Jack’s Dream Pet With Petplan Insurance

Jack’s Dream Pet With Petplan Insurance

 

Jack is a very imaginative little soul, always coming up with stories and drawing weird and wonderful things. When he was given the opportunity to create his very own dream pet thanks to Petplan, no matter how wacky it was, I knew it would be something he would relish doing and really delve deep into his imagination.

He sat down and thought for ages before he started to scribble away at the paper, finally coming up with his dream pet, Bob the Great Flying Snake. He has always loved snakes – he’s the first to hold them at zoo events or at his friend’s animal parties so I wasn’t surprised to see a snake featuring. The detail of the wings and colour and even his name ‘Bob’ had me chuckling – how fun does Bob look?

Jack was very excited with this task from Petplan – a company who have understood from the start that pet owners have specific needs when it comes to finding the right policy and who work with and support more animal rehoming charities than any other pet insurance providers, working with more than 1200 charities throughout the UK. They are one of the few who offer genuine lifetime policies and also offer 12 month policies that are designed to suit all needs.

What I hadn’t actually told him yet was the super exciting news that his dream pet was going to be turned into a soft toy – unique to him as he had, of course, designed it!

Whilst we don’t have any pets right now, Jack is always begging us to get something – he is desperate for a dog but knows we can’t have one in this property and is aware they need a lot of looking after. We are trying to ensure he knows what he is letting himself in for when it comes to having a pet – it is important to be a responsible pet owner. In the meantime though, a unique soft toy of his dream pet was always going to be popular and once I told him, he asked me every morning when it was going to arrive. I reminded him that it was custom made so may take some time so was pleasantly surprised at just how quick an email arrived to say it was ready!

I didn’t tell him, I picked up the parcel from the post office and picked him up from school with it in the car – he saw the parcel and got so excited and couldn’t wait to get home and open it up and see his dream pet.

Are you ready to meet Bob?

I couldn’t believe just how well Petplan had captured Bob and turned him into the soft toy that Jack has barely put down since it arrived. The colours, the details – everything is exactly as Jack drew it and how he imagined. You can imagine just how excited Jack was and Bob has been the first thing being shown to visitors whenever they come round!

It is important to keep pets healthy and owners happy so you should definitely consider Petplan Pet Insurance for peace of mind as a responsible pet owner. I have many friends and family who use them and are very happy with the service.

Creating Jack’s dream pet has been such a fun experience for him. From the beginning when he created Bob for the first time which encouraged him to sit down, design and draw and use his imagination; to the waiting for his toy to turn up and the anticipation as we waited; to the arrival and the excitement as he opened the parcel; to finally getting to hold Bob in his hands.

He has had such a fun time during this experience and is enjoying spending time with Bob – I’ve heard him playing with his sister and Bob and making up stories about where they are visiting and what troubles they get into. It is great to see that his great flying snake is helping him to use his imagination even more – it is so important to be creative and imaginative, especially as a child.

What would your dream pet be?

This post has been possible thanks to Petplan, but all thoughts are my own

Assure Safe Social Media Use By Kids With This Parental Control App

Assure Safe Social Media Use By Kids With This Parental Control App

There is no surprise that if your kid uses the social media without any supervision or direction, it could be dangerous. There are a number of issues parents might face because kids are growing up in a tech-saturated world with a variety of options available at their disposal. Almost all these gadgets help them connect with the web in no time and this is the reason parents feel reluctant to buy their young kids a smartphone. There is talk of a parental control app, to monitor their social media activities and this is why I’m writing this article to explain it better to you.

They might share too much

To expand their social circle and to have large friends lists on Facebook, many kids have given out their personal information to those they don’t know. The matter could get worse if they share their photos and physical appearance on the Web to unknowns. Another terrible trend is posting mean and embarrassing information and pictures about others, be alert because it’s likely that someone is doing this to your kid or your kid is doing the same.

With such kind of immature attempts to look cool, kids can get into real trouble like kidnapping, cyberstalking, cyberbullying, physical harassment, violence, etc. Social exposure is a must for their development but development at the cost of compromising their wellbeing is not something any of us can accept. Kids mostly use social media through their cell phone, so monitoring them with a parental control app is the handiest option.

How can you help?

