Ironmongery Experts Stock a Wide Range of Door Handles: A Deep Dive into the Zoo Hardware Range

As a homeowner, it’s easy to overlook the impact that door handles can have on the overall look and feel of your home. However, choosing the right door handle can enhance the appearance of your doors and even add value to your property. Ironmongery Experts stock a wide range of door handles, including the popular Zoo Hardware range, which offers a variety of designs to suit any home decor.

In this article, we will take a deep dive into the Zoo Hardware range of door handles, exploring their unique designs and the benefits they offer.

Knurled Handles: A Popular Choice

One popular type of door handle is the knurled handle. These handles feature a textured surface that adds both style and functionality to your doors. Knurled handles are easy to grip, making them a popular choice for doors in areas such as bathrooms or kitchens.

As Citrus Spice UK notes in a recent post, knurled handles are also a great way to add a touch of industrial style to your home. The textured surface of the handle creates a unique visual texture that can complement a range of decor styles, from modern to traditional.

Zoo Hardware offers a range of knurled handles in various finishes, including polished chrome, satin chrome, and black nickel. These handles are available in a variety of sizes and shapes, making it easy to find the perfect fit for your doors.

Handle less Doors: A Sleek and Modern Look

For those looking for a sleek and modern look, handle less doors are becoming an increasingly popular choice. These doors feature a minimalist design, with no visible door handles or knobs.

As Dungarees and Donuts states, handle less doors create a streamlined look that is perfect for contemporary kitchens and bathrooms. This style can be achieved with the use of push-to-open latches or touch-latch mechanisms, which allow you to open the door with a simple push.

Zoo Hardware offers a range of handle less door options, including magnetic latches and touch latches. These options allow you to achieve a minimalist look while still enjoying the functionality of your doors.

Classic Designs: Timeless and Elegant

For those who prefer a more traditional look, Zoo Hardware offers a range of classic door handle designs. These handles feature elegant curves and timeless finishes, such as polished brass or antique bronze.

Zoo Hardware’s classic designs are perfect for period properties or homes with a more traditional decor style. These handles can add a touch of sophistication and elegance to any room, from the front door to the bedroom.

Zoo Hardware offers a range of classic designs, including lever handles, door knobs, and finger plates. These options allow you to find the perfect match for your doors and overall decor style.

Zoo Hardware: A Range of Options for Any Home

Zoo Hardware is a popular brand that offers a range of door handles in various styles and finishes, as mentioned on their website, https://www.zoohardware.co.uk. From knurled handles to handleless doors to classic designs, there are many options to choose from to enhance the appearance of your home.

At Ironmongery Experts, we are proud to offer the Zoo Hardware range of door handles, as well as many other brands and styles. We understand that every homeowner has unique tastes and preferences, and our range of door handles reflects this. Our expert team can help you choose the perfect handles for your doors, ensuring that your home looks and feels its best.


Benefits Of Using A Professional Handyman Service

As the saying goes, “a stitch in time saves nine.” This is especially true when it comes to home maintenance. Many homeowners tend to ignore the small problems that arise in their homes until they become significant issues that cost them more time and money to fix. Hiring a handyman in London can be a great solution to avoid such situations. The Handy Squad is a professional handyman service in London that offers a wide range of services for homeowners. In this post, we will discuss the various tasks a handyman at The Handy Squad can undertake.

The Handy Squad offers a wide range of services that can be divided into three categories: maintenance, repairs, and installations. Let’s delve deeper into each of these categories.


One of the primary tasks of a handyman is home maintenance. Maintenance tasks are essential to keep your home in good shape and prevent significant problems from occurring. At The Handy Squad, our handymen can undertake various maintenance tasks, such as gutter cleaning, power washing, and drain unblocking. These services can prevent potential damage to your home and save you money in the long run.


Over time, your home will inevitably suffer wear and tear, and repairs will be necessary. At The Handy Squad, our handymen can undertake various repair jobs, such as fixing leaking taps, repairing drywall, and fixing electrical issues. Our handymen have the expertise and tools necessary to fix any problem in your home.


The Handy Squad can also undertake various installation jobs, such as installing flat-screen TVs, fitting shelves, and installing doorbells. Our handymen have experience installing a wide range of items and can ensure that everything is installed correctly and securely.

