Posted in All about Mamma bear, Mamma bears

The playdough dress

As a mom at home I’m used to having little hands and noses wiped on me ALL day!

So often I’ll find a bit of paint or smudge of peanut butter sandwich on one or other part of my clothing.

It’s a mom thing right ?

So, yesterday morning I’m rushing to get out the door to attend an event by 8am.

As usual I always leave the house and Hamish ready for the day before I go anywhere. It’s a habit.

Getting ready

I neatened the house. Made everyone morning coffees and teas. Prepared Hamish a breakfast and a snack box and opened his playdough for him to play with while I ran upstairs and got dressed.

Slipping into my long mustard dress I felt good. Often too few adult outings in a week, leave me feeling like old mother Hubbard but here I stood flashing my inner diva.

Checked the hair, added a dash of colour to my lips and I was ready to go.

Time to play

I went downstairs and waited for Brent to come down.

Hamish was building red playdough characters and I stooped down to help him add some ears and legs to his oddly shaped giraffe.

Here’s where I made my first mistake. I gave him the playdough from a brand that’s a little too sticky and tends to leave itself EVERYWHERE!

Off I go

At last Brent was ready and I kissed Hamish who by now had hugged me a hundred times, before leaving him to play with his older sister.

And I was off to enjoy a breakfast event at the gorgeous Durbanville Hills wine estate.

My confidence was high. I felt good and I think I looked good. Ready to spend some adult time away from playdough and Lego and toy cars.

Diva in a mustard dress

I walked my way around the room, introducing myself and prided myself with my dress choice …

and then I looked down!

I wanted to die!

Could the floor just swallow me up already!

There on my beautiful Mustard hued dress were the teeniest tiniest fingerprints of smudged red playdough.

I was horrified.

How many people had seen my newly patterned dress. Could I just sit and hide throughout the rest of the event.

How had I missed it?

Self concious

And so there I sat in my self conscious thoughts when the one speaker spoke about breaking the “supermom” concepts.

And I listened to her words and realised there I was worrying about how I would be judged by others but forgetting what those little red stains meant.

You see, my imperfect dress reflected me so much more authentically than any words I uttered that morning.

They represented the part of me that holds my heart …I am a mom!

Red stains

That means that regardless of what the world demands of me there are little hands that need me more. Those stains reflect my heart, they show that little arms hugged me before I left and show that I wasn’t too busy to stop and play.

A mark of love

Somewhere, in the silence of my thoughts, my mind became aware that each mark was a stain of love.

Somewhere I stopped worrying about the judgement of the women around me. I stopped obsessing about the marks that were so small I’m sure very few people noticed and somewhere a calm peace fell over me as I acknowledged that each little fingerprint stain in their perfect imperfection show the world that a little boy happily wiped his hands all over his mothers dress not to clean his hands but because he loved her so much he wanted to stop his play to give her a hug.

Posted in Brands we love, Christmas

10 Affordable stocking fillers from Hasbro

Each year we search for affordable, good quality and entertaining toys to fill the kids Christmas stockings.

To help us, Hasbro have compiled a list of their 10 top ‘stocking filler’ ideas for 2019

These toys are perfect for Holiday gifting, on the go entertainment or as small spoils to keep the kids busy during the long December holidays.

Hasbro’s Top 10 stocking filler ideas

1· The Monopoly Deal Card Game is all the fun of the Monopoly game in a quick-playing card game ideal for on-the-go fun.

2· Have a blast with Play-Doh Colour Burst, it’s the classic non-toxic Play-Doh compound with an innovative way to mix and play.

3· It’s a real treat to experience the irresistibly fun Play-Doh Ice Pops ‘n Ice Cream Cones Assortment. Instead of a can, Play-Doh compound come in an airtight container shaped like an ice cream cone or ice pop.

4· Blast into big fun with the Nerf Microshots Fortnite series of collectible, mini-sized Nerf toy blasters, which includes replicas of the FORTNITE TS blaster, FORTNITE RL blaster and FORTNITE Llama blaster.

5· Look out for the Lost Kitties Mice Mania milk carton singles, which comes with a mouse or kitty figure, meme stickers, two hidden accessories and a collector’s sheet.

6· Kids can image new adventures with their favourite rescue birds-in-training with the Top Wing Single Figure Assortment. Each poseable 7-cm figure includes a snap-on ‘wings’ badge.

