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Child Related Tips

useful tips for busy Mums and Dads

  • Some children these days seem to have a lot of toys, some of which never see the light of day.  To keep children interested and to get the best out of their toys divide them into two different toy boxes and rotate them every two or three weeks.

  • Hand painting is a great way to amuse children as they love to get messy.  The finished articles can be used as pictures, borders etc,.

  • To encourage finicky eaters put a variety of food in a dish to make it interesting for them.  For instance you could use an ice cube tray and put things such as nuts, raisins, currents, cheese etc. into each compartment.

  • Pieces of bread soaked in milk and baked in the oven until crisp, make ideal rusks especially for babies that are teething.  As well as being cheap they have the added bonus of no added sugar.

  • Use role play with children, this encourages their imagination and can help with difficult situations such as pending hospital visits etc.
  • Place an old washing liquid "ball" over the bath taps to prevent children burning themselves.

  • For babies suffering with acute nappy rash put a teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda into a bowl of warm water and sit baby in until the water cools.  This is both soothing and healing.

  • Use a visor to prevent soap in childrens' eyes when washing hair.

child dressed up as nurse tending her doll
  • On the beach don't try and rub sand away from between toes and fingers, but shake baby talcum powder on hands and feet and the sand comes away easily,

    Catherine Smith

  • To make tidying up toys etc. fun use a kitchen timer and make it into a game to see if they can "beat the clock".  A small reward at the end makes is extra fun.

  • The noise made by domestic appliances (washing machines etc.) can be very soothing to babies. 

  • To make home made baby wipes put some hot water into a bow, add a squirt of baby oil and then lay in some cotton wool squares.  Hey presto, home made wipes.

  • To bring up babies' wind, walk upstairs with baby resting over your shoulder as this movement encourages "burping".

  • Muslin squares are very useful as they can be used for mopping chins, changing mats, burping and much, much more.

  • If you use a dummy for your baby wrap in cling film after sterilising and it is always ready for use.

  • Record an audio tape for your children to hear when they are going to sleep.  Nursery rhymes, favourite stories etc. together with a familiar voice can work wonders.  These are also useful when travelling.

  • If you're a busy mum and find an item of clothing you forgot was damp (i.e. baby's bib in the glove compartment in the car) and it now has black mould spots on it, soak it in a solution of bottle sterilizer and water - just enough to cover the garment. Rinse and launder as usual. 

    As long as it is colour fast, the spots will disappear and leave it clean as new.

    Mandy Davies


Sandwich bags - easy opening for children

I have been sent this very useful tip for sealing childrens' plastic lunch bags.

After plastic bagging the daily sandwiches, make it easy for the children to open them by tying the bag shut with a tie that is sheer simplicity to remove, even for the youngest child.  Easy to reseal too, it they want to.

Take another of the bags and make it into a tie by pulling lightly on diagonal corners.  Exclude the air from the bag with the food and then tie the neck closed with the strip made by the second bag.  A single knot is suitable.

To open the food bag just pull on the knot with your fingers and it will easily slide off the neck of the food bag.

You can re-use the "tie" bag four to six times by ignoring the knots and tying again.

Our thanks to Mae Loat for this very original and useful idea.

  • When pregnant an old skirt can be utilised by cutting out section from the front from waist to just below the "bump" line. From a similar piece of material cut a fan shape i.e. so the bottom edge fits the new cut edge of the skirt with the top edge much wider.  Hem the top edge and thread through ribbon or a piece of elastic.  Attach to skirt and the sides and cut edge (below bump).  Waist line can then be adjusted using the ribbon tie of will expand with elastic.

  • Always make childrens' dresses and skirts with at least a 6" hem, they can then be lowered as the child grows.  It is important to remember when washing these garments either undo the hem each time or open out to prevent a wear mark line forming.

  • Babies' dresses can be made into rompers by threading elastic through the hem and stitching a flap between the legs.  Obviously rompers can be made into dresses by removing the flap and elastic and hemming.

My sister sent me these tips which she can remember our Mum using






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