As mentioned in the article on My Fashion Life, a handyman can also be beneficial in interior design. Our handymen can install curtains, blinds, and other window treatments, as well as fitting shelves and hanging artwork. These tasks may seem small, but they can make a significant impact on the overall look and feel of your home.

Spring is the perfect time for cleaning and maintenance tasks. As referenced in the article on Sparkles and Stretchmarks, here are some spring cleaning tips to keep your home in top shape:

  1. Start by decluttering your home. Get rid of anything you don’t need or use, and organize what’s left.
  • Deep clean your carpets and upholstery. A professional cleaning service can remove any dirt and grime that may have accumulated over the winter months.
  • Clean your windows, inside and out. This will allow more natural light into your home and give you a clearer view of the outside.
  • Test your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors to ensure they’re working correctly.
  • Clean and maintain your HVAC system to ensure it’s working efficiently.

By following these tips and hiring a handyman from The Handy Squad, you can ensure that your home is in top shape for the spring and beyond. Our handymen have the expertise and tools necessary to undertake any task in your home, from maintenance and repairs to installations and interior design. Contact us today to schedule a handyman appointment and keep your home in top shape.


Tips to Organize Digital Teaching Materials for Busy Teachers

The COVID-19 epidemic has significantly altered the global sector. Every aspect of people’s daily lives went digital in 2020, with no exception in education. The development of online learning platforms is accelerating the digitization of education even more. Many teachers were looking for the best tips to get organized digitally, starting from that pandemic year.

For better or worse, the classroom will seem very different after the coronavirus has stopped affecting our daily lives. Being a teacher nowadays means tons of digital teaching materials to handle. It would be almost impossible for a teacher without digital materials. Imagine how many books to buy and how much space to provide when teachers must have physical books for their teaching materials. 

The cost will be multiple times higher as well. Thanks to digital materials that make material preparation for the students way more practical.

The digital materials are usually in PDF format. They can be in the form of printable worksheets, eBooks, or downloadable reading resources. Some are free, whereas others require teachers to purchase through memberships or by buying the study package.

PDF format helps teachers nowadays because it is easy to manage. So, a proper tool or application to manage and edit a PDF is a must. A PDF editor is just one of the tools that teachers nowadays should have and master. 

Many teaching materials served by the curriculum and material websites are in the form of PDFs. However, even though PDFs are made to preserve the document’s original format, teachers should know that PDF is editable. An editable PDF means they can easily add stickers to mark important notes, give highlights to any crucial information in the PDF materials, or even put drawings in it. The Internet provides many tools to edit a PDF online or offline. 

They can edit PDFs for free, although a paid PDF editor is also available. Both free and paid PDF editors can be used as needed. The online one can be used through the web, while the offline one, through an application installation. 

What can an online PDF editor do? A suitable online PDF editor should be able to edit PDF files fast. It should allow users to easily add text, sticky notes, highlights, drawings, and more to PDF files. As it is online, comments also can be given. It can be done using an online PDF editor in any web browser, like Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Safari, or Firefox.

Adobe, the first company to introduce PDF, provides online and offline features. Here are the simple steps to edit the PDF files online:

1. Select a PDF file to edit, then drag and drop the files to the box available.

2. After the file is uploaded, sign in to add comments.

3. Choose to add text, sticky notes, highlights, drawings, and more as desired.

4. Download the file. To share the file, teachers should get a link.

Getting started with digital teaching materials is easy, but organizing and storing them may become problematic when teachers procrastinate. Ironically, teachers’ digital libraries must be full of worksheets for every subject, e-books for the teaching materials, countless question papers, answer sheets, syllabuses, lesson plans, etc. The more they procrastinate, the more files to manage are laid up on the PC.

Tips for Organizing Digital Teaching Materials for teachers:

1. Create a Master Folder

Sort the digital teaching material based on the grade or level. Create a master folder on the computer and name it based on the class or level the teachers teach. Then add all the digital homeschool material for that class or level to that master folder. Having a master folder of all the digital teaching materials used each year will shorten the time in case the teachers want to reuse it later.

2. Set Up Lesson Folders for each Master Folder

After creating a master folder based on the grade or level, teachers must make sub-folders, namely lesson folders. It also helps them quickly find the subjects they are looking for on busy teaching days.

