Posted in recipes

3 ways to get your child to eat more fruit at breakfast

Here are 3 ways to encourage your fussy eaters to eat more fruit at breakfast.

1. Fruit kebabs

Fruit kebabs are a fun way to get fussy eaters to enjoy their food, especially if you involve them in the process of making them.

You will need:

  • Assorted fruit
  • Kebab sticks
  • Silicone cupcake holder
  • Fair Cape low fat Granidilla yoghurt

Method:

Cut up the fruit to thread along the kebab sticks.

I like to stick to fruit Hamish eats and let him help me thread the fruit pieces into the kebab sticks.

Pour some Fair Cape low fat granidilla yoghurt into a novelty silicone cup cake holder or fancy little bowl.

You could serve with a small sprinkle of cinnamon or nutmeg.

2. Fruit platter

Finger foods often appeal to a fussy eater as the food is not combined but separate from each food type and is served in small bitable sizes, as to not overwealm them.

I also find the presentation seems more fun and appealing.

You will need:

  • Assorted fruit
  • Fair Cape low fat granidilla yoghurt
  • Silicone cupcake holder
  • Large plate

Method

Cut up each fruit into smaller pieces.

Arrange onto the plate.

Pour some Fair Cape low fat granidilla into a silicone cupcake holder.

Serve

Hamish enjoys dipping his fruit bits into the yogurt and eating it that way but you could also serve with a tiny straw, sprinkled with cinnamon or some crushed nuts on top.

3. Monster fruit plate

This is a fun favourite in our home and a nice way to repurpose those plastic Easter eggs.

You will need:

  • 2 plastic easter eggs
  • Grapes
  • Silicone cupcake holder
  • Fair Cape low fat granidilla yoghurt
  • Citrus fruit – we used naartjie

Method

Place grapes into the two plastic eggs and close to form eyes. Kids love opening the eggs to find the suprise fruit.

Pour some Fair Cape low fat granidilla yoghurt into a silicone cupcake holder as the nose.

And lastly form a mouth using the citrus fruit.

You can substitute the fruits for any that your child will eat.

Posted in craft reciepe, Crafts

Microwave puffy paint

We love puffy paints and they add an interesting element to art works.Have you tried making your own puffy paintyet?Today I’m sharing a fun puffy paint reciepe I first used with Kerri and Ronan for art lessons in 2012.Not only is it a fun art project but can be used as a science experiment to demonstrate how heat changes things.

To make your own you will need :

  • 1 tblsp plain flour
  • 1 tblsp salt
  • 1 teaspoon of baking powder
  • 1 tblsp plus 1 tsp of water
  • food colouring

Method

  • Mix all the ingredients together.
  • Paint onto paper.
  • Put the painting into the microwave for 20 seconds. Do not leave the microwave unattended during that time.
  • Carefully remove the painting and observe the wonderful transformation!

💥Be careful – the paint may be hot when it is removed from the microwave

Posted in craft reciepe, Crafts, preschool

Make your own puffy paint

Puffy paint is a great way to add texture to an art project.

To make your own you will need:-

  • Cold glue
  • Shaving cream
  • Food colouring
  • Ziploc bag
  • Scissors

Instructions

  • Add equal parts cold glue and shaving cream into a container
  • Add a few drops of food colouring and mix well. I like to use a craft stick to mix my paints, so that I can throw it away when done.
  • Store your puffy paint in a ziploc bag or sealed container.

You could also use your ziploc bag as a piping bag by cutting a small piece out of the corner and piping the paint onto paper.

Posted in Crafts, Family Life, Life with my bears, Parenting

We are the family who paints windows

I recently decided to let Hamish paint the sliding doors with some Dala finger paint as a sensory activity.

It started off very innocently. We called over his little friend and I set out a few paint tools and paints.

The boys were really excited and quickly set to work choosing a paint brush or roller and painting the glass.

Hamish and I will often paint the sliding doors and use a variety of materials to do so. Some of the things we use are:

  • Paints
  • Shaving cream
  • Flour paste with food colouring
  • Corn flour mixed with food colouring and water
  • Custard
  • Instant pudding ( and then he licks it off)
  • Ice cream
  • Coloured ice blocks
  • Creams or lotions
  • Mielie mel cooked runny with cinnamon or nutmeg
  • Cream, especially orley whip
  • Yoghurt

I also like to mix up our painting tools and let him use :

  • Paint brushes
  • Rollers
  • Mini sponges
  • Stamps
  • Spoons ( plastic)
  • Forks or knives also plastic, to make patterns
  • Kitchen utensils
  • Cotton wool
  • Pom poms
  • Feathers
  • Our hands
  • Toilet tubes as stamps

The most beautiful pictures are designed and if you want to keep a copy of your child’s masterpiece you can place a piece of paper over the image and take a print.

