Introducing…The Magic Hat Reviewer on YouTube

Aeryn has been long since pestering me for her own YouTube channel. Isn’t mine enough? Apparently not.

She obviously had a plan in mind and what a plan it is.

The idea of the channel is completely hers (I’m actually quite proud of her). Every time she puts her hat on, a toy appears. So say a big hello to (drumroll please)…

The Magic Hat Reviewer

 

And it doesn’t end there.

Soon after the channel was set up, she got a poster ready (Heck, I don’t have one!) . I have strict instructions to recreate this on the computer. Canva she says!

The Magic Hat Reviewer

 

I worry that she may already have a business plan in mind and I’ll have to pay out on advertising soon.

I do know that I need to get her logo sorted.

Update as soon as I uploaded the post – She didn’t let me rest and we have a logo too. I am slightly in awe of her. The design is her own with the hat on the writing a must!

She checks in everyday to see how many views and subscribers she has too. (SO on the ball)

It’s adorable to watch and I wish her all the best. I’m sure she’ll soon have many more subscribers than I do! Don’t forget to visit The Magic Hat Reviewer on YouTube

To Grandad – Please Come Back

How do you tell a 5-year-old her very beloved grandfather has passed away?

It was the hardest thing I had to do.

Well, perhaps not. Because in actual fact, I didn’t have to tell her per se.

When I got the news that my father had passed away suddenly, my reaction got the children worried enough to know that the news was the worst. Grandad had left the world after a massive heart attack.

I could not come to terms with it. How could the children?

My father being overseas meant that I attended the funeral with my siblings. The children stayed back with Hubs and attended school.

I thought it best.

I wanted them to remember him as he had been – a loving grandfather, full of life, playing with them, talking to them.

I never hid anything from the children. They knew that Grandad was no more and he had gone to heaven to be with Grandma.

The older two could perhaps understand death better. They had been through it with my mother.

My five-year-old did not.

She wrote letter upon letter – with the same strain – Please Come Back – it said.

And it broke my heart.

As I tried to explain that Grandad was not coming back – she always retorted with – ‘but why, it’s not fair’.

Yes, it’s not fair – I wanted to scream too. But, that’s life.

70 is too young an age to die.

Especially when we didn’t get to say goodbye.

During half-term, we took the children overseas with us. To say goodbye properly.

Aeryn still thought she would see her grandfather – in the grave. She thought nothing of the fact that she would see him not living but still. As she had seen him in the photo taken during the funeral. Lifeless.

As I explained to her that Grandad was beneath the earth in the grave, she said but why can’t we see him one last time and kiss him goodbye.

I told her I had kissed him for her when I had gone back to attend the funeral.

As we stood by the grave, she realised that she would never see him again. And as I struggled to be strong for the children. I realised too – Death is Final.

The ‘Please come back’ letters stopped.

Just the ‘I Love You and Miss You’ letters remain.

FA Girls’ Football Week #WeCanPlay

I was pleasantly surprised when Jadyn came home one day saying she wanted to enter the tryouts to play football for her school team. To be honest, she had never shown any interest in playing the game and more so, I don’t think I had ever encouraged her to do so.

It was great news to find out that she had been chosen to be on the team. Yes, girls can play football and they are pretty good at it.

I felt quite proud to see her play and though they didn’t win overall, the team did pretty well.

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Do you have daughters who play football?

If you don’t, maybe you need to think about getting them interested in playing. I had never realised that Jadyn would want to play football. Perhaps it’s my thinking that football is predominantly a boys’ game. This thinking was also seen when The FA  ran a survey among girls where only just over half felt that football was a game for them. Even among young girls that did want to play football, one in four didn’t follow this interest up because they did not have any peer support.

To help champion women’s football, last year The FA launched a campaign called ‘We Can Play’, calling for more girls, parents and teachers to realise that girls can play football too and that it is not just a sport for boys.

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Next week sees is The FA Football Week which aims to to help drive girls’ participation in the sport, raise awareness of the opportunities for girls to play locally and help encourage positive perception changes for girls, parents and teachers about football.

To get you and your girls more interested in playing football, here’s some information about Kelly Smith, an English football forward currently playing for FA WSL (Women’s Super League) club Arsenal Ladies.

Kelly Smith was made an MBE in 2008. She grew up in Watford and played football regularly on the boys’ team. She was kicked out of the team when the parents of her male opponents complained, despite being the top goal scorer at age 7.

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She carried on playing football at Pinner Girls, a team formed by her father, moving onto develop her skills at Wembley Ladies, making her senior debut in 1995. She has since accumulated over 100 caps for the England women’s national football and is England’s record goal-scorer with 46 goals. Kelly also played in the women’s football team for Great Britain at the 2012 London Olympics.

If you are interested in playing football and to find your local football opportunity, go to TheFA.com/PlayFootball to find local football opportunities to you.

You may want to also encourage your child’s school to look into more football for girls. The FA is offering free-to-use resources to participating schools and institutions, which include session guides and promotional materials. This can be accessed by registering the session at www.fagirlsfootballweek.com

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We had been really lucky to also get a behind the scene tour of Wembley Stadium with a peek into the players’ locker rooms and that piqued Jadyn’s interest in the game even more.

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Disclosure: This post is in collaboration with The FA. All ideas and opinions are my own.

Helping Your Kids Find Amazing Hobbies

Hobbies are wonderful things that can help us to develop, learn, and grow. Whether we’re 4, 24, or 44, it’s a great idea to have at least one hobby. Hobbies can help us to de-stress. They can teach us about ourselves. They can become another source of income. They can simply be a passion in our lives that we enjoy. That’s why you should take the time to help your kids find amazing hobbies to get involved in. Kids who grow up not really knowing what they like to do or are interested in may struggle to find a job they enjoy, or feel as if they have a purpose. Having hobbies can definitely make life easier! Here’s how you can help your kids to find hobbies that they love:

 

Ask Them What They’re Interested In

 

Start by asking them what they are interested in and go from there. If they are interested in sport, you could try them with different sports until they find something they want to stick with. If they are interested in wildlife, you could buy them books and let them explore the garden. You could even set them fun assignments yourself. Depending on what they are interested in it may be difficult to find something that is suited to them, but if you brainstorm you can come up with something!

 

Look For Classes And Lessons In Your Area

 

Classes and lessons in your area will vary depending on the demand. You might find after school gymnastic classes, art classes, singing lessons – there’s likely to be something to suit your child. You could simply try them and see how they feel about it. Letting them try all kinds of different things will give them a strong idea of who they are and what they’re about while they’re young, which is amazing!

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Buy Them Things To Try At Home

You don’t always have to send your kids off to somebody else so that they can practice and enjoy their hobby. Buy them things to try at home. You could buy them a craft kit, or even an Atlas Editions collectable.

 

Don’t Try To Force Your Hobby On Them

If you have a hobby, you probably love the idea of your child loving that hobby too. But don’t try to force your hobby on them! You can set an example by loving and enjoying your hobby, and if they ask to join in you can let them and see what they think. Remember, they are their own person with their own likes and dislikes. They might have a completely different hobby to you!

 

Get Excited About Their Hobby With Them

Once they are excited about something, make sure you share their enthusiasm. Discuss it with them in detail and explore ideas. Have fun with it!

 

Be Prepared For The Commitment

Many hobbies require commitment. Whether it’s dance lessons, music lessons, or after school baseball games, you need to be committed to. They will take time and cost money. But it will be worth it!