Encouraging Family Fitness (Guest Post)

family parenting

Finding the time to you need to exercise when you’re a parent can be a particularly difficult task, especially when your children are very young. Whilst running round attempting to keep up with your hyper-active four year old can prove to be more energetic than you’d think, it may not quite be the fitness regime you were hoping for.

Whilst it’s important to spend time with your kiddos, spending time doing the things you enjoyed pre-children is extremely important too – especially if it means leading a healthy lifestyle. Of course, while your children are not quite at the walking stage just yet certain activities may not be parent-child friendly; but as they grow there are plenty of sports you can enjoy together.

Cycling

Teaching your children to ride a bicycle is such a rewarding task and it will fill you (and them!) with pride when they finally get the confidence to banish the stabilisers! Providing your children with a trike from a young age will stand them in good stead for when they get a little older and move onto a more grown up bike. When they reach the age when they feel safe and secure on two wheels rather than four, then venturing out into the countryside is a great way to explore the great outdoors and keep fit whilst doing so.

Cricket

Whether you’re spending time at the local park or enjoying a family outing to the seaside, cricket is a superb way to encourage the whole family to keep fit together and get up off of that sofa! Whilst the children are younger, it may not be as physical as you’re used to but as they get a little older, playing cricket can be a fantastic way to encourage some healthy competition amongst siblings. Investing in high quality equipment that is built to last such as cricket bats and the right protection, will mean that the sport can be enjoyed time and time again!

Swimming

Swimming is a fantastic activity to enjoy with your children as it can be done from a very young age – and it gives you the perfect opportunity to enjoy some quality time together whilst keeping fit. Swimming is a great workout for your whole body and will help to keep you looking toned and is beneficial for those of you with bad backs or achey joints. The best part is, swimming hardly seems like exercise at all and is a fantastic way to unwind after a particularly stressful day.

Ice Hockey

Perhaps a tad unconventional in comparison to other sports, but ice hockey can be plenty of fun – provided you have the correct equipment to keep you safe whilst doing do. This is a pastime that should be saved for when your children get a little older as any sport carried out on ice can mean some tumbles, especially if you’re not steady on your feet at first but once you both become a little more confident you’re certain to forget the bumps and bruises!

Beachcombing on London Beach

Here’s a little piece on one of my favourite father/daughter activity that I wrote for the lovely Bubele people.

http://bubeleapp.com/beachcombing-on-london-beach

Babies Going Through Tunnels

Daddy Dazed loves this compilation video of babies driving through tunnels.
Their reactions are hilarious. They probably think they are re-birthing!

 

50 Shades of Grey and a Baby

It all started with an innocent question over breakfast.

Darling have you got a pilots license? Asks my wife.

You mean can I fly a plane?  I say.

Yes.

No.

Oh.

 

A few days later…..

Darling. Have you got a pilot’s uniform?  She asks.

What like a fancy dress outfit?

Kind of.

No. And you know how I hate fancy dress parties.

 

The following morning.

Darling I want you to tell me what to do. I want you to assert your manliness.

 Really? Are you sure?

 Yes.

 But you hate it when I tell you to pick up your dirty clothes off the bathroom floor. You get angry and tell me not to treat you like a child.

I like the way you said dirty. I can be very dirty sometimes can’t I? She says seductively.

What’s going on?

She moves in closer.
I want you to dominate me. I want to be your submissive.

Then the penny drops.

You’ve been reading that Fifty Shades of Grey haven’t you?

She smiles.

Yes I have and its opened up a whole new side of me. I want to be your sex slave. I will have sex with you whenever you want me to.

But when I tried it last week you told me to get off because you were watching Desperate Housewives.

You should have insisted. That’s what dominants do. You should do what you want whether I want it or not. 

You sound like a Conservative talking about rape. How about you tell me when you want me to dominate you and I’ll pretend I don’t know and then I’ll sneak up behind you, grab you and carry you off to bed.

Mmm that sounds nice. But be careful of your back. You don’t want to have to  go to the physio again.

Ok ill drag you across the floor.

I like that. But make sure there aren’t any of baby’s toys in the way I don’t want o to get injured like when you stood on her xylophone and you cut your foot.

Ok. So you’ll give me the sign. I’ll pretend you haven’t given it to me. Then I’ll sweep the floor of all known toys. Pull you across the floor and into the bedroom. Where I will have my wicked way. Loudly and manly.

Not too loud though honey. We don’t want to wake baby.

Dads: How To Get Your Daily Dose of Masculinity!

Life can be hard for a full-time father. Parenting, keeping your partner happy, doing the school run, working the nine to five and getting the weekly shop in; whilst we can try and pretend that we are still hunter-gatherers bringing a juicy Mammoth chop back to the family cave, in reality the life of a father can occasionally be somewhat emasculating. To help re-balance dad’s levels of manliness, we thought we come up with some ideas any father can employ to bring his gonads back from the edge of the realms of the castrati!

First up; sports. Whilst there indeed is a relatively large sub-section of society that dreaded physical education lessons, any real red-blooded man should relish the chance to get themselves out on the pitch to prove their mettle. Football, rugby, field hockey, marathon running, mountain biking; the list of fun, healthy activities a proactive dad can indulge his Saturday afternoons and weeknights in is massive. If you’re not sure of where your local teams and venues are located, check out beinspireduk.org. Here you can search your local area for all things athletic, giving those red blood cells a much-needed dose of oxygen!

Of course, for really busy dads, going out and playing a game of footy with the lads a few nights a week simply isn’t an option. Trapped babysitting or on a business trip can be a pretty boring experience for any red-blooded male, but even then there are loads of ways you can tide yourself over until Lads United meet up once again! Online gaming sites that can be found through sites such as FortunePalace are pretty big nowadays, and are a great way of whiling away an hour or so. You’ll have to be careful how much you spend, and it’s always a good idea to check out the tips and strategies to improve your game, but you could pocket a little money if you become adept, great for sneaky trips to the pub or to be put towards the summer holidays.

You could also start up a small weekly poker league with your nearest and dearest boys. Are the wives off on a night out or away for the weekend? Pile round to the lucky gentleman’s place, set up the chips, dips and crisps, crack open a crate of frosty ones and begin outwitting friends you’ve known for years! Play with fake cash or kick things up a notch with a £30 betting limit!

Being a dad isn’t easy, but hopefully these fun tips should make it a slightly more enjoyable job. Got any other great ideas to make dads’ lives more laddish? Let us know in the comments section!

 

How to buy gifts for other dads

It seems like once someone’s a dad there’s a mental barrier about buying gifts for them, and it’s even worse if you’re a dad yourself. Suddenly you’re representing your family when it comes to your gifts selection, and in turn the dad on the receiving end is likely to get some family scrutiny over your choice of present too. Here are some basic ideas when it comes to finding gifts for a fellow patriarch.

Indulgences

Food and drink is usually a good choice for anyone. If you want to buy booze for your friend or relative, but want something a bit more grown up than a six-pack, consider buying a whisky tasting selection. Alternatively you might want to skip the beverage and focus on the receptacle by buying a quality glass or novelty mug. A fancy idea for food gifts at the moment is to get some on on-going subscription with a food delivery service: a Friday night curry for example.

Good habits

Another avenue of gifts is to go with items that encourage a healthy lifestyle. There are some portable bits of exercise equipment out there, like dumbbells or ab wheels, which make great gifts for the active man. If the person in question is considering giving up smoking, then you could help pave the way by getting them an e-cigarette. The best electronic cigarettes come with a selection of e-liquids and chargers, so they’ll have everything they need to get started.

Big kid stuff

Finally, you might consider treating your fellow dad to one of those childish treats that you know they might secretly want, but couldn’t buy for themselves. There are some great, low cost remote control aircraft at the moment, with options that you can even fly indoors, so they can spend their Sunday afternoon indulging in a domestic flight.

So there you have it – buying gifts for dads doesn’t have to be a nightmare. It’s just a case of selecting a theme for your gift and taking it from there.

Why the right room temperature is vital for children and new-borns

We all worry about doing the best for our children. Sometimes that means protecting them from harm, and sometimes it means giving them the best opportunities possible. The problem is that we can only protect our children against the things we can foresee.

Dehumidifiers can help to  make your baby's room more comfortable.

Dehumidifiers can help to make your baby’s room more comfortable.

One major factor in the immediate health and future wellness of new-borns and children alike is the temperature and humidity of the environments in which they spend their time. Children’s bodies are constantly trying to acclimatise to their surroundings – that’s why they gradually move from their mother’s milk to baby food to simple foods to an adult-ish diet. We do our best to provide optimum conditions for this acclimatisation, and therefore to allow our children’s abilities to be the best possible, so how can we ignore something as constant as the air they breathe?

The answer, of course, is that it’s invisible. We don’t understand temperature and moisture in the same way as more immediate and tangible factors in child development, but the effects of ignoring these variables are very observable. Good air quality is essential to good respiratory development, and it’s something that needs to be taken care of.

Poor air temperature and humidity can lead to a whole host of later complaints and ailments, including general difficulty in breathing, specific complaints such as asthma and hay fever, and a higher susceptibility to developing allergies. Even minor problems with respiratory development can lead to discomfort while sleeping, and a domino effect that reduces the wellbeing of children and new-borns.

The good news is that it’s easy to combat problems like this with even a basic humidifier. This can take the form of dehumidifiers in the baby’s room, creating an isolated and ideal environment, or a home dehumidifier that services the entire household. With such easy solutions, there’s no longer any reason to ignore this important aspect of child development, or to provide our children with anything but the best.

How can you ensure that your children are safe online?

internet_safety

Our children are spending more and more time online, for a variety of purposes: to help with homework, to play games, to socialise with friends and more. While we as adults are concerned with our own online security, a child’s internet security is even more important, as they are less likely to realise the risks that being online can bring.

These risks do not only include viruses and Trojans, but also the possibility that they may see something that is inappropriate for their age, or that they may find themselves the victim of cyber-bullying or the subject of other unwanted attention.
To ensure that your children remain safe online, here’s a list of five top tips…

1. Speak to them regularly about online safety.

Ensure that you regularly speak with your children about the dangers that they could encounter online, and how they can avoid these dangers. The regularity is important to ensure that they don’t forget.

2. Make sure you know whom they’re talking to.

If your children have social network profiles, ensure that you talk through privacy settings with them, and make sure that they are only speaking to people they actually know. Warn them of the dangers of adding strangers.

3. Use parental controls.

Both your internet service provider and your device should have the ability to restrict certain content so that your children can’t see harmful content – ensure that these controls are in place.

4. Set rules.

While children don’t like rules, they can help them stay safe. Consider setting rules around what they can and can’t look at online, the information they are allowed to share, and the amount of time they can spend online.

5. Ensure they know what to do if problems arise.

If your children are concerned about something they have seen or experienced online, make sure they know how to report it and who to.