Mother’s Day Cards

In our classroom this week we’ve been making the most adorable Mother’s Day Cards.

*If you’re a mum from our classroom please look away now Winking smile*

mothersdaycards3

They were so fun to make and a great opportunity for little fingers to practice tracing and cutting. These cards were quite tricky for five year olds to master, but we nailed it with two adults and twenty-one children without any hassles. I got this idea from Pinterest (is there any other way?!). It’s from a clever site in Bulgaria – thanks to Google for their translation!

The children were SO absorbed in this activity. They worked alongside each other, sharing all the crafty bits and pieces, chatting about their creations and celebrating in their finished work.

mothersdaycards4

There were a few slip ups along the way. Some children ended up with two separate hands instead of a card. But as we always say: “is it ok to make mistakes? YES!”. That’s how the best learning is done. If at first you don’t succeed, and all that…

mothersdaycards2

You will need:

1 piece of A5 card per child
writing pencil
scissors
glue
markers/textas
bits and bobs for decorating

How to do it:

1. fold the A5 card in half across the width

2. place your hand on the card with your thumb and index finger touching the folded edge

3. trace around your hand

4. cut out the hand shape, making sure you avoid cutting the thumb and index finger where they meet the folded edge (tricky!)

5. write your message on the front and inside of the card

6. decorate!

Preschoolers, toddlers and even babies could absolutely make these cute cards with one to one help, and older children could easily make them on their own. They’re not just for Mother’s Day either, you could use them for any occasion.

What are your plans for Mother’s Day?

Easy Coconut Pumpkin Soup with Chilli

easy coconut pumpkin soup with chilli

I recently went to a cafe for a working lunch with My Awesome Co-teacher, and I was craving soup. Lucky for me their special was “Pumpkin, Leek and Chilli Soup”. Yum, right? Mmmmm, yeah, it was ok. But it was more like pumpkin soup with a blob of sweet chilli sauce thrown in at the end. Meh.

I decided that I would make my own version of this soup, and I have to say I was pretty impressed with my efforts. This soup is SOOO CREAMY without the use of cream, very thick and uber tasty. The kick from the chilli really does it for me, but if you’re not a chilli fan you can skip that bit.

This is a very simple to make soup. As long as you have some common sense. Read on…

Easy Coconut Pumpkin Soup with Chilli
(go ahead and ignore the blue text if you are toddler free)

makes approx 4 large serves or 6 small serves

1 small-medium butternut pumpkin, skin and seeds removed, chopped into large chunks
2 tablespoons of oil for roasting (I used coconut oil)
1 leek, rinsed and sliced thinly
1 tablespoon of oil for frying (I used rice bran oil)
2 cans coconut milk
1 cup vegetable stock
dried chilli flakes (or use fresh chillies) ~ if you’re not a chilli fan just leave it out
optional: freshly chopped coriander leaves for serving
1 toddler
common sense (sadly, I forgot this ingredient)

1. Remember the last time that you cooked with the toddler “helping” and choose to set them up with something entertaining and educational this time. I used ABC Kids.

2. Roast the pumpkin in coconut oil until golden and tender (20 – 30 minutes at 220 degrees).

3. Pop out to the bakery for some fresh bread to have with your soup, it’ll only take 20 minutes.

4. Realise (again) that nothing takes twenty minutes with a toddler, as you ask her patiently to please hurry-up-and-get-in-the-car-no-you-can’t-have-a-chocolate-frog-don’t-pick-up-that-dirty…-OH!-Gross!-come-here-let-me-wash-your-hands-HURRYUPANDGETINTHECAR!!

5. Promise yourself never to ‘pop out to the shops’ mid-cook again. What were you thinking?

6. Resume the entertaining and educational activity (see step 1).

7. When your pumpkin is nearly ready, fry the leeks until translucent.

8. Combine all ingredients except chilli and simmer until warmed through.

9. Add chilli to taste.

10. Serve sprinkled with chopped coriander and season with salt and pepper to taste. Or use Italian parsley because you’ve run out of coriander and you want the photos to look pretty. For your blog. You geek!

11. Resume regular parenting programming. Lucky for us, it was nap time!

Have you eaten a delicious soup lately? Or perhaps you made one? Do tell!

Oh, The Places You’ll Go

Today I’m grateful for blog love. I recently won not one, but two bloggy awards!

liebster-blogversatile blogger award

Thank you so much to The Tech Foodie and I Have Kids, When Did That Happen? for thinking of Octavia and Vicky, you guys rock! Now I’m passing the awards on to these interesting, funny, inspiring new blogs that I found just recently. Click to on each one below to pay them a visit.

*drumroll please*

The Liebster Award goes to:

http://greatbalancingact-blog.blogspot.com.au/http://thejadeleaf.blogspot.com/

Domestic Bliss

Happy Ian

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The Versatile Blogger Award goes to:

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Don’t forget to visit the host of Grateful, Maxabella, and all her grateful mates.

What’s your favourite blog right now?

Apps for Kids

O&V April4

I’m still that podcast listening, photo geeking, Android obsessed chick. {iPhone peeps, don’t walk away just yet. I have some love for you today too, just sit tight}. I also seem to always be making confessions here…. oh well, here goes another one: I let me kid play with my phone. Yeah, yeah, kids get too much screen time, I know it. But. There is a time and a place for these things. In our family those times and places are: waiting rooms, and early mornings in bed. We’ll often start the day with Pebble padding into our room, climbing into our bed and asking “Pay a game, pees?”, with that high pitched, overly sweet emphasis on the “pees” that she knows gives her maximum chance of success.

Here’s what we like to play with.

apps heytell

HeyTell [Android] [iPad & iPhone]

This is an awesome communication app for adults and kids, but we love it for a quick ‘hello’ or ‘I love you’ to and from family and friends. You simply press and hold the name of the person you want to talk to and it records and sends your message to their phone (they must also have HeyTell installed). Grandad has been a big fan of sending ‘Goodnight Pebble, I love you” messages at bedtime. Naw.

Price: Free

apps story chimes

StoryChimes [Android] [iPad & iPhone]

These are cute little classic story books that you can have read aloud or record yourself reading the story. You can set the page flip to manual or automatic and it even has a ‘bedtime’ setting that allows you to adjust the brightness of the screen within the app. The only negative that I have found is that the text is very small (on my phone) so it’s difficult to actually read. This doesn’t effect Pebble’s experience at the moment, but it might as she gets older and is interested in reading words. Tablet users may find that it’s not a problem.

Price: Free for Android. $0.99 each from iTunes.

apps kids doodle

Kids Doodle [Android] [iPad & iPhone]

This is a kids drawing app that allows you to draw using a bunch of different tools like neon, emboss, crayon, and rainbow. You can also save your work to your SD card and share it with friends. It has a cute “shake” to clear the screen function and you can choose the background colour of each pic.

This app is free, however I paid $1.49AUS to upgrade to Kids Doodle Pro and remove ads. You also get an added feature of being able to doodle over your own photos. Drawing on Mummy’s face is fun! [upgrade for Android] [upgrade N/A for iPad & iPhone]

Price: Free

Honourable mentions: Android only (sorry!)

Kids Piano Lite – Free (contains ads at menu but not in play. Upgrade to remove)

Toddler Cars – Free (contains ads)

Toddlers Trifling – Free (contains ads at menu, but not in play. