Currently many children have been taught at home for the last 12 weeks so the thought of having the usual summer holidays start in a few weeks might seem a bit daunting. A lot of the activities we usually would do with our children during the summer may even still be under restrictions as we move into the summer months, so we’ve put our heads together to think of suggestions to keep our little ones occupied, no matter what age they are or what the weather is like.

1. We’re not a camping sort of family (I do like a comfy bed!) but we recently bought two small popup tents for the garden. We had a boys tent and a girls tent, and although it was a little chilly once it was dark, it was great fun. The boys used camp beds and sleeping bags in their tent, while our daughter and I used mattresses from their old toddler beds and our double duvet in ours. It wasn’t your traditional camping experience, but having croissants for breakfast outside made it as close as we needed.

2. We used the tents as little reading booths out of the sun for the next few days before putting them away. The children then realised they liked having a shelter in the garden, so with a few carefully positioned garden chairs, we used blankets to make a den. It looked quite Moroccan with an open side and a broom holding the door up, but they loved playing out there! It took a while to collect the building materials and a while longer to do the actual building, so all in all, it kept them busy for most of an afternoon! Obviously if the weather isn’t quite so lovely, using blankets and indoor chairs, even sofa cushions, can make an exciting fort den.

3. Embrace those Hama Beads! These classic little beads are great fun for little hands and big imaginations. Once the children have made their designs on the peg board, you carefully iron them to stick the beads together and once they are cool, you can use them to make fridge magnets, keyrings or other little plaques. We have quite a few coasters, and we have enjoyed making little hearts for friends during the lockdown. Making little gifts for friends and neighbours has helped the children remember that we all need support at this time.

This pandemic has changed so many aspects of our life, but one thing is certain, working as a team and enjoying our time together can keep us all happy. Regularly washing our hands and observing the various restrictive measures such as social distancing can help keep us safe.

We have more ideas for keeping both young and old entertained, so look out for our next blog post. Don’t forget to send us any of your suggestions or plans for the summer!

From BBQs to Roadside Picnics, we do love to eat outside, in fact, the best part of summer is being able to eat outside without freezing. Now our children are getting a little older, we’re getting a bit wiser when it comes to planning picnics, with the obvious benefit of them being able to help!

With that in mind, we have collated our favourite tips and tricks when preparing for your next picnic – having tested them all out thoroughly so far this summer!

1. Simple is best

You’ve heard it all before but keeping a picnic simple really is the best option. I have even been known to put everything in the hamper, and then play ‘Construct Your Own’ when we arrive at the designated picnic spot, picking up fresh bread on the way. Using an ice block (or even refrigerated small fruit juices) keeps sandwich fillings cool and salad crisp.

We recently had an even simpler picnic: we went for a bike ride, after reaching our destination we bought some food and sat on a village green to eat it, before cycling home.

2. Its all in the planning

While we have just said its best to keep it simple, a little bit of planning goes a long way.

– Keeping fruit juice cartons in the fridge save having to add extra ice blocks to the hamper. 
– Baking snackable (yet non melting) puddings, such as fairy cakes or flapjack, means marginally less mess when eating. 
– Prepare a little more for dinner today to use pop in the fridge and use on the picnic tomorrow.
– Keep small sachets of sugar, oil, salt and pepper so your drinks and salads are to your liking. 
– And of course, keep your picnic blanket and thermos near or even in your hamper so you don’t have to search for it every time!

All this can be done beforehand so you can be Picnic Ready in no time!

3. Everywhere is suitable

Finding the ideal picnic spot is great if you know the area well. It can be harder once you’ve been walking for a little while and everyone is getting hungry. There are very few places that can’t be used for a picnic, however.

We sometimes play ‘Left, Right, Straight On’, where, as we get near a junction, the children must decide which way to go. We’ve discovered plenty of new picnic places this way. Don’t forget emergency clothes for riverside picnics and that our Bright Bots Training Pants do give you a few more moments when looking for a toilet!

Of course, sometimes its just not picnic weather. In that case, we spread out the blankets on the lounge floor and have an indoor picnic instead! We find a outdoor soundtrack and pretend we’re by a campfire, in a rainforest even or by the beach!

