Times are changing, technology is making remote working possible for an increasing number of roles. I’m not suggesting that the office environment is a thing of the past but maybe, just maybe, the illusive work-live balance could be looming on the horizon for more of us.
Tomorrow is a big day for all of us, especially Libby. Her dad and I are running a half marathon and Libby is competing in her first race- a 1km walk that she will be doing with her aunty Emma.
Last month, I wrote a blog post about my brother, who had sold his prize possession, his X-Box. Fast forward a month and, as predicted, he couldn’t live without it. He has purchased another one. In the intervening time when he didn’t have an X-Box, my brother was still constantly using gadgets and gaming consoles of one sort of another.
He’s not alone though, gaming is becoming more and more popular, particularly amongst teenagers. Despite being a bit technophobic myself, even I can’t help but be amazed by the fantastic array of specialised gaming peripherals that give gamers the edge over their peers when playing online. I could watch this website scrolling through its featured products all evening, I think I’ve become a bit hypnotised by it. There are so many things that look like they are from a sci-fi film. I have to admit it makes me think of Back to the Future. My brother would say that this just means that I’m old.
So it seems that I need to move with the times and realise that we are living in a time where education takes many different forms. In previous blog posts, I have discussed the benefits of learning online, alongside virtual peers. Having spoken to my 14 year old brother though, it seems that even learning online on a computer could be considered to be a little bit antiquated these days.
Whichever gaming console you or your children use, you are likely to find that educational games are readily available. Even I have heard of ‘brain trainer’ type games. As well as assisting children with basic mathematics, logic and reasoning, the brain trainer is well known among people of “a certain age” (sadly, I must include myself), as being beneficial to keep your mind active and stave off the onset of alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.
These days though, there are numerous skills that you can learn, practice and perfect on your gaming console. Take art, for example. My three sisters are all incredible artists and the likelihood is that my brother shares their artistic talent. There are several games available on consoles and tablets that are geared towards allowing children to develop their artistic side whilst at the same time thinking that they’ve got one over on their parents because they’re doing what they want to do, i.e. gaming.
The same can be said for maths, P.E., English literature and learning foreign languages. There is even a game that appeals to me. The 8 year old me would have loved the Enid Bliyton Faraway Tree Series for the Nintendo DS. You read the stories and collect magical items and bonus content as you go. The (nearly) 33 year old me is sitting here with fingers and toes crossed that Libby enjoys similar stories when she’s older and I get to read this with her. Maybe by the time Libby is old enough for this, Moonface will actually appear in our living room with some pop biscuits to entice her into reading. Here’s hoping!
This post is sponsored but views, opinions, indecisive brothers, artistic sisters and yearnings for the Magic of the Faraway Tree to be real are all mine.
I have been lucky enough to be given a free entry into the amazing Shock Absorber Women Only triathlon at Eton Dorney lake on 14th July. I’ll give that a moment to sink in. Jealous? I would be!
If you were momentarily consumed with envy, you’ll be delighted to know that I have five additional free entries to give away! If you are considering entering, you might like to know that this has been voted one of the top five triathlons IN THE WORLD! Here’s a bit more about the race and how to prepare for it.
The race is sponsored by Shock Absorber. I will be trying out one of their fantastic sports bras during their triathlon. Have a look at their collection at http://www.shockabsorber.co.uk. I would highly recommend getting a decent sports bra for a triathlon. Everyone is talking about Shock Absorber at the moment, even Next have recently written about the Shock Absorber Ambassador on their blog.
I’m running the competition through Rafflecopter and it’s really easy to enter. Please note that you will need to provide your own travel, wetsuit and bike because Shock Absorber and PlutoniumSox won’t be able to provide these for you. Good luck!
Update 21st June 2013: The winners have now been drawn at random by Rafflecopter and contacted by email. Please check your email to see if you were a winner!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
On Friday, we were delighted to see that the front page of our local paper featured Libby and her fundraising efforts!
Libby and I are lucky enough to be taking part in the MoneySupermarket #KidsGrowWild challenge.
To be honest, I’d forgotten that I had applied to do it so the knock on the door yesterday delivering our parcel was a nice surprise. It was an even nicer surprise when we opened the parcel and found Libby’s beautiful gardening bag inside. Libby is obsessed with bags, so having her own was a bit of a dream come true. Particularly as it contained some more lovely goodies. She has a little watering can, some lovely flower seeds, a trowel, a fork and some gardening gloves that will be great for a few years time when her hands have grown a little bit. Here she is having a look through the bag.
I am in the process of tidying up our garden, and I’ve started with the front garden and cut back the overgrown plants and weeded the flower beds. This has left a nice little area in the flower bed that was empty. I decided that for Libby’s first attempt at growing flowers, we would use the ‘pretty flower family’ seeds and sew them in an “L” shape. On the seed packet, it suggested sewing the seeds in the shape of your name. We didn’t have quite enough space for this, but I thought it was a lovely idea and hopefully, next summer Libby will be learning her letters so seeing the letter “L” for Libby in the garden should be quite exciting.
While I prepared the ground, Libby checked out the trowel… and it seems she loved it!
Then I helped her to sew the seeds in an ‘L’ shape, and we covered them up with some dirt. Next, she used her fabulous little watering can to give the seeds a bit of water. Then we went into the back garden… still clutching the watering can that she adores!
In the back garden, my borders aren’t quite ready for growing flowers yet so I decided that we would plant one of the sunflower seeds that Libby received in her gardening pack into a big pot. This will go against a the wall, where there is a lovely sun-trap. I hope it will grow well there, I don’t think it will be long before it towers over Libby. She was delighted by the idea of planting in a pot, because it meant that she could play with the dirt before we put the seed in, covered it over and gave it some water.
Before we headed inside for a much needed bath, Libby explained to the dogs how much she loves her beautiful gardening kit.
As you might have noticed, our black dog Soxa has a bad paw at the moment so our family walks have had to stop for a few days. Spending time in the garden has been a welcome replacement for our walks and a great way for us all to enjoy the weather. This post is an entry for BritMums’ #KidsGrowWild Challenge. If you would like to enter, you can do so here: http://www.moneysupermarket.com/home-insurance/competitions/kids-grow-wild/. +Marianne Hopwood I thought of you and your boys when I was doing this, I think you would write a lovely blog about it!