We all know that giving your kids some coloring in to do is, sometimes, the perfect crime. They love doing it and you might get as much as 10/15 minutes peace (or longer if you are really lucky).
The only downside is this: What should they color?
You could buy a coloring book, but they aren’t cheap and, in our experience, there are usually about 5 pictures in them that kids actually want to color. If you happen to be a talented artist, you can quickly scribble out a tractor or a penguin for them, but most of us never progressed much past being able to color inside the lines! If this applies to you – don’t worry, we have the answers: welcome to the world of the online coloring book…
Freckle Box have some of the most interesting designs to print off and color in for fee. These will keep you little one busy for some time!
Coloring Page Creator
Coloring Page Creator is one of the more interactive sites out there. All you have to do is upload a picture (of yourself or of SpongeBob or of what ever you like) and it will turn that picture into a black and white outline drawing, just waiting to be colored! Simply print and enjoy.
Crayola have some lovely, if a little more simplistic images you can print and color, again for free. In fact, it is worth seeing what else Crayola have to offer, since there is a whole section dedicated to fun indoor and outdoor activities – a very useful resource for a tired parent at the weekend!
Fisher Price also offer free printable coloring pages, some of which you can help to design before you print!
Perhaps our favorite way to keep a kid entertained for a little while, however, is Hippo Paint. Type anything you like into the box (and we mean anything – jam, kittens, calculator, bacon sandwich, moose) and it will give you a bunch of options to color in online! It is super easy and very fun! We must admit, we spent a little to long “researching” this page…
Today we discovered what is (quite possibly) the best blog to waste an hour on that we have found in ages: www.cakewrecks.com That’s right, a whole site dedicated to cakes that are broken, misshapen, misspelled, misguided and straight up wrong! These are some beautiful examples of why you should need a licence to make a cake. It is a really well put together blog too, well worth a browse. Anyway, among these monstrous puds are a selection of some of the funniest/most disgusting looking baby shower cakes of all time – and we have decided to bring you our 10 favorite bad baby shower cakes pictures…
A Swamp Monster is Born
Is it a baby shower cake or an horrendous prophesy?
It’s a… monkey?
When coming up with baby shower cake ideas, who said “A monkey. Yes, I think that says congratulations on the baby boy…”
Very impressive, buy where would you cut into it?
Now, this is either the most beautiful baby shower cake in the world, or a really confusing, far too accurate edible baby that you will – sooner or later – have to decapitate.
Gangsta baby – this one is actually sort of funny
Bling, cigars, shades, piercings… This little guy is ready to rock.
Is this cannibalism?
As baby shower cake designs go, this is one of the most impressive, from an acidemic point of view. But eat it? That feels a bit… weird.
Yup, that cake is in utero
As baby shower cake ideas go, this is one of the weirdest. By FAR.
Which is less appetizing - the face or the buttons?
“Here is our baby shower gift: it is a creepy disfigured button-baby-cake-of-hell. Enjoy eating the face!”
All we can see is placenta and jaundice cake
Here is a good baby shower game, lets play a good old fashioned round of “are the scissors edible?”
Pornographic alien birth
This is one of the strangest cake toppers imaginable, but imagine if you could buy them over the counter… Every student cake in the world would have one!
Someone was having a very bad day…
NB: This cake was described on www.cakewrecks.com as a “mutant flippered pig-child of perpetual worry”. We really like that description.
We at BabyPing got stopped in our tracks today. Not only did we discover one of the best Dad Blogs ever, but judging by the 139,688 twitter followers it has gathered, it seems we are a little late to the party too!
HowToBeADad.com is run by two very amusing, interesting and insightful chaps called Charlie and Andy (that’s them down there ▼). With a name so bold as HowToBeADad you would think it easy to guess what was on the site, but, slightly counter-intuitively, it is NOT a blog about how to be a dad. They make this very clear:
“We aren’t experts in “dadology.” We aren’t even sure such a thing exists. We’re just here to tell you that being a parent sometimes means experiencing things without an authority, letting love and humor get you through. For those other times, we recommend a sturdy helmet.”
Instead, what HowToBeADad.com offers is a very funny, often sweet and always well written list of stuff related to having children and being married.
Overall, these two are quite “male” with their humor occasionally and certainly don’t hold back the gory details that we all know (but don’t often discuss) about parenting. What becomes very obvious, however, is that these two love their children, love their wives, love to have a laugh at the boring stuff and are overall good guys.
