How to choose eye protection for travel

Sunglasses are not just cosmetic accessories that give you a unique style wearing them, but also necessary since their main job is to protect your eyes from harmful ultraviolet radiation. Choosing them is a grave matter, and it would not be suitable for your criteria to be based only on the aesthetic part, but to keep in mind some other parameters, especially in the case of a trip during which you will be exposed to the sun’s ultraviolet rays. Below you will find answers to all your questions to find out what sunglasses suit you!

Proper frame and good fit

A frame is considered suitable when it has the necessary size for everyone’s face. It should not come in contact with certain parts of your face, such as the temples, eyelids, eyebrows, cheeks, because there is a possibility of some kind of intolerance. Improper application of sunglasses can make them unsuitable for use.

 

Protection filters

Remember that sunglasses’ most basic “job” is to protect your eyes from harmful UV rays. A good pair of sunglasses is labelled UV 400. This means that it prevents UVA and UVB rays from entering your eyes while keeping the area around them healthy. It would be good to use your glasses daily, even during the winter months, for more comfortable vision.

 

Lens material

Take some time to find the material you want your sunglasses to be made of. The material is related to durability, cost as well as other parameters.

 

  • Glass, although very fragile, quite heavy and thick material compared to others, but gives an excellent level of visual acuity and is resistant to scratches.
  • Polycarbonate is a light and thin material that at the same time offers a relatively high level of optical clarity. It has excellent UV absorption.
  • Plastic, lightweight material, highly resistant to breakage, offers a satisfactory level of visual clarity.

 

Lens colour

It affects how you distinguish colours and their contrasts, as well as the percentage of light that enters your eyes. The UV filter has absolutely nothing to do with how dark or light your sunglasses lens is.

 

  • Green, brown and grey. They are considered the most suitable for everyday use. They do not change colours and, in conditions of medium and high sunshine, are highly effective.
  • Golden yellow, orange. They are considered excellent for winter sports. They provide a high sense of depth and perform very well in medium and low light conditions.
  • Red and pink. Ideal lenses to be used in an environment dominated by blue and green. They perform exceptionally well in common light conditions and do not offer much shading.
  • Mirror lenses. These lenses provide almost 100% protection for the eyes from UVA and UVB rays. Also significantly reducing the amount of light that reaches the eyes. They do not change the perception of colours, and the user does not notice any difference in his vision. The way to find out what shade these lenses are is to observe them from the front. Mirror lenses have the “charisma” to enhance image significantly.

Where can you get your sunglasses?

Of course, from an optical store. Skilled workers will help you with their knowledge to find the right sunglasses for your needs. But before you go to an optician’s shop, you should visit a specialist ophthalmologist, who will examine your vision in detail and give you the appropriate tips to protect your eyesight during your trip. An ophthalmologist such as Aris Konstantopoulos of Aris Vision Correction clinic will be able to offer you the best services and tips on protecting and maintaining your vision at normal levels.

And for my next trick… the juggle!

It’s been a bit of a year, hasn’t it? I don’t just mean good old Rona and the never ending story that is lockdown. Just everything. My children are now 19, 15 and 6. I haven’t seen my eldest, Col, properly, since last September when we had to take our lovely beagle to be put down.

I miss him very, very much. He lives with his Fiancée across town now. We haven’t really even been able to celebrate them getting engaged yet. He used to be a carer which worried me massively because of all of the contact he was having with so many people. Thankfully now he has a job as a contact tracer which means he is working from home. That, at least, is a little reassuring.

Bess is plugging away with her schoolwork. We just got her report. In a way I wish I had done what a friend of mine did and requested that they didn’t send it home. Thankfully Bess is a good student and is on course to get very high marks but I don’t really think measuring them in terms of grades is at all helpful right now. Our kids are living something which is unimaginable and we are still using the same way to measure progress? No, no thank you. I don’t care what she is currently getting in Maths or Dance. I want to know she is managing ok with so little social interaction. Is she keeping up friendships that she will need later? Does she have people her age to vent to about being stuck in the house with us oldies?

Is she coping? Are any of us?

Moose is a different breed to be honest. In a lot of ways he appears to prefer lockdown. We have tried to keep everything upbeat as much as possible so it is fun for him but he really likes home school and never complains so I think we are quite lucky really in that respect. We have good support from his teacher. He does miss his friends and I have made sure that he has video calls regularly with his cousin and his best friend. He absolutely loves those chats. Next week his teacher has organised a little Zoom meeting so that her class can all see each other. He is going to love that!

Boy in the snow in a yellow coat

G is working from home and will be for the forseeable future I think. Can anyone actually imagine that we are all going to return to offices after all of this and work like we did before?! I can’t see it. We are getting on better at the moment than I think we ever have. It’s actually really nice. Maybe we are both just too worn out to pick fights? Maybe seeing what the other does all day has stripped out some of the resentment I suspect was bubbling before lockdown happened. He got to escape, I got to stay home. I dunno. Whatever the reason, I like it.

