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Showing all posts tagged: parenting

As the 31st October comes round again, the shops are filled with multi-packs of sweets and chocolate, fancy dress outfits for all ages and enough decoration ideas to turn your entire house into a haunted mansion.

Children and adults alike love the chance to dress up as a frightening alter ego. Whether you're going trick or treating with the kids or having an night in with your friends watching horror movies, one thing is almost certain – sweets and treats will be involved.

A lot of parents are worried about how many sweets their child will consume around the Halloween period – they are literally handed to them on a plate, especially if you let the kids go trick or treating. There are other safety issues too – a lot of parents don't like the idea of letting their child wander the streets in the dark.

We've come up with a few tips to make sure your little ones stay safe and healthy this Halloween...

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Published: 28/08/2015

Healthy Cooking For The Whole Family

You probably had a few weeks during the summer where you hit the gym and ate more salad in preparation for your holidays, but being healthy, happy and confident doesn't have to be a seasonal thing.

Making small, easy changes to your diet can result in a huge difference, not only on the scales but in your confidence. And getting the whole family on board will teach your children how to make healthy choices in a fun and informative way.

When you're on the go constantly, and with a family of fussy eaters to please, it can be difficult to make meals from scratch. So we've put together a few tips that will get your family eating and enjoying healthier foods...


1) Choose What To Eat Together

If you get your children involved in planning meals, they will be more interested in the food that they will be eating. They also have the opportunity to raise any issues they have with ingredients before it is placed in front of them at the dinner table and is too late.

If their meal idea is chosen, you can use this as a great way to get them on board with the meal preparation and washing up!

Teaching children to cook from a young age is a fantastic life skill, so teach them about where their food comes from and how to prepare different parts of a meal.


2) Do The Weekly Shop Together

For kids, the weekly shop can actually be quite exciting! They will love helping you grab everything you need and choosing food they will look forward to eating throughout the week.

When you've made a list of the meals you're going to prepare, break it down into a list of all the ingredients that you're going to need.

Try to vary the menu for the week, but don't be afraid to have something twice to keep the cost down.

Two pasta meals in one week is fine if you make it with different ingredients, and larger joints of meat can be cut up and frozen in portions, or cooked and saved to use for salads and snacks.


3) Stock Up On Healthy Snacks

Have a fruit bowl full of apples, bananas, grapes and strawberries on the side, and prepare bowls of cucumber, carrot and celery sticks so everyone can grab a handful from the fridge when they're peckish and on the go.

You and your kids will then be much less tempted to reach for bags of crisps and chocolate bars, especially if you don't fill the cupboards with them and healthy options are your only choice.

Don't restrict children from snacking, but let them know that if they choose fruit, they can have as much as they like, whereas if they have crisps, they can only have the one bag and no other snacks for the rest of the day. This will help them make healthier choices.


4) Experiment With Meals

Make meals that you've also not tried before so you can share the new flavours for the first time alongside your children. Knowing that you've not eaten it before either will encourage your child to try new things.

Create meals from scratch using ingredients that you know you all already like, and let your children see exactly what is going in. That way, they will know that everything on their plate is food that they enjoy, just in a different form.


5) Create Healthier Versions Of Your Favourite Foods

If you and your kids love chips, there are ways to create a healthier version. A Tefal Actifry is a revolutionary way of frying chips using just one spoonful of oil per 1kg of potatoes. The appliance was designed to decrease the amount of fat needed to cook chips and other dishes without compromising on the taste – and people say they taste even better without the greasy oil!

With standard deep fat fryers, the oil and burnt bits of food can cause unpleasant smells that seem to stick to every surface and fabric in the house. In an Actifry, the fat and oil smells are reduced and the oil is only used once.

Having a versatile appliance such as an Actifry in your kitchen is extremely handy as it can also be used to cook casseroles, curries, meat, fish, stir fry, risotto and vegetables. There are even ways of making desserts in them.

Another family favourite is pizza. Making your own from scratch is much healthier and a great way to get children in the kitchen and excited about food. Cut up vegetables such as peppers, tomatoes and mushrooms and let them decorate their own bases in the vibrant colours. It's a great way to get them eating vegetables which they probably wouldn't touch in other foods.

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The sun is out and it finally feels like it's Summer. REAL summer. Not the usual 'sunny for five minutes before it rains again' British summer either.

In true British form, we complain when it's cold, we complain when it's warm, and you don't want to be around if a wasp flies in our direction. But like snuggling up indoors with a fire and blanket to keep warm during the winter, we have a variety of games and toys what can help you keep cool and have fun during the summer.

It's time to think about what you can do to keep the kids amused during the school holidays. Six weeks is a long time and you can't go on road trips every single day.

We've put together a few pieces that will give your kids (young and old!) some entertainment:

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Are you an expectant mother, perhaps mum to a new baby or are you an experienced mum with a brood clinging to your hip?

We want to celebrate all of you gorgeous mothers! We have put together a collection of items that we think both mother and baby need for their time together.

We have created a list of 12 essential items for mother and baby.

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