Hauck South Africa News
  • 6 Back To School Traditions

    Posted by Dominique Bothma

    About the Author

    Posted on behalf of Zayaan Schroeder who is a mother to two kids and is passionate about making their childhood memorable and happy. She has been a parenting journalist for 10 years and also runs a parenting blog called Surviving the Madness dedicated to making things easier for moms. You can follow her on Instagram www.instagram.com/survivingmadness

    The festive season has passed, the New Year has been rung in and parents across the country are turning their focus to the new school year. For many this will be their first year at Big School and for others entering their matric year, it’s the beginning of the end. But whether your kids find themselves at the beginning of their journey, nearing the end or somewhere in the middle the first day of school is always an exciting time.

    I like to start the new school year with some fun traditions. And because the first day is usually a mad rush to get back into the routine of things, they tend to be simple things. Here are some ideas you can implement for your own family.

    First day of school posters

    A great way to document the start of the school year is to have your kids pose with first day of school signs. These can be very simply, a small chalkboard with their grade or you can get one of these printables from How Does She.

    Planes and Balloons has editable first day of school signs that include few details about your kids and their upcoming school year.

    First and last day of school interviews

    I like the idea of first and last day of school interviews, it shows just how much kids change and grow during a year. And once they matriculate it will be a nice way to look back over their school years to see how they’ve grown up if you put them in a binder or flip file.

    Positively Splendid has some free printables for preschool all the way through to Grade 12. If you don’t mind spending a bit there are some beautiful ones on Etsy, my favourite being this one from Kimberful Designs.

    Back to school breakfast

    All too soon you will be throwing your teen with a piece of toast as they run out the door because they’re inevitably late. Or pouring a bowl of cereal for your younger ones because you’re running late. But I like to take some extra time on the first day to make a really special breakfast that we all sit down for together. Usually some of the kids’ favourites like flapjacks, scrambled eggs, toast and fruit. It doesn’t have to be fancy, as long as everyone sits and takes some time together.

    Create a bucket list

    Creating goals is a great way for your kids to work on improving a skill. It can be anything from improving their reading, trying a new sport or making new friends. You can make a checklist poster for their rooms so that they have a visual of the goals they’ve set for themselves.

    Grow into the t-shirt

    I really like this idea and it’s super cute. Buy an adult sized t-shirt and have the year they’re meant to matriculate on it. Then take a picture of them in it every year from Grade 1 to Grade 12 and watch how they grow into the t-shirt. It’s silly, but it’s so cute to watch them literally grow into the t-shirt.

    The Backpack Fairy

    Now this will only really work for the little ones because by the time they’ve gotten to Grade 4 or 5 they will realise that fairies are not real and it’s all you. Nonetheless it’s a nice idea. After your kids have gone to sleep, sneak some new school supplies, a new book or lunchbox into it. It doesn’t have to be big things. Novelty erasers, pens or notepads are great little ideas.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • How To Survive A Family Road Trip

    Posted by Dominique Bothma

    About the Author

    Posted on behalf of Zayaan Schroeder who is a mother to two kids and is passionate about making their childhood memorable and happy. She has been a parenting journalist for 10 years and also runs a parenting blog called Surviving the Madness dedicated to making things easier for moms. You can follow her on Instagram www.instagram.com/survivingmadness

    Our kids have worked hard all year and finally school is out for the summer! Hear the relieved sighs of teachers everywhere. If you’re packing up the kids and taking them on a road trip for your end of year holiday, you might be questioning your sanity right now as you contemplate a 6 hour drive with humans who have low attention spans. But have no fear, here are six tips to help you survive the constant whine of “Are we there yet?”

    1. Pit stops

    The journey is part of the holiday and the adventure. If you present this mindset to your kids they might not even bother with asking if you are there yet. When you have kids you might want to get there as quickly as possible but making regular pit stops helps everyone’s mood. Everyone gets a chance to stretch their legs, relieve themselves and maybe even take in a sight or two.

    Before you head off on your road trip, pick some farmstalls, garages or interesting spots along the way to stop at. Ideally you should stop every 2 – 3 hours for at least 15 minutes. Especially if you’re travelling with a baby who likely wants a break from the car seat.

    2. Snacks

    While you may have eaten a meal at one of your pit stops it’s always a good idea to have snacks on hand. This can easily distract a child for at least 10 minutes given the complexity of the snack. Good things to have on hand are: water bottles, dried mango, small bags of chips, lollipops, carrot sticks, sweeties. Have a mix of healthy and sugary treats, your kids are on holiday after all.

    3. Playmat

    Lollipops can only distract a child for so long though. If your child is still in a car seat, Hauck’s Play On Me play table is a great investment for road trips. It’s quick and easy to put on and remove (you know, when making those pit stops) and is softly padded making it comfortable for your child on the long road. The raised edges ensure that the toys and games don’t fall off and the best part is the pockets! The left side has a big zip-fastening pocket and the right side has two smaller net pockets, this means your kid’s toys are not littering the back seat.

    4. Backpacks

    Now that you have your Play On Me play mat, what kinds of things should you bring along to combat the boredom once they have gotten over looking at all the cows and sheep and the endless farm lands? A good idea is to get a small backpack for each kid and have them fill it up with their favourite toys. You can also get some new colouring or activity books to surprise them.

    5. Kids’ Songs Playlist

    I’ve made my kids a playlist of all their favourite songs on Spotify and downloaded it over our home WiFi before taking a trip. Whatever your kids’ favourite TV show is you’d be surprised that they actually have albums on Spotify. I for one was very surprised that Hey Duggee has not one but two albums. Who would’ve thought? So from Storybots, Moana and Frozen to Cats and Camilla Cabello (don’t ask) it’s all on there. The kids love a good carpool karaoke.

    6. Audiobooks

    And when it’s all getting a bit too much and everyone just needs to calm down a bit, put on an audiobook. There are lots of children’s books that are available as audiobooks. If your kids are into Cressida Cowell’s How To Train Your Dragon series then you’re in for a treat because the Tenth Doctor himself, David Tennant, narrates that series and if you have Harry Potter fans then you have the luck of having Stephen Fry read to you. If you have a younger crowd in the car then Roald Dahl’s The Enormous Crocodile and Other Stories is a fun read to get you to your destination.

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  • 8 board games to take Family Game Night to the next level

    Posted by Dominique Bothma

    About the Author

    Posted on behalf of Zayaan Schroeder who is a mother to two kids and is passionate about making their childhood memorable and happy. She has been a parenting journalist for 10 years and also runs a parenting blog called Surviving the Madness dedicated to making things easier for moms. You can follow her on Instagram www.instagram.com/survivingmadness

    Now the games on this list are not the classics like Monopoly or Scrabble but something a bit more exciting. These days there are board games for your toddler right up to your older kids, so there’s no need for even the littlest members of the family to miss out.

     

    Monkey Around

    Suggested age: 2+

    Monkey Around is a wonderful first board game for kids that was created specifically for you and your two year old. Kids get to move about while playing a game which is perfect for little ones who have short attention spans and can’t sit still anyway.

    Bunny Bedtime

    Suggested age: 2+

    Another one for the youngest member of the family is Bunny Bedtime. Roll a chunky dice and move bunny on the path. Along the way players help bunny make choices about her bedtime routine. Which bath toy will she play with? What pyjamas will she wear?

    Skunk Bingo

    Suggested age: 3+

    Skunk Bingo is a great game for kids who can’t read yet. The concept is simple, spin the wheel and insert the corresponding number of tiles into the log. Whichever tiles come out the other side, you put on your bingo board. Unless you get a skunk, then they all go back to the tile pile. This game teaches your kids at an early age how to be a gracious loser.