With the use of smart apps it is quite simple to take responsibility for kids’ social presence and safety. Whether it’s a threat of cyberbullying or physical harm, you can protect your kid by keeping an eye on them, and how can you do it? With just a single app!

Apps like FamilyTime help a lot in monitoring. Parents who are not so familiar with the latest technology can also make use of some of these apps such as FamilyTime that offer user friendly interface and simple functionalities.

The app offers a list of valuable features that can help parents monitor their kids better and from a distance. With the app in hand, they can:

  • Check the list of installed apps
  • Track usage frequency
  • Blacklist unwanted apps
  • Allow specific time for an app usage
  • Track internet usage & web-history
  • Monitor bookmarks
  • Allocate specific hours for the device usage on a weekly or daily basis
  • Schedule auto screen locks
  • Remotely locking the phone

These are only a few features of the app that lets you monitor and control digital consumption of your kids. There are many others related to the location tracking, alerts, family communication and Speed limit for driving, etc. To try these features yourself, give FamilyTime app a free try.

All-in-one solution for kids’ digital safety

With the use of this parental control app you can check kids’ Web behavior all around the clock. I would suggest you check out the FamilyTime app because it could be even more convenient to stay in touch with an expense of just a dollar or two. Check all of their Web history and most visited sites and stop their exposure to the sites you think are harmful.

Collaborative Post

A Little Life Update | School, Health & All

I feel like it has been so long since I gave you a life update. So much has been going on recently.that I keep meaning to tell you about. So here goes…

School

Jack is finishing up in Year 1 and going into Year 2. This year his school has become amalgamated with the junior school into one joint primary school which means a lot has changed. He is going into a class with a new teacher and new teaching assistant and the teacher who used to have the year 2 class he is moving into is moving into year 3. His new teacher is also the deputy head and is a great teacher so we are very happy.

Olivia is obviously still too young to attend school and doesn’t attend a nursery or pre school yet but she has been attending a playgroup once a week for the past few weeks which she is really enjoying. If any of you know my daughter in real life, you will know she is a bit of a character and she had them all laughing today during the singing part of the group. She cannot wait to go back when it starts again in September and I can’t either; it is a really great place for her to go. Jack attends a Friday night club at the same place and it has done wonders for him.

 

Health

Overall we are all doing quite well. Jack’s eczema seems to have all but disappeared and Steve doesn’t seem to be having as much trouble with his eczema/dermatitis, thanks to the scalp eczema treatment he’s been using. Unfortunately, we have been noticing patches of red dry skin on Olivia – we’ve been keeping an eye on it and are hoping it is just a little bit of chafing from the heat (it’s right where her nappy would rub her legs) but if it continues, we will be taking her to the doctor.

Everything Else

On a whole, we’ve been pretty good. We’ve been paying off some debts, Steve has been helping my brother out at work and has just been offered an interview for next Thursday. I’ve got some new clients for VA work and am enjoying working with existing clients and I’ve also developed some new freelance contacts to for my writing work. All in all, life is pretty good right now.

I’m looking forward to the summer and seeing what it brings. What is going on in your life?

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Why is outdoor play in decline?

If you reflect on your own childhood, you will likely have fond memories of riding bikes, climbing trees and playing outdoors with friends. Traditionally, outdoor play is a staple part and often a highlight of every child’s upbringing — but is it in decline?

According to a report by The Guardian, three-quarters of children in the UK receive less than 60 minutes of outdoor play each day. That’s less than prisoners, as UN guidelines are in place to ensure they get a minimum of one hour’s open air activity per day. Alarmingly, one fifth of children do not play outside at all.

So what is triggering this shift in childhood activity? Infinite Playgrounds, specialists in the design and installation of wooden playgrounds reviews the decline in outdoor play before discussing why this type of play is so important to your child’s development.

Playtime cancelled: the causes

As part of a survey by Persil, which polled 12,000 parents globally, 64% of parents said they believe that they had greater opportunities to play outdoors than what their children have now. So what is causing the generational differences in attitudes to outdoor play? There are a number of key causes that can be held responsible.

Screen time

Of course, technology is a hugely influencing factor when it comes to the decline of outdoor play. As tablets and mobile devices have grown in popularity, the number of children accessing the devices has grown. In 2016, the average age for a child getting their first mobile phone was seven. At eight, they get their first tablet and by ten they own a smartphone.

