Top

A Guide to Bonfire Night

November 2, 2017 | Leave a Comment

Bonfire Night Traditions:

Do you have specific traditions that you do as a family every year?

Food! Traditional yummy food known to be enjoyed on Bonfire Night:

  • Jacket potatoes
  • Pulled pork
  • Warm winter soup
  • Toffee apples
  • Marshmallows/ smores – A bonfire night must!
  • Hot chocolate – To keep you warm whilst watching the firework display.

Bonfire Night Safety

The Firework Code from the RoSPA:

The Royal Society of the Protection of Accidents (RoSPA) have top tips to ensure safety around fireworks:

  1. Plan your firework event, making sure it is safe and enjoyable
  2. Always keep fireworks in a closed box before use
  3. Only use one firework at a time
  4. Read and follow the instructions on each firework
  5. Light all fireworks at arms length with a taper and stand well back at a suitable distance
  6. Make sure naked flames are kept away from fireworks (including cigarettes)
  7. Never return to a firework once it has been lit
  8. Do not put fireworks into pockets
  9. Never throw away fireworks
  10. If using rocket fireworks, make sure they are not directed at spectators
  11. Do not use paraffin or petrol on bonfires
  12. Make sure any fire is put out and the surrounding area is left safe, prior to leaving

RoSPA Sparkler Safety

We all enjoy using sparklers, especially children! However, they can potentially be dangerous so these safety tips from the RoSPA should be followed:

  • Sparklers are not recommended to be used by children under the age of 5
  • When handling a sparkler, gloves should be worn to keep hands protected
  • Sparklers should be held at an arms length away from the body when being lit
  • Sparklers should not be ‘waved’ directly towards individuals
  • Do not hold a baby whilst handling a sparkler
  • When the sparkler has finished, place in a bucket of cold water

Top Tips to Remember on Bonfire Night

Nannies and parents, if you planning on attending a firework event or planning to have your own firework display in your garden with your charges or children, here are a few top tips to remember:

  • Stand at a suitable distance away from the bonfire and fireworks. Usually, the area will be sectioned off and should be avoided. Make sure children are aware that they cannot go near the area.
  • Keep a bucket of water close by in case of any emergencies.
  • Make sure you and your children or charges are warm. With winter time well and truly underway, November is often a very cold time of year. Make sure you are wearing plenty of layers, a thick coat, a pair of gloves, a scarf and a hat or ear muffs.
  • Make sure your children or charges are recognisable in the dark. Children should wear recognisable or fluorescent clothing.
  • Make sure small children are kept in pushchairs or on safety reins to prevent them from running off.
  • Make sure no pets are around the bonfire or fireworks. Pets should be kept in side at all times when fireworks are ongoing.

It is important to remember that not everyone enjoys fireworks and for some, they find bonfire night particularly scary. If your children or charges are scared of the fireworks and don’t want to watch from outside, don’t worry about them missing out. Fireworks can still be enjoyed from inside, watching by the window. To get an even better view, turn your lights off in your house!

This is also certainly true for pets. Make sure you take their needs into consideration by keeping in mind a few simple things:

  • Close all windows inside your home to reduce the sound of bangs and explosions.
  • Close all the curtains to try and block and the light from the fireworks.
  • Try to keep everything as normal as possible. If your pet is hiding or trying to keep themselves distracted, let them.
  • If you have a dog or a pet that needs walking, make sure you do so, prior to the fireworks starting.

To find out more, check out the RoSPA website to get a full understanding of firework safety!

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

Get set for National Nanny Recognition Week 2017

September 5, 2017 | Leave a Comment

National Nanny Recognition Week 2017

Are you aware that the fourth week in September (24th – 30th) 2017 is National Nanny Recognition Week?

This special week created in 1998 recognises the work that nannies do for families. National Nanny Recognition Week gives families the opportunity to celebrate everything that their nanny does for them.

National Nanny Recognition week is not necessarily a time to give your nanny a gift, it is however, a time to reflect on the amazing work that nannies do, and a time to say thank you.

