Posts Tagged ‘kids’

Simple Green Ideas

What can kids do on a rainy day? Something that doesn’t involve X-Box or Playstation or TV!

One of the banes of modern shopping is the ubiquitous polystyrene try.

Food comes like this...

Food comes like this…

You get left with this...

You get left with this…

What to do?

I used to wash them and most would finish up in the ‘junk box’ along with all sorts of other knick-knacks.

On a rainy day I’d get out the junk box, sellotape, glue, paints, etc set it on the veranda and tell the kids to get to it and use their imaginations.

They’d come up with all sorts of weird and wonderful things.

Like this…

The result of imagination

The result of imagination

Monday Moaning

Yes, I know it’s Tuesday… deal with it! I am. I’ve got coffee.

Nature Ramble on Sunday warned of illegal pets, or transporting species from one part of the planet to another.

Here’s another issue that runs parallel to keeping turles and other unusal pets.

Hewlett-Packard ad featuring runaway iguana ‘poses threat to native wildlife’

Invasive Species Council asks company to pull ad, saying ‘Ralph the iguana’ could encourage Australians to buy the illegal pet

Hewlett-Packard’s Australian advertisement features a boy whose pet iguana is on the loose.

Hewlett-Packard has been criticised for featuring a runaway iguana in its Australian advertising, as the animal is considered an environmental threat and is illegal to own as a pet.

The Invasive Species Council has said the use of “Ralph the iguana” in HP’s marketing campaign would encourage Australians to obtain iguanas as pets, only for them to be released into the wild, where they could cause significant damage to native flora and fauna.

The HP campaign is an online effort involving the tagline #HelpFindRalph. People can look at pictures of Ralph to guess his location in order to win various HP products.

So far, Ralph has been photographed alongside camels on the beach in Broome, looking sanguine in a South Australian vineyard and looming in front of Sydney town hall. The green iguana has also been shown at the Twelve Apostles in Victoria and the Whitsunday islands in Queensland.

“We don’t want to create a new demand for this species and for people to buy them on the black market,” Andrew Cox, chief executive of the Invasive Species Council, told Guardian Australia. “These things can grow up to two metres long and then people will dump them, which causes a major threat to northern Australia.

“Hewlett-Packard should have known better. They should have done their homework. They now need to make people aware that it’s illegal to have iguanas in Australia and that they are a threat to the environment here.”

Green iguanas, which can weigh up to 9kg, are considered a pest because of their broad diet, which may include native plants, animals and bird eggs. Their burrows can also disturb the environment.

A Queensland government analysis has warned the animals are considered “high-risk” to the natural environment and are prone to spread in that state because the climate is comparable to that of their native central America.

Although they are often kept as pets, the Queensland government warns: “Adult iguanas are large, powerful animals. When threatened they can bite, cause severe scratch wounds and deliver a painful slap with their tail.”

It is illegal to import iguanas or keep them as pets but 17 animals have been seized by authorities since 1999.

“We can only guess how many are in Australia, probably hundreds,” Cox said. “We don’t want that number to increase because once they are established, it’s a hard creature to dislodge. They can camouflage themselves in the wild, after all.”

The Invasive Species Council, which recently warned of an influx of pest species into Australia, has written to HP asking the company to scrap the advertising campaign and apologise.

But an HP spokeswoman told Guardian Australia it had no plans to alter the ads and that Ralph would continue appearing next to Australian landmarks.

Source: TheGuardian

Opinion:

I realise that Ralph is an invasive species and therefore a concern, but I wonder is this making a mountain out of a molehill?

Ralph makes an endearing ambassador for HP and understandably so.

Perhaps HP should have been a little more astute in their campaign and added an educational factor into the ad, therefore actually helping the powers that be.

But there is also the responsibility of parents in educating their kids about such issues and the matter should also be dealt with in schools.

Make you Fink on Friday

kidgardening

Are we Slowing Down?

Many children ‘slower runners than their parents were’

Children are advised to do at least an hour of vigorous activity every day

Many children cannot run as fast as their parents could when they were young, a study of global fitness says.

Experts say the work – being presented at the American Heart Association’s annual meeting – suggests children’s fitness levels may be declining.

Researchers analysed data spanning 46 years and involving more than 25 million children in 28 countries.

On average, children today run a mile 90 seconds slower than did their counterparts 30 years ago, they said.

Obesity

Across nations, cardiovascular endurance – gauged by how far children can run in a set time – has dwindled consistently by about 5% every decade, according to the findings.

The decline is seen in boys and girls and across all ages from nine to 17 years, and is linked to obesity, with some countries faring worse than others.

Lead researcher Dr Grant Tomkinson of the University of South Australia’s School of Health Sciences said: “In fact, about 30% to 60% of the declines in endurance running performance can be explained by increases in fat mass.”

The problem is largely one of Western countries, but some parts of Asia like South Korea, mainland China and Hong Kong are also seeing this phenomenon.