3. Create Topic Folders in the Lesson Folder

Once they have made lesson sub-folders, create additional subfolders within each folder based on the topics. For example, they can include topics like Animals, Plants, and Science Experiments inside the Science folder or multiplication, additions, and shapes inside the Math topic.

4. Make a “To Be Printed” Folder

It will be overwhelming when teachers have to prepare the materials daily. Therefore, it is best to schedule a weekly preparation. Create a ‘To Be Printed’ folder and make weekly subfolders. The teachers must know what subjects and topics to give each week. It will save a lot of energy because they have prepared everything beforehand.

Teachers can also put the modified or edited PDF files in this folder–and keep the original resources in the lesson or topic folders. Follow the steps to edit a PDF online with Adobe safely:

Go to Adobe PDF editor here.

If teachers need to edit PDF files with more advanced features, Adobe Acrobat Pro provides a 7-days free trial. Adobe Acrobat Pro provides these features:

– Edit a PDF file, including fixing a typo, changing the text, or even adding new content.

– Move the images, rotate them, flip them, or add images in JPG, PNG, and other formats

– Add numbered or bulleted list.

– Add page numbers on the PDF files; give watermarks when it is needed.

This PDF editor will help parents to edit a PDF material/ worksheet given to their kids based on their preferences before printing it. 

5. Backup the Resources

It is just a reminder, as the computer used to save all the digital materials may not last forever. Of course, teachers won’t have their stockpile of teaching materials lost just because of some computer-related snafu.

Add a backup reminder of the digital homeschool material every few months. Whether the original storage location is a flash drive or the My Documents folder of the PC, be sure to back up all the digital material regularly.

6. Do It Now

Don’t let the downloaded files of the digital materials stay too long in the downloaded folder. The more extended teachers delay organizing the materials, the bigger the risk of forgetting what files have been downloaded. Finding the files needed in the teaching process would be more difficult. Remember to rename the files that have been downloaded with a name that is easy to be identified.

Those tips may seem like teachers have much work to do, but it would be worth trying. Having hundreds of digital files to organize is not easy, but it will be much easier rather than not doing it. Teachers will find many benefits, as finding the files they want is just as easy as snapping their fingers.


Must-try Interclamp projects

Whether you’ve heard of Interclamp before or have no clue what it means, if you are someone who’s hands-on with their home renovation and home improvement projects, Interclamp should be on your radar. I love talking about unique ways of tackling DIY projects and thought Interclamp would be a great conversation starter!

To find out more about this innovative system, I spoke to industry specialists at Speedy Fixings. They are a UK-based business supplying construction materials, including fasteners, builders metalwork, post shoes, holding down bolts, hand tools and a variety of other products (including Interclamp and Interclamp fittings!).

What is Interclamp?

Interclamp, also known as q clamp or key clamp, is a type of easy-fit modular clamp system that will help you create a variety of tubular structures – I’d compare it to adult Legos, if the adult was a passionate DIYer. As Lylia Rose explains, “All you need is a simple hexagon key or Interclamp ratchet to assemble your project with Interclamp fittings.”

These tube clamp and key clamp fittings have a multitude of uses and can bring countless projects to life without the need for welding, something that the average DIYer will not know how to do or won’t have the tools for. Without the need for welding to create metal tubular structures, Interclamp changes the game. You can now quickly and easily build hundreds of different projects with Interclamp tube and malleable iron pipe fittings.

Must-try Interclamp projects

Over the years, I’ve seen many Interclamp projects that I’d love to try. So, I thought of putting together my favourite and share them with you to, hopefully, spark some creativity for you and me both.


I particularly love the look of the shelves made by The Design Twins with pipes, fittings and wood boards. These shelves boasted an industrial style of the galvanised pipes balanced with a rustic charm of the wood – the best of both worlds!

Storing musical instruments.

If you or someone in your home loves music and plays a specific instrument, having storage space is essential. A member of Gear Space shared that he built a rolling snare drum rack using aluminium pipe and pipe fittings. “No more tripping over snares that are lying all over the floor!” the forum member exclaimed.

Clothing racks.

Create a walk-in closet with open clothing units by building pipe clothing racks like Gathered Living did for their dressing room. They used black steel pipes and spray painted the connectors in copper for a two-tone look.