How to celebrate National Nanny Recognition Week

Tell your nanny how much they mean to you.

Make an effort to tell your nanny how much they mean to you. There are many ways in which you can do this:

  • Give them words of encouragement – throughout National Nanny Recognition Week, give your nanny a few extra words of encouragement
  • Be positive – When your nanny helps you out, praise them for the job they have done.

Personalise a special gift for your Nanny

Put your creative minds to the test and see what gifts you can make with your children. Creating a personal gift is an ideal activity to do with children to show how much their nanny means to them personally. It gives them the opportunity to get involved and make something special that their nanny can treasure.

Give your Nanny a bunch of flowers

A bunch of flowers is a simple gift to give your nanny to show your appreciation. Choose a bouquet you think they would love and give it to your Nanny some point during National Nanny Recognition Week.

Let your Nanny have a surprise half or day off

In celebration of National Nanny Recognition Week and to show how much they mean to you, why not see if you are able to let your nanny have some time off. Any time off you can offer would be appreciated.

Invite your Nanny to have a meal with you and your family

The perfect idea for a ‘live in Nanny’ to show your appreciation. Invite them to join you for a meal at breakfast or dinner, don’t forget to prepare their preferred meal.

The Simplest Gift of All…

Having a great Nanny employed to work with your family is a something that cannot be taken for granted. Over National Nanny Recognition Week, make sure you make the effort to tell your nanny how special they are to you and how they are a valued member of your family. A little bit of praise and appreciation, really can go a long way. Offering praise can help them to feel appreciated and know that they work they are doing is not going un-noticed.

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

The secret to a perfect Picnic

August 7, 2017 | Leave a Comment

How to ensure you have a perfect picnic

When the sun is shining it is the perfect opportunity to enjoy a picnic in the open air with friends, family and children.

Having a picnic is the perfect way to spend a sunny day. Everybody loves going on a picnic and it something that children are able to enjoy to.

Picnic Essentials:

Here are our top 10 picnic essentials that you should always remember to pack:

  1. Food & Drinks – Top picnic essentials
  2. Cups, plates and cutlery – Another picnic essential to ensure is packed.
  3. Other kitchen utensils if needed – Depending on what food you are planning on taking with you, make sure you are able to open everything and have the utensils needed to serve with.
  4. Condiments – A selection of condiments are always good to have available to go with your food.
  5. Napkins – Always good to have on standby.
  6. Ice packs – These are ideal for keeping food chilled and as fresh as possible.
  7. Picnic blanket – Having something to lay out food or sit on is always a good idea.
  8. Chairs – As an alternative to a blanket and a more comfortable option.
  9. Rubbish bags – Boring but essential to make sure you have them so you are able to clear up after.
  10. Something to keep children entertained – See below for ideas.

Things to do when going on a picnic:

To keep children entertained and happy, consider taking some of these things to keep them occupied:

  • A Frisbee
  • A ball
  • Sports equipment – Croquet, cricket stumps, tennis/ badminton rackets
  • Bikes
  • Colouring
  • Pens and pencils to draw surroundings
  • Music/ CD player

Whenever you decide to go on on a picnic make sure you have packed the essentials and have everything you need to keep children entertained. Make the most of the sunny weather by spending time outside with family and friends.

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

nanny picnic, childrens picnic, family picnic

nanny picnic, childrens picnic, family picnic

Cost effective days out and activities in Sussex for Parents and Nannies

July 11, 2017 | Leave a Comment

Cost Effective Weekend Ideas/activities for Parents and Nannies

Sussex

There is so much to discover in Sussex! This being said, it is not always cheap. If you are looking for some fun activities to do with your children or nanny children at the weekend that are fun, family orientated and don’t break the bank, then hopefully this article will help.

Sussex has so much to be discovered, including all of this:

Top Sussex Attractions/places to visit:

Brighton

Brighton is such an exciting place to visit with lots of different attractions to see and lots of activities to take part in. Perfect for families and nannies, providing entertainment and excitement for all!