7· The 15-cm Power Rangers Beast Morphers figures feature multiple points of articulation and design.

8· The Marvel Figures assortment includes classic Marvel design. Create scenes from the Marvel Universe and imagine incredible adventures with Captain America, Hulk, Iron Man and Thor.

9· My Little Pony Cutie Mark Crew combines the worlds of My Little Pony and Equestria Girls. With a tropical vacation theme each blind bag includes a 4cm figure, beach-themed accessory, collector card and storage case.

10· Collect My Little Pony Equestria Girls Fashion Squad dolls to mix and match more styles. Each mini doll comes with two outfit pieces and an accessory to dress her up in her signature style.

With so many fun and affordable options to choose from your child’s stockings can hold an entire world of play this year.

Hasbro products are available from leading retailers including: Takealot.com, Makro, Toys R Us, ToyZone, Toy Kingdom, Game and Checkers.
Posted in Brands we love, Christmas

10 essential Christmas gifts for your baby from Chicco and Prima Baby.

With Christmas just around the corner shopping for quality baby toys that are both educational and entetaining can be an overwhelming and arduous task.

We have made it easy for you with a selection of the top 10 essential items this festive season from the trusted Chicco and Prima Baby brand.

1) CHICCO FIRST DREAMS MOBILE

A multi-tech mobile that brings a magical atmosphere into the nursery. Ten minutes of gentle classical music, alongside a diffused nightlight will sooth baby off to a peaceful sleep. With 4 removable plushies, the mobile is suitable for all wooden and travel cots, as well as co-sleepers. Available in gorgeous pastel pink or blue.

2) CHICCO BABY SENSES ANIMAL COTTAGE

The best way to get your child understanding shapes and colours, The Animal Cottage teaches animals as well as improving motor skills. Hugely popular with the global market due to its developmental innovation as well as entertainment value.

3) V-TECH BABY FIRST STEPS ACTIVITY WALKER

One of the most high-tech walkers on the market, The First Steps by V-Tech Baby has songs, sounds, lights and much more to encourage baby to walk with fun and entertainment.

4) DISNEY BABY 50CM MICKEY AND MINNIE PASTEL PLUSH

As soft and cuddly as a plush toy can get. Standing 50cm tall, these gorgeous dolls in pastel variations of Mickey and Minnie Baby are representatives of one of the best-loved baby labels in the world.

5) CHICCO MOVE & GROW TUMMY TIME PILLOW

Made by Boppy, leaders in the nursing pillow market, this memory foam tummy-time pillow has lots of entertainment for your child, with a book, mirror, textures and colours to keep their developing minds busy and active.

6) CHICCO BABY SENSES STACK ‘N FUN CUP

A great way to learn the alphabet whilst working on your child’s motor skills. The cups build a large tower with a hole down the middle that a ball drops into to collect in the base, which is a 4-piece puzzle. A great development toy for toddlers starting to grasp cause and effect.

7) CHICCO BABY SENSES FINGER PUPPET

One of few traditional finger puppets on the market, the Baby Senses Finger Puppet is unique in the sense that it has animals and textures on each finger and provides wonderful bonding time between parent and child.

8) DISNEY BABY MICKEY AND MINNIE FIRST ABILITIES 25CM PLUSH

Available in Mickey or Minnie, this plush toy contains various activities for your baby to engage with. A gorgeous gift that will instantly become their new best friend.

9) V-TECH BABY MY FIRST GIFT SET

A collection of V-Tech Baby toys in a great hamper type set that will blow your little ones mind. Consisting of 4 tech toys that act as entertainment whilst helping them reach milestones.

10) CHICCO MOVE & GROW HAPPY HIPPY WALKER

Another great walker from the Chicco stable, the Happy Hippy Walker is a fun, colourful and interactive way to encourage your child to take their first steps. With flowers and a cute face, the walker is a great gift for any child this Christmas.

The above toys can be found in selected stores including: Babies R Us, Takealot.com, Loot.co.za, Thekidzone.co.za, selected Kids Emporium stores, Hamleys, Lilliputs and others.
Posted in Christmas, Family Time, Life with my bears

Our Christmas Traditions

I love Christmas time.

It’s my absolute favourite time of the year. I love everything about Christmas, the hype, the kindness people suddenly possess and mostly the ability to unashamedly spoil my children.But, more than that, I love the numerous traditions that surround Christmas.