One survey found that 37% of children spend one to two hours a day using their gadgets, while a further 28% spent between two and three hours — significantly higher than the time spent playing outdoors. Clearly, our children’s love affair with gadgets is replacing outdoor play.

Supervision time

The survey’s findings also show that 50% of parents have little to no time to supervise their child outdoors. This lack of time could mean that children aren’t able to play outside. The results of another survey by Families Online show that parents will allow children to play unsupervised outdoors when they reach 10.5 years old.

Given the growing number of threats in our society, it’s natural for parents to have concerns. However, these concerns teamed with our parents’ own time constraints are restricting the type of activities our children enjoy, which will ultimately hamper their development.

Academic pressures

Recent research has revealed that children as young as those in primary school, are showing signs of stress and anxiety around exam time. This suggests that children are feeling pressurised to do well in their exams from a young age. There is a combination of reasons why this is the case; it is believed that many teachers are feeling pressured for their students to perform to qualify for school funding, and some parents are more eager for their children to obtain high grades than they have been in previous years.

This extra pressure from exams could be another contributing factor to children’s reluctance to play outdoors as they are choosing to stay home and study instead.

How can we encourage outdoor play?

Of course, parents have every right to be cautious when they’re little ones ask to play outdoors, but preventing youngsters from leaving the house is not the way forward either. There are actions that you can take as a parent to encourage outdoor play.

First, make sure that your child is aware of stranger danger and knows how to react should they be approached by a dangerous person. Knowing that your child is aware of this can give you comfort in allowing your little one to play outdoors.

Encourage unstructured time in your children’s day. When children are young, often parents fill up their child’s time with extra-curricular activities such as sports or clubs. This is still important, however, ensure that these activities aren’t dominating your child’s life. Paired with homework, your child’s day can fill up pretty quickly and it’s important that they have some time on their hands spare. In this time, encourage them to be imaginative with play and try not to let your children rely on technology for entertainment.

With younger children, take a step back when you are playing with them. Try and let them take the lead in coming up with games and activities. This will encourage imaginative play that hopefully they will practice in the future too. Introduce toys that encourage creativity too, perhaps ones that are less technology oriented.  

Collaboration

Sleeping Through The Night

It is funny that I should be publishing this post after last night – Olivia has an awful cough and kept waking up before deciding to throw up over me at 5am – but up until last night, she was actually sleeping through the night, yay!

It has taken a while to get there and I feel like I have been living on autopilot for months since she was born. Of course, I didn’t expect her to sleep through the night straight away and I knew that all babies are different – especially as Jack was combination fed from about 3 days old whereas (apart from one week when she was tiny), Olivia was exclusively breastfed. I knew that their sleep patterns would be different. I just didn’t realise how long it would take Olivia to finally settle into a routine and actually sleep pretty much through the night. Talya actually has some great tips on how to get your baby to sleep – I wish I’d seen her post many months ago!

Happily this means I myself am actually starting to get a decent nights sleep. As Steve has been helping my brother out recently working nights, we’ve all been going to bed at around 7.30pm-8pm so Steve can have a little nap whilst the kids can fall asleep. I either work for a little bit longer or take some downtime, reading a book or catching up with something on TV.

Me getting a better nights sleep has seen me be more productive, more refreshed and more energetic in my day to day life. I’m getting more work done as I am not as tired and I’m also able to make more food from scratch, meals that take longer or things such as these chicken marinades ready for the freezer.

However I have found that I am now starting to rely on my alarm a lot more in the mornings as I have been in such a deep sleep, it is hard to wake up! I’m not alone – a recent study by Happy Beds found that more than half of people that use an alarm hit the snooze button in the morning. I probably hit it two or three times – I actually set four alarms for the morning, the fourth being the one I absolutely must get up for!

After almost 18 months of barely any sleep of a night, it is so nice to be able to fall asleep without a problem and actually stay asleep – not have to worry about being woken up by a clingy 17 month old or 6 year old. Whilst it has taken Olivia a lot longer than Jack to finally start sleeping through the night, I am so grateful that she has and I can finally get back to being human again rather than feeling like an extra from The Walking Dead!

How long did it take your little ones to sleep through the night?

*Post includes a collaborative link