Brighton Beach

Who doesn’t love going to the beach? Always an exciting day out and the perfect place to take children. With the warmer weather fast approaching, Brighton Beach is the place to be. There are also lots of attractions to visit along the beach side:

  • Brighton Fishing Museum – Free Admission, open 10am – 5pm Monday – Sunday – Perfect place to find out about the fishing and beach trade. Suitable for all ages to enjoy.
  • Beach Railway – The perfect way to see the sights of Brighton Beach, whilst sitting back and being taken on a ride you will be sure to enjoy. A 1 mile long route that runs between terminal stations at the Aquarium (close to the Palace Pier) and Black Rock (close to Brighton Marina). There is a fee to go on the railway, but it is a reasonable price. You are also able to buy a family ticket which you may find will be cheaper than buying individuals.
  • Traditional sea side activities – Lots to take part in along the beachside. Activities that children are going to love including a ‘merry go round’.
  • Brighton Pier – One of the most iconic places to visit in Brighton. An ideal place to visit with children of all ages. With free admission onto the pier, you are then able to visit various food and drink outlets, sampling the famous fish and Chips that Brighton has to offer, or picking up some of the traditional seaside treats like a Mr Whippy ice cream or some tasty donuts. When tummies have been filled, check out the pier’s attractions, arcades and rides. Lots of rides and amusements to choose from to suit different ages of children. The great thing about the pier is you are able to keep costings minimum. You may decide to set a limit for your children in terms of ride money or just enjoy the views that are on offer. A fantastic family day out that can be enjoyed on a budget.

British Airways i360

The i360 is the tallest moving observation tower in the world and is an exciting way to see Brighton & Hove all at once. Located on Brighton Beach close to the iconic West Pier. Suitable for children and ideal for families. Children are able to point out key landmarks, ships and all exciting things that they see. Children are also able to enjoy animations showing how the i360 was built and there is also a free app that can be downloaded to enjoy a photo hunt around the attraction.

The i360 is not free and you do have to pay a charge to go on. However, children under 4 will go free and if you book online, you are able to save some money on your tickets.

To find out more about ticket pricing and opening hours, visit their website >>> http://britishairwaysi360.com/

If you and your children prefer going on adventures and getting muddy then these places are for you:

Tulleys Farm

Lots of fun to be had at Tulleys Farm. An ideal day out that it suitable for children of all ages. Lots of seasonal and day to day events take place during the year at Tulley’s Farm, so there is always something to do and take part in. There is also a tea room to enjoy, a courtyard to explore, a play area to have lots of adventures in and an animal patch to get up close with some of the animals Tulley’s has.

There is free admission into Tulleys. If you want to take part in a special event that they are running, then there would be a charge to pay.

http://www.tulleysfarm.com/

Washbrooks Farm

Washbrooks has it all! Animals, climbing frames, sandpits, tractor rides, a football pitch, a zip wire and lots of play areas all to be discovered. They also have a place to relax and grab a cup of coffee or some lunch when needed.

Open everyday form 9:30 – 5pm. There is a fee to enter, however children under the age of 3 go free and if you are a family of 4 you can save on ticket prices. Tickets are very reasonably priced and it is definitely worth the trip. With so much to see and do, little ones will not get bored.

http://washbrooks.co.uk/index.php

National Trust

If you and your family prefer a quieter place to visit and spend time together then why not visit a National Trust place. Sussex is home to lots of National Trust establishments that have stunning scenery and are child friendly.

Here are a few free/low cost National Trust locations:

  • Wakehurst Place, Haywards Heath, West Sussex – Free for children under 16, National Trust Members and friends of Kew/Wakehurst
  • Devils Dyke, near Brighton, West Sussex
  • Ditchling Beacon, East Sussex
  • Birling Gap and the Seven Sisters, near Eastbourne, East Sussex

There are so many places to visit and lots of stunning scenery to be scene. To find out more information about the places listed or to discover other National Trust Locations, click on the link >>>

https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/days-out/regionlondonsoutheast/sussex

Castles

An exciting and educating way to spend the day that all are able to enjoy.

