As a parent, it’s tempting to let your children enjoy the carefree days of childhood without any real responsibility. We all want our children to be happy, and what’s more enjoyable than playing and creating without any obligation or accountability?

Feelings of accomplishment, self-sufficiency, and independence contribute to a child’s enjoyment and continue to fuel a sense of self-worth and happiness as they grow into adulthood. And children are more than capable of “working” and still enjoying the process and the benefits for their developing minds.

By using chores to teach your children skills that will help them navigate the road to well-adjusted adulthood, you create a strong, reliable foundation for a satisfying life. Starting at an early age and letting your children progressively take on more responsibility will help develop positive habits and develop life skills that will last a lifetime.


The words “I can” may just be two of the most important words your child will ever say to themselves, especially early in life. Allowing your children to complete household chores on their own helps to develop that all-important grit and “can do” attitude. Merely knowing that they can accomplish a task helps your children trust their abilities and makes them more willing to take on other tasks that may be unfamiliar or appear difficult.

Keep in mind that completing a task or chore alone is enough; their attempts don’t need to be perfect or even well done. The sense of self-sufficiency comes from achieving something, regardless of how well it’s done. While it’s okay to guide them and help when necessary, just knowing that you have faith in their abilities to get the job done is the critical part at this stage of their development.


That sense of belonging that is so important to your children is strengthened by giving them responsibility. A child who is given a chore to complete will naturally feel that their contribution is valued and that their help is necessary as a part of the family.

Think of a job where you weren’t given any responsibility. You’ll know exactly how children feel when they aren’t given a chance to contribute and be a part of the “team.”

That sense of responsibility you are helping to develop spills over into many other aspects of your children’s wellbeing. When you give your child responsibility for accomplishing something, you are nourishing their self-worth, sense of reliability and other parts of their psyche. Above all else, you are telling them that you know you can count on them and that they are needed.


While it’s important to allow young children to complete chores without additional help, that doesn’t mean you can’t “work” side-by-side and instill a sense of self-sufficiency. Developing an understanding of inter-dependency in your children is just as important as creating a sense of independence. This ability to understand the necessity of relying on others will give them the skills they need to build healthy relationships as they mature.

The benefits of doing chores with your children are numerous. Not only do you get the chance to guide them in developing their skills for completing chores well, but you also enjoy that sometimes elusive “quality time” that is so critical for you and your child. You get the opportunity to teach them that working together can often result in a more desirable outcome and get the job done quicker!

Routine and Structure

Children need structure, and they feel most comfortable when their lives follow a familiar routine. Consistently helping out with chores around the house, especially with a somewhat regular schedule, gives your children a sense of structure.

Your children will quickly learn how developing a routine helps them more easily accomplish things that are their responsibility. As your children become more proficient in completing their chores, their sense of accomplishment will continue to grow.

Work Ethic

As your children become accustomed to routine chores, they will naturally begin to understand the relationship between hard work and accomplishment. The simple correlation between scrubbing harder and a cleaner floor and the general sense of wellbeing they get from putting forth a little extra effort will go a long way to developing a strong work ethic.

Time Management

As your children get older, they will find that their progressively fuller schedule will no longer allow them to focus exclusively on one routine or task. Getting things done on a regular basis becomes more difficult. Juggling homework, their social life, and chores around the house will be difficult. Your children will need to develop new skills to handle the increasing demands on their time.

With older children, it may be tempting for you to take some of the responsibilities off of your child’s plate to allow them to focus more on pressing things like academics. After all, no parent wants to watch their child struggle to keep up with their responsibilities or fall behind in their studies. However, giving in to this natural desire to keep your children from feeling overwhelmed means missing the chance to help them gain critical time management skills that will be essential in adulthood. Your children are perfectly capable of developing the coping skills needed to get through trying times.

By using chores to teach your children essential skills and life lessons, you are taking advantage of the most formative years in their life. When you help them develop the strong foundation these valuable life skills create, you are giving them the tools they’ll need to grow into well-adjusted and dependable adults.

Thank you to The Maids for providing this content.

Using Chores To Teach Your Children Valuable Life Skills

My Random Musings
Musings Of A Tired Mummy

How to prepare your daughter for her first period is something that will be on the mind of mums of tweens and teens. You don’t know quite when this key milestone will happen but you want her to know the facts and also have some idea of what periods will mean for her for approximately 38 years of her life. If you are like me, you find it easy to discuss such matters but perhaps you are a parent who struggles to approach anything to do with bodies or sex. What are the various ways you can prepare your daughter for her first period.

Talk to her openly

OK, so you may be a little embarrassed but if you don’t talk to her you can bet someone else will. I remember a girl at school who came to me for her information. Now luckily I had a mum who was open to discussing things with me so I was relatively clued up but by no means perfectly.


