Can’t knock me down

Can’t knock me down

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3 tips for online safety

I cannot express enough the importance of being safe online. I’ve grown up in a generation that has been basically raised on electronics. I know how undeniably important it is to be as safe as humanly possible online.

Personal experience has shown me just how dangerous the online world can be. I’ve seen that there are people online who are just as bad as people in the real world. On the news you see stories about kidnappings and murders but it shocks me how little stories there are on online mishaps.

To keep safe online, I’ll leave you with three top tips for you or your daughters:

  1. If you don’t know them personally, you just don’t know them. If someone random starts talking to you don’t talk back. The worst thing you can do online is give your trust to people you don’t even know.
  2. If it looks too good to be true, it probably is. I know this is old advice but it’s definitely important. It doesn’t just apply to spam emails or messages, it also applies to people. If a person seems too perfect, providing you don’t know them of course, they probably aren’t who you think they are.
  3. Don’t give out your personal details to anyone. That doesn’t just mean bank details or phone number. That also means simple things such as school or sporting clubs. People online are very smart so even a little bit of information can go along way.  Ashlea xxx

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Online safety is something most parents worry about. As Ashlea states, her generation have always experienced the internet but my generation did not grow up with online interaction. When I was a child you either called your girlfriend on the telephone (cordless if you were lucky) or you had to wait until the next day to chat with them.

I worry about online safety as technology is constantly changing and kids are quick to catch onto the next ‘new’ thing way before most adults have even heard about the new ‘app’ even existing. I love Ashlea’s tips and support them thoroughly. I will add a couple more tips from a mums point of view.

  1. Once it is out there, it is never coming back. A simple, thoughtless decision like sending a naked selfie to a boyfriend or posting a nasty comment about an ex-friend, will stay in the cyber world forever. Always understand that our lives are changing constantly and so do our thoughts. So what may seem OK today, can feel very wrong the following day.
  2. Become familiar with the sites your children visit. I understand it can be a little overwhelming with all the new apps and websites children seem to know, so by limiting which sites they frequent can help you gain a greater understanding of how the site works.
  3. Parenting needs to flow to online. We teach our children to not talk to strangers, to use our manners and many other qualities we believe are important to become a grounded, well-adjusted adult. This parenting advice needs to flow into the cyber world. We need to teach them the rules which are important for online interaction and follow up on these rules as we would do if rules were broken within the home environment.

cheers natalie

A promise kept

Number 4 had been promised a tree house…. promised delivered… Well done man of the house

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Online Honesty….

The sad news about Charlotte Dawson has sadden me. Mental illness is real and effects many people in such a private way. Think before write, think before you speak, think before your words maybe hurtful.

 

Girls ♥ Talk

Girls ♥ Talk

My daughter is talking to someone online and I’m getting worried because I don’t know the person. What should I do?

Well first off, you need to clear up whether or not SHE knows the person she’s talking to. If she knows the person then, as long as they aren’t someone that is totally inappropriate for a teenage girl to talk to, you shouldn’t worry. Let her have her space online but if you still are not comfortable, talk to her about online safety and making sure she’s being smart. If she is talking to someone who you both know could be a danger, immediately sit her down and talk to her, (not in a condescending way) about the position she may have put herself in and how to be smarter next time. If you are really worried, contact the police. Ashlea

Very scary I know. I love Ashlea’s advice and think clear communication is the first step. We have experienced this situation with a friend and it wasn’t a nice situation. Explain to your daughter that talking to someone online they do not know is like opening the front door of your house to a stranger and letting them inside. Would she do that? I don’t think so. Make her understand that not every person online is telling the truth and she only wants to communicate with those people who will care for her needs – therefore someone she knows and likes.

I give my children freedom online ( well the older 2) but I do spot checks on their accounts. I have told them if they don’t think I will like what they have written, then maybe they shouldn’t be writing it in the first place. Stay open with communication, its essential. A great article from Modern Parent gives fantastic advice on this topic. natalie

Girls ♥ Talk

My daughter loves to wear brand name clothes but I simply can’t always afford to dress her the way she likes. When I say no, she gets angry and tells me it’s not fair. How do I make her understand I am doing my best?

Being fashionable is a very important part of being a teenage girl. Sometimes, we have no money. It happens to everyone so if you explain to your daughter that you simply can’t afford the new dress for the weekend, she will most likely understand. If she doesn’t, take some time to think from her perspective.

Talk to her about whether or not she NEEDS it and even if she says yes, she knows deep down that she really doesn’t. Make a compromise with her. If she really wants the dress try taking her to less pricey places or going on eBay. If the dress is something she wants desperately then she will go along with that idea. Cheers Ashlea

I think open communication is the best way. We all love to buy and wear a new outfit but when there is no money, then there is little that can be done. Maybe you could put your daughter on a savings plan, helping her understand that when you want something you can’t always get it instantly. Sometimes you need to save a little every week and then buy the new item yourself. It will teach her some precious life skills not only how to budget money but sometimes good hinges are worth waiting for. Saving and buying something yourself makes you love the item even more. Cheers Natalie

Book review – The Book Thief

The Book Thief movie was beautiful. It ticked all the criteria. Perfect cast {especially Liesel and Rudy}, loyalty to the book. {a very, very important thing when bringing a book to the big screen} and an amazing location.