Here are a few castles located in Sussex that have stunning scenery and are suitable for families:

  • Arundel Castle
  • Lewes Castle
  • Bodium Castle

The admission of these places is not free, so if you are planning on visiting make sure you plan ahead and decide on the perfect time of year you would like to go and what events would be best suited to you and your family.

Sussex has so many exciting things to offer and lots of exciting places to see. Hopefully this article has helped you to gain an understanding of them. There are lots of activities and days out to be had that don’t cost a fortune. Spend time with your family or Nanny children discovering what Sussex has to offer.

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

Spend time at the library this Summer

June 27, 2017 | Leave a Comment

How you can enjoy spending time at the library this Summer

There are so many ways that your children can enjoy the library. A library gives children the opportunity to unlock their imaginations with a huge range of books to discover.

This Summer, West Sussex County Council have set a new, exciting challenge for children to take part in. Children will be challenged to solve a mystery with the ‘Animal Agents’ gang. With a choice of 4 suspects, children will be challenged to put their detective caps on, solve the clues and work out the crime.

The Summer reading challenge begins on 15th July 2017 and is completely free for families to participate in. Children will be required to read a series of 6 books as well as taking part in a interactive activities in order to be able to solve the crime. At the end, they will be rewarded with a medal and a certificate of their very own so they can show off their achievement.

The Summer reading challenge is an ideal event for young children over the Summer holidays. With children broken up from school, it is important to keep their brains active and this event gives them the perfect opportunity to do that.

The summer reading challenge is available at a selection of West Sussex libraries. The case closes on the 16th September 2017, so make sure you have solved the crime in time!

This challenge is open to all and children of all ages are able to take part. Toddlers can get involved with the ‘mini challenge’, collecting stickers as they share library books. Toddlers will be awarded with a special gold medal certificate and certificate to show off their achievements. Parents are also feel encouraged to join in. Make an example to your children and choose a book to read alongside your children.

So, if you are stuck for things to do over the Summer holidays, why not go to the library to discover a huge range of books and fun challenges to take part in.

Good luck with solving the crime!

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

Nannies and Families Celebrate World Book Day

March 2, 2017 | Leave a Comment

Nannies and families, World Book Day is on the 1st March!

This is an exciting opportunity for all children, nannies and families to get involved by dressing up, reading and bringing their favourite stories to life!

World Book Day gives young people the chance to celebrate reading, authors, illustrators and books. It gives them the chance to discover new books and new authors to get to know and love.

2017 is the 20th World Book Day celebration and it is a time where young people can come together and celebrate reading. The main aim of World Book Day is ‘to encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading by providing them with the opportunity to have a book of their own’.

Taken from the World Book Day Website: http://www.worldbookday.com/

Dressing up:

Nannies and parents, a great way to encourage children to join in is by dressing up. Your child may be celebrating at school and may be asked to come in dressed as their favourite character from their favourite book or your child may just want to dress up at home and have some fun.

There are so many different books to choose from, it can be tricky to just choose one character to dress up as. If you are looking for some inspiration, here are a few well know characters that you can encourage your children to dress up as:

  • Harry Potter
  • Star Wars
  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Little Red Riding Hood
  • Dorothy – Wizard of Oz
  • Mary Poppins
  • Matilda, Miss Trunchbull – Matilda
  • Willy Wonka
  • Horrid Henry
  • The Cat in the Hat
  • Mr Men characters
  • A Peach – James and the Giant Peach
  • The Big Friendly Giant – The BFG
  • Where’s Wally?
  • The Gruffalo

Bring your favourite stories to life:

Parents and nannies encourage your children to re-create their favourite stories/ books with some dressing up and role play. A fun idea to encourage children to get involved with World Book Day.

Nannies and families, why not have even more fun by joining your children and getting involved with dressing up and role play!

You will need to:

  • Choose your favourite book & character
  • Get dressed up as your favourite character and start planning your role play
  • Bring your favourite book to life!
  • Have fun recreating your favourite short story! All children can get involved.

