Skips Crossword Puzzles for kids

K2 crosswords puzzles skips

Easter holidays and isn’t it lovely to watch the children play without a care in the world? I daren’t reprimand them for a messy room of an evening when I can see they have clearly had loads of fun playing with their toys, we’re making it part of our day to tidy up at the end so ‘we know where to find everything’ for play the next day. Sounds good on paper and no it doesn’t always work but we have years ahead to perfect this idea of mine.

We also have homework to do and as I am constantly saying I am amazed at just how much the children are learning at school. Our recent parent’s evening blew me away completely when I looked at their exercise books and saw for myself the sums, the writing, the projects completed when they’re not with me, hats off to Mrs J and her assistant Mrs G for the excellent continued work.

I do believe in a little exercise throughout the holidays, I think it should never be too much but enough to tick over so on their return to the classroom they’re not overwhelmed by the work load again.

skips crossmaths

I have been sent two of the Skips books to have a look at, I have bought them puzzle books before but some are a bit too boring and get put to one side, others are a bit too complicated and therefore are no longer enjoyable but become a task.

The Skips books are constructed around Key Stage 1 and 2, they aim to improve your child’s education and give them confidence with their homework, there is a huge emphasis on parental interaction, the thing is if we as parents are positive about homework then our children will enjoy it al the more too.

I have been sent two Skips books KS1 Crossmaths and KS 2 Crossword puzzles, I have flicked through them and like what I see but I will have to order another copy of each as each child needs their own copy.

The pages are bright and colourful they are set out very easily and are appealing to the eye. The one thing I like the most is they were developed by a mum, Ash Sharma, for her child to remove all the moans and complaints associated with homework.

The books are engaging and you can do as little or as much as you like, let your child set the pace and do their own puzzles when they want.

If they enjoy it it makes life so much easier and they are learning and practising their new skills all the time too, bingo!

Mummy, is God real? – Easter chats

buffalo tiger

The photo above was taken on a trip to Florida in 2006, the gentleman I am with is Buffalo Tiger, the leader of the Miccosukee nation in Florida between the mid 1950’s and the early 1970’s. He now runs an airboat tour company in the Florida Everglades

First you are to think always of God.
Second you are to use all your powers to care for your people and especially for the poor. – Sioux

I must confess that we are not a church going family although this doesn’t mean we don’t believe in ‘God’ it just means we haven’t found a religion that suits us. On a visit to Washington years ago one of my favourite museums was the National Museum of the American Indian, a population that has always fascinated me and one I have enormous respect for. I love their philosophy of life and believe it’s the closest I can get to explaining how I feel about God, you will find some of their quotes highlighted in this post to help understand the way they see it and maybe understand why it connects with my heart.


The one thing that matters most are the children. They are true human beings. – Lakota

All religions are but stepping stones back to God – Pawnee

At school the past few weeks there has been a lot of talking about God, I am perfectly happy with this after all Easter is a religious occasion and I’m happy for the girls to understand the origins and why it is celebrated. If you don’t know well I hate to break it to you but it’s not all about chocolate.

holy bible

I also want them to learn about other religions and living in the mixed society of Britain today this is fundamental to understanding that there are more ways than one of worshiping and it’s ok to be different.

Trouble no man about his religion – respect him in his views and demand that he respect yours. – Shawnee

I am of the belief that the girls can choose who and how they wish to worship should they want to later on in life but in the meantime I have to answer their questions to the best of my abilities and guide them to grow up as loving human beings, here was a discussion we had the other day with my answers

Ask questions from your heart and you will be answered from the heart – Omaha

Twin: Mummy, is God real?

Me: God isn’t something we can touch or feel with our hands, we can’t see God with our eyes.

Be kind to everything that lives – Omaha

Twin: Does he live above the clouds?

Me: No, if he did we’d be able to see him, he lives all around us, in the flowers, in the animals and in the world.

It makes no difference as to the name of God, since love is the real God of all the world – Apache

church cross

Twin: Did he die on the cross?

Me: No, that was a man named Jesus

Remember that your children are not your own, but are lent to you by the Creator – Mohawk

It takes a whole village to raise a child – Omaha

Twin: Does God make the people go up to heaven when they die?

Me: Yes and heaven is a lovely place where people who die will be very happy

When you die, you will be spoken of as those in the sky, like the stars – Yorok

Twin: God made the seas and the clouds and the flowers.

Me: He did, he’s very clever and makes everything we need to live a happy life

We are made from Mother Earth and we go back to Mother Earth – Shenandoah

Are you having any God conversations with your little ones? How are you tackling them?