4. Think outside the box

I do love a well-structured picnic, but sometimes, a little bit of silliness is in order. Backwards Lunch is always a favourite, where we eat puddings first, then move on to savoury. Amazingly, they still eat everything!

Completely spontaneous picnics are also always fun, so I try to keep nuts and sweets in the car in case we want to stop, as well as a small kite to play with.

Relaxing picnics are also very enjoyable, and especially during the holidays, we try to read as many books as possible. A nice outdoor meal (even in the garden) followed by a few pages (or chapters for the older ones) sets you nicely for a run around afterwards!

5. Everybody join in!

Getting everyone involved makes getting picnic ready much quicker. The children collect the hamper and blanket, while the adults gather together food and drink. We all then pack any books, balls or toys (the frisbee lives in the hamper to save time!) – and we’re ready!

Working together before the picnic means we all enjoy the time together while we’re picnicking.

Do you have any tips, tricks or ideas for summer picnicking with young children? Let us know – we’ll be very happy to try them out!

Is it time to move on?

There are so many benefits to using cloth nappies with your baby: the reduced waste, the reduced cost, the gentleness on your babys skin and of course, the cuteness of a big fluffy bottom! At some point, though, you must move on from nappies and start toilet training with your child.

If the time is right, there are a several signs that your toddler is ready to start using the toilet or potty. If you already use cloth nappies, these will already be helping them become more aware the cause/effect of needing to go to the toilet.

How will I know?

Here are 8 indications that your child is ready to start potty training. If your child can do 3 of the following, it might be time to give potty training a go.

1. Your child can stay dry for at least two hours at a time or is dry after a daytime nap.
2. Your child tells you that wearing a wet nappy is uncomfortable, and that they need/want changing.
3. Your child asks if they can use the potty or the toilet.
4. You generally know when your child is likely to have a poo.
5. Your child asks to wear training pants or normal pants.
6. Your child can understand and follow simple instructions, like ‘bring me the wipes, please’.
7. Your child can use words to let you know they need a wee or a poo.
8. Your child can put on some of their clothes on without help (e.g. shorts or pull on skirt).

Obviously, there is no set time for starting or even completing the transition from nappy to pants, and it really isn’t something you can force. My son got the hang of it almost instantly and was dry just after his 2nd birthday, my daughter took considerably longer and still had the occasional leak age 4!

The main message is: If you start toilet training but it doesn’t go well, don’t panic. Leave it a while and try again. Just like walking, they will get the hang of it eventually!

Does it have to be stressful?

In a nutshell, no it doesn’t. Bear in mind that up to this point, your little one hasn’t had to think about when or where they go to the toilet. They now must concentrate and realise that the sensation they are feeling requires action.

Every minute counts on the run to the toilet (I once had to run across an airport when our first son said he needed the toilet before checking in!) so regularly checking with your child can help them become aware of when they start to need the toilet.

Bright Bots Training Pants incorporate a PUL layer to help protect from little accidents. Bright Bots are not designed for multiple accidents, they don’t absorb urine or keep the skin dry as nappies do, but the PUL layer will stop small leaks, avoiding a complete outfit change every time.

Contrary to disposable training pants, these Bright Bots training pants are washable, reusable and are shaped just like ‘grown up’ pants. With both a selection of colours and sizes, these training pants are great for potty training.

We will look at other ways to help smooth out the transition in the next few posts, so don’t forget to check back!

¿Es hora de cambiar y seguir adelante?

Hay tantos beneficios en usar los pañales de tela con su bebé: la reducción de basura, la reduccion de invirtir, la suavidad en la piel de su bebé y, por supuesto, que chulo esta un culito grande y esponjoso! En algún momento, sin embargo, debe pasar desde los pañales y comenzar a entrenar con su hijo para ir al baño.

Si es el momento adecuado, hay varias señales de que su niño está listo para comenzar a usar la váter. Si ya usas pañales de tela, estos ya los ayudarán a ser más conscientes de la causa / efecto de la necesidad de ir al baño.

¿Cómo lo sabré?

Aquí hay 8 indicaciones de que su hijo está listo para comenzar el entrenamiento para ir a la váter. Si su hijo puede hacer 3 de las siguientes acciones, podría ser el momento de darle una oportunidad al entrenamiento para ir al baño.