Writing

Another important aspect of World Book Day is writing. Children have amazing, creative imaginations! Nannies and parents, encourage them get thinking, put pen to paper and see what wonderful stories they can come up with.

However you decide to celebrate World Book Day, enjoy it. It is a day that all can get involved with, children, parents and nannies! To celebrate World Book Day, many National Book Tokens are given out. If your child is given a World Book Day token to spend, remember to take them to choose a new book and get reading! To find more about information about World Book Day, National Book Tokens and more exciting ways to celebrate this amazing day, click the website link: http://www.worldbookday.com/

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

Cost Effective London day out ideas for Parents and Nannies

February 16, 2017 | Leave a Comment

Nannies and parents, are you looking for some low, cost effective ideas for days out in London with your children this half term?

This article will help you see what low cost activities are available in London for nannies and families to take part in over half term.

Whilst going to the theatre or visiting London’s top attractions like the London Eye, Madame Tussauds and the London Aquarium are all fun days out for the children, they are also particularly pricey. This can be just to enter, and doesn’t take into consideration costings for coffees, lunch and the trips to the gift shop. If you have a big family, a day trip to London can be scary!

But it doesn’t have to be, you just have to know where to look and plan ahead. Here are some top London attractions that are low cost or even free that are still fun for all the family.

Museums:

The Natural History Museum:

About: Lots of exhibits to see and an all-round great day to be had. You are able to view the upcoming events and exhibits on the Natural History website so you can plan and tailor your visit according to what you and your little ones love. There is always so much to see so it is defiantly a day trip to be had.

Fees: What is even better is that admissions are FREE so you don’t have to worry about paying an absolute fortune just to get you and your family in. The only charges that you may occur are for some ‘special exhibits’ and for any coffees you buy or any little treats you pick up in the gift shop. What is fantastic about this, is that it is totally up to you about how much you want to pay. More information can be found on the website here:

General Information: Open Daily 10:00am – 17:50pm

Website: http://www.nhm.ac.uk/

The Science Museum:

About: The London Science Museum is not only extremely fun and interactive but it is educational as well. A fun way to get your children interested in Science and learn all about Space, Einstein, engineering, robots and so much more. There is always an exciting event on at the Science Museum so be sure to check out the website to see their event calendar. Suitable for families, with activities available for all age groups.

Fees: Just like the Natural History Museum, it is FREE admission into the museum. Most of the exhibitions are free, however there is a charge for the IMAX cinema, simulators and some special events. More information about this can be found on the website here:

General Information: Open daily 10am – 6pm

Website: http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/

Tourist Attractions/events:

Even though there may not be free to enter, there is nothing stopping you from visiting London’s top attractions and snapping some pics of you and your family.

Here is a list of some of the top attractions in London:

  • The London Eye
  • Buckingham Palace – Changing of the Guard
  • Big Ben
  • Tower Bridge
  • Trafalgar Square
  • Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

Parks:

Why not visit ones of these top parks with your family. The children are able to run around and burn off some energy or engage in some of the selected park activities, whilst you can sit back and relax looking at the stunning scenery around you. When the weather gets a little warmer, why not pack a picnic, and enjoy a lovely day out. Suitable for all ages and is absolutely free to all.

Hyde Park

A great selection of activities to enjoy. Including, swimming, boating, cycling and skating. Also facilities including pitches for sports games, tennis courts, horse riding tracks and a fun filled playground for children to enjoy are all available. Ice skating is also available during the colder months, running from November to January.

St James Park

Home too many different types of wildlife. You may be lucky enough to spot pelicans, which are fed daily at 2:30, water birds, owls, woodpeckers and bats! A perfect opportunity to spend time with the family and see lots of different animals

Richmond Park

An ideal space to run around and take in some great scenery. If you are lucky, you may even be able to spot a few deer’s running around.

Kensington Gardens

Also called the Royal Park, is the home of the Peter Pan statue. There are also 2 playgrounds including the Diana, Princess of Wales memorial playground for children to enjoy.

