tie right down to the colour of the school socks. While my pair often moan that they would love to be able to wear their own clothes (ie football jersey!) I am fully supportive of the uniform. It helps the parents an the teachers in my view.  For example even for the teacher when out and about with their class on field trips, if each child was wearing something different, it would be much harder to monitor what they were all wearing and enforce rules about what’s acceptable. Wearing a uniform at school will also help prepare your child for the future when they may have to wear a uniform for work. 

One of the most important benefits of school uniform is that it reduces bullying and peer pressure amongst students. If children had to wear their own clothes to school, they might feel anxious that they’re not “cool” enough or worry what their friends are going to say. My boys football team have also introduced a “uniform” as the regular Saturday morning training had descended into a battle of the Premier League teams.   It makes it a lot more cohesive and gives the sense of “one team”.  A child cannot be judged or harassed about what they’re wearing if they are all wearing the same thing. 

Note: This is a collaborative post
Mamma Musings

Is Your Garden Prepped For The Winter?


Pic Credit: Unsplash

With the arrival of the colder weather, trees’ leaves have already begun to fall from their branches, potted plants have begun to die, and it has become simply too chilly to spend any amount of time in your garden. It’s understandable, though, that you want to preserve your garden for the winter season in order to keep it looking presentable and to reduce the amount of work you have to do when it comes to making your garden look beautiful again come springtime. Get ready for the cold weather by reading these tips.

Mow the lawn and trim the hedges

Lawns and hedges don’t grow nearly as much in the winter as they do in the summer because of the extreme cold. Before the onset of exceptionally cold weather, take advantage of the opportunity to trim your grass and cut your hedges one last time to ensure that your garden remains nice and tidy throughout the winter season. Trimming your hedges back significantly will give you more than enough time before they need to be done again in the spring. Using treatments such as evergreen to treat your lawn can help to keep it in the best condition possible.

Out with the old, in with the new

Plants and trees may have died due to the cold weather, and now is the time to remove them so your garden doesn’t appear untidy in the winter. You should also prepare ahead if you plan to conduct any landscaping work in your yard next year, such as updating your garden furniture or purchasing a new shed, so that you can have a bin hire ready when springtime rolls around. Get rid of the old so you can make room for the new when springtime hits!

Plant evergreen trees

Your garden may look a little sparse in the winter after you remove all of the dead plants, but if you’re entertaining guests, you’ll want to make it look its best. Plant some evergreen plants in your garden to keep it looking good even if the leaves start to fall on other shrubbery.

Accessorise your winter garden

Certain people simply enjoy being outside regardless of the weather, and if you’re one of those people who enjoys being outside in the fresh air, it might be a good idea to invest in some of the following winter accessories to make spending time in your yard that little bit more enjoyable:

  • A clay fire burner for an open fire where everyone can snuggle up and enjoy the conversation.
  • If you don’t want to use a clay fire, consider a patio heater.
  • A gazebo providing weather protection, particularly against the wind and rain.
  • Outdoor fairy lights to add a festive touch.

A small amount of work now will ensure that your garden is ready for winter and will spare you from a lot of work in the spring.

Note: This is a collaborative post