Tag Archive | Park

11 Great Ways to Reduce Stress on a Family Day Out

Family, Outing, Park, Day Out, Entertainment, Recreation, Lifestyle, Raising Children

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If you’ve got kids, you probably dream of lovely days out as a family. Where everyone is having fun and laughing, learning together and enjoying their day. You see other families having these fairy tale days out where everything is wonderful, and everyone is happy and long for the day that you can do the same. Before we have kids, we imagine that this is what all of our family days out will be like. Lovely and carefree. Then, we have them and start going out together.

We quickly realize that that perfect family day out is nothing but a pipedream and suspect that those families who appear to be having the perfect day are heavily bribing their children.

Family days out are stressful. Sometimes to the point of not being worth it at all. The children whine and moan, even if it’s a destination they have chosen. The food is rubbish, the journey is long and boring, and the entertainment or attraction is never quite how it looks online. By the end of the day, everyone is upset, tired and hungry and you’ve had to deal with 8034 toddler tantrums.

But, does it have to be this way? Is bribery the only way to have a stress-free day out with your family? Surely not. Here are some great tips to reduce all of the stress so you can all enjoy your day.

Plan

Planning your day out in plenty of time gives you a chance to save lots of money, get cheaper transport tickets and prepare an itinerary to make everything as easy as possible. Write lots of lists and make sure you know exactly what you are doing and when. Brief the rest of your party too, and then repeat yourself on the morning of the event.

Don’t Plan

All that said, sometimes it’s best not to plan. When you plan a perfect day out, it often leads to chaos and an immense pressure to have a great time. It can be hard to live up to your expectations. If something comes up and you are free, or you spot something that your family will love last minute, go with it. Sometimes the spontaneous days out with absolutely no preparation and planning are the most fun and the ones that you remember in years to come. Don’t get too hung up on the planning.

Let the Kids Help

When the kids get a little older, they can resent being dragged around with their parents and younger siblings. To be fair, even 6 or 7-year-olds would often rather be at home on their tablets. So, let them help you arrange their perfect day out. Sit together and look at some great family days out online and try to find something that everyone will enjoy. Encourage them to think of not only their needs but of those of the rest of the group, especially any younger children.

Family, Outing, Park, Day Out, Entertainment, Recreation, Lifestyle, Raising Children, Aquarium

Pixabay

A visit to an aquarium such as SeaQuest can be the perfect solution. Younger children and even babies can enjoy watching the colourful fish swimming around, and older kids and adults can make the most of the interactive displays and learning opportunities. Other great options include farms, zoos and fun, family-friendly museums.

Give Older Children Responsibility

Another way to keep older children happy on a family day out is by making them feel needed and appreciated. Give them a job, such as looking after the map and checking things off your to-do list and tell them how important this is and that they are doing you a huge favor. Keep an eye on their progress and encourage and praise them throughout the day. Tell them that everyone is having a much better day because of their help.

Get an Early Night

Family, Outing, Park, Day Out, Entertainment, Recreation, Lifestyle, Raising Children, Baby, Sleep time

Pixabay

The last thing you want on the morning of your big day out is tired and agitated kids or adults for that matter. If the children know that something fun is happening the next day they might find it hard to sleep if they are excited. So, try to keep their routine normal and put them to bed a little earlier. Then, get some rest yourself. Big family days out can be long and tiring, so make sure you are starting on top form.

Give Yourself Plenty of Time

Get up a little early than usual too to give yourself plenty of time to make sure you’ve got everything you need for the day. Then, leave early enough that you aren’t having to rush whether you’re driving or using public transport. Make sure you’ve got enough time for an emergency stop.

Plan Activities for the Journey

You don’t want to be stressed out before you arrive. But children can be hard to entertain on a long journey. So, plan some activities. Think of some games you can play together and take a few small books or toys. You could even let them take their tablets or other devices just for the journey if it keeps everyone happy.

Pack Snacks

Even if the journey is short, you may find you have to spend some of your days in queues or waiting for shows. Kids tend not to be very good at waiting, so healthy snacks are a must. Just make sure you also take a bag for rubbish and some baby wipes for sticky fingers.

Keep the Kids Safe

As a parent, your biggest fear on family days out is always that one of the children will get lost. Even when they start getting older, it’s something that worries us. Temporary ID tattoos with a parent’s name and contact number are a great idea to help keep them safe. You should also make sure they know your real name and that there is a landmark nearby they recognize if they need help.

Remember, it’s Their Day Out Too

It can be easy to get hung up on our children’s behavior, but on a day out it’s important to relax a little. Remember, it’s their day out too, they are excited and might be a little louder than usual. It’s ok to let things slide a little for the good of the day.

Know When to Give Up

However, sometimes, it can seem like everything is against you. The weather is awful; things are closed, the car stops working, your picnic gets ruined or worse. Things happen. Instead of trying to force everyone to have a good time sometimes it’s ok to give it up, go home and watch a DVD together. There’ll be other days.

This is a collaborative post.
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The Rabbit, The Pigeon and The Park – Echoes of my neighbourhood

Thankfully, I went off to unwind with the family before everything went wonky election wise. Now I need to unwind even some more.

Nothing beats relaxing in nature to work out the kinks.

So, take up your mats and collapsible camp chairs and just go and relax. After all said and done, your well-being counts for everything.

Lady Manila shares her breathtaking NaNoPloBano post with us. Have a look see 🙂

On Thursdays, I share pictures about ‘Echos of my Neighbourhood.