Flower hair wreath or Easter Bonnet

easter bonnets

I’ve been dreading the Spring for one reason only – it’s Easter bonnet making time and I didn’t have any ideas whatsoever on what to do for 2014.

flower hair wreath - easter bonnet


Then watching and playing with the girls I noticed how much they still love fairies and princesses. A truly magical moment that I don’t want to push them out of too soon as I’m only too aware that it doesn’t last forever.

Then the idea came, a Flower hair wreath fit for a princess or a fairy!

Once I had the idea I was pleased to find our local pound shops and Wilkinsons full of colourful fabric flowers so I bought a colourful collection, armed myself with gardening wire and a few other bits and bobs and set to.

The gardening wire is bendy enough to be able to form into a wreath, I took the measurements of the girls heads and wound the wire round and round on itself to form a sturdy wreath.

I then used secateurs to cut the wire and I wound the last piece round and round the entire circle to hold the wreath together.

flower hair wreath

I cut the flowers leaving a short plastic stem and I placed them around the wreath to get an idea of the end product. Then taking one flower at a time I wound the wire around the stem and the wreath at the same time, the longer the stem the firmer the grasp will be.

flower hair wreath

I made sure the end of the wire was poked into the wreath to avoid catching hair or scratching faces.

Once all the flowers are secured, I added four strips of ribbon to the back by tying in a knot and then adding a couple of staples (It’s a school day after all)

I also added a few decorated polystyrene eggs to each that I found in a local pound shop, again using wire to secure them in place.

flower hair wreath

My final touch was clipping on a butterfly to each et voilà! Job done, one flower hair wreath Easter Bonnet.

flower hair wreath

Of course I have chosen large flowers, a strong wreath and bright colours so it’s a more fun wreath as it will be acting as our 2014 Easter Bonnets just use smaller flowers and less wire for a more simple wreath.

Our first visit from the Tooth Fairy.

MUCH excitement was to be had on holiday over half term as the wobbly teeth belonging to Alice were hanging on by a thread.

alice teeth

We missed ‘catching’ the first tooth, who knows where it ended up? So you can imagine the panic – we were away from home, in a holiday resort with lots of other children. We convinced Alice to write a letter to the Cornish Tooth Fairy explaining what had happened.

You see, Alice was convinced the tooth was in her throat.

letter to tooth fairy

Fortunately fairies are very clever and they have magic wands so have lots of resources available to sort out problems like these, plus Alice knew first hand from Daniel in her class, who’d had a similar plight but he’d swallowed his. The fairy came anyway and was able to locate his tooth and leave a reward.

As you can imagine we had an early start the next day as Alice was up at first light and so very pleased to find a gold coin in exchange for her tooth. The Tooth Fairy, who’s writing is uncannily like mine, wrote a note back to Alice thanking her.

tooth fairy letter

The delight in Alice’s face lasted for days and it reminded both Dad and I of how the small things are often the most important ones. One day she will understand and hopefully she too will see that a little make believe can change a little girl’s world and make her dream… and now we are wiggling Bessie’s teeth in the hope they start to loosen a bit too.

All the Small Things - MummyNeverSleeps

Philips Disney SoftPals – no more scared of the dark

Ever since a Light and Dark experiment at school which required wearing pyjamas to school, drinking hot chocolate and all sorts of other fantastic activities, the girls have also decided after 5+ years they are now – scared of the dark.

Philips Disney SoftPals

Never happened ONCE before. Now they are scared. We have taken to leaving on the baby monitor night light which had been wrapped in a box for years.

Then Philips got in touch and asked us if we’d like to receive a couple of their new Philips Disney SoftPals the range includes Minnie and Mickie Mouse and Sully and Mike stars of Monster Inc. #NotSoScary

PERFECT solution, so I immediately replied yes please.

We tried them out the first night and were amazingly easy to set up. There is a base which is plugged into the mains, the SoftPal is placed on the base and there’s a small button to switch on. Your SoftPal sits there a while to charge up and then with a simple movement of the SoftPal it lights up and casts a soft friendly glow and again a simple movement of the device will turn the light off, yes you can imagine the fun can’t you? On, off, on, off giggle, giggle.

Philips disney softPals

The SoftPal will charge and stay on for 6 hours and creates a really warm glow in the room.

The girls wanted to take their SoftPals into class for Show and Tell and apparently they were a great hit with the kids, and they came home in need of a good charge where they’d been moved to glow and turn off all day.

A glance online has shown prices ranging from £22 – £30 depending on the model and who’s selling.

BritMums #NotSoScary hangout – Thurs 13th Feb 10.30am

If, like me, you have children who are afraid of the dark you may be interested to know that BritMums is holding a hangout next week with Philips Lighting and their collaboration with Disney. Psychologist, sleep expert, author and mother of four Chireal Shallows of the Baby Sleep Clinic will be with us. Chireal will be sharing her expertise on the best bedtime rituals along with a couple of bloggers who are joining the discussion, watch out for it on BritMums TV