Thursday, January 7, 2021

How to Stay Calm After Your Child Is Hurt

man in brown shorts carrying woman in white dress during daytime

Any parent knows how stressful it can be when their child hurts themselves. Whether this happens at home or when spending time outdoors, it is never something you are prepared for, even if you have a feeling that something will go wrong soon. When something does go wrong, many parents' immediate response is to panic. But, this isn’t the best approach. If your child sees you panic, they will panic, too. Instead, it’s essential to stay calm, and here is how you can do that. 

Don’t Just Stand There 

After seeing your child hurt themselves, you can easily go into a state of minor shock. You don’t know what to do, and you may just stand there. However, this can cause several problems. For one, your child won’t get the immediate help that they need. Furthermore, you might find that you shut down, and this will make you feel worse than you already do. So, even if you only go over to check on them, make sure you do something to help put yourself and your child at ease. 

Identify The Problem 

It’s easy to fear the worst when your child gets hurt. You worry about broken bones and large cuts with plenty of blood. However, this is not always certain, and the sooner you identify the problem, the calmer you will be. After your child gets hurt, get to them as soon as possible to see what is wrong. This will give you a chance to analyze the problem and determine if it is just a small cut or if you need to seek medical attention. 

Have a Plan 

All parents should have a plan for when their child gets hurt. Hopefully, you never need to use this plan, but it’s still useful to have. You should know how to administer First Aid if required, and also how to get to the closest doctor. Parents might also want to get in touch with a team of expert personal injury attorneys who can offer advice, especially if the injury occurred at the playground or somewhere that you deem unsafe for kids so that it doesn’t happen to others. 

Find Ways to Distract Them 

Your child is likely to cry after getting injured, and this can increase your stress levels, making it impossible to stay calm. To avoid this, you must find ways to distract them while you take care of them. You can do this by playing a game with them, such as I Spy, or you can ask them questions to take their mind off the pain. Getting them talking about something completely different should distract them enough that you can clean the wound and apply bandages. When you’re finished, you can go home, or you can let them get back to playing with their friends. 

Staying Calm 

Everyone knows how difficult it can be to stay calm in an emergency, but staying calm is crucial if you want to get through the initial shock and make progress to help your child. While you may be freaking out on the inside, you must still present an aura of calm to help them feel better.

Tuesday, January 5, 2021

4 Tips to Throw Your Child a Birthday Party They Won't Forget



When you’re a child, your birthday is a monumental occasion. It’s a chance to receive all the presents you could want and get all your friends together for fun games and delicious food. And birthdays only come round once a year, so it’s an extra special occasion worth pushing the boat out for.

Birthday parties come in all shapes and sizes. You could have one at home, in a fast-food restaurant, soft play area, or an entertainment venue. They could be large or small, themed, or casual. Nevertheless, there are a few key ingredients that are essential to throwing the perfect party.

If you want to throw your child a birthday party they won’t forget this year, here are four key steps you need to think about.

The guest list

Who will be coming to your child’s party? You might not think the guest list is hugely important, but it could make or break your child’s enjoyment. Children’s loyalties and friendships change all the time, and you don’t want to inadvertently invite their worst enemy or forget their new best friend. Even if your party is a surprise, you should talk to your child and find out who their close friends are and get an idea who to invite along. If you’re really unsure, you could play it safe by inviting everyone in their class at school.

The theme

Not every party needs a theme, but for young children, it will make the event a lot more exciting and memorable. You can theme a party on anything you choose, so it makes sense to pick the one thing your child is more passionate about than anything else. It might be superheroes, unicorns, Disney princesses, or Fortnite. Whatever it is, this should manifest itself in all aspects of the party from the fancy dress outfits to the food to the games they play. As a word of warning, if it is a mixed-gender party you should be careful not to exclude people and have something for everyone. A nine-year-old boy might not be too excited about attending a princess party, but if you opt for a general Disney theme, they could come dressed as Aladdin, Mufasa, or Buzz Lightyear.

