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Worried Your Kids Watch Too Much TV? Try These Ideas Instead

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It is so easy to use the TV as a babysitter. We’ve all got so many household chores to do while the children are around. We cook, we clean, we do the laundry and the vacuuming. We can’t physically entertain our kids every second of every day or nothing would get done. So, to keep them in one safe spot for ten minutes, on goes the TV. We know where they are, we know they’re safe, and we know we can get a nourishing meal on the table.

However, it’s also easy to fall into the trap of having the TV on for a lot longer. I’m not a fan of all those ear-piercing sound effects that sound like the phone is ringing in the other room, or someone’s knocking on the door. But I can see how easy it is to let all that wash over you. And before you know it, an hour has passed. So what can you do to drag your kids away from the TV? There’s more than you might think.

The children in my life love their favorite TV characters with a passion. But I’ve learned that they don’t need to be watching them on TV to enjoy them. Merchandise has exploded into our lives. There are bed sets and lampshades and pencil cases and lunchboxes. You can find your favorites adorning bags, clothes, scooters, and snack packets. There are even dolls and plushes of their favorites. It can all be pretty expensive, but at least, they’re not sat in front of the TV.

There are also lots of games and puzzles featuring TV and film characters. These I can get on board with. They encourage lateral thinking and fine motor skills. And the scooter gets them active and outdoors. I can’t complain for a second with these things. And it’s all thanks to a funny little character they saw on TV. Are your kids refusing to wear their sweaters when it’s chilly? Simply pop down to the store and pick one up that has a picture of their favorite TV character on it. The sweater will probably never come off again!

If you’re looking to get your kids more active and outdoors, you might be able to find some items bearing their favorite characters too. Bicycles and scooters are very popular. You should read some reviews though to find the best quality ones. And bear in mind that you may be paying a little more for the item just because it has the characters on there.

I love that the theme parks are getting on board with the TV shows at the moment. You can find all your favorite Nickelodeon characters like Spongebob Square Pants and Dora The Explorer. Many theme parks have rides based on family movies and other TV characters too. It’s a great day out, and the kids are running around keeping active at the same time.

While you’re traveling for your day out or if you’re going on vacation, it’s handy to have some episodes of their TV show available. They can be watched on a tablet or even smartphone. But there are plenty of apps that are more engaging and interactive. They may even be educational. Best of all, they feature your child’s favorite character. Your kids think they’re playing, but they’re actually learning at the same time.

Image Source: clconroy
Image Source: clconroy

To keep your kids active and away from the TV, you could try shopping for some branded sports items. You can often find balls with characters on. Slippers bearing cartoon characters have been around for ages. But I’m now starting to spot more and more sports shoes with logos and pictures on. Cycle helmets and skateboard pads are also available in most characters!

If you can’t find something that you need with their favorite character on, you can cheat. Stickers are very easy to come by. You can usually find them online, at your newsagent, or even in the dollar stores. It’s a great activity to do with your little one too. Sticking stickers keep some of the kids I see entertained for ages. Once they’re branded their helmet or trike, they’re ready to ride. And this means they’re out of the house, in the fresh air, and getting some exercise!

I love buying gifts for the kids when it’s their birthdays. I do my best to find them something educational or activity based. But you could also keep them active on their special occasion. You can find jumping castle hire near you that may well have inflatables of a TV show or a movie. Why not have their party at a theme park? It’s a great day of fun for them, and they’ll be away from the TV!

I know the TV has its place. And I definitely appreciate how handy it is when I have to get on with a couple of chores. There is certainly a time for sitting down and cuddling your little one in front of a StoryTime TV show or their favorite cartoon. I’m definitely all for watching TV when I finally get a chance to sit down in the evening! But I also understand why so many parents are against letting their kids watch it.

We all want to spend quality time with the kids. And most of us wish we could find more ways and more time to engage with our children. It’s not easy these days. Fortunately, there are channels that specialize in educational programming. They can explain and demonstrate things in ways I just don’t have the resources to do. Plenty of kids learn a lot from the way things are presented on TV shows.

Image Source: GaborfromHungary
Image Source: GaborfromHungary

At the end of the day, if a funny little yellow character with a passion for bananas gets my kids to eat more fruit, that can’t be a bad thing, surely. And if they want to be out playing soccer with their friends all afternoon because there is a picture of a Turtle on the ball, how can that not be good? Perhaps there are more uses for that TV than we thought.

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Treat The Kids To A Week’s Vacation In Boston

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Some parents believe that city breaks and kids don’t mix, but that’s not the case. Admittedly, some cities and children don’t mix, like Las Vegas, it might have a lot to see and do, but with young kids, it’s just far too crazy. There are lots of cities that are kid-friendly, but none more so than Boston. Of all the ideal cities for a family break, this place has to be number one.

Image Source: Flickr
Image Source: Flickr

The reason Boston is so perfect for a family getaway is because the activities aimed at kids are all also adult-friendly. There are lots of things to do as a family that everyone will enjoy. There are also plenty of child-friendly restaurants that serve healthy food that’s affordable priced.

Make travel as stress-free as possible

You have lots of options when it comes to getting to Boston, depending, of course, on where you live. The main travel options are to fly, take the train or drive; flying tends to be quickest but with little ones in tow, driving can be easiest. How you choose to travel is up to you – choose the fastest, most affordable and least stressful option.