Dr Tomkinson said children needed to be inspired and encouraged to do more vigorous exercise.

If not, the public health consequences could be dire.

Huff and puff

“If a young person is generally unfit now, then they are more likely to develop conditions like heart disease later in life,” said Dr Tomkinson.

To stay healthy, children and young people need to do at least an hour of physical activity – such as walking or cycling to school and running in the playground – every day. It can be done in small chunks rather than one session.

Prof Michael Gwitz of the American Heart Association said: “The type of exercise is really important.”

He says exercise must be something that “makes you sweat” and is “sustained and dynamic” to promote cardiovascular fitness.

Simply going to the gym or belonging to a school sports team might not be enough, unless you are moving around a lot.

Christopher Allen of the British Heart Foundation, said: “It’s well established that being physically inactive in childhood can have serious health implications later in life.

“Keeping active can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and the sooner kids start, the better.

“By encouraging children to get active, we can help protect their hearts as they grow up. Parents, schools and community groups can all help kids on their way to 60 minutes exercise a day.”

000BBC_logoOpinion:

Not only exercise, get them off any form of soda, and don’t feed them anything that comes in a packet or a can from the supermarket.

 

Simple Green Ideas

You got kids?

They use skateboards?

They got broken skateboards lying around?

Try this novel idea for a kid’s hobby table…

repurposeskateboards

Can’t remember who to credit for this photo, if it’s yours, let me know and I’ll do the decent thing and add the credit.

Change the World Wednesday – 6th Nov

digitallateRunning late again, it has not been a good day. Read Well, Bugger Me! to find out why.

Nothing really to add to last week’s post, and not much has happened since then.

Although this week is not a beefless week, I had a wonderful pork leg chop the size of a dinner plate for a BBQ lunch at home, BBQed the potatoes in their jackets as well.

Let’s get on with this week’s CTWW.

Click on the banner for the full post

This week invite someone to join you in a green activity. Need some ideas? Invite a friend to go for a walk … and perhaps pick up litter as you go. Ask a family member to help you plan and cook a meatless meal. Swap clothes, tools, books, etc., with a neighbor. Start a “green club” with your friends and meet occasionally to share green tips and ideas. Host an Eco-friendly cleaning party at a friend’s home. Do laundry together … or join forces to rake up leaves. Be creative and have fun. The idea, here, is to share an experience so that a green activity which you care about will become important to someone else as well.

 

OR …

If sharing an activity isn’t really your thing, then please share your passion by writing a post about a favorite green activity.

I don’t really have friends whom I could invite for this type of activity, although when my kids are over for a BBQ, I do get them to help keep the area that we use in the park tidy, and see that we don’t leave any rubbish. They know full well, my views on litter, and do help. We tend to leave the area tidier than when we arrived.

So, I am going to affirm my passion for gardening and preserving produce; that would have to be my favourite green and healthy activity, albeit in modest proportions now that I don’t have a garden as such, just many buckets and paint tins with plants.

My best year was the first in this house. I had passion fruit growing up the side of my neighbour’s house.

Passion17

With beautiful big fruit.

Passion15

And lovely flowers.

florT0005

I also had tomatoes.

toms001

Things like chili peppers and cayenne peppers get bottled in olive oil and I now have a pot with a healthy growth of parsley, which gets used often in the kitchen. Then there are my two goiaba (guava) trees, the acerola and pineapple.

My ‘garden’ isn’t big enough to grow beetroot, onions nor cabbage, but I buy them when they are cheap and pickle them as well.

So, yes, gardening and preserves would have to be my favourite green activity.

Make you Fink on Friday

How Big is Your Nurdle?

Have you checked lately?

Surprisingly, the size of your nurdle is of vital importance.

Toothpaste manufacturers want you to have a big nurdle, where as a small nurdle is sufficient. It’s a bit like penis size, not important, it’s the job it does that counts.

You’ve still got no idea what a nurdle is, have you?

To paraphrase William Shakespeare, would a nurdle by any other name still be a nurdle?

Cricketers know what a nurdle is; a case of nudging the ball into a vacant area to score runs; the ocean is polluted with plastic nurdles, but these are not the nurdles I am referring to.

I am referring to your everyday, domestic nurdle.

As parents you should be very concerned with the size of the nurdle your children use. Children’s nurdles tend to be bigger than adult nurdles and to no greater purpose. Children tend to squeeze their nurdles harder which leads to waste. Some children even squish their nurdles on bathroom walls. You have to watch the kids, they have all sorts of unseemly traits.

A nurdle, 5x bigger than necessary

A nurdle, 5x bigger than necessary

A nurdle is the small pea-size blob of toothpaste that you apply to your toothbrush. Manufacturers always show big nurdles, when a nurdle the size of a pea is sufficient; you do not need to line the entire length of your bristles with toothpaste to be effective.

Toothpaste manufacturers always show a long nurdle, because subconsciously this makes you use more toothpaste. You use more, you buy more.

%d bloggers like this: