A Mixed Bag!

I have recently been collating my 10 internet finds for the month around one theme. This month however, there was a few finds that I was just busting to share and they were completely unrelated! So I decided on a mixed bag for this month. Here are a sweet assortment of things I have enjoyed on the web:

1.London Times Top 50 Design Blogs.

I found this post via Kellie at 74 Lime Lane. Posted on sfgirlbybay, you could spend hours looking at these visually stunning blogs. A couple of my favourites:

2. Bhalo

Bhalo was feautred on the Design Files blog, a Melbourne based blog that was number 34 on the above list. I hadn’t heard of Bhalo before, but here is what they say about themselves:

Bhalo is a fair trade design label that aims to create desirable fashion whilst empowering disadvantaged people, especially women, allowing them to work their way out of poverty.

Our cotton is hand loomed and hand embroidered by women in rural Bangladesh, not only giving them much needed employment and training, but providing them with simple things that we take for granted – education/childcare for their children, basic healthcare, and most of all, dignity. We oppose human exploitation and feel everyone should be given the right to fair employment terms, and given a decent price for their work. Wouldn’t you expect the same?

3. Bg Patterns

Create Your Own Background Patterns
I found BgPatterns via How About Orange… It is a very cool online tool that you can use to create patterned backgrounds for blogs, Twitter or your desktop. You choose the design and can rotate it to suit your preferences, then choose the colour, texture and size. You can then save it for your own use. If you take the time to register (free) you then can see what everyone else has been making and use those designs if you like.

4. Why Women Don’t Get Enough Sleep

I really liked this article “Why Women Don’t Get Enough Sleep” by Lisa Belkin. Belkin writes the Motherlode blog for the New York Times.

The reason women don’t sleep as well as men is not because of our misguided workaholic tendencies, or our short-sighted need to prove ourselves, but because the world, as it is constructed, gives women more to DO.

This post elicited some very interesting debate in the comments section, which are worth a read. (There were 123 comments when I wrote this.)

5. Children who use technology are ‘better writers’

BBC News reports on a survey conducted by the National Literacy Trust in the UK.

“Our research suggests a strong correlation between kids using technology and wider patterns of reading and writing,” Jonathan Douglas, director of the National Literacy Trust, told BBC News.

Something that I had wondered, does using “text speak” degrade children’s writing skills, was also answered in this article:

“Does it damage literacy? Our research results are conclusive – the more forms of communications children use the stronger their core literary skills.”

He said that children needed to learn to distinguish between different writing styles but that in his opinion it was no different from learning when to end a letter “yours sincerely” or “yours faithfully” – and when “love and kisses” would be acceptable.

6. How stranger danger changed the way children play

Also from BBC News, this article discusses a BBC Documentary, Hop, Skip and Jump: The Story of Children’s Play. (I hope this will be on our ABC this year some time!)

There are few reliable statistics on stranger danger and the increase in child molestation and abduction. It can be said with certainty though that the number of reported cases remained extremely small. A much greater threat to children’s lives was road traffic accidents – made worse by the increasing number of parents who began driving their children to and from school in order to protect them from the dangers of the outside world.

7. 10 Habits MORE Important than Vegetable Eating

This is from a new blog that I have started following It’s Not About Nutrition (The Art & Science of Teaching Kids to Eat Right). The blog is written by Dina R. Rose. Rose has a PhD in sociology, over 15 years experience in teaching and research and she is also a mother and a foodie. This is really a fresh holistic approach to getting children to eat healthily. A couple of my favourties from her list of 10 habits are:

4) Avoid emotional eating.

5) Practice proper table manners.

8. New Research: Blaming Others Is Contagious

This article from NutureShock really made me think. I sometimes have a tendency to want to know “Who did that??” in the time of a household drama, as opposed to working on a solution first. NutureShock discusses an experiment conducted by USC’s Nathanael Fast and Stanford’s Larissa Tiedens, which will appear in this month’s Journal of Experimental Social Psychology.

The blame contagion, according to Fast, is not a new phenomenon. It’s a fundamental part of the human psyche—the need to protect one’s ego. When we see someone defend his ego, we reflexively defend our own self-images as well.

But Fast does think that the 24-hour news cycle, the Internet, and social networking (Twitter, Facebook) are exposing us to much more blaming behavior than ever before.

9. Feed Your Soul – Free Art Project

feed your soul - free art project download
Each month at the Free Art Project you can download for free, a new illustration that you can then print and frame. This would make a lovely gift for someone.

10. Treat Bags

Treat Bags

Crafts On A Whim have a great tutorial on how to make these unique party treat bags using Peppermint Patties. (Image from Crafts On A Whim)

There is just so much good stuff out there on the interwebs!