The entertainment

Kids are notorious for getting bored easily, so you will need to plan some entertainment to keep them occupied. Games are an essential part of any birthday party so make sure you have something planned. If your party revolves around an activity like bowling or ice skating you have your bases covered, but you might still wish to come up with a few quick and easy games like Pass the Parcel to fill those gaps in the party. If you’re throwing your party in your backyard it’s a good idea to invest in some outdoor games such as Cornhole Worldwide or Giant Jenga.

The food

With a herd of excited children running around, food is essential to keep their energy levels up. Many children are very picky, so make sure you have a wide variety of options available. You could even plan ahead by getting them to pick their food from a menu in advance. Make sure you cater to specific dietary requirements and prepare something for the adults too.

Friday, December 18, 2020

NOVICA - The Place To Go For Handmade Gifts Review & Giveaway

Disclosure:  We received a gift code to purchase items to facilitate our review.  All opinions stated are those of the Shelly's Bits and Pieces family.

One of my favorite things about Christmas is finding unique gifts for my family members.  I like to purchase handmade and one of a kind gifts for them, and that is not always easy.  One of my favorite places to shop is  Here is a little more information about them:

We started Novica with a dream to create a better world for artisans because a better world for Artisans is a better world for all. Along the way, we discovered something very important - as artisans around the world succeeded, there was also a visible and profound impact on the communities around them.

You can find gifts from jewelry to clothes, handbags to scarves, and from unique carved items to facemasks!  With so many wonderful items to choose from you can find something for everyone.  My favorite item has to honestly be the beautiful earrings that they have.  I'll tell you more about them later, but I want to tell you about the unique facemasks now.

As lives and livelihoods have changed, we have renewed our belief that a better world begins with simply looking after each other. To make ends meet during COVID times, many artisans turned to handcraft unique face masks. Innovative designs crafted in comfortable fabrics display the amazing fortitude and resilience of artisans as we support each other during these challenging times.

They have so many beautiful ones to choose from.  Here are a few of my favorites.  

I received a gift code to purchase some items to review, and I chose earrings!  They are handmade and are lovely.  They are gifts for my mom, sister-in-law, daughter-in-law, and myself!  I love them.

There are so many things to choose from, I want to give one lucky Shelly's Bits & Pieces reader a chance to see for themselves.  Simply tell me what item you like best in the comment section below and you could win a $50 gift code.  This will be a flash giveaway and will end Sunday night, 12/20.  Please make sure I have your email so I can message you if you win!  

Monday, December 7, 2020

Be More Productive As An Entrepreneur At Home


If your life goal has been to be your own boss and forge your own path to success, 2021 might be the ideal time for you to pursue this dream. We all know how difficult 2020 has been and the idea of starting fresh at home for a new life is definitely a promising one. 

For the new entrepreneur, the most important thing is to make the most of all of your days and try to be as productive as you can. Today we want to help you be more productive and become a successful entrepreneur at home this year. 

Create a good workspace 

The first task for anyone deciding to work at home is making yourself a space to work which is productive and easy to manage. A home office can be a wonderful thing, and as you try to work from home for the first time it is important to create a space that emulates the feeling of being in an office. Be sure to make a space that is comfortable, practical, and organized. 

When creating your home office be sure to choose a bright part of the house or at least have plenty of bright lights in the room. Be sure to bring comfortable items in the space such as a chair and cushions and even a blanket for winter. Choose your office space carefully so that it is away from the rest of your house so that you don’t get distracted by your pets or children throughout the day while you try to work! 

Separate work and home 

As we mentioned above - it is important to have a workspace and set up away from the rest of your home. We know how tempting it is to wake up, grab a coffee and sit in bed in your pajamas with your laptop - but this is not the most efficient way to work and will not help you to succeed at home. Choose a room away from the main part of your home and once you ‘go to work’ shut the door and pretend you are elsewhere. Being away from your dirty dishes, laundry, and other chores will allow you to focus on work and not keep getting distracted by things around the house. 

Wake up early 

As an entrepreneur you no longer have a boss breathing down your neck every minute of the day making sure you are doing work. While this is amazing, it is also something that can be a challenge. Be sure that you wake up early in the morning so that you have time to get up, eat, and get ready for a productive day working at home. It is important to try and be as productive as you can when working at home and an early start, as well as a big breakfast, will make all the difference to your day. 