And me?

I have had the biggest change I think. At the beginning of lockdown G was made redundant. With him being the main breadwinner this was problematic to say the least! I decided that it would be best if I took a look online to see what jobs were around and managed to snag a job as a contact tracer within 30 mins of starting to look! That contract ran it’s course and that was that. Luckily my old manager pointed me in the direction of new contracts with them and I got back into it. There I was happily doing that and home schooling Moose until last month when I got a promotion.

I am now working as a Quality Coach and I absolutely love it! I mean, looking forward to going back after a couple of days off love it. The ideal would be that this continues on a permanent work from home basis but who knows. I am still making cake toppers and writing too so for the first time in quite a long time my life feels quite full and a lot if it is things that make me happy!

Working and kids

I am not going to pretend it is all plain sailing. Going from being completely freelance to having structured working hours and attending meetings has taken a bit of getting used to. For me and for my children. Moose said to me a few weeks ago that he wished I didn’t have a job. That stung a little bit to be honest. I need this though, having a regular income and a job I genuinely like doing has done masses for my mental health.

I know it is a little selfish on my part but I don’t want to give that up. It hurts that Moose felt that way but I have stepped up the time we do have so we “do” more. Well, as much as we can do right now I guess. I think it will be ok though. It has to be really.

So at the moment I am working a 40 hour week but making sure that on my days off we are spending time together. I would love to be able to take him out and about again but that will come in time. For now it’s a Scooby Do style repeat of baking, Lego, movies and Minecraft.

For now that seems to be enough and if I can just be enough then I think I am ok with that.

 

 

 

10 Benefits of Board Games

Family games have always been a feature of downtime for us and especially at Christmas when we have lots of time to relax together. We love nothing more than grabbing a board game and having good old fashioned family fun. 

This year has really been the year of the board game. From old favourites to new educational games. It really does feel like we have played them all this year. We have definitely had the time to! 

Now that I have started shopping for Christmas gifts for my family I will definitely be looking at The Works for great board games gifts as well as books! There are so many ways every member of the family can benefit from board games and here are just a few of the best reasons to start playing together

Board games are a great way to unplug

Sometimes you need to reconnect. A great way of doing that is to put away the screens. The complete lack of technology required by most board games makes them a great tool to help bring people together. Not only do you have to sit together to play a game but everyone benefits from the emotional connection of playing together.

Board games give kids an opportunity to teach adults

You can really only teach something if you know it well enough yourself. Let your child teach you how to play a game. Not only will you have fun but it will really help to build their confidence. 

This year for Christmas I have bought Moose a game of Downfall and also Perfection. I love these games from my childhood but he doesn’t need to know that. I plan to let him teach me how to play both of them. 

Board games teach kids how to be (good) losers

There are always going to be hard lessons to learn and not many of us have made it through life without having to lose sometimes. Yes, playing a game of Monopoly together can be tense but learning how to lose is a really important life skill to have. 

Board games promote literacy

Most board games involve reading. Whether that is questions on a card, instructions to learn how to play or something else. There is always something to read. Why not encourage little ones to hone their skills by reading aloud to other players.

Board games encourage teamwork

A massive plus point of board games is that often they are suitable for different ages. Being able to work as a team with others from different age groups is a skill that your children will need over and over again throughout their life.

Board games help with Maths skills

One of our favourite board games this year is a maths based game called Sum Swamp. It is a very simple concept but in order to move around the board you have to do sums. Games like this one are incredibly educational. It’s great to see kids enjoying maths and now we also incorporate sums into older games too. For example, when we play Snakes & Ladders we use the sums dice from the Sum Swamp game. Suddenly Moose has had an easy 30 minutes of Maths with zero effort.  

Board games help kids to understand how others think

Most board games involve tactical thinking. A lot of them cannot be played without thinking ahead. Playing board games together is a great way to show children that not everyone thinks the same way and that’s a lesson that will come in handy over and over again.

Whether it’s by perfecting their poker face or thinking ahead these are excellent skills to have. Games like Chess are classic and are awesome for building on tactical thinking skills.

Board games are a good alternative to time out

Sometimes when children act out it is a sign that they need you. In fact, I would say that sometimes is a bit of an understatement. Of course there are situations where a time out is absolutely appropriate. However, it makes sense that the more you use a particular method of discipline, the less impact it has. 

The next time your children are playing up why not try getting a game out and switching off distractions and just seeing what kind of an effect it has on you all. Most games have a level of structure to them so they act as a great opener for better communication too.

Board games help build the attention span

I think screens are generally a positive thing for us and our children. However. One of the massive downsides is the sheer number of distractions. The result of this is a notable decrease in everyone’s attention span. Not just children, adults too. 