1. Su hijo puede permanecer seco durante al menos dos horas seguidas o está seco después de una siesta durante el día.
2. Su hijo le dice que usar un pañal mojado es incómodo y que necesita / quiere cambiarse.
3. Su hijo le pregunta si puede usar el baño o la váter.
4. Generalmente sabes cuándo es probable que su hijo tenga una caca.
5. Su hijo le pide usar pantalones de entrenamiento o pantalones normales.
6. Su hijo puede entender y seguir instrucciones simples, como ‘tráeme las toallitas, por favor’.
7. Su hijo puede usar palabras para hacerle saber que necesita hacer pipi o caca.
8. Su hijo puede ponerse algo de su ropa sin ayuda (por ejemplo, los pantalones cortos o una falda).

Obviamente, no hay una edad fija para comenzar, o incluso completar, la transición de pañal a braguita, y realmente no es algo que puedas forzar. Si empiezas a ensenar a tu hijo a ir al baño pero no te va bien, no te asustes. Déjalo un rato y vuelve a intentarlo. Por ejemplo, mi hijo usaba la váter un poquite despues su segundo cumpliaño, mi hija todavia tenia acidente con 4 añitos. Al igual que al caminar, ¡ellos lo dominarán eventualmente!

¿Tiene que ser estresante?

En pocas palabras, no. Tenga en cuenta que, hasta este momento, su pequeño no ha tenido que pensar cuándo o dónde ir al baño. Ahora deben concentrarse y darse cuenta de que la sensación que sienten requiere acción.

Cada minuto cuenta la carrera a la váter (por ejemplo, una vez tuve que correr por un aeropuerto cuando nuestro primer hijo dijo que necesitaba el baño), por lo que consultar regularmente con su hijo puede ayudarlo a darse cuenta de cuándo comienzan a necesitar la váter.

Las Braguitas de Aprendizaje Bright Bots incorporan una capa PUL para ayudar a proteger contra pequeños accidentes. Los Bright Bots no están diseñados para múltiples accidentes, no absorben la orina ni mantienen la piel seca como lo hacen los pañales, pero la capa de PUL detendrá las pequeñas fugas, evitando un cambio completo del equipo cada vez.

Al contrario de los pantalones de entrenamiento desechables, estos pantalones de entrenamiento Bright Bots son lavables, reutilizables y tienen la forma de un braguita “adulto”. Con una selección de colores y tamaños, estos braguitas de aprendizaje son ideales para el entrenamiento de ir a la váter.

Buscamos otras formas de ayudar a suavizar la transición el mes que viene, ¡así que no olvide volver a consultar!

As your little one grows, their nutritional needs also develop. When they are first born, feeding babies is relatively simple. Milk fills all their needs, and very well too. Once children start to show an interest in other food, getting them in a good routine is important to help their future eating habits.

Eating together around a table as a family is a wonderful time to discuss the day and to strengthen bonds, giving children a sense of stability and connectivity as they grow.

Here are our favourite tips for getting off to a good start:

1. Plan together

Children are more likely to be invested in a meal if they have taken part in the planning. Obviously, this doesn’t work for very young children, but maybe getting older children on your side will help the younger ones try different dishes. Likewise, children love to help, so, with guidance, even little ones can break eggs or stir batters.

2. Set the table

Preparing the table before serving means you don’t spend the first 5 minutes of the meal jumping up and down to collect missing items. As children grow, they can help with this. We have a 5-minute warning on ‘Food Time’, during which the children must wash their hands and help set the table. It doesn’t always go to plan, but meals times run smoother when we all take a share.

3. Know your place

It might seem odd, but having your own space, your own chair at the table, helps us feel settled. It might not be our favourite spot around the table, but it does save arguments. We didn’t always have our own chair when I was little, and the rush for the ‘best’ spot invariably ending in someone being upset.

4. Help everyone join in

When everyone is sat around the table, chatting, children feel part of the group. Using a high chair or a MiniMonkey MiniChair brings even little ones up to the same level. Admittedly you’ll need to move items out of arms reach, but as your little one grows they will realise that you are all important members of the family.