There are books on periods available now and on the wider challenges and joys of becoming a woman. My own mum left a book by an agony aunt on my bed and told me I could ask her anything once I had read it. My daughter was ahead of the game and chose a book on periods out of the library herself presenting it to me and telling me she would ask if she had any questions.  I was very impressed with her that day.


Ensure your daughter has access to pads or tampons. I think most of us start off with pads and it can be a little scary at first for your daughter to think about inserting a tampon into her body. A really great tip is to provide her with something like a pencil case or tin for her to keep supplies with her at all times so when the first period or an unexpected one later arrives, she is all set.  Consider pants that are secure such as those from Knixteen which are available online.


Only recently have I let myself off the hook as I come towards the end of my time having periods. It is OK to realise that if you have cramps or other not so good elements  of periods, it is sensible to take it easy. This might mean a nap, a treat or extra cuddles. I like that my daughter is  already taking extra care of herself at her time of the month. She is an inspiration and I often think she is teaching me  rather than the other way around. I am going to carve out some special times for us when she has her period where we do things together as the amazing women we both are.

Involve others

OK, so perhaps you don’t need to be like my own mum who telephoned every member of the family to announce my first period but you can involve others in supporting your daughter. As with many parenting issues, you are not the only person who can help her. My mum dispatched my dad to buy me a cake when I had my first period to celebrate me becoming a woman. That might sound a little corny but it is a gesture I have loved ever since. I made sure both my husband and boys knew about my daughter starting her periods and what she would need from them at this special time of the month.

How To Prepare Your Daughter For Her First Period

 What tips do you have on how to prepare your daughter for her first period?


Cuddle Fairy
Shank You Very Much

The only opportunity you might have to spend with adults is at children’s birthday parties or at the school gates. In fact, you might not be able to remember the last time you enjoyed an evening out that exceeded 8 pm.

However, becoming a parent doesn’t mean you need to give up on your social life. It is possible to care for your children while enjoying a little adult conversation. Find out how to balance children and a social life.

Find a Dependable Babysitter

Unless you want to take your children out with you, you’ll need to find a dependable babysitter to enjoy an evening with your partner, friends or family. For example, you could ask a parent, relative or friend to care for your child to enjoy a well-earned night out. If this isn’t possible, you could always arrange a babysitter via a professional agency.

Save Up for a Night Out

One reason you might not be able to enjoy much of a social life could be due to your finances, as you may not have the cash to spare for drinks, taxis and a new outfit. If so, consider saving up, so you have the money in the bank for a night out with your spouse or friends.

Host a Dinner Party

If you are unable to book a babysitter or don’t want to leave your children, you always have the option of inviting your friends over for dinner. Simply serve a delicious meal for your loved ones and enjoy a drink or two once your children have gone to bed.

Organize a Mobile IV

Does the thought of a hangover prevent you from enjoying a night out with your friends? You might be unsure how you’ll care for your children when dealing with a pounding headache or lethargy. That’s why you should book a mobile IV therapy Miami, which can eliminate the harmful toxins that can cause fatigue, nausea and headaches.

Schedule a Date Night with Your Partner

It is important to both you and your children to keep the spark alive in your relationship. That’s why you should regularly schedule a date night with your partner, so you can both enjoy some quality time together and remember why you love each other.

While dinner at a restaurant followed by a movie is ideal, you could always enjoy a date night at home once the children are fast asleep. For example, cook your partner a romantic dinner, open a bottle of wine, watch a movie or play a board game. Also, you should make a rule not to talk about the kids, so you can simply enjoy some quality conversation.

Exercise with a Friend

If you want to enjoy a little distance between you and your everyday routine, consider joining a dance class with a friend. Leave your children with your partner, family or babysitter to enjoy an evening of laughter, exercise and conversation. It will provide you with some adult conversation while lifting your mood and improving your mental and physical health.

How To Balance Children And A Social Life


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Looking after elderly relatives in your own home is something more of us will be doing as we have an ageing population. As many families struggle with financial pressures, often it makes sense to pool resources and live in a multi-generation household. Whether due to frailty, loneliness or bereavement, many older people would love to live with their loved ones. My advice would be to think about the emotional and practical implications before making life-changing decisions. Honest communication is key along with practical stuff such as deciding if you need to install a stairlift in your home and working out which welfare benefits may be available to your family.

Looking After

Role reversal

There are certain times when it really hits us that we are actually adults. When your parents need you to care for them, you start to realise that you will be doing some of the very things they did for you when you were growing up. Tasks might range from offering a listening ear to more intensive care such as helping with dressing, toileting and personal hygiene. You may have to accompany your parent to medical appointments and ensure they take their medication at the right time.

