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Get set for Snow

February 26, 2018 | Leave a Comment

Snow is forecast and more wintry weather is expected! Employers and Nannies, discover what needs to be considered…

Employers and Parents of Household Staff

If your nanny or housekeeper is unable to travel to work, you should advise and make them aware that unless specified differently in the employment contract:

  • In these circumstances, all time off will be unpaid unless agreed otherwise
  • The time taken off can be used as annual leave or, if preferred, the time can be made up by working additional hours.
  • Pay will paid on a discretionary basis and only in exceptional cases

It is important to be aware that if your nanny asks to leave work earlier than usual due to the weather conditions, the same conditions would apply.

If one of your nanny’s duties is to collect your children from school or drop them off in the mornings, they need to be aware of the places they can check to keep updated with last minute school closures.

For information from the school and nursery, always check:

  • The school and nursery’s website – all information is usually posted on the website to keep parents updated
  • Social Media – some schools use Twitter and Facebook to share announcements
  • The local radio stations – they usually announce school closures.
  • Your mobile phone – many schools send out text messages to inform you of the latest information

All schools and nurseries will have a procedure in place for such events. It is worth making sure your nanny is aware of what this is.

Have a snow and adverse weather plan in place!

Communication is key! Have a snow plan in place in case of any last-minute closures due to the weather. Some nannies are only employed to work before and after school. If this is the case for you, talk to your nanny to see if they can look after your children during the time they should be at school. Factors including additional pay need to be consider and agreed.

It is important to have a plan put in place for such events, as alternative options might need to be considered.

Employees and Nannies, Drive Safe

One of the most important things to remember is to only drive in the snow if the journey is crucial! Do not drive unless you have to – check the Met Office website and weather websites for snow warnings and advice. Be sure to call your employer and let them know that it’s unsafe for you to travel, don’t risk having an accident.

It is also a good idea to consider the possibility of staying over at your employer’s house. Think ahead, check the weather forecast and plan for adverse weather conditions.

Stay Safe in the Snow

Remember to ensure you keep safe and warm in the snow. The impacts of the cold weather are worse for young children, babies and those with pre-existing medical conditions.

Make sure you:

  • Stay tuned in to weather forecasts
  • Check and maintain daytime room temperatures of 21C
  • Check bedroom night time temperatures and maintain it at 18C or warmer
  • Keep warm and active and if you must go out, dress warmly and wear non-slip shoes.

Written by Emily Martin for Harmony at Home Limited. All Rights Reserved, 2018

A Nannies Birthday Guide

February 22, 2018 | Leave a Comment

On a day to day basis, your nanny is there to look after and care for your children.

Many nannies work long hours so their birthday is the perfect occasion to celebrate and show your appreciation for them.

So, this year add your Nannies birthday to your diary and celebrate it by doing something special.

Discover our guide for ideas to celebrate your nannies birthday and show your appreciation:

Buy them a gift

One of the most popular ways to celebrate a persons birthday is by giving them a gift. So why not do the same for your nanny?

It does not have to be anything fancy or expensive, but just a little something can really mean a lot.

It is completely up to you how much you spend. Discover our gift ideas below:

  • Personalised gifts – Make your gift personal by adding a special touch. Gifts that work perfectly to get personalised include: mugs, key rings, pictures and jewellery. Personalise it with there name, initial or your child’s name.
  • Homemade gifts – If you don’t want to have to break the bank for a present, consider making something special for your nanny. Ask your children to see if they would like to be involved and make a special card or picture for them. Nannies love gifts they can treasure, and a homemade gift is something that they will.
  • Gift card or experience days – These gifts are perfect for when you don’t know what to buy. Choose an experience that you know your nanny will love or get them a gift card for a shop, cafe or place they will enjoy. A small gift that is always appreciated.

Get them a Card

If you don’t feel that a gift would be appropriate for your nanny, why not consider just getting them a card? A card is simple way of acknowledging their birthday, without having to worry about a gift.

Your children might like to right, sign or leave a special message in it. Card are always greatly received and show that you have acknowledged their birthday, without making a fuss.

Arrange a cake for them

Every birthday should be celebrated with a cake, so why not arrange one? Especially if you have a live in nanny, arrange to celebrate their birthday with them. Organise a special birthday meal to celebrate with them and present them with a cake for them to enjoy.

Get your children involved

Another way to make their day special is to make your children part of it.

Give them some time off

Finally, if you can, see if you are able to offer your nanny some time off on or around their birthday. Even if it is just a few hours, a little bit of extra time off on their birthday, will be greatly appreciated.

So, why not find out when your nannies birthday and arrange a few little treats for them. Even the smallest of gifts are appreciated.

Don’t forget to wish them a ‘Happy Birthday’ on their special day!