Industrial light fixtures.

Domestic Deadline created a fabulous pipe light fixture that I definitely want to replicate. This beautiful industrial style light fixture was created with wire cages for lightbulbs, gas pipes and fittings. It was painted with a hammered finish spray paint, giving it a beautiful finish!

Do you like any of these projects? If so, what’s your favourite?


Is painting wood floors a decorator’s sin?


Endless colour choices.

There are only so many shades of brown you can choose from if you are replacing your floors with new wood flooring. Having the chance to paint your floors opens up a new world of possibilities. I had a quick browse on Google and found hundreds of places where you could buy all shades of wood paint possible. For instance, Kent Blaxill, a family-run decorating centre, has a variety of wood paint suitable for floors, from trade paint to designer paint in a wide range of colours. So, there’s something for everyone!

Mummy Vs Work says “ Choosing the colour of your floor paint comes down to personal preference – you can choose a colour that matches your interiors or a paint colour that completely contrasts your interiors. If you want to create a bold statement, choose a few colours that work together to create a one-of-a-kind pattern.”


Painting floors is an affordable way of refreshing the look of old and worn floors. Even if you opt for expensive floor paint, such as Farrow & Ball, you should still spend less than you would if you chose complete new wood flooring. As Architectural Digest mentions, “while a certain investment in paint will be required to turn out a good result, it should still cost less than other quality flooring options. Glossier paint finishes can add flash to a room, but a matte finish can help hide scratches and dings, so something like eggshell is a good compromise.”


Physically strenuous.

Painting a floor is no easy task. As Laurel Home puts it “Floor work is an exhausting back-busting job. And to do it properly requires many steps of prep, paint, sand, paint, sand, paint, paint, paint, paint, paint…” With this said, there are ways of making this process less strenuous. Yes, you will have to cut in around the edges and for this you will have to be on your hands and knees but for the rest, you can use a paint roller with an extension pole, so it’s not as back-breaking.

Wear and tear.

Kelly DeWitt, interior designer, shared in Southern Living that “Painted wood floors show signs of wear more quickly than a traditional floor finish”. However, this might not be as negative as I first thought as the reasons to go for a painted floor might make up for some scuffs and marks that can be easily touched up with a new coat of paint.

After much deep diving into all the corners of the internet, browsing countless wood floor pictures and reading various opinions, I’ve reached my conclusion about painting wood floors: it’s up to you. Painting wood floors is no sin, it’s a personal choice that can look stunning when done well. It’s your home, have fun with it!


Enjoy the outdoors all year round with a retractable roof

As a lover of the outdoors, it was my mission to find a way to enjoy nature and scenery all year round, no matter the weather. That’s why today, I’ve partnered up with Designer Shade Solutions, retractable roof specialists, to tell you all about their amazing shading structures which offer protection rain or shine. With a little insight into their selection of retractable roof pergolas, you will learn how to enjoy the outdoor air every day of the year.

How does a retractable roof work?

So, let’s start with the basics… how do retractable roof pergolas work? Essentially, with a retractable roof or pergola sliding roof as they are otherwise known, you are “able to retract the roof of your pergola to either an open, closed or tilted position” says The Rare Welsh Bit. This means that you can adjust your pergola to suit the weather condition, giving no excuse to miss out on outdoor relaxation.

These modern pergola structures are also not to be confused with more traditional style pergolas which, as Country Living describes them, “consist of parallel columns that hold up an open roof or grid of beams, rafters, or lattice work”. Clearly, these more commonly known pergolas do not offer the same comfort and protection as the innovative retractable pergolas structures, so it may be time to reconsider your outdoor shading option.

What are the benefits of retractable roofs?

Other than their increased protection against the elements, a retractable pergola canopy has many other benefits to boast about too. Firstly, the pergolas available at Designer Shade Solutions “can be fully customised to meet your requirements” says Baby Budgeting in a recent blog post. So, whether you are looking for a wooden retractable roof structure, a retractable roof with integrated heating or a retractable roof with additional side screens, they can create the bespoke design to help.

Not only this, but you can choose how you want your pergola canopy to sit. Perhaps you are looking to extend the end of your property, creating an outdoor-indoor effect. Maybe you want the retractable pergola at the end of your garden as a standalone piece? Either way, by installing this structure you will truly maximise the enjoyment of your outdoor space all year round.