A history of traditions

As a child, I came from a family of few traditions and so no two Christmases were the same.In South Africa we don’t celebrate cold, TV Christmases with snow or elaborate decorating and so it never felt like a “real” Christmas to me.My first marriage was pretty much trial, error and trying to make ends meet and so as much as we tried to maintain some sort of tradition often we were just winging it each year.I always made a trifle and had my children sleep under the tree on Christmas eve, but other than that Christmas was as abundant and busy as the years bonus would allow.

My favourite traditions

Of course as the children grew so did their need or want of Christmas traditions and the day became a symbol for great food and new gifts.My silent traditions seeping in where I could still could.I’ve always had a mental list of all the things we would do as a family in preparation for Christmas day and would silently tick off those I had accomplished each Christmas.

This is my list :

1. Make and share handmade cards and gifts.

I had a shoe box where I collected stationary, glitter, coloured card and stickers over the months for the children to ue to make cards and gifts.I still prefer a homemade gift to a bought present.

2. Sleeping under the Christmas tree

This was my favourite thing to do. It started by accident, my children did not want to go to bed after we put the Christmas lights up one year, and so I let them sleep on the lounge floor that night.For many years they would decorate the tree on the 12th and make a family bed to fall asleep while the Christmas lights flickered.

3. Family tree decorating

Decorating the Christmas tree with 6 children is like letting Christmas puke on your house.There’s no order as each child creatively makes Christmas their own.Our Christmas trees were always a miss match of colourful, odd and handmade decor. Our trees were a true representation of our home …. busy.

4. Christmas baking

Christmas was the time to go all out as we baked biscuits, gingerbread men and later, when they were older gingerbread houses.There is something about the smell of cinnamon and ginger in a warm house that shouts Christmas.

5. My trifle

Each year I would construct a trifle I’d learnt to make in home economics class.This multi layered treat never lasted long and contained no alcohol.It is just layer upon later of sponge cake, caramel treat, mix tin fruit , ultramel and jelly that has been topped with Orley whip.

6. Christmas caroling

We would sing all the time. In the kitchen, while walking or just playing together.Although I always wanted to go door to door caroling we settled for beautiful carol services at church over Christmas time.

7. Christmas stockings

I love Christmas stockings and nothing fills my heart with more happiness than rows and rows of Christmas stockings.I would hand sew the children’s stockings each year and my favourite year is the year I hung 10 cheap gas store stockings up for my children and their cousins.

Last year I got to hang 14 stockings and my Christmas heart was in it’s happy place.

8. Advent calendar

The one item we never missed was an advent calendar.A cardboard box, brightly decorated with little windows opening to tiny chocolates each morning.Many times I would discover someone had opened all their windows during the night and gobbled up the chocolates by the 10th and that would end our advent attempt.

9. Nativity scene

A nativity scene is important to me as it represents the significance, history and meaning of Christmas.Some years we would make our nativity, other years I would bring out a little ceramic model.

10. Christmas candle

I’m not sure where I first decided we needed a Christmas candle and if I think back, my memory of my earliest candle is the year my grandmother passed.But I would walk the shops until I found the perfect candle.There was often nothing elaborate about the candle, but my Christmas candle shines for those we wish were at our table and so, many years later I still buy a new Christmas candle each year.

13. Look at the Christmas lights

Each year the kids and I would walk through the malls enjoying the Christmas lighs and decor.Some years we would drive to the centre of town to enjoy the large lights the council had hung.

14. String popcorn

The year my eldest child celebrated her first Christmas, I was at my father and my teen sister and step brother were trying to avoid the parents, I remember we had watched a happy family Christmas movie where the kids had been stringing popcorn and I decided there and then that regardless of our home we would have a happy Christmas .My children always loved this tradition, although they ate more than they strung.

15. Writing to Santa

Each year I would sit with the kids and we would page through the Checkers toy guide and they would write or draw long elaborate lists to Santa.This was also a great way for me to see what each of the 6 of them wanted.

18. Christmas hat’s and props

I’ve never needed a reason to dress up so we have always had a box of Christmas hats and props for the kids to dress up in.

19. Christmas clothing

As a young girl my gran would gift us a church outfit ( even though we never attended church as a family) and a blanket every Christmas eve.I fell into the same habit with my own children, leaving out the blanket and gifted them a new outfit to wear for Christmas day.