Do a workout before work 

One of the hardest things for us to do in our lives is to maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine. If you have always found it a little bit difficult to stay on track with your fitness it is important for you to consider working out as soon as you wake up. Working out first thing in the morning will allow you to wake your body up and get those muscles moving before you even sit down to start work. If you often feel groggy when you first start working, it will also be a good way to ensure you don’t spend the first hour of your day struggling to start. By doing a workout you’ll release adrenaline and also happy hormones to your brain - and these will kickstart your brain and help you get going with your day as soon as you sit down at your desk. 

Write a list the night before 

If you always find it difficult to get back into the flow of work in the morning, it is a great idea for you to write a to-do list for yourself at the end of the day and leave it somewhere you’ll find it in the morning. By doing this, you will have a clear direction to follow from the moment you wake up and it will help you stay on track with your day. Get going right away and don’t miss the opportunity for some productivity. 

Work when you feel productive 

It is a great idea when working from home to try out some different ways of working to find which one suits you best. In your first week of working at home, you might want to try waking up super early one day, waking up and having breakfast the next, doing a workout before work the next, or even waking up a little later and working in the afternoon/evening. Everyone is unique and we all have our own most productive times of the day. Find yours and stick to this for your routine even if it might not seem like the most ‘normal’ working schedule. As long as you are able to get things done it doesn’t matter what time of the day you decide to work. 

Be flexible 

It is always important for you to be flexible with yourself as an entrepreneur and also be flexible with anyone you decide to hire as part of your team. Modern-day working is all about working when we are at our most productive and as we know this is different for all. Be flexible with your employees and allow them to manage their own time. As long as they do their work and stick to deadlines that is the most important thing. 

Take breaks 

When working from home and managing your own schedule it is very important for you to also input breaks into your day. It can be difficult to manage your time correctly and be productive at home but you mustn’t end up working too much because it will tire you out and will not enable you to work efficiently. Take breaks now and again to refresh your mind and come back to your work with a fresh head. 

Use work scheduling 

It is so important if you are taking on other people in your team remotely that you are able to schedule their working hours efficiently. Be sure to do a comparison of work schedule types and decide which one works for you. Hiring employees to help you with your venture is a big step and you should make sure that even if they are based at home they are able to be productive and stick to deadlines. 

Work to a deadline 

When you work as an entrepreneur for the first time - the biggest change you will notice is that you no longer have a boss. When working in a normal office job it is natural to have your boss looking over your shoulder and keep you on track but when you work for yourself you won’t have this. Be sure to create work deadlines for yourself at home and stick to them for the best work. Ensure to create realistic deadlines for yourself to give you something to work towards. 

Get out of the house 

The most important thing you should do as an entrepreneur working from home is to make sure to get out of the house once in a while. Now that you don’t have a reason to go out to go to work you are much less likely to leave the house at all. However, if you do leave the house and go for a walk or to the shops it will help to refresh your mind as well as improve your mental health.

Sunday, December 6, 2020

How to Spend Your Free Time During the Pandemic


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2020 has been an odd year. The coronavirus and Covid-19 pandemic has had countless knock-on effects on our day to day lives. From health concerns to financial concerns to sheer boredom. Now, we can definitely help you to tackle the latter. Now, many of us have fewer things we can do right now due to government restrictions and guidelines that have been implemented to slow the spread of the virus around the world. Many of us can’t mix households. Many of us are now working from home. Many of us are having to isolate in our homes for extended periods of time if we exhibit any symptoms. So, let us give you a few suggestions on how to spend your time so that you’re still doing things you enjoy in spite of the pandemic!