We were having a lot of fun, encouraging the boys to paint the entire window pane when Hamish suddenly decided he was going to paint ….me!

We will often have mini paint fights and I always use a non toxic and non staining paint as we very seldom use art aprons.

So, when he painted me I wasn’t worried about the mess and quickly met him in play and painted him back.

These are the moments I believe he will remember.

The moments that will make him unafraid to try new things and explore his creativity.

These are the moments I can show him that it is just a little paint and we can always clean a mess.

These are the moments where our spontaneity shines through and there is pure joy in the moment.

After many giggles, lots of paint and excitement we were both pretty colorful and decided to stop painting each other and concentrate on painting the window.

I showed the boys how to drive the toy cars through the paint and make tracks onto the glass. Another firm favourite boy activity.

You can read about how we were painting with cars when Hamish was much younger.

And then I went behind the glass doors and the boys painted my face. This activity we do quite often.

This is a great way to teach facial features and for little ones just learning to draw faces.

All in all it was a fun afternoon, the kids needed a shower and I was incredibly happy to wash all the paint off me.

Until our next paint explosion that is 🤣

Posted in recipes

The cheat guide to making vetkoek

I love baking but when it comes to cooking I get really bored making the same 5 meals my family will actually eat over and over again.

So, although I can make most of the meals from scratch, I’ve discovered a love for what I call ” cheat meals”.

What is a cheat meal?

For me a cheat meal is honestly anything that requires the least amount of my time in the kitchen.

You know ready made mixes, pre-cooked meals and to be very honest and if my budget allowed it more anything Woolworths have precut.

But how do you cheat vetkoek?

My family love vetkoek but I usually decide 20 minutes before making them that it would be a great idea to have vetkoek for supper. ( yip, I’m not strong in the meal prep or planning game either ….I love to open my fridge and be just as suprised as everyone else as to what we are eating)

Because of this, making them from scratch or from a pre mix packet and allowing the dough to rise is not really an option.

So, I pop down to our local Checkers bakery and just buy 2kgs of pre-made dough.

It costs me under R30 and with absolutely no fuss or pre-mixing I’m ready for my spontaneous need of vetkoek.

Vetkoek reciepe
Vetkoek

How to work with the dough

I usually lay down some flour on my working surface, remove the dough from the packet and roll it out with the rolling pin.

Then I use a large cookie cutter ( about the size of my hand) or a large rim glass to cut out my vetkoek.

Why you may ask? Because the odd shapes of my vetkoek give my OCD anxiety and besides who doesn’t want to eat a vetkoek flower?

Variation

Over the years I’ve also used the same dough packets to make :

  • Coconut balls – make small ball shapes, deep dry and roll in a mixture of cinnamon and sugar
  • Cinnamon buns – roll into large circles and dust with cinnamon and sugar before baking.
  • Chelsea buns – mix in sugar , cinnamon and raisins before rolling into large circles and baking. Mix up icing glace and drizzle over once baked
  • Jam donuts – nake circles with the dough, poke a hole in the centre and push in a little jam. Close up the hole and deep dry. You can dust with icing sugar
  • Bread rolls – roll in to circles and bake
  • Savory or cheese rolls – make as for rolls but add cheese, onion, feta, garlic or herbs before baking
Posted in Crafts, preschool, Toddlers

Toilet tube crafts – making a bee

I’m a huge fan of reusing and repurposing as much around the house as we can and one of the items we often use in our crafts are the inside of toilet tubes.

They are versatile and inexpensive. With a little paint and some creativity you can create a wonderworld of crafts all year long.

Today we are making ….

A Bee

Bee
Bee craft

You will need:

  • Toilet tube
  • Yellow paint
  • Paint brush
  • Black marker
  • White paper
  • Glue
  • Scissors
Supplies
What you need

Directions

Set some scrap paper down for your child to work on as this can get quite messy, and let them use the yellow paint to paint the whole tube.

Paint
Paint the toilet tube

When the paint is dry use the marker to draw on the details for the bee.

Next draw a set of bee wing outlines on the white paper and have your child cut out the wings.