What do you think?

I have been looking for an addition to my garden for a while now and it seems that these pergolas are the answer I’ve been needing! I don’t need to worry about the summer coming to an end with one of these stylish structures, as I can continue the garden parties throughout the seasons. So, what do you think? Will you be installing a retractable pergola in your back garden?

Children Food

Easy after-school snacks, your child can make

This is a guest post written by Jenni who writes the blog Chilling with Lucas. Jenni is a virtual assistant, originally from the UK but now lives in France with her husband and two children. 

There are as many easy afternoon snacks that your child can make as there are creative minds and available food supplies in your home. Keep a good stock of fresh, packaged, canned and frozen foods in your pantry and freezer and let your children create their own afternoon snack masterpieces!

In addition to encouraging your children to make their own afternoon snacks, also encourage them to include healthy and nutritious foods in those snacks, educating them early on about the importance of healthy eating and healthy living.

Easy and nutritious afternoon snacks

  • A bowl of cereal with some low-fat, skim or whole milk always makes a great afternoon snack and certainly is very easy to prepare. Add some sliced bananas or fresh berries on top and your child has put together a quick and wholesome afternoon snack.
  • A bowl of soup is another easy afternoon favourite, especially when accompanied by a scrumptiously oozing grilled cheese or peanut butter and jelly sandwich.
  • Anything that goes on crackers, bread, bagels or inside a sandwich works well as an easy afternoon snack. For a change, encourage your child to prepare some tuna, chicken, ham or egg salad. Spread on bread or crackers, add a glass of milk or juice and your child has prepared a great snack.
  • A plate of cut-up fruits or veggies also makes an excellent afternoon snack, healthy and won’t spoil your child’s appetite for dinner. Depending on the age and dexterity of your child, your assistance may be required during the cutting process. An easy yoghurt or veggie dip would add a delicious side touch.
  • With some planning the night before, your child can prepare frozen yoghurt that will be ready for the next day’s snack. Suggest that your child experiment with small pieces of fruit or nuts that can be added to the yoghurt before freezing.
  • Foods such as boxed macaroni and cheese, canned pasta and other pre-made stove-top or microwaveable foods always taste good and are very easy to prepare. Young children should be supervised when using the stove or microwave.
  • Frozen snacks such as pizza bites, chicken nuggets, and even frozen entrees, are easy to prepare and are usually very tasty. Although not the most nutritious of snacks, on occasion your child can enjoy preparing and devouring these easily prepared foods.
  • Pizza is just about everyone’s favourite snack or meal, regardless of age. Keep a supply of prepared pizza bases handy, along with some canned pizza sauce and grated cheese, and your children can whip up a pizza at any time for themselves or when having friends visit after school. Add some sliced pepperoni, sausage or veggies and your child has created a very tasty and nutritious snack.
  • If your child has developed a more mature palate and wants to impress his or her friends, a prawn cocktail is a great afternoon snack, low in calories, full of protein and very easy to prepare. Keep a supply of pre-cooked prawns on hand and some cocktail sauce. Homemade cocktail sauce is also very easy to make – mix one cup of ketchup with one tablespoon of horseradish, add a squeeze of lemon, chill and voila!
  • For the younger children who typically love anything with a silly name, show them how to prepare “ants on a log”, also called “bumps on a log”. This is easy recipe kids enjoy making and also eating. Use celery stalks about 3-6 inches long, spread the insides with cream cheese or peanut butter, add some raisins or peanuts into the spread, and your child has created a fun, budget-friendly and nutritious snack. Chocolate-flavoured hazelnut spread also works well for this recipe and is a favourite on bread or toast also.

Encourage your children to come up with their own creative ideas for afternoon snacks. Also, encourage them to occasionally help prepare the family dinners. Introducing your children early on to the vast array of foods and recipes, both domestic and international, will give them a love and appreciation for both food and cooking, and also help prepare them to become self-sufficient young adults as they prepare to leave the nest.

Check out these easy after school snacks that are nutritious and everyone will love.

Fundraising ideas for school – help your PTA raise money!