It is easy to imagine your mother or father (or grandparents for that matter) shaking their heads and saying something like “well I never had anything like that when i was growing up, and neither did you, but we did alright.” or “Can’t you just talk to your child? Why must everything be on a computer?”.
But the truth is, there are a lot of apps that can help children. Sure, computer companies have been claiming for years that computers can be educational for children (since the commodore 64 in fact), but only with the creation of the reliable touch screen have young kids been able to fully interact with the software.
With that in mind, let us fill you in with a handful of our favorite educational apps for kids of various ages:
Talking Carl is a bit of a hero – he can help your baby to communicate!
Carl simply replays a distorted version of anything that is said to him, so to a pre-speech baby who is still just making sounds it really does seem like Carl is responding.
You can swipe, tickle and poke Carl and he will jump, spin, laugh and say “Ow!” in response. This fun, brightly colored app is sweet and engaging, and babies LOVE it (trust us!). He entertains and encourages communication, and he only costs £0.69! Worth a go we think!
Build it Up is aimed at the 2/3 year old child. It is a simple game consisting of a handful of multicolored, different sized building blocks to stack on each other in size order. It helps with visual perception, basic maths and motor skills. Oh, and did we mention it is free?!
Most of all, however, it seems pretty fun to a 3 year old! Don’t believe us? Check out this video…
This lovely app has not only really sweet illustration, but also is the ability to teach pronunciation and visual learning. A selection of sounds, pictures and games help this app to teach your child the way a child wants to be taught. Don’t believe us? Well this app was created by a genius three year old girl!
Pregnant celebrities have been plentiful and well publicized of late. Nicole “Snooki” Polizzihas recently given birth to Lorenzo, Kate Middleton is currently pregnant with Prince William’s child, Kim Kardashian is pregnant with Kanye West’s little one and, perhaps the most publicized of all, Beyonce and Jay Z with their little Blue Ivy.
It seems now that when a celeb gets pregnant it is standard practice to post the happy news all over the internet – and why not? It is their big news, so why not spread the joy? If one of us boring “normal” people gets pregnant we would probably post the news on Facebook wouldn’t we?
The difference is that when your average person posts something on the web about 100 people will see it and about 50 will care. When Kim Kardashian posts on twitter, it is to all of her 17 million followers!
Never the less, it is very much a personal decision, and if you want to tell the world you are pregnant, whoever you are, then you should! And if you do want to yell it from the roof tops, here are two of our favorite tools that you should have a look at…
Little One Pregnancy Calender
With this very cool Facebook app you simply pop in your due date, your conception date or your last menstruation date and see tips and hints about exactly how far along you are in the pregnancy.
On top of this, you can see videos explaining exactly what is happening inside your belly, create polls for your Facebook friends to vote on (baby names, boy or girl etc), make the big pregnancy announcement on Facebook and plenty more. And as the baby shower approaches you can even add your baby registry!
This rather cool little app keeps you totally up to date with exactly where you are in your pregnancy. It includes weight charts, to-do lists and even a pregnancy forum! So even if you don’t have any friends who are pregnant at the same time as you, you can ask all of those “should my feet be swollen like a rhino trod on them?” style questions. Of course there is also the added benefit of it being a phone app…
There are three very good reasons to stock up on the finest Christmas movies for kids this December:
1. Nothing feels much more Christmassy that cuddling up on a sofa in front of a Christmas movie with the family. It doesn’t matter how old your kids are, they could be 17, 4¾ or still in your tummy, a Christmas movie can always be a family event.
2. Lets face it, so many of them are fantastic movies that we still enjoy! Just ask the nearest adult to you “What is your favorite Christmas film?”, and you can be pretty much sure the response will be a kids film!
3. They are a very good way of keeping kids quiet and entertained for a few hours! Lets face it, if you have 100 or so of your own and your families’ children running around, it can be difficult to find a quiet moment to enjoy the new pair of socks (or bottle of wine) that you just unwrapped.
So we decided to put a little emergency top 10 list of Christmas movies for kids together for you. These are all tried, tested and suggested by the everyone here at BabyPing – you can’t go wrong with these films!
Robbie the Reindeer
The Muppets Christmas Carol
Nightmare Before Christmas
The Santa Clause
National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation
All ages (and we mean ALL ages) will enjoy these films, they are, after all, Christmas Classics! Plus, of course, you get a well earned sit down!
Almost as ingrained in Christmas as the presents, tree and big beardy guy in red are the classic shows, films and general television of the season. Everyone has their own traditions, but at least most of us, surley, grab the chance to watch that beautiful classic “The Snowman”.
