Tagged With parents hacks

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If you've ever had to change a nappy in a public place, you know that it can be awkward -- and a large nappy bag doesn't necessarily make the process easier. Instead of carrying supplies in a big bag crammed with other baby stuf, use a "zip trip" bag with just the essentials.

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Christmas rolls around again like a tinselled-covered freight train. Shopping centres sway in unison to the tune of carols, while children test the patience of their parents as the queue slowly contracts towards Santa's lap. To-do lists are being crossed off, cards are being scrawled in, and everywhere there is just the faintest hint of exhaustion. Yet despite the dodgem-car shopping and magic disappearing act of my bank balance, I do love Christmas.

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Hi, A friend of mine's child recently knocked over some stock on display outside a store and broke it. The stock was fragile, and was placed outside of the store on the footpath on a very rickety table. The store owner promptly came out and demanded my friend pay for the broken stock. I would think that the store owner was partly to blame due to poor placement of his display stock. Does my friend have any rights here? (And yes, this really is about my friend, it didn't happen to me!) Thanks, Broken China

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Too much sugar isn't good for anyone, and that's especially the case with sugar that's added during manufacture (as opposed to occurring naturally in fruits and other foodstuffs). A new study suggests that more than half of all Australian kids get more than the recommended level of added sugar in their diet, with the figures rising dramatically as kids get older. Which foods are the biggest offenders?

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There's a teachers' strike in NSW today, which inevitably leads to grumbles from parents who face last-minute changes to their day-to-day school drop-off and child-minding arrangements. What are your coping strategies when that happens?

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Parenting approaches differ widely, and so they should -- kids are individuals, not dough to be shaped identically by your cookie-cutter personality. With that said, a few guidelines are always welcome, and our sibling site Babble has a neat list of ten approaches that might help ensure your kids grow up happy.

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KidRex is a kid friendly front-end for Google searches that uses Google's SafeSearch technology to filter out child-inappropriate content. It's a hassle-free tool for masking the underbelly of the internet from young searchers. KidRex isn't as robust a solution as setting up a completely stand-alone browser with a white list like KidZui or using OpenDNS as a parental filter, but it is effective and more than adequate for preventing childhood curiosity from exposing kids to inappropriate content. Basic keyword queries that would lead a kid to wonder exactly why that girl has so many boyfriends are blocked, and the user is redirected to search again. If your eight year old nephew a robust vocabulary, however, KidRex won't be much of a challenge. Search for curvaceous and you—and Junior—will find out that there is an entire magazine devoted to the implications of the word. In any case, if you'd like to be able to help a young-in research for a school report about cougars without having a conversation about the birds, the bees, and the economy of southern California, KidRex will provide more than adequate filtering.

KidRex

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If you have an itchy clothing label that you'd like to be rid of but you don't want to risk damaging the seam with scissors, or you want to keep the tag on but decrease the itch factor there is an excellent solution over at parenting blog Parent Hacks: Why did I never think of this before hacking off a bunch of my daughter's shirt tags? (I inevitably break the thread of the neck and a hole is born.) I got a little piece of iron-on no-sew hemming tape and tacked the tag down. No itching and no chance to ruin the shirt with my over-zealous tag removal.

A tiny bit of no-sew tape, an iron, and no more scratchy tags wiggling about your shirts. Photo by Lin Pernille. A Cure For Itchy Shirt Labels

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Lifehacker will be taking a leave of absence on Monday as it's the Australia Day public holiday. I couldn't find one central list of Australia Day activities being planned by different cities or councils, but if you google "Australia Day 2008" and your location you should find that your local council has a list of activities planned. Hopefully including fireworks. :)And if you're staying home with the kids, here's five tips from the Geekdad blog for how to turn weekend projects into awesome memories.I'm heading to country Victoria for some camping this weekend, so enjoy your Australia Day, whatever you might be doing. :)

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If you, I mean your kids, love robots then Sydneysiders and Brisbanites should look out for the ASIMO robot tour which is on at the moment. ASIMO is a very cool robot designed by Honda who can walk, run at speeds of nearly 6km/hour and use stairs (so it's better than a Dalek!). It also has voice and face recognition.

 Not as cute as Sony's QURO robot which visited here in 2004, ASIMO is closer to human size. It looks like a short spaceman wearing a helmet and rocket pack on its back. The videos on the website show it carrying trays of drinks (take that, R2D2).

ASIMO will be appearing in shows throughout the day while on tour - they're set to music and include him dancing and performing soccer moves (!). Tickets are free and first come first serve. In Sydney's Darling Harbour til Sunday (25 November) ASIMO then heads up to Brisbane. More details here.