You may have decided to join your school PTA – that’s the Parent Teachers Association – to help the school and your children, or your school may have a less formal arrangement where it asks for assistance with fundraising. I think it’s a great way to volunteer your time and having an active PTA can really improve school activities and helps a lot of people. Taking part in the PTA, school council or other volunteering school activities is also a good way to socialise with other parents and work together, so I think you’re going to have tons of fun. One of the big jobs of the PTA is to help fundraise for the school. Every school has different needs when it comes to funding, but the fact is – they can always use more. Funds could be used for improving facilities, gardening and landscaping projects, educational materials, special school trips, playground improvement, extra staff training, sports equipment, support learning, activities and events and loads more. All of these things can really improve things for the kids, so it’s really important that everyone get involved and help out how they can.

If you’re on the PTA or involved in fundraising you’re going to be brainstorming for events. You want to find fun, interesting and engaging things to do – as this is what will give back the most value for money and bring in the best donations! On top of the financial side, running extra events helps everyone to socialise and provides a great deal of value to the community.

Here are some fundraising ideas for your school PTA – you’ll soon be raising loads money for an amazing cause.

Fundraising Ideas for your School PTA

School Fetes – Themed fetes can include the seasons, or events such as Easter, Christmas or other special celebrations. A fete can include selling stalls to local companies and small businesses which helps support them as well, and you can run raffles and have entertainment, as well as food, cakes and drinks to buy.

Cake / Bake Sale – Everyone can make a cake to sell, and you can host a cake / bake sale after school at a prime time such as when parents are picking up their children, or alongside a School Fete or Jumble Sale.

Jumble Sale – Ask for donations for a jumble sale and you’re sure to get a ton of things! This is a win win for everyone. Some people get to clear their houses of things they don’t need anymore, other people get to buy second hand goods at bargain prices, and it’s great for the environment too, as this keeps items in circulation and out of landfill. Anything left over at the end can be donated to your chosen charity shop to spread more goodwill.

School Uniform Sale – You can hold one of these by themselves or alongside any of the other events. Ask parents if they have any school uniform that’s used but in good condition that they’ve outgrown. Children are constantly outgrowing their uniform. You can then sell pieces for a small price, saving other parents money, and raising some money for the school at the same time.

School Disco / Dance – This one requires a fair amount of organization and volunteers but it can be a big winner as you’ll sell tickets to the event, and it’s also very rewarding for the children and helps them socially.

Non Uniform Day or Fancy Dress Day with a Donation – This is a simple and easy one that any school can take advantage of. Just send out a letter to the parents saying it’s a non uniform day to raise money! The kids will love dressing up and a small fee from each parent who can afford it soon adds up.

Christmas Events – Christmas is a big time for everyone and parents are often looking for fun activities, to make memorable moments and to exchange gifts. Some ideas for Christmas events can include a visit from Santa and his elves or reindeer, Christmas shopping nights (crafts and jumble), Breakfast with Santa (a breakfast buffet is a very affordable event to host), Christmas photos (with festive backdrops), Secret Santa exchange, Christmas charity collection (such as putting together Christmas gift packs for the homeless or those in shelters) and Christmas crafternoon events with themed crafting such as card making and bauble personsalization.

Quiz or Bingo Night – Host some family entertainment with a quiz night or bingo night. You can use some of the entry money for a prize for the winners, and use the rest for the school. This is a really fun activity for families and helps parents and children bond and work together too.

Sponsored Walk or Bike Ride – Get the kids and their parents exercising together out of school with a sponsored activity.

Evening Classes for Parents – If anyone has a skill that they can teach and are willing to volunteer their time, you might be surprised how many parents want to learn and do something in the evening! This could be learning a language, decorating cakes, sewing or even classes about parenting.

Car Boot Sale – If your school has a large car park, playground or field that cars could drive on, you could be making money by hosting a car boot sale on a weekend morning. You’d charge per car to use the field, and then parents could sell anything they want from their car!

Movie Night – Host an evening entertainment with a movie and popcorn, like a mini cinema, but in school. How cool would that be?

Parent Coffee Mornings – A lot of schools don’t have a coffee shop nearby. Wouldn’t it be nice if parents could come into a space in the school and have a coffee and just have a chat after dropping their kids off? This could be an excellent way of raising money!