London is full of fun! Whether you live there as a family or nanny, or are visiting for a day or weekend, there is always something to be discovered, lots to be seen and plenty of adventures to be had, without having to break the bank. So go on, see what you can discover in the great City of London.

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

We are supporting Anti Bullying Week!

November 17, 2016 | Leave a Comment

Anti-bullying Week 2016 is being held between the 14th and 18th November with the theme ‘power for good’ and is organised by Anti-Bullying Alliance.

You can follow the Anti-bullying Weeks’ events, tips and articles with the following hashtags:
#antibullyingweek #powerforgood

Print

Fun ideas for celebrating St. Georges Day with your little Dragons…

April 8, 2016 | Leave a Comment

St. Georges Day is always celebrated on April 23rd & is the National day of England. St George is famous for slaying a dragon in 303, and has since become the patron Saint of England.

There are lots of fun things to do for St. George’s day for Nannies and children alike; here are a few of our favourites;

St. Georges Day Activities for Nannies and Children

  • Make St. George’s Day Bunting & Flags.
  • Make a tissue paper red rose and wear on your Lapel.
  • Dress Up – St. George, the Dragon or the Princess!
  • Throw a party!
  • Cook Traditional dishes, the best selection to be found in ‘Jane Grigson’s English Food Cook Book’.

Free London Attractions suitable for Nannies and Children

The Mayor of London’s annual Feast of St George takes place in Trafalgar Square with a Shakespearean theme. Celebrity chefs offer cooking demos, stalls selling food and drink, and family-friendly games — with live music. 23 April, 12pm-6pm

The V&A Museum of Childhood hosts a family-friendly day of English folk music and dance. Watch performances by the Trad Academy and the Becontree Brass Band, and take part in art and craft activities. 11.30am-4.30pm

Interesting Facts

Did you know that the Scout movement has been celebrating St George’s Day on 23 April since its first years.

Odd but true – “Shakespeare was born & died on St. Georges Day”

Further information about St. Georges Day can be found on Wikipedia here.

Flag of England

Flag of England

Fun Family Things to do over Easter!

March 24, 2016 | Leave a Comment

Easter Weekend is a great 4 day weekend for all the family, whether it’s Easter egg hunts or enjoying a big Easter Sunday dinner with all the family and friends. There are plenty of activities to do over the weekend, so if you are a mummy or a nanny take a look at our ideas here…

London are creating many wonderful events for this wonderful weekend that are great for all the family, luckily it’s only a train ride away!

Chocolate

There is an amazing chocolate tour around London for the ultimate chocolate lovers. This three hour tour through Mayfair lets you learn about the history behind chocolate, how it’s produced and traded. Plus you get the pleasure of sampling different chocolates, truffles macaroons along the way- all family favourites. The walk however is only suitable for children age 13+, so not the best family day out if you have younger children, and booking in advance is important.

Easter Egg Hunts

On Friday 25th March, The Roof Gardens in Kensington are holding an Easter Hunt for Adults!  This will be taking place 100ft above London where adults will be challenged to find hidden treats among three different themed gardens. Alongside this, make sure you keep an eye out for their Roof Garden’s Ducks accompanied by some Easter tags and be in with a chance to win some special prizes.

Over the next couple of days (25th March – 28th March) there is an Easter egg hunt taking place at Lee Valley Park Farms. This Easter egg hunt is brilliant for all ages. Take time to walk around the farm and meet many different farm animals along your way to finding your Easter eggs. Get the chance to meet new arrivals on the farm and not forgetting the possibility to meet the Easter bunny! Also, make a trip on Tex the Tractor to their working dairy farm and let the kids run around in their in and outdoor areas.

Family Theatre

Take time from the 29th March to the 10th April to visit the theatre this Easter, from magical stories that will sure to keep your children interested. Roald Dahl’s, The witches, a story about a boy and his grandmother battling witches that are trying to turn children into mice.  This is being shown in the Rose theatre, Kingston

Of course these are only a few attractions happening over the weekend, but if you love exploring London these will sure make your four day weekend a real treat.

Happy Easter!

Happy Easter!

X
- Enter Your Location -
- or -