If you would like to participate, the challenge is quite simple and you can find out more about it through this link.

 

 

 

Indulgence…Streams of Consciousness Saturday

My Stream of Consciousness Saturday comes out late because I had a brainwave yesterday and indulged in something that’s almost become a novelty for me.

I shut down my systems completely throughout yesterday, took a novel and my mat to the park with my children where I read, dozed off to sleep to the tweet of birds, the gentle breeze, the sound of children playing in the background, the tantalizing aroma of grilling sausages and sweet smell of cotton candy floating to my nostrils sporadically.

I woke up refreshed, thankful and relaxed and I said to myself ‘Jacqueline, you must indulge in this novelty often enough.’

I doubt if it will ever grow stale to just step back for a few hours and just be without the undue pressure that we put on ourselves trying to meet all manners of deadlines.

To more novelty and reading novels 🙂

© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha


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Hide and Seek, Here and Now…

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Here and now, as I sit on the parks bench soaking up the air,
watching the children play hide and seek with Griffin,
the darling old dog of a good neighbour.
Griffin is 14 years old, that’s really old in dog years;
he’s no longer fast and pants quite heavily,
but he still loves a good rub and enjoys playing hide and seek,
as he trudges slowly on his Cocker-Spaniel legs.

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Here and now a bazillion thoughts race through my mind
like flitting fireflies, resting on this and floating to that,
I craft plans with paper and pen;
some thoughts etched in ink,
and some are left to the mind.
…make sandwich of tuna and eggs on a bed of lettuce,
…call mother and enjoy a good laugh with baby sister;
…go with the boys to get a haircut later,
…write a post to publish before I go (this is the post);
…tinker with a few widgets on my upcoming blog.

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Here and now, I feel at ease yet restless…
I have learnt to live day by day and enjoy the moments,
though sometimes my imagination drifts beyond the present.
I try not to query the future for it’s not guaranteed to anyone.
I have learnt that all I truly have is here and now,
and I must make the best of it as much as I can.

© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha

Here and Now – Discover Challenge


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Animal kindness…Every day beautiful people – Kindness Challenge

I wanted to join the Kindness challenge right from the onset but with so much on my schedule, I could barely see where to fit it in until an idea struck me that I could tie it with my daily observation of everyday people. I’ll try as much as I can to keep to the challenge for the next few weeks.

However, having always being a people observer, over time, I’ve noted both the lapses in human kindness as well as the beautiful expressions of kindness people show.RevofKindness

The lady below caught my attention during my early morning visit to the park over the weekend.

Pets and strays are not particularly a favourite in this part of the World though people own their pets and learn to keep them behaved, but in the case of strays, they are at the mercy of mercy.

I’d noticed the cute kittens when they wandered closer but within minutes, I was privy to a scene that made me happy.

The kittens seemed to know that their benevolent ‘Cat lady‘ was on her way, so they wandered out of their hidden corner.

She buys food for them from a nearby Waitrose and comes to the park to feed them each day, under the scolding gaze of the groundskeeper.

We had a chat and she related to me on how she had been told off severally by them, but her mind just couldn’t let her be when she thought that they were starving and now the groundskeeper ignores her 🙂

She couldn’t take in pets ‘cos her apartment is ‘no pets allowed.’ We talked about letting an animal shelter know about the little ones and she agreed to look into it and I thanked her for doing what she was doing.

I left with some sense of happiness. Her kindness didn’t go unnoticed.

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© Jacqueline Oby-Ikocha

Observe kindness around you: “no act of kindness no matter how small, is wasted” – Aesop

P.S. You are invited to our monthly blog party this weekend. It’s fun and you get to meet fantastic folks:-)


Below is my first just published Poetry Book “Out of the silent breath” which is available on Amazon and Smashwords.

When you buy my book, you support me in an invaluable manner.

Out of the silent breath

May I live,

unafraid to breathe.

Free from a choke-hold,

that becomes a stronghold.

May I live,

unafraid to live,

clinging to my expectations,

with feral desperation.

*

*excerpts from my poem*

Good Stuff…Every day beautiful people # 48

“I love books. I love that moment when you open one and sink into it, you can escape from the World, into a story that’s way more interesting than yours will ever be.” Elizabet Scott

“Reading gives us someplace to go when we have to stay where we are.” Unknown

That book she’s reading must be some good stuff 🙂

There are books that are such compulsive reads that when you sink your teeth into them, you are lost in them and you keep going until it’s finished.


Below is my first just published Poetry Book “Out of the silent breath” which is available on Amazon and Smashwords.

When you buy my book, you support me in an invaluable manner.

Out of the silent breath

I hear you in my thoughts…

Your words of wisdom,

of love and encouragement…

They are etched upon my soul.

They keep me warm.

**

*an excerpt from my poem*

Sweet!…

After reading my dear Van’s ice-cream truck post yesterday, I was inspired to post this photo.

It was taken last weekend. A mango sorbet purchased from an ice-cream truck at the park. Yummy  😉

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“Life is like a cup of ice-cream, even the last drop is sweet and enjoyed by those who really love it. Enjoy it before it melts away” Anonymous


Below is my first just published Poetry Book “Out of the silent breath” which is available on Amazon and Smashwords.

When you buy my book, you support me in an invaluable manner.

Out of the silent breath

Never leave me lonely

With words left unsaid

You walk away into the dark

Like a mist, that melts away.