20. Christmas movies

Who doesn’t love a Christmas movie?To me the true Christmas season would start when all the hallmark movies came on.I had a large collection of kids DVDs that all centered around Christmas and as a bedtime treat the kids would get to watch one a night.

As my own children have gotten older and we’ve adjusted to new family dynamics we have changed or altered some traditions.After I had Hamish, the need to impliment those traditions, one again, became essential. Only this time I had a new husband to consider and we had to find a compromise on blending our traditions together.

Whilst I still keep all of the above traditions, I’ve also added these new ones for Hamish

1. 24 Christmas book advent

From last year I collected 24 books that have a Christmas theme and we read one each evening in December.

2.Reading Christmas story on Christmas day

I bought Hamish a beautiful Children’s bible and we will read him the Christmas story on Christmas day.This year I also have the Superbook DVD which tells the beautiful story of The first Christmas for him to watch.

5.leaving Santa his favourite milk and biscuits and a carrot for Rudolph

Santa works hard and so we want to say Thank you to him and Rudolph by first baking Santa some biscuits and leaving him one with a glass of milk and a carrot for Rudolph on Christmas eve.

6.Christmas eve box

I love this tradition and we have a wooden crate for Hamish. Each year we buy a premade kit which usually consists of:

  • a Nice list certificate
  • Santa button that he gets caught on the tree
  • Santa key to come inside and deliver gifts
  • Reindeer bell that Rudolph loses
  • letter writing kit
  • letter from Santa
  • Reindeer feed
  • and some treats.


7. Elf

Last year was the first year we did an elf on the shelf and everyone in the family was an immediate fan.I had great fun thinking up things for the elf to do over the month of December. Hamish couldn’t wait to see what the elf had done.I think this is my favourite tradition.

8. Santa cam

This year we have a specially made Santa cam that will be watching to see if Hamish is behaving.This is really just a decorated bauble.

There are many more small cute things each year and I’m sure the list will grow .

I’d love to hear about some of your favourite Christmas traditions.

Posted in Cape Town - Things to see & do, Family Life, Family Time, Life with my bears, Parenting

Questions you should ask before taking your child on a game drive

This weekend we visited an established game farm, in the Western Cape, and Hamish experienced his first game drive.

A bad experience

I would love to tell you it was enjoyable but sadly it was not up to standard with other drives I have been on.

Whilst the guide was knowledgable, he spoke over Hamish’s questions, ignoring him to make rugby jokes with a rather rude visitor who seemed intent on spoiling everyone’s experience.

The “rude visitor” was allowed to enter the vehicle clearly drunk and carrying a beer, which to me having Hamish there and another mom her son , I felt was both irresponsible of the game farm and inappropriate for a game drive.

This man made stupid comments through out the drive, often interrupted the guide and then climbed out the vechil to relieve himself whilst we were stopped to view the giraffe.

The vehicle, which can seat 3 people per seat was crammed and myself and another mother were left holding our children for over an hour as their spaces to sit were taken so that we could squash in another two people instead if taking a larger vehicle or simply dividing the group into 2 vehicles.

This to me was not safe and was certainly not comfortable for either us the moms or the two little boys . Who on our laps kept knocking on the sides of the vehicle as the road is bumpy.

The vehicle at one point looked like we were not going to be able to navigate through the soft sandy path and smelt like something was burning. I imagined trying to walk back with a 15kg 3 year old to carry.

Needless to say the atmosphere on the vehicle was cramped and not pleasant with this unruly visitor.

But worst of all was that we hardly got close to most of the animals that the farm boasts.

We got up close to the zebra and springbok to get decent photos and came semi close to the giraffe and the poor lonley looking camel but all the others were so far into the distance that Hamish was often just looking at trees and those he could make out just looked like ordinary bucks.

It’s hard to explain the different physical features on an animal you can’t see.

I was bitterly dissapointed and actually packed my phone away, after we had seen the giraffe as prior to this we had sped past the emu and I was trying to keep Hamish comfortable on my lap and prevent us both from falling off the seat and bumping onto the railings.

The last 25 minutes of our drive I was willing it to come to an end now.

I was really dissapointed that this was Hamish’s first experience at something that should be magical in the eyes of a child.

It has however prompted us to ask few questions before booking any further game drives anywhere with a child.

Questions you should ask before taking your child on a game drive

  • Does the child have their own seat
  • How long is the drive ( this matters, especially if the child does not have a seat)
  • Are kids given a treasure hunt of animals to find or a spot sheet to tick off
  • Is their information avaliable for children on the animals before or after the drive?
  • What time is the drive? ( this also matters for naps, feeding of children, ect)
  • How many animal species approximately are seen at each time.
  • What is the best time for maximum exposurea to the animals
  • How close do you get to the animals
  • How many people per vehicle
  • Is alcohol permitted on a drive
  • If yes, can I request a family friendly game drive without alcohol being allowed and does this cost extra?
  • How are rude/unruly guests dealt with on a drive
  • Will mine and my child’s questions be answered along the drive
  • Is the drive child friendly
  • Can a car seat be inserted
  • What can I take along on the drive
  • Who do I complain to should the game drive not meet standards

Whilst bitterly dissapointed at our first game drive with Hamish, I’ll certainly do more research before booking a weekend away and wont just jumping on a game drive without asking enough questions for usto ensure he is safe and enjoying his adventure.

Posted in Cape Town - Things to see & do, Christmas, Events, Family Life, Family Time, Giving back

Slide into Summer with some Frozen Fun at Canal Walk Shopping Centre

Canal Walk Shopping Centre’s Frozen Fun Slide Park celebrates the launch of Disney’s Frozen 2

Get ready to slide into summer with the arrival of Canal Walk Shopping Centre’s Frozen Fun Slide Park, which opens on 29 November 2019 and runs until 5 January 2020.

The school holiday entertainment celebrates the eagerly awaited launch of Disney’s Frozen 2, the sequel to the smash hit 2013 movie, Frozen.

Frozen 2 follows Elsa, her sister Anna, and a host of friends, including the lovable snowman, Olaf, as they set out on their latest quest and will hit the big screen in South Africa from 6 December 2019.

Frozen Fun Slide Park

The Frozen Fun Slide Park is made possible by a collaboration between Canal Walk Shopping Centre (CWSC) and The Walt Disney Company Africa.

Sharing in the excitement of the upcoming launch, Canal Walk’s Marketing Manager, Vanessa Herbst said:

“Fans have waited for this movie for a long time and with its release on the 6th of December coinciding with the school holidays, we wanted to make the most of this magical time of year and give visitors a special Frozen experience.”

Canal Walk is well known for its family focused fun-filled events, and the Frozen Fun Slide Park will be no exception, with four frozen slides of varying heights appealing to thrill seekers of all ages.

But, if building a snowman is more your style, then an Olaf snow play area will help let the inner creative out.

Sessions are 45 minutes every hour, on the hour and will open from 10H00 each day (except 25th December and 1 January 2020), with the last session at 20H00.

This allows plenty of time for festive season shopping, or for entertaining energy filled kids during the holidays, not to mention a space for mom and dad to chill out in the heat of summer.

Ackermans print for Free!

The fun doesn’t stop here though. Ackermans is the retail sponsor for the event and will open a pop-up Frozen character activation at the event, where youngsters (and those young at heart) who have purchased a plain white t-shirt in store, can have a Frozen 2 character printed on it – for free.

The pop-up will operate at specific times. Check out the Canal Walk website for details.

Extended Shopping Hours

It is the festive season, so CWSC will extend its shopping hours from 29th November.

The Canal Walk Express and wrapping station will open on 6 December – wrapping starts at R15 per item and funds will be donated to charity.

Donate an Olaf

Because this is indeed the season of giving, a giant celebration tree will stand guard in the Food Court. Adorning this, will be a host of Olaf plush toys, you can donate R50 so that these cuddly Olafs can be given to children supported by Reach for a Dream or receiving treatment at The Red Cross Memorial Children’s Hospital, and Tygerberg Hospital.

Tickets

Tickets to the Canal Walk Shopping Centre’s Frozen Fun Slide Park are available on www.webtickets.co.za and on site at the event ticket booth and cost:

R100 – full rider

R80 – mini rider

R35 – non-rider.

Other Attractions

Meet Santa

Dates: 13 – 24 December 2019

Time: 10am – 9pm

Venue: Canal Walk Centre Court

Kids World Express

Dates: 7 December – 12 January 2019

Venue: Upper Level, Centre Court

Times: 10am – 5pm

Tickets: R20 per person

Magical Gift Wrapping

Dates: 6 – 23 December 10am – 10pm & 24 December 10am – 9pm

Prices: R15 – R55

Visitors are encouraged to share their festive experiences with Canal Walk Shopping Centre ….