However you want to travel, pack the kids activity packs to keep them occupied. Magazines, mini toys, and tablets loaded up with their favorite movies and games can work wonders when it comes to travel. Keep them occupied, and you’ll find your journey much easier to cope with.

Be choosy about your hotel

Often, the most stressful part of traveling with kids is choosing the hotel. This is because as a parent, you need to find a hotel that’s child-friendly, and also affordable. To get an idea of all the most budget-friendly Boston hotels, check out these hotels deals. Often, if you look online, you can find some fantastic discounts for four and five-star hotels.

Aim to select a hotel that’s within walking distance of the city center. This is especially important when you have little ones as their legs get tired more quickly than ours do. Of course, you could use the city’s public transport system to get around, but this just makes the trip more expensive.

Research all the best family-friendly restaurants

Kids are fussy eaters; they like what they like, and that’s it. If you plan on eating out while you’re away, it’s a good idea to research all the best family-friendly places to eat. There’s a lot of seafood served here, so you’ll find fish dishes on almost every menu. That’s ideal if your kids love fish, but if they don’t, it’s not so ideal.

The good news is that there are plenty of places that serve pizza, pasta, burgers, and grills. So there should be lots of places with food your children like on the menu. The best child-friendly places to eat, include Chatham Squire, Sel De La Terre, and La Verdad. You’ll also find plenty of family-friendly street food, so there’s no need to stress about what your little ones will eat.

Create a plan of your daily activities

If anything, you’ll have too much choice when it comes to what to see and do each day. If your children love exploring, walking around the city could be enough to keep them occupied for a few hours, as there are so many things to see and do.

From artsy museums and unique parks, there is plenty on offer. Don’t forget to hit the Freedom Trail while you’re in the city. Faneuil Hall, Quincy Market, and Boston Common are also worth a visit.

For the perfect family city break, Boston is the ideal place.

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Get The Story Behind the Goods at UncommonGoods

Brought to you by UncommonGoods and Our Little Haven.

I guess you can tell from my title that I’m geeking out over UncommonGoods today. Before you head out to check out some of the most unusual and awesome products for gift giving or even to purchase something wonderful for yourself, I wanted to familiarize you with the story behind UncommonGoods. I love learning about the products I buy and I think it’s really neat that every product sold on UncommonGoods.com has it’s own story. Whether the goods come from an emerging designer or a seasoned artist crafting each of his pieces by hand, you’ll be able to meet the designers and learn all about each item. I’ve been taking a little tour all over their site to meet everyone and to learn more about this company and what they offer, and I’ll post the link below so you can learn more as well. I think you’ll find the information very informative and worth your while to read. And of course, anyone that helps support and protect our American Forests has my vote. I’m a tree hugger and proud to be one.

A note from my sponsor:

Studio Tours: An exclusive look inside the workspaces and minds of our uncommon jewelry artists and designers. Find the faces and inspiration behind some of our customer’s favorite gems. You can even take a step inside our own creative studio!

Let’s take a look at some of the goods starting with these stunning jewelry pieces because we all know what a Diva I am.  I like unusual and unique bling and lots of it. My favorite bracelet selection would be the “Story of the Earth Set of 7 bracelets.” They are so boho chic and so me. By reading the story behind the bracelets, I learned that they are made in Guatemala and that the designer is Lis Giròn. Isn’t that neat? I think you’ll agree that they would make a great gift for anyone on your gift-giving list or if you’d prefer a different style, there’s jewelry to fit everyone’s style and fashion taste. Do you have a favorite piece of UncommonGoods jewelry that you’d love to own or give as a gift?

Get The Story Behind the Goods at UncommonGoods

While I’m all about the bling, my oldest daughter prefers minimalist jewelry. She likes simple and clean looking jewelry like the ones seen on UncommonGoods. She’d really go wild about the Awaken Meditation Spinning Ring which is on sale right now BTW. I’m pretty sure she’d never want to take off the Pebble Stack Necklace. It’s so her, I’d swear it was made specifically for her taste. Even I’d love one of those. I think my favorite piece would be the Sea Glass Sterling Clasp Bracelet. I’m bad about losing jewelry if it doesn’t have a good clasp, but this bracelet does. Sterling and sea glass, oh my. I’d love to buy a few jewelry holders as well for my DIL and both daughters.

Get The Story Behind the Goods at UncommonGoods

While I’m all about the jewelry, I realize that not everyone likes to be adorned with beautiful jewels so you’ll be happy to know that UncommonGoods offers gifts for everyone. Him, her, home, office, furniture, jewelry, kids, fun and just about anything else you can imagine. I’ve even managed to find a couple of anniversary gifts for couples or individuals as well. My SIL would love to own a BBQ Briefcase for their anniversary coming up, and my sister would go wild over her own Personalized Wedding Bowl. I would love to own the Artisanal Bamboo Salt Chest for myself and I’m sure my mom would as well. I do a lot of cooking and baking and it would come in handy. Which anniversary gift is your favorite?

Get The Story Behind the Goods at UncommonGoods

I’ve held you up enough because there are so many products on UncommonGoods, it’s going to take awhile to see them all. Happy shopping.

P.S. Don’t forget to read the story behind the goods and meet the team as well as to discover their business focus.

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