Well, for those who didn’t know, “The Snowman and The Snowdog” is a much anticipated sequel to the 1982 Christmas classic “The Snowman” – and it looks utterly lovely! It is set to be shown on Christmas Eve, and if watching this trailer doesn’t make you feel Christmassy, then nothing will!
Anyway, we did a little stumbling around the app store today (which normally yields some fun results!) and discovered that this lovely looking animation is coupled with an app. A cheap cash in? A badly put together excuse to squeeze a few quid out of parents with children who saw the show and want more?
The official game app for “The Snowman and Snowdog” is both completely fantastic, utterly beautiful and entirely and FREE!
The boy and his magical friends calmly fly around a beautiful snow covered expanse whilst you help out by tapping snowflakes and decorations, deciding what to do next and just generally entering into the loveliness of the whole thing.
The graphics and game-play are very smooth and glitch free. It is just the right difficulty level for a young child to be able to enjoy it, but not so easy that an older child would be bored. Actually, we don’t mind admitting that we all rather enjoyed playing it too…
All in all, we give this game app a massive 10/10 without question. Perfect for getting the kids in the spirit (or keeping them quiet for a bit…), really lovely and totally free. Even Raymond Briggs, the original creator of The Snowman, describes the app as “Triffic!”.
The only down side is that it had to end!
Nothing could have got us feeling more Christmassy except Christmas day itself! We also now can’t wait for the airing of The Snowman and the Snowdog on Christmas Eve at 8pm on Channel 4, which we suspect may have been the idea…
It is no overstatement to say that this whole pregnancy thing can be an organisation nightmare! Particularly if it is your first time, it can be full of confusing stuff you have never done before. So, lets take this from the top:
1. You are pregnant – Check! Well done, sometimes even that can be harder than it sounds!
2. You have announced that you are pregnant - Lord, there are so many ways to do this! Did you whisper it to everyone individually? Did you post a celebratory picture on Facebook? Or did you literally shout it from the roof tops?!
3. Sort out your baby shower - Ah yes, one of the more fun aspects of pregnancy, getting some presents! There is just so much you need, especially if this is your first baby. You are going to need a crib, a baby monitor, blankets, baby clothes, nappies, toys, a stroller, parenting books, a car seat…
So lets get organised here. The last thing you need is four car seats, five parenting books and no nappies. The best thing to do, therefore, is to get a baby registry, a wish list of what you need, what you already have and what you’d like.
Fortunately, there are some really helpful tools out there for this. Gone are the days of hoping someone will buy you something useful, now there is a polite way of making it very clear what you would like!
A good idea is to use one of the bigger stores to register with. That way you can be sure everyone will the right store local to them. It is a lovely idea to register with some local, organic, green friendly toy builder, but if they only have one or two stores across the country, its not too easy for anyone! So here are a few to try out:
Toys R Us
Toys R Us and Babies R Us have a fantastic range of products to choose from and a very good registry service. They also have a rather smart registry awards scheme, where you earn “R Us dollars” for every gift you receive. Its free and easy, so why not give it a go here:
Burlington Coat Factory have a fantastically large baby department, with just about anything and everything you could wish for! Again, a registry is free and a really good way of keeping in touch with what you need. Make sure there is a store around where you and your friends live first though!
Amazon, of course, is always a safe option. The benefit of it all being online is that everyone has an amazon store in their computer! This is arguably a down side as well of course – since there are no physical stores, some less technically able people can come a little unstuck. On the other hand, Amazon sell just about everything, so it can’t be a bad choice! They have a friendly returns policy, if you have family overseas or a long way away it all gets shipped straight to you and you can add any item from any store – weather it is sold on Amazon or not! Worth a look we think
The final option is to use a couple of registries at once. Some stores are better for some products, some stores only exist in some areas, so to make the lives of others easy, having two registries with different stores could be a good plan. If so, you may want to try a registry grouping site like thebump.com. They offer a profile building tool where you can upload baby pictures, link to videos, chart how far along you are and link to your various registries. It keeps everything in one place, so just send a link to your Bump profile and people can choose which registry to use! It is quite a fun profile to keep on even after the birth too, perhaps to use for your children’s birthday wishlists and general information. Sort of like a family Facebook!
Your partner or somebody you know has just announced they are pregnant! Hooray! Now you have to buy them a present. Less hooray. But since you are such a fantastic, wonderful and helpful person, you want to give her a fantastic, wonderful, and helpful gift.