Find Blogs and Podcasts You Enjoy

Nowadays, we’re pretty lucky that there’s a world of free content out there that can be easily accessed from our phones, laptops, or computers, as long as we have some sort of internet connection. This means that during times like now, when money can be a little tight and there’s not much we can do outside our homes, we can still easily occupy ourselves without worrying about how we’re going to pay the bills or whether we’re going to come into contact with strangers while we do the things we enjoy. Some of the most popular and widely tuned into free content out there tend to be blogs and podcasts. Blogs provide free reading material and think pieces on a matter of topics, or specialism into specific industries and fields. You can be entertained by them. You can see yourself learning a lot. You can start to think about things you haven’t thought of before. Look into areas you’re interested in and find relevant blogs for content that will entertain you. If you’re into performing arts, for example, check out Travis Preston CalArts blog. Podcasts can provide you with all of the same things that a blog can but tend to be a little more easy listening. Again, scout out podcasts specializing in the things you’re interested in!

Find a Hobby

Many people are finding all sorts of new hobbies and interests throughout this pandemic. Sure, your new hobby is unlikely to get you out of the house or have a particularly social element to it. But there are countless things you can still do under new restrictions and our new way of living. You could get into baking. You could pick up arts and crafts projects like knitting, embroidery, or painting. You could learn a new language with learning apps. The possibilities really are endless. All you need to do is sit down and think of things you enjoy doing and then take them a little more seriously. Then, go for it. Don’t let self-doubt hold you back! Nobody is perfect at anything at first. You just need a little trial, error, and experimentation. Then, practice will get you along the way!

These are just a few suggestions for things to do during the pandemic. Hopefully, they’ll help to occupy some of your time and alleviate a little boredom!

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Finding Reasons To Get Outdoors In 2020

 This year has certainly been an odd one. Aside from making everyone’s life that little bit extra stressful, it’s also seen a lot of us spending a lot more time indoors than we usually might, and more than we might like to. If you’re being prudent, you might not be getting out for your usual gatherings and events, so what opportunities should you take to get out there instead?

Picture - Pixabay License

Move those legs

There’s nothing to stop you from getting up and taking a walk even if you’re in a state of lockdown. Quarantine is designed to keep you from other people, but most places with lockdown rules still allow for people to be outside if it’s for recreation or fitness purposes. If you’re going out for chores, then instead of taking the car everywhere, you can take the more scenic route, or you can use walking apps to find nice routes near you, too.

Take care of the garden

Since you’re spending more time in your home, why not make use of it to add a little curb appeal, as well? Getting into gardening for beginners, you can start to learn about the day-to-day maintenance and planting choices that allow you to create a gorgeous exterior for your home. Not only can be a great way to get out into the sun and to take your mind off things, it can be good for property values, too. Even if you only have something like a single balcony, you can create a mini-garden to tend to each day.

Hit the water

If you live near any bodies of freshwater, then there should be nothing to stop you from taking advantage of them. Fishing has tremendous health benefits, aside from getting you out of the home, even if you’re bringing beginners fishing kits. It’s great for your core, heart, and lungs, it gets you more than your fair share of vitamin D (so be sure to take necessary precautions to protect against UV rays), and it can help you shake off a lot of the day-to-day stress we’re all experiencing a little more of.

Create your own zen den

You don’t need to get too far away from home to enjoy a little relaxation, however, nor do you necessarily need the excuse of getting active to get outside. Creating your own relaxing space in the garden or on the porch might not necessitate that you get your hands dirty or show off your green thumb. Creating a well lit, comfortable space, with the right furniture and some means to privacy can give you the perfect place to enjoy some respite in the great outdoors, a perfect place for reading, meditation, or any other means or chilling out that you might like.

Just because a lot of us are being more careful about not getting out around other people doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t still take the time to enjoy the outdoors. A new hobby or “ritual” to get you outdoors could just be what your mind, body, and spirit needs.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

Four tips for hosting a large scale event

 From weddings to birthday parties, business events to charity auctions, most people have an occasion in their life when they have to host a large scale event. If you are unaccustomed to organizing events, however, to begin with, such a large gathering could overwhelm you, with the result being that what should be a joyous occasion becomes stressful and unenjoyable. To help you out, here are four tips for hosting a large scale event. 