Written by Emily Martin for Harmony at Home Limited. All Rights Reserved, 2018

Celebrate World Book Day 2018 in Style

February 22, 2018 | Leave a Comment

Thursday 1st March is World Book Day!

World Book Day is back for its 21st year and is a day to celebrate writers, illustrators, authors, reading and all book lovers out there.

Celebrate World Book Day 2018 in style by dressing up as a character from your favorite book or novel. 

It doesn’t have to be a well known story or one that everyone knows about, you just have to love it.

Nannies and parents, encourage your children to get involved this year and have fun dressing up and discovering new books to read and love.

If you are looking for a few ideas, discover our top dress up ideas below:

  • Fantastic Mr Fox
  • Gangsta Granny
  • The Hungry Caterpillar
  • Sophie from The Tiger who came to Tea
  • Angelina from Angelina and the Ballerina
  • The BFG
  • Willy Wonka or Charlie Bucket from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
  • A character from Harry Potter
  • Horrid Henry
  • Mr Men characters
  • Paddington Bear
  • The Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland
  • Mary Poppins

For more ideas of how to celebrate WBD 2018, visit their website. Full of fun ideas and activities for children and the latest news and events.

Discover other ways to celebrate WBD with your children HERE

Written by Emily Martin for Harmony at Home Limited. All Rights Reserved, 2018

Celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Day 2018

February 13, 2018 | Leave a Comment

Don’t forget that the 17th February is Random Acts of Kindness Day 2018…

To celebrate, we have come up with a list of top activities that children can do to show an act of kindness to a friend, a family member, their Nanny or neighbour:

  1. Bake someone some cookies, cakes or brownies
  2. Start a ‘piggy bank’ fund for a worthwhile cause
  3. Give someone a gift of something special
  4. Hold the door open for someone
  5. Offer encouragement to someone
  6. Lend a hand in the kitchen – cooking or doing the dishes
  7. Make a cup of tea for someone
  8. Clean your room
  9. Thank your teacher
  10. Offer to help out with housework or walking the dog

These are just a few simple things that you can do to celebrate Random Acts of Kindness Day.

Just the simplest of acts can have a positive impact on someones day.

So, nannies and parents why not get involved and encourage your children to make someone’s day this year?

 

To find out more information, click and follow the link to be taken to the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation Website: https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/

Written by Emily Martin for Harmony at Home Limited. All Rights Reserved, 2018

Allergy Friendly Pancake Day Recipes for Nannies, Children and Families

February 6, 2018 | Leave a Comment

Nannies and Families, it’s nearly time for Pancake Day. This year Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday) falls on Tuesday the 13th February 2018. It is the one day of the year that it is acceptable to have pancakes for dinner. It is a day that all children, nannies and families can enjoy and get involved with cooking and creating pancakes. It is a perfect opportunity for nannies and families to get the children involved with cooking. Nannies can use the day to encourage the children they care for to help in the kitchen, cooking up some delicious pancakes. Children can also be encouraged to put their creative minds to the test and see what topping flavours they can come up with.

Here are some pancake toppings that are known and loved by all children, nannies and families… and some slightly more obscure ones:

Sweet: Lots of different combinations that children will enjoy…

  • Lemon and Sugar – a classic that is loved by all
  • Maple Syrup – Sweet and delicious
  • Honey – works well on its own or with yoghurt or fruit and is a perfect choice for a healthy pancake.
  • Chocolate Spread – Perfect served on its own. Or to make it a little healthier, try adding some fresh strawberries/raspberries/banana
  • American Blueberry/ syrup – The perfect topping for a thicker style pancake
  • Fresh fruit and ice cream – You choose! All different types of fruit make the perfect accompaniment to pancakes. Why not try adding your favourite fruit and a dollop of ice cream to complement your pancake?
  • Berries and White chocolate – Frozen berries and white chocolate to top of your pancake, delicious!
  • Chocolate, peanut butter and banana – this super sweet filling will be sure to fill you up!
  • Salted caramel and pretzel pancakes – perfect to serve with ice cream. The perfect combination of sweetness and saltiness.

Savoury: Some people have their pancakes savoury… check out some of these topping ideas…

  • Bacon and Eggs – a breakfast pancake!
  • Ham and Cheese – the perfect pairing
  • Bacon and avocado
  • Spinach and grated cheese
  • Tomato and Mushroom – a great choice if you are wanting to create a healthy pancake
  • Tuna and sweetcorn – 2 foods which go hand in hand and are perfect to put on top of pancakes
  • Bacon and Maple Syrup – the slightly controversial, sweet and savoury topping

There are so many flavour combinations that can be created. Why not try a few different combinations and see which one is your favourite!

Fun ideas for Nannies and Children:

To make your pancake that little bit extra special, why not create an exciting design/shape with your pancakes or use your toppings to do so?