I hope that all of these fundraising ideas have sparked some enthusiasm and you’re now thinking of how you can make lots of money for your school, and how to spend it. Good luck!


How to talk to your children about divorce

First of all I want to say that just by searching for ways to talk to your children about divorce you’re showing yourself to be a loving and caring parent. You might be worried that your actions are going to affect your children, but whether you realize it or not, being in an unhappy marriage will be affecting the children too. It’s incredibly brave to be tackling divorce when the marriage is no longer happy. Of course if you’re still not sure whether divorce is the right option or not, then couples therapy together could really help figure out if divorce is the best way forward.

Once you know that separation or divorce is the next step, it’s time to talk to the children. There is no easy, one size fits all way to talk to your children and separation and divorce. Every child will react differently and have their own concerns, questions, and anxieties surrounding this change. As an adult and a parent, it’s important to remember that during a divorce your children are likely to have a flurry of emotions and concerns that they may, or may not, wish to voice to you. It is your job to make sure that your children are comforted, their questions are answered, and they know that you’re available to talk should they have further questions. Make sure you also have someone to talk to during this time to help your mental health as well.

Below are a few tips on how to talk to your children about divorce. Talking to children about divorce is no easy feat, however, it’s something that must be done; therefore the following tips will help to make this difficult conversation easier for you and your children. It’s better for both parents to be present during these conversations unless that is likely to cause more conflict or bring negative energy into the conversation.

Remind your children that both parents love them still – no matter what.

Regardless of what has happened in the relationship between you and your partner, it’s imperative that your children know that they are still loved and cherished by both parents. Communicating to your children that, although your relationship may have broken down, it had nothing to do with them and was certainly not their fault, will help put them at ease. When talking to your children about divorce, making them understand they are not to blame is vital, as well as ensuring they know that, despite changes in living arrangements, both parents still love them just as much as before. If you are determined to still have contact with your child, despite not being the main carer, ensure that you make regular plans to connect and spend time together. Stick to these plans as best as you can, as canceling meet-ups with your children can make them feel unwanted and unloved.

Do not blame the other parent for the divorce.

It’s best for parents to plan what they want to say to their children when thinking about how to talk to their children about divorce. With complicated break ups and mixed feelings, sometimes parents cannot agree on what to say. The most important thing to do in this scenario is to refrain from placing the blame on the other parent. Blaming the other parent when discussing divorce with your children can create confusing and conflicting feelings that are often far too complex for your child to process, especially in such a highly emotional situation. Children may feel they then have to ‘choose a side’, or feel worried about rejecting or betraying a parent. Whatever the ‘truth’ may be, ensure that your children do not feel torn about who was in the right and who was in the wrong in their parent’s relationship.

Tell your children what’s happening, but keep it appropriate.

With that being said, your children will ask you questions about why this is happening and how it all came about. Older children and teenagers may have seen it coming and have their own opinions that they may wish to voice. They are also more likely to ask questions that will help them to understand how and why their lives are going to change. Although it’s advised you don’t share the nitty-gritty details, it is perfectly reasonable to explain that, despite your best efforts, your relationship is no longer working. Again, it’s best to refrain from playing the blame game and reiterate that, despite the divorce, both parents still love their children very much. 

Having some age appropriate books to hand that they can read, or you can read together, can help them process the information. For example this drawing and activity book is suitable for children under 10. Charly, an Amazon reviewer, said “As you can imagine it’s been a difficult time for our family but this book has helped my 6 year old to understand the situation better she’s able to talk and express herself through the pages.

Discuss what will change and what will stay the same.

When discussing divorce with your children, you’re going to want to focus on how your divorce from their other parent is going to affect them. No matter how amicable your divorce may be, there will still be big changes to your children’s lives, and preparing them for these as early as possible will give them a better chance to compose their thoughts and feelings. Important things to mention will be topics such as:

  • Where will the children live?
  • Which parent will be the main carer?
  • Who will be leaving the family home?
  • Who will pick them up from school?

Again, it’s vital you reiterate that, as parents, you are divorcing each other and not divorcing your children. Reassuring your children that, even though one parent won’t be living with them anymore, doesn’t mean that they don’t still love them. 

When it comes to discussing divorce with your children, reassurance is key.