5. Make time, take time

Meals are where we learn family and cultural values, we learn of likes and dislikes, and where, with the distraction of food, we can talk openly to each other about what is on our mind. From a very young age, showing our children the importance of spending time together, regularly, can make all the difference.

Do you eat as a family? Have you seen any benefits in your children? Do you have any suggestions? Let us know!

A medida que tu pequeño crece, también se desarrollan sus necesidades nutricionales. Cuando estan recien nacido, alimentar a los bebés es relativamente simple. La leche satisface todas sus necesidades, y muy bien lo hace también. Una vez que los niños comienzan a mostrar interés en otros alimentos, es importante ponerlos en una buena rutina para ayudarlos en sus futuros hábitos alimenticios.

Comer juntos alrededor de una mesa como familia es un momento maravilloso para hablar de la que han pasado durante el día y fortalecer los lazos familial, dando a los niños una sensación de estabilidad y conexión a medida que crecen.

Aqui tienes nuestros consejos favoritos para comenzar bien:

1. Planear juntos

Es más probable que los niños se inviertan en una comida si han participado en la planificación. Obviamente, esto no funciona para niños muy pequeños, pero cuando los niños mayores estén disfrutando a su comida, este ayude a los más pequeños a probar diferentes platos. Del mismo modo, a los niños les encanta ayudar, por lo que, con ayuda, incluso los más pequeños pueden romper huevos o batir batidos.

2. Coloca la mesa

Preparar la mesa antes de servir hace que no pasará los primeros 5 minutos de la comida saliendo para recoger los artículos que faltan. A medida que los niños crecen, pueden ayudar con esto. En nuestra familia, tenemos una advertencia de 5 minutos sobre “Hora de comer”, durante la cual los niños deben lavarse las manos y ayudar a poner la mesa. No siempre va a lo planeado, pero las comidas son más fáciles cuando todos compartimos el trabajo.

3. Conoce tu lugar

Puede parecer extraño, pero tener su propio espacio, su propia silla en la mesa, nos ayuda a sentirnos tranquilos. Cuando era joven no siempre teníamos nuestra propio sitio, y la prisa por el “mejor” lugar invariablemente terminaba en alguien que estaba molesto. Puede que no sea el lugar favorito en la mesa, pero saber donde sentarnos, guarda los argumentos.

4. Ayuda a todos

Cuando todos están sentados alrededor de la mesa, charlando, los niños se sienten parte del grupo. Usar una silla alta o un MiniMonkey MiniChair lleva incluso a los más pequeños al mismo nivel. Claro, es cierto que deberá mover los artículos fuera del alcance de los brazos, pero a medida que su pequeño crezca, se darán cuenta de que todos ustedes son miembros importantes de la familia.

5. hacer tiempo, tomar tiempo

Las horas de comer son donde aprendemos los valores familiares y culturales, aprendemos sobre los gustos y aversiones, y donde, con la distracción de los alimentos, podemos hablar abiertamente sobre lo que tenemos en mente. Desde una edad muy temprana, mostrar a nuestros hijos la importancia de pasar tiempo juntos, regularmente, puede hacer toda la diferencia.

¿Comes en familia? ¿Has visto algún beneficio en tus hijos? ¿Tienes otros consejos para anadir? ¡Haznos saber!

Starting school is a major step in growing up, both for little ones and for us as parents. Seeing your ‘baby’ go off to school is probably one of the most difficult things to cope with, other than when they grow out of your favourite baby outfit of course!

Everyone in the Daizy office are parents and we’ve asked around for some tips and tricks that helped make the transition a little easier. Here you have our favourite 6:

1. Be positive

In the run up to September, no matter how you are feeling inside, speak positively about school to your child. When you are looking for uniforms, shoes and bags, talk about how much they will learn and enjoy it, the new children to play with. If they have older siblings, talk about the fun that they had at school, how they learnt to read, the books they had etc. The work you put in now will help once they start school in September.

2. Label everything

Panicking about losing belongings was quite high on our list so label everything. Absolutely everything. With the average class size at 30 and everyone in uniform, there are bound to be a lot of similar sizes, which makes reuniting a lost shoe or jumper to its rightful owner trickier than usual. Labelling absolutely everything keeps the process simpler and means you don’t have to spend time rummaging around in the lost property box. When my son started school I even labelled his shoes (no mean feat!) as almost every boy in his class had the same style!

3. No valuables

Although you might want your little one to know what time it is, the chances of them coming home with their watch is quite slim. Likewise, they might want to take their favourite teddy, but can you imagine losing it?! Children put things down and forget about them, so keeping personal, valuable items to a minimum will help keep them safe – plus, again, it means you don’t have to spend 20 minutes trying to find their belongings at the end of school!

4. Bright Bots Training Pants

This might seem an odd addition to the list, however, quite a few parents said that although their little one was using the toilet without a problem at home, once they were concentrating in class they didn’t notice the urge until it was almost too late. Bright Bots training pants have a hidden waterproof layer which helps protect clothes and gives a few extra moments to run to the toilet.

5. Remember PE day

PE day is always fun, a chance to learn new sports and work as a team – but the problems start once everyone is back inside getting dressed. From fastening buttons on shirts to untangling legs and tights, the teachers really have their work cut out! Help both adult and child by sending your child in easy to put on clothing on PE day: polo shirt instead of shirt if possible, socks instead of tights etc. And obviously label absolutely everything!

6. Don’t hang around!

I think this one is the absolute hardest. Finding the line between making sure your little one is settled and leaving them in the capable hands of the teachers can be tricky. Some children are excited to learn (like our son) and others would just like another cuddle for confidence (our daughter).

Remember that each child is different but also that the teachers will have seen lot of children start school and will have a couple of their own tricks up their sleeve! Most say that once their parents have gone, the child concentrates on the activities with everyone else. Not to say that you shan’t go home and feel a bit quiet….

School is a big step but think of all the fun you’ll have reading together, playing together and working through tricky maths together in the future!

If you have any extra tips or tricks to share, please let us know!

Comenzar la escuela es un paso importante tanto para los más pequeños como para nosotros como padres. Ver a tu ‘bebé’ yendo a la escuela es probablemente una de las cosas más difíciles de enfrentar, ¡excepto cuando no pueden poner tu ropa favorita de bebé, por supuesto!

Todos en la oficina de Daizy son padres y hemos pedido algunos consejos y trucos que ayudaron a hacer la transición un poco más fácil. Aquí están nuestros 6 favoritos:

1. Sea positivo

En el período previo a septiembre, sin importar cómo te sientas por dentro, habla con tu hijo sobre la escuela de manera positiva. Cuando busque uniformes, zapatos y bolsos, hable sobre cuánto aprenderán y disfrutarán, los nuevos niños con quienes jugarán. Si tienen hermanos mayores, habla sobre como disfrutaron la escuela, cómo aprendieron a leer, los libros que tenían, etc. El trabajo que pones ahora te ayudará cuando comiencen la escuela en septiembre.

2. Etiquetar todo

El pánico por perder ropa era bastante importante en nuestra lista, así que etiquetad todo. Absolutamente todo. Incluso zapatos. Los zapatos escolares para niños son muy similares en estilo y tamaño, así que ¡haz que reclamar la ropa sea más fácil al poner tu nombre!

3. Sin objetos de valor

Aunque posiblemente tu pequeño quiere saber qué hora es, las posibilidades de que vuelvan a casa con su reloj son bastante pequeño. Los niños sueltan cosas y después se olvidan de ellos, por lo que mantener artículos personales valiosos a un mínimo ayudará y seria lo mejor, ¡además, significa que no tiene que pasar 20 minutos tratando de encontrar sus pertenencias al final de la escuela!

4. Braguitas de aprendizaje Bright Bots

Esto podría parecer una adición extraña a la lista, sin embargo, muchos padres dijeron que, aunque su pequeño usaba el baño sin problemas en la casa, una vez que se concentraban en clase no notaron el impulso hasta que casi fue demasiado tarde. Las braguitas de aprendizaje Bright Bots tienen una capa impermeable oculta que ayuda a proteger la ropa y le da unos momentos extra para correr al baño.

5. No olvides el día de Educación Física

El día de educación física siempre es divertido, una oportunidad de aprender nuevos deportes y trabajar en equipo, pero los problemas comienzan una vez que todos vuelven a vestirse. ¡Desde abrochar botones en las camisas hasta desenredar las piernas y las medias, los maestros realmente tienen trabajo! Ayude tanto a los adultos como a los niños enviándoles con ropa fácil: polos en vez de camisas si es posible, calcetines en lugar de medias, etcétera. ¡Y obviamente etiqueten absolutamente todo!