Juggling it all

The very time when your parent needs to live with you often comes whilst you are bringing up your children and also trying to make a living. It can be a very stressful time and it is vital you recognise yourself as a carer and seek support. You may feel isolated but there are lots of people out there who can help from your local authority to a wide range of charities. It is a sign of strength to say that you need help and to seek it. Only by looking after yourself well can you care effectively for those around you so never think it is selfish to say you need support too.

My experience

When my mother died, I knew I wanted my father to come to live with me. He was adamant that whilst he liked the idea he would need his own personal space. It took me a year to find the perfect accommodation with an annexe attached to the house. We had some amazing years of memories together before he passed away. He had such quality time with his grandchildren treating them, reading to them and laughing with them. In turn, they learned so much from him and treasure their memories of him. I supported Dad as his needs became greater and he was lovely to have around for me too. We had fun trips out together with a regular Tuesday lunch date and also fish and chips on Fridays. He shared stories that he had not told me when my mum was alive. It was a very precious time for all of us.

Things that can help

You can meet other carers in person or online. You can ask your local authority for the assessment of your elderly relative’s care needs and also your support needs. You may be able to claim welfare benefits or to apply for grants. Depending on the individual, your relative may need special equipment which might be anything from mobility aids through to a specially adapted vehicle. Ensure you look into things like Meals on Wheels and laundry collection services that just might make life a little simpler for you all.

I would recommend looking after elderly relatives in your own home wholeheartedly so long as you have the right support in place. Of course, individual circumstances differ but with a little goodwill and imagination, it is possible to live together and thrive in a multi-generation household.


Looking After Elderly Relatives In Your Own Home

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Cuddle Fairy
Musings Of A Tired Mummy

Sodium valproate (also known as Epilim, valproic acid and Depakote) has been used as an epilepsy treatment for decades, being affordable and highly effective for dealing with a range of seizures associated with the condition.

However, there has been growing evidence in recent years that sodium valproate can be a danger to unborn children if taken by their mothers during pregnancy.

Use of the drug by expectant mothers has been connected with a range of issues in their children, including reduced intelligence and autism, however, the most serious health effect associated with the drug is the potential for a child to develop foetal valproate syndrome.

The advice from The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is that sodium valproate should no longer be prescribed to pregnant women of women of childbearing potential.

What is Foetal Valproate Syndrome?

Foetal Valproate Syndrome (FVS), or Foetal Anticonvulsant Syndrome (FACS), is the umbrella term for birth defects caused by exposure of a foetus to valproic acid while in the womb as a result of the mother taking sodium valproate while pregnant.

It is often not immediately obvious when a child is born that they have the condition and it sometimes take months or even years for some of the effects to be picked up on.

Common symptoms of Foetal Valproate Syndrome include:


  • Facial characteristics – including a small upturned nose with a wide bridge and epicanthic folds (where skin from the upper eyelids covers the corner of the eye)
  • Cardiac problems – due to malformation of the heart
  • Spina-bifida – where the spinal cord does not develop properly, leading to issues such as weakness, paralysis and incontinence
  • Cleft-lip/palate – usually requiring surgery to correct, resulting in life-long scarring
  • Genital abnormalities – such as the urinary opening being on the underside of the penis
  • Skeletal abnormalities – including contractions of small joints, long overlapping figures and deformity of the feet

Treating Foetal Valproate Syndrome

There is no cure for Foetal Valproate Syndrome, but there are a number of treatments that can alleviate the symptoms and dramatically improve a child’s quality of life.

These treatments will generally focus on dealing with the individual symptoms associated with Foetal Valproate Syndrome and may include one-off treatments, such as surgery, as well as on-going treatments for issues such as speech problems.

Typical treatments for Foetal Valproate Syndrome include:

Surgical intervention – May be required to correct issues such as a cleft palate, heart defects and those connected to spina bifida.

Speech & language therapy – Is often used where a child has issues with communication, including the effects of a cleft palate.

 Physiotherapy – To deal with issues with movement caused by spina bifida and skeletal abnormalities.

 Behaviour therapy – Which can be helpful where the condition has a cognitive impact.

 Occupational therapy – To help a child develop strategies for dealing with specific tasks they have problems with as a result of their condition.

Claiming compensation for Foetal Valproate Syndrome

There is increasing concern that there was a failure to warn women of the risks of sodium valproate, resulting in a Parliamentary debate and calls for a public inquiry.

If your child has been affected by Foetal Valproate Syndrome, claiming compensation may be essential. It can be used to ensure your child has all the right support in place to deal with the consequences of their condition for their health and lifestyle, giving them the best chance of living a full and happy life.

Sodium valproate claims can be complicated, especially where the claim is being made many years after your child’s birth. It is therefore strongly recommended to work with a solicitor specialising in these types of claims, ensuring they have the necessary expertise to help you secure the compensation your child needs.