Playing a board game from start to finish without allowing distractions from phones or tv most definitely helps to increase concentration and in turn it will also help to lengthen anybody’s attention span.

I love this Ted talk about the brain benefits of playing games

Back to school – Living Arrows week 37 2020

“You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth”

Each week I like to (try and) link up to a series called Living arrows which is about celebrating childhood. You can find out more here

Can you hear that? Yup, it is the sound of silence and it is bliss!

This weeks photos were both taken this morning (in a rush of course) just before both Bess and Moose left to go to their respective schools and approx 30 minutes after MrG left to go to the office. It has just been me and the dog for the whole day for the first time since April and honestly, I could get used to this!

It feels like we are waiting at the moment though. Not sure for what exactly but just waiting. For normality? For it all to kick off and close down again? I don’t know, just waiting. At least I get some peace and quiet for now though!

I think my lot have gone back quite late compared to some schools. Either way, it was worth the wait.

Looking at these photos and then back at old ones (obviously we do this every year, we have to now we have been doing it so long) it          is astonishing how much Bess especially has grown. I do miss the littler version of my girl – even if she did chop herself a dumb and                dumber style fringe just days before she started reception class at her primary school!

Living Arrows

 

10 things I hate about soft play – and why we are rushing back

Hey. It’s me, Tasha. How ARE you?! You may not remember me, it’s been a while. Like most of you I have been staying at home and self isolating where possible! I’m still going nowhere except my weekly outing to do the grocery shop. Fun times.

This, however, is about to change. It’s Moose’s birthday today and just when I was feeling super guilty about having absolutely sod all planned.. A Facebook post popped up informing me that a local indoor soft play place, Safari Adventure Play was about to re-open 2 days before my darling offspring celebrated his 6th journey round the sun. Admittedly over the course of my (thus far) 19 years as a parent, soft play has never been my favourite place to be.

boy in ball pit

Historically my biggest memories have been:

  • Sweaty kids
  • Other peoples kids vomit (never had the dubious pleasure of it being mine – thank God)
  • Other peoples kids being absolute dickbags
  • My kids being absolute dickbags
  • Stickiness. Play equipment, kids, tables, floors. Sticky is never a good sign is it!?
  • Having to be prepared to fight other bleary caffeine needing parents for somewhere to sit
  • ‘That smell’. You know, the one which is a bit of a cross between ageing rubber, old urine and feet and hits you like a train upon entry to soft play.
  • Absolutely disgusting and shockingly overpriced coffee. I was once charged £3.40 for a cup of straight-out-of-the-sachet Nescafe which bore an unsettling similarity to used washing up water. Rough.
  • The frayed nerves of nearly every single adult there – not just parents but grandparents, childminders and the usually bewildered teenage staff members found hiding behind the counter. We once arrived at a soft place just as a shirtless man came charging out offering to rearrange the face of a man who as it turns out was another Dad. Madness! But at soft play, all bets are off.
  • One particularly memorable woman who changed her toddler’s stinky nappy IN THE SOFT PLAY (and then, of course, left the dirty nappy there for the poor staff to deal with)

Nonetheless the news that soft play centres were once again going to be throwing open their doors has had me positively giddy with excitement!

Yes of course it’s great that pubs and restaurants are letting us in again but oh the pure joy of waving my darlings off while I sit and chit chat and enjoy hot cuppas. Ah bliss. Of course, right now we are still having to wear face coverings except when we are eating and drinking so expect me to drink. A lot.

Is it safe?

I have to admit that it did cross my mind that maybe during a pandemic is not the time to be visiting somewhere we all think of (in normal times) as a bit of a germ factory – but, hear me out!

Right now they are running at much lower capacity. The one I am off to with Moose today is limiting admittance to 40% and they are recommending booking online. That’s far fewer people to have to deal with. A good start. On top of that they are cleaning like their jobs depend on it – because, you know, they kinda do. If we want indoor soft play to stick around then we have to use them. It’s as simple as that. There is a daily clean anyway on top of them wiping down the high touch areas throughout the day AND some kind of super anti bac they are spritzing everything with which protects for longer than the usual cleaning stuff.

So these places are about as clean and safe as they are EVER going to be right now. As part of the Eat Out to Help Out scheme the lovely food and drink this particular place sells will be half price. It doesn’t mean you don’t have to quickly scoff your cake while your kid is busy in the ball pit. Sorry. No help for that.

Plus, in about 3 weeks time Moose is going to be going back to school. I don’t believe for a second that they will actually be able to socially distance a whole primary school effectively and this is a kid I had to tell off once for licking his mates shoes. HIS SHOES.

So, if anyone wants me between now and September there is a good chance that you will find me sipping tea and enjoying the air conditioning while Moose gets some much needed exercise and learns how to co-exist with children his own age before school starts again.

See you there?