    Spot it Jr! Animals

    Suggested age: 4+

    With adorable animals and only 6 symbols on each card, Spot it Jr. is ideal for kids under 7. Like the adult version of Spot It! There is only one matching animal between any 2 cards. But in this junior variation, each card has one big animal for easier spotting. Spot it Jr. is a fun way to sharpen kids' visual perception, focus and cognitive speed. Little ones will love to spot these colorful animals and the variety of images will challenge all ages.

    Gnomes at Night

    Suggested age: 6+

    If you want to foster a sense of cooperation among your kids then anything from Peaceable Kingdoms is a good choice. Gnomes at Night is a cooperative search-and-find maze game where players work as a team to manoeuvre the magnetic gnome movers around the maze. Work together in this quick-thinking communication game where every second counts!

    Catan and Catan Jr

    Suggested age: 10+ (Catan) and 5+ (Catan Jr)

    Settlers of Catan, or Catan as it’s now been called is the one game on this list that can be considered a classic game. The OG of board games, Catan has been around since 1995.

    Your adventurous settlers seek to tame the remote but rich isle of Catan. Start by revealing Catan's many harbours and regions: pastures, fields, mountains, hills, forests, and desert. Players acquire resources through trades, cards or lucky dice. Use resource combinations of grain, wool, ore, brick, and lumber to build roads, settlements, and cities. But beware! Someone might cut off your road or play a monopoly card. And you never know when the wily robber might steal some of your precious gains!

    The Junior version of the game is a modified playing style of the classic game, giving younger players the opportunity to experience the world of Catan. Catan: Junior takes place on a ring of islands where 2 to 4 players build hideouts, and the mysterious Spooky Island, where the Ghost Captain lives.

     

    Forbidden Island

    Suggested age: 10+

    Dare to discover Forbidden Island! Join a team of fearless adventurers on a do-or-die mission to capture four sacred treasures from the ruins of this perilous paradise. Your team will have to work together and make some pulse-pounding manoeuvres, as the island will sink beneath every step! Race to collect the treasures and make a triumphant escape before you are swallowed into the watery abyss!

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • 5 Reasons You Should Consider Baby Wearing

    Posted by Dominique Bothma

    About the Author

    Posted on behalf of Zayaan Schroeder who is a mother to two kids and is passionate about making their childhood memorable and happy. She has been a parenting journalist for 10 years and also runs a parenting blog called Surviving the Madness dedicated to making things easier for moms. You can follow her on Instagram www.instagram.com/survivingmadness

    When you’re expecting a baby there are so many lists you can find online that tell you what you will need for baby’s arrival. A pram is usually high on those lists but not a lot of them consider baby wearing. Many people view baby wearing as a hippy concept but there are so many benefits to wearing your baby in a sling or baby carrier.

    Check out Hauck’s Close To Me Baby Carrier

    A lot of online communities also put the two modes of transport against each other, but there is room for both prams and baby wearing in your life. For me baby wearing was beneficial both at home as well as being out and about. Let’s take a look at how baby wearing can change your life.

     

    1. It’s a hands-free kit

    The number one reason I loved baby wearing in the home was that it gave me the freedom to still get on with my life while keeping my babies close. In the early days your baby doesn’t want to be away from you so it’s easy to fall into a routine of getting nothing done. Because despite them actually doing absolutely nothing, they take up a lot of your time. So simple house chores like making supper and doing the laundry end up falling by the wayside. Baby wearing meant that at the very least I could eat something.

    But where it really saved my life was when I became a mother of two. It is no small feat taking care of a newborn baby and a toddler, especially one who is inquisitive and rambunctious. And having my newborn in a baby carrier meant that I could still pay attention to my toddler who honestly was the one who needed the attention.

    2. It helps to soothe baby

    Another great benefit of baby wearing is that somehow they are blessed with magical sleepy dust. Because every time my baby was fussy or wouldn’t fall asleep I would pop her into the baby carrier and walk around a bit and she’d fall asleep within 5 minutes. The combination of being close to a warm body, being wrapped up tight and the motion of walking does wonders to soothe your baby whether it’s sleeping time or not.

