Five small ways to treat yourself today

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Whether it’s the latest cold doing the rounds or the hangover of a particularly bad night’s sleep, it’s hard to get a handle on anything at this time of year.

Yup, the Winter blues have hit and you may have found yourself saying “It’s been one of those days” far too regularly.

But when plastering on a smile and soldiering through doesn’t cut it, it’s time to admit you need a little break. To help get some well-deserved and much-needed ‘me time’, here’s five of my favourite treats guaranteed to turn your day around.

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How reading helps young children learn

 
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Should you ban video games for your kids?

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It seems like almost every child has a device to play games.

Games have replaced physical toys and books as must-have Christmas and birthday presents.

But with so many scare stories about the effects of games on children’s development, especially those that contain violence, should you ban them in your household? What are the consequences of the digital entertainment take-over?

So let’s take a look at the pros and cons of games for kids, check out fun, educational alternatives to violent games and offers tips to help integrate game-playing into your kids’ lives in a sensible way.

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The loneliest place in the world

 

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The loneliest place in the world is inside my head when anxiety takes hold.

When I try to speak up for myself, but the voice which comes out only sounds sad and pathetic.

Or, even worse, like I’m trying to cause a drama or make something “all about me” because I take everything personally.

And I’m told “grow some balls” or “get over it and move on – like a NORMAL person would”.

That’s when I feel isolated and voiceless. Like anything I say to try to explain sounds so ‘me, me, me’ and only proves the other person’s point.

Because anxiety does make everything all about me. It’s my fault. I’m worthless.

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Making a shopping Lyst

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As a busy parent I’ve always done a lot of my shopping online.

But since returning to work, and then becoming a single mum, clothes shopping has become pretty much impossible unless I purchase on the internet.

I love fashion and get a lot of joy from adding a new item to my wardrobe. But the idea of my two kids waiting while I take things into a store changing room is both horrific and laughable. The stress of keeping them amused is tough enough without the thought of them noisily destroying a shop display while I’m still grappling with the zip of a dress.

So I’m glad I’ve found Lyst.

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Excuse my anxious heart

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Please excuse my anxious heart.

I am sorry it makes you uncomfortable when I need love and reassurance.

Pardon my panics, my palpitations and moments that you perceive as weakness.

No I haven’t found closure, and I get that you “can’t be bothered” with my insecurities and tears.

You know where the door is.

Because there is no cure for what ails me. And do you know what? I wouldn’t take it if there was.

My anxiety is a war wound I have recently learned to wear with pride.

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Review: Education Quizzes

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I guess my sons are typical boys. Teaching them in a classroom environment will only ever achieve so much. And now they are aged 7 and 10, there are certain strengths and weaknesses which seem to be coming out in their schoolwork.

Numbers. Numbers are fun for them. Give them any maths activity to do and they attack it with relish.

Words? Now they are a whole different matter.

Being  a journalist and blogger, you’d think my boys would take the same kind of joy from words as I do. But I guess we’re all different. They love storytelling and have colourful imaginations.

But the technical side of words – spelling, grammar, tenses, nouns, pronouns…….. start teaching them that stuff and their eyes roll back in their heads as they daydream about going out on their bikes.

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Rainbow Trust: Monica’s Story

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Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity provides emotional and practical support for families who have a child with a life-threatening or terminal illness. They offer the whole family individually tailored, high-quality support for as long as they need it.

Family Support Workers work with up to 25 families at any one time, providing help with whatever they need. Each family is unique, so the support offered is different for each one.  It is flexible and understanding. Family Support Workers work with families to help them cope in extreme and uncertain situations, so that they do not have to cope alone.

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Surviving Divorce

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If I felt grown up buying my first home, getting married, having kids….

It’s nothing compared to how grown up I feel getting a divorce.

Only this time, not in a good way. It’s something to survive.

Tackling the emotional and practical side of ending a marriage, is like negotiating a minefield in oversized clown shoes.

Because there was once two of you promising to stay together forever. There was once two of you making plans, putting your trust in each other…

And then it all blew up in your face.

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Making the most out of your car insurance

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Insurance is a pain, expensive and not the most exciting thing to spend your time or money on.

If you want to save, you’ve got to be smart.

Being approached by car dealership Carspring made me realise that with just some small changes, you can hugely cut your car insurance costs.

Here are eight surprisingly easy tricks to beat the insurers and save your cash for the more exciting things in life.

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