Here are a few deigns/shapes that you can have a go at creating:

  • A heart
  • A flower
  • Farm yard animals
  • A cat
  • A dog
  • A bunny
  • A Teddy Bear
  • Mickey mouse

A fun way to try out new designs and get creative with children. All you need to do is draw the outline of your desired shape with pancake mixture onto a heated pan, let it cook for a few seconds, fill in with more pancake mixture, cook further until golden brown and then flip to cook the other side. It may take practice and may not work out the first time, but it is a great way to be inventive and have fun in the kitchen.

 pancake day recipes for nannies nad children

Pancake Recipes

Perfect Pancake Recipe: ideal for sweet/savoury toppings:

You will need:

100g of plain flour

2 eggs

300ml of semi skimmed milk

1 tablespoon of sunflower or vegetable oil (plus extra for frying)

A pinch of salt

To make:

  • Put the flour and a pinch of salt into a bowl and create a well in the middle
  • Add the eggs, 50ml of milk and 1tbsp of oil to the middle of the flour
  • Start to whisk from the middle, slowly combining the mixture. Once combined, beat until smooth and a thick paste has been formed. More milk can be added at this point if the mixture is too stiff.
  • Add a good splash of milk and whisk to loosen. Whilst still whisking, slowly pour in the remainder of the milk.
  • If you can wait, set aside the mixture for 30 minutes.
  • Grab a frying pan and place over a medium heat. Heat up some oil and then add some mixture to the pan (enough to cover). Depending how thick you like your pancakes, add the right amount for you
  • Cook for 30 seconds to 1 minute, flip when golden brown and then allow to cook again
  • Once you have the perfect amount of pancakes, add your favourite toppings and enjoy!

https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/3374/perfect-pancakes

If you or someone in the family has a special dietary requirement, maybe you have an intolerance to gluten, dairy products or eggs, you don’t have to miss out on Pancake Day. These recipes are tailored to suit almost all requirements:

Allergy Friendly Pancake Recipes

Gluten Free pancake recipe:

You will need:

125g of gluten free flour

1 egg

250ml of milk

Butter for frying

To make:

  • Put the flour into a bowl and make a well in the centre.
  • Crack the egg into the well and pour in a quarter of the milk
  • Whisk the mixture until a paste is formed and then add another quarter of milk.
  • Once the mixture is free of lumps, add the remainder of the milk and stir once again
  • If you can wait, set aside the mixture for 20 – 30 minutes. If not, start cooking!
  • Using a non-stick frying pan, place on the heat and add a small amount of butter and wait until it starts to bubble.
  • Then add the mixture, ensuring enough is added to cover the base of the frying pan. Cook until golden brown and then flip and cook.
  • Once you have the perfect amount of pancakes, add your favourite toppings and enjoy!

https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2920665/glutenfree-pancakes

You will need:

125g of plain flour

1 egg

300ml of help of coconut milk (used as a replacement for regular milk)

Sunflower or rice bran oil for frying

To make:

  • Put the flour into a bowl and create a well in the middle
  • Crack the egg into the well and pour in a quarter of the milk
  • Whisk the mixture until a paste is formed and then add another quarter of milk.
  • Once the mixture is free of lumps, add the remainder of the milk and stir once again
  • If you can wait, set aside the mixture for 20 – 30 minutes. If not start cooking!
  • Using a non-stick frying pan, place over the heat and add a splash of oil and allow to heat up.
  • When hot enough, add the mixture, ensuring enough is added to cover the base of the frying pan. Cook until golden brown and then flip and cook.
  • Once you have the perfect amount of pancakes, add your favourite toppings and enjoy!

https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2920663/dairyfree-pancakes

Dairy, egg and gluten free pancake recipe:

You will need:

125g of gluten free flour

An egg replacer equivalent to 1 egg

250ml hemp of coconut milk (used as a replacement for regular milk)

Sunflower or rice bran oil for frying

To make:

  • Put the flour into a bowl and make a well in the centre
  • Pour in the egg replacer and a quarter of the milk
  • Whisk the mixture until a paste is formed and then add another quarter of milk.
  • Once the mixture is free of lumps, add the remainder of the milk and stir once again
  • If you can wait, set aside the mixture for 20 – 30 minutes. If not start cooking!
  • Using a non-stick frying pan, place over the heat and add a splash of oil and allow to heat up.
  • When hot enough, add the mixture, ensuring enough is added to cover the base of the frying pan. Cook until golden brown and then flip and cook.
  • Once you have the perfect amount of pancakes, add your favourite toppings and enjoy!

https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2920662/egg-dairy-and-glutenfree-pancakes

Written by Emily Martin for Harmony at Home Limited. All Rights Reserved, 2017

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