Website: canalwalk.co.za

Facebook: Canal Walk Shopping Centre

Twitter: @canal_walk

Instagram: @canalwalk

Hashtag #FrozenFun #CanalWalk

Posted in Christmas, Crafts, Family Time, Giving back

The kindness advent calendar

I love everything about Christmas. I love the old traditions that mark the day, the holiday keepsakes, the cheap tacky decor that some shops sell and the lavish gifts all through the stores.

But more than that I love that Christmas is a time where families remember to include everyone, where neighbours greet and the malls are full of people smiling at each other. It’s a time where secret Santas are endulged in just to make someone else happy.

It is a time of magic and belief …

But it also fast becomes a commercial humdrum of wish lists and debit cards. Of us spoiling our children with expensive toys that to be honest may never be played with after Christmas day or are broken and discardead.

So, as we fill our homes with chocolate advents and cheap toys for bright red Christmas stockings, as we hunt down expensive wrapping and buy gifts that we have just paid off when Christmas rolls around again, how do we teach our Children the true essence of Christmas?

Kindness Advent

This year in our home I’ve started a kindness advent to do just that.

To teach Hamish, and remind ourselves, that Christmas is about our love and kindness for others.

It was incredibly easy to set up and you can use any little advent calendar that will hold 24 slips of paper.

We bought an Advent Calendar DIY kit from Busybean which Kerri stitched together one night a few weeks ago with her friend.

This little felt kit is much bigger than I first thought and each little pocket is big enough to hold a small sweet or toy.

Everything is precut and the numbers stick on with a little sticky tape. At a later stage I want to secure the numbers a bit better,by removing them carefully and gluing them on using bostick to make them more permanent .

This little kit cost R30 and was well worth the buy.

To personalise his tree, I added a few little Christmas pegs and each little advent pocket will hold a little slip of paper encouraging an act of kindness that we will help Hamish to complete each day.

My hope is that this becomes an annual family project and a reminder of the Christmas spirit.

Gifts of Kindness

The acts of kindness that I’ve included are:

  1. Feed the birds
  2. Donate 3 old books to a library
  3. Make Christmas cards for your friends
  4. Bake biscuits for your neighbours
  5. Take a treat to the police station, fire station , hospital or ambulance service.
  6. Phone your grandparents
  7. Make a special ” I love you gift” for your sibling(s)
  8. Smile all day
  9. Donate 3 old toys to a Children’s home
  10. Hug a friend
  11. Hide a happy rock that you paint for someone to find in a park.
  12. Do a chore for mom or dad
  13. Leave a Thank you note and candy cane for the mail man
  14. Gift 3 old pieces of clothing to a charity or homeless shelter
  15. Make a new friend
  16. Pick up litter or join a beach clean up
  17. Tell your family you love them
  18. Pick flowers for someone
  19. Make someone laugh
  20. Share your sweets
  21. Ask mom and dad to help you take treats to an old age home
  22. Help mom and dad prepare dinner
  23. Tell shop assistants to have a nice day
  24. Plant a tree

This is our list but you could write your own adjusting it to suit your family, child’s age and to acts of kindness that you are comfortable with.

Because the greatest gifts we can ever offer anyone are our time and kindness.

Posted in Brands we love, Family Life

Unique affordable Christmas gifts avaliable at West Coast Fossil park

We visited The West Coast Fossil park today in Laangebaan and I popped into their curio shop for a quick look.

There were so many amazing, unique, aaffordable items that would make fantastic Christmas gifts.

If you are looking for some great Christmas ideas for junior paleontologists, archeologist or nature lovers I highly recommend the following :

1. Laser cut dinosaur puzzle to build

2. Laangebaanweg …a record of past life by Q. B. Hendley

3. Fossilized shark tooth

4. Fossilized fish

5. Fossilized skull

6. Mini dig kit ( these come in 2 sizes)

7.West coast fossil park puzzle

8. Magnets as a keepsake- pair this with a pre bought ticket

These items are only avaliable at the fossil park and it is well worth a visit whilst buying your Christmas gifts.

