Monday, 23 May 2016

The Kid Dog Connection

Dogs are great companions for adults, but they are especially good for children. Owning a family pooch brings many benefits, and gives your kids a fantastic start in life.

These furry delights benefit children in a range of different, often surprising, ways including the below.

A Strong Immune System

For example, did you know that babies that are brought up in homes with dogs are less likely to suffer from a range of illnesses? The Finns first made the connection between dog ownership and baby health.

In 2012, Finnish researchers looked at the health of 397 babies. They found that babies in homes with dogs or cats had fewer colds and ear infections than those living in pet free households. They also discovered that dogs offered a better level of protection than cats did.

In addition, an extensive Swedish study showed that children who grew up on farms around animals had a 50% lower chance of developing asthma. A later study that was published, in 2015, in JAMA Pediatrics, showed that children who owned a dog had a 13% lower risk of developing asthma than those that did not have one in the home.

You can read more about the health benefits that owning a dog brings for young children, by clicking this link.

Better Learning

Another surprising benefit of giving your kids access to a family pooch is that it can help them to learn to read faster. Because of this, in America, and some other parts of the world, dogs are being introduced to classrooms.

Researchers at the University of California, and several other institutions, have found that children will happily read to a dog. Doing so allows them to practice their reading skills on a regular basis. The dogs seem to enjoy the attention and children do not seem to feel any stress when reading to the family pet. This gives them confidence and turns reading aloud into something that they enjoy rather than dread.

Improved Socialisation Skills

Studies also show that children with dogs socialise better, and become active members of their community faster than those without a dog in their lives. Researchers from the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts University discovered this.

They looked at the personalities and characteristics of 500 18 to 26 year olds. Some owned dogs, whilst others had never owned a family pet.

The researchers found that those with dogs were more confident and empathetic than those without. They were also more likely to be deeply involved with their community. Dog owning children had a better sense of well being, and in later life were more likely to take on leadership roles.

As you can see, owning a dog is very beneficial for children. So next time you see a puppies for sale Lancashire or dogs for sale Hertfordshire sign, why not take action and pop in. Pet ownership is a big undertaking, but, as you can see, owning a dog is a great experience for your children, so it is well worth doing.

You just need to be sure to buy from a good breeder that offers plenty of support and advice. Provided you do so, becoming a dog owner will be a positive experience for both you and your children.

Now we have our pooch in our lives, our family is complete!

Jada xx

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

An Update On The Health.

Last week I wrote about my recent absence and the reason behind it, and after waking up on Saturday with awful pain in my legs I decided not to put it off anymore and made a promise to myself to visit the doctor.

Fortunately I got through to my surgery at 8:02am yesterday morning (Monday), to get an emergency appointment, you're advised to call up at 8am, in the past I've tried to get through as quickly as possible but I've had times where I've not been able to get through for a good 40 minutes, to find out all the appointments had gone! After a quick conversation with the receptionist making sure the appointment was an emergency and I did need to see a doctor urgently, I was given an appointment.

I've been worrying about the idea of a blood clot for a few weeks now, but I'm a natural born worrier and panicker, so I thought maybe I was panicking about the pain (even though it's been excruciating) and swelling in my legs, however after seeing the doctor, and being told I should of come sooner, I knew I wasn't worrying for no reason.

The doctor measured my calves, and the leg with the varicose vein which is the leg thats been given me more jip, is larger than my other leg, so at least I wasn't imagining the swelling! This obviously led to cause for concern though and I now need to have a blood test to rule out a blood clot.

To be honest, I'm quite surprised at how well the doctors treat blood clots, al I seem to hear these days is how bad doctors are, but the doctor I see yesterday was fantastic. She told me step by step what would happen, I'd have a fasting blood test and will get the results on the same day, if the doctors are closed by the time the results are back, the local out of hours doctors - located at our nearest main hospital will call me.

I will start treatment straight away - on the day and will be seeing the doctors/hospital quite a lot over the next few weeks if the results come back as positive for treatment. I'm not entirely sure on what the treatment will be, but I know I'll have to have a daily injection to thin my blood for a couple of weeks, so when the doctors aren't open, I'll be visiting the out of hours doctors at the hospital, neither are within walking distance - especially with a bad leg, and I don't drive, so it's going to be quite hard, but manageable.

Once the treatment is over, I will have a scan at the hospital where I will be seen quite quickly, and this is whats making me worry, because for doctors to rush things like this, there is obviously a real concern.

My doctor did go on to tell me that she's had many cases where the blood test have come back positive, her patients have had the treatment and gone to the scan where there's been no blood clot, but they need to make sure they're treating you as if you do have one.

I'm also on antibiotics for lumps under my armpit believed to be hidradenitis suppurativa, and at the moment, resting my right arm in its natural resting place is giving me the most horrid of pains, it's even worse than my legs and that's saying something! I need to take antibiotics before I can be referred to the hospital to have them removed, I've also been left with bad scarring which will never go.

My beautiful big sister's wedding is just four days away, where I am being bridesmaid, I don't want to let her down in anyway, but being a single mother to a child means you can't rest. It's impossible.

Gareth was able to help me yesterday both dropping Spud to school and collecting him for me, unfortunately he can't help me with the rest of the week, so this morning see me and Spud get the bus down to school, it's only five stops away from our home, but my leg is giving me that much jip I had no choice. A single for the pair of us cost me £3, luckily my sister needed my help with some last minute wedding preparations and was able to pick me up from Spud's school, otherwise a single for myself would of cost me another £1.60 home, and then there's getting to the school later on.