Well, the obvious choices, of course, are baby things. Baby clothes, baby shoes, diapers, bottles, bibs and rattles. Perhaps the classic comedy baby grow or bib…
But really, is this the most helpful gift? Remember, there are nine months between now and when your present will be approaching useful, and in that time your friend, girlfriend or wife will be going through an awful lot!
So here are some gift ideas for pregnant women, not for babies! After all, she is going to be doing all the work for the time being!
1. An Outfit she’s Going to Look Great in.
One of the easiest to get wrong, one of the most rewarding to get right.
There comes a time when most pregnant women will feel like a beached whale. Being comfortable and happy when your pregnant is the most important thing of course, but if you get her something she looks fantastic in, she will wear it all the time. Trust us!
Ok, so this one isn’t for everyone, but for those of your friends who would get a giggle out of being dressed as a unicorn, or a kangaroo, or a tabby cat, one of these Kigu onsies is perfect! Super comfortable, super warm, super fun and, lets face it, will most likely still fit when you are eight and a half months in!
Now, this really is one of the few “baby products” that is for the parents.
The BabyPing is a multi-award winning Video Baby Monitor that you view via your iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch. Its high quality, totally invisible night vision (nothing lights up to wake up your baby) means you can see your baby clearly, day or night. Customizable cry alerts mean that you could have your phone in your pocket, be making a call or be surfing the web and it would let you know right away that your baby is crying.
You can even view it from anywhere in the world, so your pregnant friend can know that – as soon as the baby comes – she will have the piece of mind of knowing her baby is being monitored wherever she is! It is ideal when you have to leave the baby with a sitter, you can use it as a nanny cam to check in to see everything is ok.
Oh, you will be so very popular with this one! When that horrible nausea starts to take devastating hold, she’ll try ANYTHING to stop feeling like she just got off a roller coaster on a boat in the middle of a rough ocean.
The Sea-Band is generally considered the best for pregnancy induced sickness, and they aren’t even expensive! Ideal!
5. A Prenatal Massage
The aches and pains caused by pregnancy are no joke, not by a long stretch. So if you wan’t to be the ultimate, all time and everlasting best friend, book her in for a prenatal massage.
It is very important to be sure you are sending her to a qualified professional though. Someone who doesn’t know what they are doing can put pressure in the wrong places and, in some women, even trigger uterine contractions.
So do your research, and find somewhere near you that does know the difference between a sports massage and a maternity back rub!
Perhaps more of a best friend/partner present this one, but if you can take her other kids off her hands, send her to a little hotel for a night or give her a day at a spar, she will LOVE you. Honestly, Just the chance to read a book, sleep and relax will feel really good, and of course it is good for the baby. The closer to the birth the better too.
7. Bath time treats
This is a classic, but it’ll do the trick! Some bath salts, lovely smellies and bath bombs are always good. Obviously this is rarely a bad present for a girl, but having some luxary bits in the house so she can give herself a bit of a pampering on short notice is particularly important during pregnancy. She will need it, and when she does…
If you want a starting point, Lush have some really lovely stuff!
8. Baby Bump Painting
This is a new trend that we rather like! Its just a bit of fun of course, but it makes for a very cool photo!
This would be a particularly good present if you where pregnant too, so no one is doing it on their own.
Some women don’t like the idea of having there pregnant belly decorated, but others say it is a bit of a bonding experience for you and your bump.
Have a look around and find somewhere near you that does bump painting.
9. Pregnancy Photos
Just do a quick image search to see some really lovely, intimate pregnancy shots. It’s very easy to find a photographer that does this now, and it isn’t all that expensive either!
Some people like a classy style photo, some like very natural, intimate shots, some like more jokey fun photos, some prefer to be nude for their shots! Whatever floats your boat, this can be a lovely way to remember a very special time.
The above photo is by Simon Kemp from Hyde End Studios.
10. A V Shaped Pillow
You might be surprised how useful this is to a pregnant lady. It can help support their bump or back, which ever needs it most, and can be bent into whatever shape is needed. It is especially useful as sleeping gets less and less comfortable and the pregnancy progresses.
Some people say it helpful for support when feeding their baby too, so it will continue to be useful after the birth!
So there you have it, our top 10 tips for gifts to pregnant women. Some practice some fun, some clever, some obvious! The truth is, as long as you don’t get her a massive cuddly toy that takes up half the living room and that wont be used for at least a year (read: ever), and as long as you don’t get her a bottle of champagne (for obvious reasons!), you should be fine.
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