6. ¡No te quedes!

Creo que este es el más difícil. Encontrar la línea entre asegurarse de que su peque esté bien y dejarlos en las manos capaces de los maestros puede ser complicado. Algunos niños están entusiasmados de aprender (como nuestro hijo) y otros simplemente quisieran otro abrazo para más confianza (nuestra hija). Recuerde que cada niño es diferente, pero también que los maestros habrán visto a muchos niños comenzar la escuela y ¡tendrán algunos de sus propios trucos bajo la manga! La mayoría dice que una vez que sus padres se han ido, el niño se concentra en las actividades con los demás. Claro que este no quiere decir que no vas a ir a casa y sentirte un poco callado …

La escuela es un gran paso, pero piensa en toda la diversión que tendréis leyendo juntos, jugando juntos y trabajando juntas en matemáticas difíciles en el futuro.

Si tiene alguna sugerencia o trucos para compartir, ¡por favor háganos saber!

Summer is a great time for spending time outdoors and exploring. With the weather as favourable as it has been the last few weeks, we’ve managed to tick a few more activities off National Trusts 50 Things list. These are our favourites for summer:

11 – Go on a really long bike ride

There are loads of cycle routes around the country, from purpose made tracks like The Five Pits Trail near Chesterfield to the countless towpaths along canals through towns and cities. We used The AA to find local routes, and because you can choose difficulty and length, you can tailor it to your youngest rider!

3 – Camp out in the wild

And by ‘wild’, we clearly mean, ‘in the garden’! A little adventure (but with nearby toilets and a kettle to keep everyone happy) is perfect for spicing up the school holidays! Starting it off with an evening barbecue and ending with breakfast by the tent makes it feel like a real holiday!

27 – Go stargazing

If you’re already camping out (see above) this one is an easy addition. Most of the famous constellations are visible and easy to point out, even with street lighting. This makes a great ‘calm down’ session before bedtime.

41 – Plant it, grow it, eat it

There are so many vegetables that are relatively quick and easy to grow in a garden. We currently have various vegetables growing pots in the conservatory (the chickens find them too alluring to have them outside) and different herbs in the garden (they don’t seem to like herbs that much, which is odd, but useful!). Our children love watering and harvesting the vegetables, they get very excited when something is ripe – what about yours?

48 – Learn to ride a horse

I’ll be honest, we’ve not done this one yet, though our daughter is desperate to learn! This school holiday might be when her dream comes true – there is nothing better than an autumnal hack, so we’ve got a few months to get ourselves sorted!

What about you? Have you managed to do many of the 50 Activities? If the weather stays fine, this school holiday could be the best yet! Let us know which your favourite summer activities are!

El verano es un buen momento para pasar tiempo al aire libre y explorar el alrededor. Con el clima tan favorable como lo han sido las últimas semanas, hemos logrado marcar algunas actividades más de nuestra lista de 50 actividades de National Trust del RU. Estos son nuestros favoritos para el verano:

11 – Ir en un largo paseo en bicicleta

Hay un montón de rutas ciclistas por todo el país, desde pistas diseñadas especialmente hasta innumerables caminos de sirga a lo largo de canales a través de pueblos y ciudades. Buscar una ruta cerca donde puedes elegir la dificultad y la longitud, ¡y puedes adaptarlo a tu jinete más joven!

3 – Campamento en la naturaleza

Eligiendo un sitio con baños cercano significa que tienen una pequeña aventura, pero con todo el mundo contento. ¡Comenzar con una barbacoa por la tarde y terminar con el desayuno en la tienda hace sentir como unas verdaderas vacaciones! ¡Y no olvides que estos parches mantienen a raya a esos molestos mosquitos!

27 – Ve a mirar las estrellas

Si ya estás acampando (ver arriba) esta es una adición fácil. La mayoría de las constelaciones famosas son visibles y fáciles de señalar, incluso con alumbrado público. Esto hace una gran sesión de ‘calma’ antes de acostarse.