I'd already spent £8 on bus fare yesterday by purchasing a family bus about as I needed to get to the doctors etc, add on today's £3 spent on the buses and thats £11 and we're only halfway through the second day of the week. A weekly for myself and Spud will cost me £28, something I just can't afford at the moment.

I've not been working due to the pain I am in, I have lots I need to purchase ahead of Saturday and I'm in constant pain! I've been prescribed stronger painkillers than paracetamol, but after taking one yesterday and needing a nap within 30 minutes of taking it, I can't carry on taking them! Luckily Gareth was here to watch Spud for me.

So for now, I will have to carry on with the pain, hope and pray that I don't have a blood clot and try and find some work!

It never ends!


Make Your New House A Home With These Awesome Tips

Buying a new house is exciting, exhausting and stressful. But eventually you pick up the keys and pack up your things for the move. It can sometimes feel a little disappointing when you first arrive at your new property. This may be the first time you’ve seen it empty. It no longer feels like the glamorous and stylish pad you last saw. It’s an empty shell. And your life is in boxes! So how can you make it feel more like home?

If you can paint it before getting all your belongings in, this will be easier. You can choose colours that are warm and welcoming. Start by painting the ceiling and door frames, though. A fresh coat of white paint can help lift the place almost immediately. When the paint is dry, you might want to change the flooring. Cosy carpets can feel very homely. But if you’re used to hardwood floors, stick with what is most comforting.

Once your furniture has been placed in each room, your new house should start to feel more like a home. Put up some curtains. If the old ones don’t fit, you can usually find sets for standard window sizes in department stores or home furnishing shops. Pick a vibrant colour to bring more energy into the room. You could add a new matching rug and cushion colours for a stylish new look too.

Thanks to for the image
Most people change the locks when they buy a new house. But have you considered changing the whole front door? It’s a great way to make a house your own. Picking a modern front door that suits your tastes and personality is one of the best ways to put your personal stamp on the place. It will feel more like your own each time you approach your house from the street. Best of all, you’ll feel more safe and secure in your new property.

Kitchens and bathrooms are the two things that people hate having second hand. But it can be expensive to replace them both. Consider a deep clean to help you feel like the facilities are fresher. You can do this yourself, or treat yourself by hiring a professional team to tackle it. Consider painting the cupboard doors and changing the door handles in the kitchen. This can make it look like a whole new kitchen. Worktops aren’t too expensive to replace if you fancy a completely new look.

Have you spent any time in the garden yet? Your outdoor space could be landscaped to provide a better entertaining area for your housewarming party. A patio, barbeque area, and some flowers can create just the setting for comfort.

It’s not unusual to feel a little awkward and uncomfortable in a new place at first. The feelings soon fade as you begin to make the house your own. That doesn’t mean you have to keep all the old furniture and stylings from your last place. Sometimes a fresh start can feel more homely than trying to fit old things into a new setting. Enjoy your new home.

Jada x

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

Must See Mountains in Wales

Wales is one of the prime destinations for a weekend of casual mountaineering, with a concentration of natural destinations and popular tourist attractions in the North of Wales.

North Wales’ holiday cottages are the perfect launching point for a long weekend spent scrambling around the 10,000-year-old Welsh scenery.

Snowdonia is clearly top of the list. It’s a common belief that Snowdonia, in Welsh, translates as 'place of the eagles’. Snowdonia's National Park has become one of the most popular holiday destinations, highly acclaimed for its natural beauty. There are nine mountain ranges in Snowdonia's park but the star of the show is Mt Snowdon, itself. There are eight ways up the mountain, so you can tailor your ascent for your fitness levels.

Well worth a stop in Snowdonia, is Cadair Idris, known for its peak which overlooks a stunning lake in what looks deceptively like a volcano (but isn't!). Easily reached from nearby Dolgellau, you'd be a fool to miss this out whilst visiting North Wales.

Cambrian Mountains
The Cambrian Mountains, and specifically Foel Fadian, are a big swathe of ranges in the middle of Wales, extending into the North and South. Machynlleth, an hour from the heart of North Wales, sits at the foot of the Cambrian Mountains in the North and offers you a variety of natural attractions. From there, it's just a short drive into the mountains to explore even more.

My dad walking one of the mountains.
Swallow Falls
Right in the middle of the most popular areas of North Wales, Swallow Falls is a delightful system of waterfalls outside Betws-y-Coed. While the falls themselves aren't technically a mountain, it would be a shame to miss out on them, and as they're seated in the Conwy Valley, you won't have to go without a hiking fix if you want one.

Moel Famau and the Clwydian Range
Higher into the North of Wales, not far from Chester, is Moel Famau. Straddling the Clwydian Range, Moel Famau offers you a few routes, ranging from extremely leisurely and bicycle friendly, to a bit more challenging for little legs. You get a wonderful view over the range and all the way out past Liverpool on clear days. It's not a huge climb, you can squeeze it easily into one afternoon, but just down the road is the Loggerheads Country Park to keep children entertained and rest any sore feet after the walk.

There’re also some outstanding mountains in South Wales. The Black Mountains, despite the ominous name, are a stark and beautiful area hosting a series of rolling sandstone peaks known for being easy to access for ramblers. Also, the Brecon Beacons National Park is another popular area in the South of Wales, with the usual selection of outdoor activities, visitor-friendly villages and extremely fair summer weather.

Wales is absolutely festooned with beauty, and you can hardly go wrong with driving in any direction and landing in a wonderful place for an afternoon.

Where’s your favourite place to explore in North Wales? Let me know in the comments!

Jada x