I thought the movie was as close to the book the producers could manage in the two hours  and eleven minutes they had to play around with. I think that the characters were portrayed in a way that showed the attention to detail that every viewer wants.

I really enjoyed the movie and was kept engaged the entire time. Despite having read the book, I didn’t feel as though the movie was too predictable or as if reading the book was necessary. The movie was fairly self explanatory so reading the book was not necessary, although I would suggest reading it as the book is amazing.

As a reader, you feel so proud when you watch something that was only words turn into something that the whole world can enjoy on the big screen. When I watched The Book Thief I felt as if a l was watching something is aw grow up become real. Watching Liesel on the screen filled me with such pride as I saw a character that originally existed only in mind become something real.

The Book Thief was expertly filmed. The lines were all well delivered and spoken with such character that you could easily believe it was being portrayed in front of you. I thought that the location and set was chosen beautifully and reflected the actors wonderfully.
Despite all of this, I thought one of the best features of the film was the small bits that were said in German. I thought that it was a genius idea and really showed the time, era and place the movie was set in. I think that it added a nice touch to the movie and would have made all the book to movie viewers proud.

see ya Ashlea

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The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak has been adapted to the cinema and the result was wonderful. The Book Thief was a novel I read through my book club a couple of years ago. I instantly fell in love with Liesel and Max. Watching the movie I fell in love all over again. And one of the most amazing and inspiring parts to this story, is the author is Australian ( great for a budding writer like myself).

The Book Thief is set in Germany during the second world war. It is about a young girl Liesel – played beautifully by Sophie Nelisse who is fostered into another family as her own family can no longer look after her. Liesel finds her passion in books, which she steals (or borrows) along the way, learning all she can from the alluring spread of words. Liesel combines her passion of books with a young Jewish boy Max, a forbidden combination, and her love of living with a young German boy Rudy. This story is told in the eyes of death but not once did I fear death, rather had a more sympathetic eye.

Ashlea and I always read a book before we see a movie and I know we both thought it was worth the wait. The movie was true to the book, with each character mimicking my images of the way I saw them. A fabulous movie for all ages, making you feel human spirit and kindness though out. Loved it, loved it, loved it.

cheers natalie

Girls ♥ Talk

Girls ♥ Talk

My friends and I had a fight but I’m scared to tell my mum, she’ll think it was my fault. How do I approach her without her getting angry?

Okay well first off, unless you have done something wrong, don’t feel guilty at all. Everyone has fights with their friends, everyone says things in the heat of an argument they wish they could take back later, everyone makes mistakes. Don’t feel like you have to blame yourself.

When approaching your mum on an undesirable topic, they key is timing. Don’t tell her when she is surrounded by other people, nor if she’s in the middle of something else. When you know that your mum is settled enough to actually listen, ask her to go into a more private space for a talk.

When you’re talking to your mum, be calm and try and stay composed. Let her know exactly what your thinking and explain to her how your feeling. Don’t start blaming others or try to down play things. Tell her exactly how it is.  from Ashlea

I don’t know many mums who blame their children when they have been in an argument. Mum’s are human too and we love to feel like we ahem helped you in a time of need. Tell your Mum you need her undivided attention when she has a moment as you have had a rough day and need to chat. When that time arrives, tell her everything. no holding back. Tell her everything you said, everything you did and the result. Most mums are pretty aware of their children’s personality traits and can tell when the story sounds  a little one sided. 

Honesty is the best policy and Mum is there to help you, not to make life harder. Trust your mum and in return she will probably confide in you too.

cheers natalie

What does a mid life crisis feel like?

What does a mid life crisis feel like?

Are team sports important for children?

Being part of a team is definitely important, especially growing up. I’ve always played basketball and just recently started netball. I think that being a part of team boosts your confidence and socialising skills. It also lets you have fun playing your sport with other people.

I love playing in teams because it means all the pressure isn’t just on me like sports such as swimming or skateboarding. In sports such as basketball, netball, soccer, cricket and so many more, you have the opportunity to play with other people who enjoy the same sport as you.

When I play in a team, I always feel as though I have to perform better. Without a team you could play at any level you what’d because no one relied on you to be good. With a team you almost get pushed by your team mates into doing the best you can. Having encouragement makes things so much easier in sport.

Playing a team sport helps you become more social and confident a round others. It helps you to interact with people who like the same things as you. When you play, you are forced to talk to your team mates so you are bound to become friends with people who you may not have been friends with before.

Basically, team sports are really fun. They have everything to make great memories as a child or to keep fit as an adult. Sports are a huge part of Australian culture, as is competition. Competition is a great way for kids to learn how to win and loose. Team sports are definitely a very important thing to be a part of.

Ashlea..

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All my children play team sports as I think it is essential to learn to be part of a group effort, the highs and lows included but feeling integrated within a small group.

Once a commitment is made to join a team, children need to learn to stay committed. That includes participating in training as well as game day festivities. There is no pulling out of a team sport mid season just because you have tired of the sport. The commitment has been made to be part of a team and as a parent, it’s my role to ensure my children understand this commitment and stick to it.

Teams rely on each to succeed. Teaching children that a team involves other people relying on them and visa versa (yes shock horror – it is not always about you) can be a lesson that helps them succeed when they get older.

Being part of a team also involves the coaching staff. In many children’s sports, the coaches are the parents of team members, devoting their time to the team. Out of respect for the coach, turning up on time to training sessions and game day, is an important part of being in a team.

cheers natalie

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