Posted in Family Life, Life with my bears, Parenting, preschoolers, Toddlers

What toiletries to pack for your 3 year old for a weekend away

We are going away this weekend as as much as I’m super excited and we won’t be too far from the shops, I’m still trying to pack so that we won’t need anything but also as lightly as possible.

Anyone with kids knows that’s near impossible.

Here’s what I’m taking in Hamish’s toiletry bag with us this weekend….

1. Clicks baby wet wipes

I’ve specifically chosen the Clicks baby brand of wet wipes as I know that they contain a little more moisture than most and I can squeeze a few together and clean more thoroughly. Being in the bush with lots of sand, we are going to need the extra water.

2. Hand sanitizer

For those moments when we are too far away from the bathrooms or taps. And for quick hand washes in the car before snacks.

3. Chicco strawberry toothpaste

This is Hamish’s toothpaste of choice and we thankfully have a few sample tubes, so can take a smaller version.

4. Colgate kids toothbrush

I find this toothbrush to be just the right size for Hamish with bristles that are not to hard for little mouths.

5. A rinse cup and tooth brushing time.

Because good hygiene routines don’t change just because we are away for the weekend, I’ll pack in his spiderman Character group plastic cup and a little tooth brushing sand timer that we bought from Diskem a while back.

6. Bennett’s bum cream

In case we need it. Honestly I hardly leave home without a tub.

7. Chicco anti mosquito products

I love this range and we’ve been using it for 2 months now …it works.

Hamish has been Mosquito free and as his skin is so sensitive I know this is a brand I can trust on his skin.

I’m taking the spray, as my teen Kerri has claimed the roll on, and the wipes which are nice and easy to just wipe him down with if he argues about the spray.

I’ve also packed in the after bite lotion just incase he is bitten.

8. Sunscreen

We don’t leave home without a sunscreen as Hamish burns so easily. Tis I usually keep in my handbag.

9. Johnsons and Johnsons 3 in 1 body wash

This product is devine. It smells fresh,makes just enough bubbles and is soft on Hamish’s skin. While I could use this as a shampoo as well I don’t.

10. Johnsons shampoo

We’ve been using this on Hamish’s hair for the last few weeks and I love the smell. I also like how shiny his hair is and that now with him trying to help me wash his own hair, it doesn’t burn his eyes like some others if it accidentally gets in his face.

11. A face cloth

Because we need to wash with something.

Can you think of anything I may have forgotten ?

Posted in Brands we love, Family Life, Family Time, Health & Wellness, Parenting

Practical presents for kids who love gardening

Hamish and I love to spend our time ouside and starting a little garden with him has been a goal since I bough him home from hospital.

And whilst we’ve done a few little gardening projects, I really wanted him to be able to enjoy his new hobby with kiddy sized garden tools.

So, when I saw the stunning little garden kit from Practical presents, I knew I’d found the perfect way to start his hobby.

Who is practical presents ?

Practical presents is owned by a mom who understands the practicality of including quality essentials without breaking the budget but who is also mindful of the excitement of the little ones opening their gift.

With a range of gifts that suit most price ranges you can find practical gift hampers for a mom to be , toddlers and even for the young adult moving on their own for the first time.

I love that not only is the pricing affordable but these gift boxes can be ordered online and delivered to the child as a fun way for a distant relative, like a grandparent or aunt, to send a memory making activity.

The garden kit

Hamish’s kit contains everything you need to get your spring garden growing.

🌸watering can
🌸garden tool set
🌸decorative flower pot
🌸Starke Ayres kids flower seeds

Why you should Garden with kids

Gardening with children promotes responsibility, a love of nature and helps to strengthen the child/parent bond.

A child also learns early biology by understanding the plant life cycle and learning how to care for plants.

Our gardening experience

Hamish was very excited when we planted our little pot and there was so much giggling as he slowly dropped little stones into the pot.

Next he filled the pot with some soil, added some seeds and watered everything ,while I explained how the flower was going to grow from a seed to a plant but it needed sunlight and water.

The watering can is his absolute favourite part of this little garden kit.

When we had finished he carried the pot inside and asked about eight times if the flower had grown yet.

Wish me luck as we wait for the first seed to sprout.

* garden update …..Unfortunately Hamish overly loved his plant and gave it far to much water, so we are currently trying a second time to grow some seeds.

To order your own kits visit http://www.practicalpresents.co.za