Find an appropriate venue

If your event is catered towards a large number of people, you will have to find a venue that is capable of comfortably hosting large groups. The activities planned for your event will also have an impact on the venue you choose. For instance, if you are planning on a sit-down meal then find a venue with a kitchen. For live music or an auction, you might want somewhere with a stage and sound equipment. Or, if you are planning on ending your event with a disco, choose a venue with a dance floor. 

Organize catering

Most events include some sort of refreshment and if alcohol is involved it is especially pertinent to offer food so that guests are not drinking on an empty stomach. You might decide to hold a formal sit down dinner, provide a buffet for guests to help themselves, or have waiting staff circulating among guests to offer nibbles. When preparing food for a large scale event, it is a good idea to order ingredients from a wholesaler local to your event, such as wholesalers in Cape Town. Ordering high-quality ingredients wholesale can help to keep costs down when catering for a large number of people. 

Provide a selection of alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages 

Drinks are essential to a successful event, providing a fun and relaxing way for guests to socialize and mingle. You might like to provide a complimentary drink on arrival, for instance, a glass of Prosecco or champagne, and have waiting staff circulating among your guests to top up their glasses when they are running low. Although alcoholic drinks such as wine and beer are ubiquitous choices for events, ensure that you also provide a good choice of non-alcoholic options as well for guests who either don’t drink alcohol or who are driving. 


Most events include some form of entertainment, whether that is a post-wedding disco, a live band for a birthday, or a celebrity guest conducting a charity auction. You might, however, decide to offer something a bit more unusual as entertainment for your event. You could, for instance, wow guests with circus-themed entertainment such as gymnasts and magicians performing magic tricks. Or, to bring a bit of comedy and give your guests a giggle, why not hire a celebrity impersonator?

The most important thing to remember when hosting a large scale event is to be flexible and prepared for unexpected complications, and try to enjoy the festivities as much as possible.

How Can You Work Out When Broke?

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You have always signed up for gym membership and have access to fancy workout equipment. Unfortunately, the pandemic came, and everyone had to stay away from public spaces. Perhaps your income was also affected, and you realize that you can't keep up with the membership anymore.

 You’re here because you don't know how you can get the best fitness program on a budget. The truth is you don’t need an expensive gym membership to have a workout regime. Use these few ideas to keep you going when you're broke. 

Join a Workout Group

Bring your friends or neighbors together and form an exercise group where you can meet twice or thrice a week. Use free resources in the neighborhood to keep your sessions fun and enjoyable.

 The local park, community pool, or high school track are places where you can work out without paying a dime. It’ll be a lot more fun if you and your friends can go for coffee afterward. 

Check Out Discount Sites

New gyms that are trying to attract new members usually offer great deals on discount sites. If you’re lucky, you could sign up at only 20% of the usual monthly membership cost. However, this will mostly depend on how flexible you are in the type of gym you can join.

Alternatively, look for donation-based classes. These are usually community gym classes that come with drop-in costs, and sometimes they're entirely free. Most of them revolve around yoga, but they may be located away from the city.

Buy Multi-Use Equipment

Your next best option is to use your membership fee to buy multi-use fitness equipment. Some popular options include: 

An exercise ball

You can use it to support your body during weight training activities and cardio exercise. When not working out, you can sit on the ball when working on your computer or watching TV. Most will cost you anything between $20 and $50.

Multi-Station Home Gym

These can be quite expensive but will save you a lot in the long run. They also let you work out the whole body since they have a variety of exercises. You’ll need up to $500 for a complete set.

Cardio Machines

Cardio machines may seem like luxury items but having them at home saves you the monthly membership fees. Your whole family can also use them, which is an extended benefit altogether.

Use Free Exercise Resources

Exercise doesn’t have to be expensive. If you look at the right places, you can get some useful resources like to inform your workout regime. Most have free information and workout programs you can use at home. 

Final Thoughts

Lack of money shouldn't be a reason for you to shelve your workout goals. If you were used to working in a gym setting, it's time to readjust to incorporate a less expensive program. Your options are diverse, including buying home gym equipment or joining discount gyms.

 Whatever option you settle for, ensure you remain committed to your workout routine. You might eventually find out that gym membership is an expense you never needed. Besides, the non-gym arrangement works better, is less costly, and is more flexible.