Divorce is often a symptom of complex adult issues that are too complicated for children to understand. Because of this, no matter what approach you use when discussing divorce with your children, you need to ensure that you are frequently reassuring them that they are loved, wanted, and that they are not at risk of ‘betraying’ or hurting one of the parent’s feelings. During the first few stages of separation, there are a lot of unknowns; because of this and the volatile nature of separation, ensure you do not make promises that you cannot keep. Remind your children that, no matter what goes on between you and their other parent, you will be doing your best to make plans and stay in their lives as much as possible.

I hope that these tips have helped give you some confidence and reassurance for this difficult time.


Tips For Blended Families

Blended families are becoming increasingly common, yet despite there being many more family units composed of step-siblings, parents can still struggle when attempting to bring together their family members. The term ‘blended family’ has evolved in meaning over the last few years, but to define it in the simplest form, a blended family refers to a family whereby a parent, or both parents, have children from previous relationships and are now living together as one family unit. Understandably, this process of blending two families together is not always easy. Often there are hiccups along the way, but these issues can often be managed with empathy and understanding. If you are looking for advice on blended families or indeed looking for how to make the transition to a blended family easier, this blog post will help you! 

1. Remember that, although as parents you may be excited, your children and stepchildren may not feel the same way right now.

As an adult in a relationship, you will be accustomed to being around your partner, accepting their quirks, and figuring out ways to circumvent conflict between the two of you. You have had plenty of time to get to know your partner and also you’ll have years of experience in dealing with common relationship discrepancies and handling big changes. Your children, on the other hand, do not have this life experience. Big changes can become overwhelming, having to share a parent with other children is a difficult emotional concept to digest, and living with step-siblings that the children don’t know well, or potentially even like, can be a really challenging and even frightening thing for them to process. 

Don’t be disappointed or upset with them if they don’t share your enthusiasm or positivity and listen to their concerns.

2. Promote open communication and mutual respect.

Parents are likely to become frustrated if the blended family they have created doesn’t function as smoothly as the family unit before did. Remember that no matter how strained things get, the key to working through the transitional period is to promote open communications between all family members, and ensure each and every person is treated with respect. Respect isn’t just something that should be between children and adults, but between every member of the family unit. Even if there are growing pains within the blended family, respect should be given to everyone who is a part of it – after all, you’re all part of one family now.

Having a family meeting where everyone is allowed to have their say and where the coming week can be organized and discussed can be beneficial. It lets everyone be heard. But if communicating is proving difficult, a second option is also family therapy, where a professional can help you work through your problems together.

3. Ensure your relationship is solid.

This may seem like such an obvious point, however, before creating a blended family, both adults need to really consider the choices ahead. Without a solid marriage or relationship, there is no family unit. During your previous relationships, you may have had additional time to adjust to your new role in each other’s lives as partners or spouses, however when forming a blended family, you’re unlikely to have that adjustment period. Your relationship will have to be strong enough to withstand frustrations and backlashes from your own children, as well as your stepchildren. You also need to ensure that both adults in the family are on the same team and have chosen to approach blended family life in the same manner to ensure consistency for the children involved. 

4. There should be no more “his kid” or “her kid”. Instead, form personal relationships with your stepchildren.

Prior to blending your families, you may have referred to your partner’s children as “his kid”, or “her kid”. After making the commitment to form a new family unit, this thought process needs to stop. You are all members of the same family now, so everyone should be seen as equals. Some children will require more time to adjust to their new stepparent being present in their life and that’s okay. Try to form personal relationships with your stepchildren by dedicating your time to them without their biological parent being involved. 

There also needs to be a very clear discussion between the adults before the family is blended, about parental responsibilities and how things will be handled from that point of view. This can also involve including the co-parent of the children, which can feel uncomfortable or even unnatural, as they are your new partners ex, but by working together as one team to figure out the children’s best interests, you secure the most positive future for everyone.

5. Everyone will make mistakes, but in the end, the effort you put into creating a blended family will form supportive, loving bonds that last a lifetime.

There are plenty of hurdles ahead if you’re thinking about forming a blended family, however, with enough patience and love for everyone involved, blended families can be extremely successful. There will, of course, be moments where frustrations and jealousy get the better of both the adults and children, but eventually, your blended family will start to feel more and more like a loving, compassionate, and respectful family unit.