    3. Safety in public

    Being out in public by myself with my kids makes me anxious to no end. There are so many stories of babies being stolen from under their mother’s noses while out shopping that I’m so paranoid of even having my kids in the trolley. Baby wearing meant I could keep my baby close and not have this worry.

    It’s also a fantastic deterrent for keeping strangers with germy hands from touching your baby. Babies have very weak immune systems and pick up germs quite easily.

    4. You can breastfeed discreetly

    Many mothers also find that with baby wearing they can nurse discreetly in public without anyone even knowing what they’re doing, especially if you’re wearing them in a ring sling or wrap. It might take a bit of practice but once you get the hang of it, it’s really very handy. And you don’t have to cover your baby with a blanket!

    5. Strengthens your bond

    Overall it really just strengthens the bond between not only mom and baby but it’s also a great way for baby to bond with dad. In the first few months newborn babies are very dependent on their mothers and new dads can feel left out. So having dad wear baby whenever he can will strengthen their bond and also give mom that much needed break.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

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  • Self-care tips to help you be the best mom for your kids

    Posted by Dominique Bothma

    About the Author

    Posted on behalf of Zayaan Schroeder who is a mother to two kids and is passionate about making their childhood memorable and happy. She has been a parenting journalist for 10 years and also runs a parenting blog called Surviving the Madness dedicated to making things easier for moms. You can follow her on Instagram www.instagram.com/survivingmadenss

    As mother's we tend to take care of everyone else around us and we're usually last on the list. But as the saying goes, you cannot pour from an empty cup and if you don't take care of yourself, how are you going to be the best mother for your kids?

    But being a mom is not only hard work but it's time consuming. There's so much to do so you don't exactly have time to take a leisurely bath with a book and some candles. Chances are the kids will come knocking because they can't find that thing they're looking for that's in the very obvious place. But that doesn't mean we can't find things to help our mental and physical health.

    Self-care is so much more than just relaxing. It’s taking the time and making decisions that are good for your life mentally, physically and spiritually.

    So here are 5 self-care tips for moms.

     

    1. Say no

    This is a big one for me but your time is precious. You're allowed to say no to things when you're getting overwhelmed. A lot of people want a lot of things from you, so prioritise the important ones (doctor's appointments, school events etc) and say no to your mother's aunty's 70th birthday or that third birthday party your invited to on the same day as the other two.

     

    2. Plan your day

    This one is difficult for me because I want to get every second of rest I can for the day before the kids get up. But if you get up half an hour before your kids do, you can make a cup of coffee, enjoy the quiet and mentally prepare yourself for the day. It's useful to have a notebook or diary where you plan out:

    • The 3 most important tasks for the day.

    • Any extra curriculars or appointments happening that day.

    • Something you’re looking forward to. 

    • What’s for supper.

    You can also use this time to meditate or pray while the house is still quiet.

     

    3. Exercise with the kids

    Have you ever tried doing a home exercise routine with a toddler? It's insane and everything just falls to shambles while they use you as a jungle gym. Instead, find other activities that will keep you all moving and having fun like racing in the park, playing a bit of soccer outside or going for a lovely walk. Fresh air does wonders for everyone.

    4. Date your kids

    When you have more than one kid not only are their lives busy with schoolwork and extra-curricular activities, there's also only so much one on one time they get with you when they’re sharing you with siblings. Take each of your kids on a date so that you can spend some time with them and develop your relationships. It doesn't have to be anything fancy, just going for an ice cream or doing something that they like to do is fine. And speaking of dating, don’t forget your partner.

    5. Make time for yourself

    Life is busy so this can be hard especially if you don't have anyone else to watch the kids. But it's so important to block out some time for yourself where you can relax and take time to recharge.

    But it’s important you do something with yourself that’s not being a mom. So either send them to the grandparents for a sleepover or make sure your partner is around to be in charge of the kids for a while. Then book that spa day or have that quiet soak in the bath. Take yourself out on a date or schedule that girls day you sand your friends never seem to have time for.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     













     

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