Glue the wings onto the back of the bee.

Bee
Bee mine 💞
Posted in Crafts

How to make a Valentine’s day inspired wrapping paper

This is the first year that Hamish understands Valentine’s day and he wanted to get his daddy a gift

I wanted to help make the gift completely from him so I grabbed a few items and we got ready to make our own special gift wrap for this special gift.

Wrapping paper
Heart print wrapping paper

To make your own you will need:

  • White paper
  • Red paint
  • Heart cookie cutters
Supplies
Things you need

Directions

Making your own wrapping paper is really eaeasy and a nice activity for younger children.

I would start by lining our work surface if I was at school, but because we were using washable finger paint, I just added an extra sheet of paper underneath.

Print making
Making prints

I placed some paint in a flat plastic plate, so that he could spread the paint enough onto the cookie cutter to be able to stamp.

Prints
Valentine’s prints

And then I let him stamp all the paper with the different sized heart cutters.

When he was done, I set it aside to dry and later today we will wrap his dad’s gift in his very special wrapping paper.

Do you encourage your preschoolers to send valentine’s day gifts?

Posted in Crafts, valentines day

Valentines craft loop – Tweetheart personalised placemat

This morning, a few amazing and talented Instagram moms shared some fun Valentine’s crafts in a Valentine’s craft Photoloop

Craft
Valentine’s craft loop – Photo by @Raisingksquared

The moms

Each mom interpreted the theme according to their child’s personality, age and skills and came up with some beautiful masterpieces to celebrate the month of love.

The moms are: ( so pop over and give them a follow)
1.@alifewithkidz
2.@antheaoneill
3.@bethsmood
4.@funmammasa
5.@momdoc_sa
6.@raising_the_gallow_girls 7.@sawdustandhighheels
8.@teixeira_murray
9.@tashaleigh_cpt and
10.@raising.k.squared

Tweethearts

Hamish and I made a personalised tweetheart placemat for the photoloop and i was very impressed at how easy it was to do.

Placemat
Tweetheart personalised placemat

For this we used a precut heart placemat from Clicks and some Dala Teddy finger paints.

Supplies
Items needed

First we painted Hamish’s foot blue with some finger paint, to be the birds body.

Foot painted
Painted foot

And carefully helped him to stand do that we could print a footprint onto the placemat.I was careful to help lift him onto and off off the placemat as not to smudge the paint.

Printed image
Print

He then painted wing and facial features and I added a bit of text with a permanent marker.

Heart gift
Final product

The perfect personalised gift for a grandparent or relative and the nicest way to tweet some love.

Posted in recipes

Cooking with Hamish …. ants on a log

This morning Hamish decided he could only eat the bananas he wouldn’t eat yesterday and grapes ….Did I mention I love being the mom if a threenager ( exaggerated sigh)

Anyway this meant we decided Hamish was an anteater and made an easy breakfast meal of ants on a log.

To make your own you will need:

  • 1 banana
  • 4 grapes
  • Sharp knife
  • Fennel for decoration

Directions

1. Gather your ingredients

2. Peel the banana

3. Cut the banana in half lengthwise

4. Cut the grapes

5. Place the grapes onto the banana as ants on a log

6 . Decorate the logs with fennel and enjoy

Posted in Crafts

Recycle your old Lego into this cute Lego man photo frame.

We’ve been introducing name recognition activities at home for Hamish. Pointing out not only his name on his lunch bag and other items but also the letters of his name.

So, when I found that him and Ronan had recycled some big pieces of Lego, that Hamish no longer plays with, into a giant Lego man, I knew exactly what we would turn it into …

A Lego man picture frame with his name on.

We glued a photo of Hamish into the centre, frame area and added some quick detail with a permanent marker and before you could say “Hand me the Dublo”, the Lego man was complete.

He now stands guarding over Hamish’s toys in the play area.

How to make your own

You will need

  • 18 x single blocks
  • 8 x 2 piece blocks
  • 2 x shaped pieces for shoes
  • 1 x shaped piece for head
  • 1 x four piece block

(Any make of large Dublo/lego blocks will do)

  • Permanent marker
  • Photo of your child
  • Pritt glue

How to make the frame

Construct your Lego man by following the blocks in the picture above.

Once you have built your Lego man, keeping his tummy area open, cut your photo to size and use the Pritt to glue it to the open tummy area, forming a photo frame.

Lastly, write your childs name and add facial features and other details.