Making instagram my happy place again – new hashtag communities

Enjoy instagram again new # communities - Bubbablue and me

If you’re on Instagram how do you feel about it at the moment? I used to really enjoy it. I joined before it was somewhere influencers were, before it was included in blog ranking calculations. When it was just about sharing square photos and finding like-minded people to follow without having to use Flickr. But over the last year as it’s become more business oriented, and the algorithms have hit many of us hard, it’s hard to get the same… Continue Reading “Making instagram my happy place again – new hashtag communities”

How and why to use the Polarr photo editor

how to use Polarr photo editor - Bubbablue and me

If you’re just getting into your photography and want to use RAW images rather than Jpegs, you need an editing programme rather than the basics you might use online.  On recommendation I’ve started using Polarr, and want to share what I’ve learnt about it. Everyone seems to opt for Lightroom or Photoshop which do the job brilliantly, but in particular with Photoshop there’s a big learning curve.  There’s also a big expense.  With Lightroom you can pay a one off… Continue Reading “How and why to use the Polarr photo editor”

Ravensburger World Landmarks jigsaw puzzle

ravensburger world landmarks puzzle

I go through winter phases. One year I’ll be into crochet, then next books are the only thing I’ll do outside of blogging.  This year it’s all about jigsaw puzzles.  The latest one I’m doing is Ravensburger’s World Landmarks that I was sent to review. N gets a bit annoyed when I get a new puzzle because he always wants to join in, and when they’re a 1000 pieces, they’re just too overwhelming and he can’t see what needs putting… Continue Reading “Ravensburger World Landmarks jigsaw puzzle”

Top reading tips to encourage children to read

tips on encouraging kids to read (2 boys reading) - Bubbablue and me

Reading ability is such a key skill for children to enable them to progress well at school, it’s no wonder many parents worry about how their children are doing.  I previously shared a comparison of the different reading levels and schemes.  But if your child doesn’t want to read (home or school books, or anything), it can be worrying.  There are things you can do to help encourage their reading. In our house we’ve gone through ups and downs with… Continue Reading “Top reading tips to encourage children to read”

Flat lay photography props – starting a collection

setting up a flat lay prop box - bubbablue and me

Over the last 2-3 years I’ve really got more into photography.  I wish I’d done so earlier, when N was first born, because we don’t have many really nice photos of him.  But I’m making up for it now, and enjoying photographing different subjects.  I love flower photography – I’m doing a flower photography course at the moment which is stretching me.  Looking at my Instagram account I have anything and everything photographed there. So far flat lay photography hasn’t… Continue Reading “Flat lay photography props – starting a collection”

Swimming pool safety and distracted parents

swimming pool safety - Bubbablue and me

Water and swimming pool safety is the reason why most parents sign their children up for swimming lessons.  Or maybe I’m missing something?  So why on earth do some parents take along toddlers to watch their siblings swim and then not keep an eye on what the toddler is doing? N has been in swimming lessons since 3 months old.  Yes, by now you’d imagine he would be on the verge of swimming miles and becoming a youth team swimmer,… Continue Reading “Swimming pool safety and distracted parents”

Fun alternative advent calendar ideas with Scholastic

alternative advent calendar ideas - bubbablue and me

Advent is such an exciting time of year for children. The bubbling anticipation of Christmas, the countdown and wishes that are made.  And children love the tradition of a daily advent calendar. In our house we do our own version of a chocolate advent calendar.  We have a fabric calendar with pockets and drop in a chocolate coin and a Christmassy activity on a bit of paper.  You can check out my advent calendar activity suggestions and printable if you’re… Continue Reading “Fun alternative advent calendar ideas with Scholastic”

Lego Cafe and a relaxed day out in Stratford-upon-Avon

Lego cafe fun in Stratford upon Avon - Bubbablue and me

Stratford-upon-Avon is usually my go to summer day out. It’s perfect for spending time down by the river, or with N in the playground. But during half term, N had requested a visit to Lego Café which he’d heard his school friends mention. So Lego Cafe it was, plus a mooch around in the morning. Travel tip –> if you’re driving to Stratford, you really want to get a parking space early rather than sitting in traffic all day There’s… Continue Reading “Lego Cafe and a relaxed day out in Stratford-upon-Avon”

Brick Wonders at Banbury Museum

Brick wonders at Banbury Museum - Bubbablue and me

Lego. Most of us are swimming in the stuff at home.  And there’s very few children who don’t like it.  For me, it’s part of childhood, remembering building with our parents and siblings, displaying out amazing wonky builds.  Our local museum had a Lego exhibition on recently and I finally managed to take N to see Brick Wonders. Banbury museum isn’t somewhere we visit regularly. It’s small but does hold the occasional special exhibition, putting on children’s activities during the… Continue Reading “Brick Wonders at Banbury Museum”

6 easy ways to keep kids entertained while on holiday

6 ways to keep kids entertained on hols - Bubbablue andme

When you go on a family holiday you always end up taking so much paraphernalia with you, you don’t want to take tonnes of toys.  The hope is that you’ll have good weather and the children will just spend all day playing outside. But there’s the journey, early mornings, evenings and of course the rain, that means taking some toys with you is a sensible idea. 6 eays to keep kids entertained on holiday *includes affiliate links 1, Arts  and… Continue Reading “6 easy ways to keep kids entertained while on holiday”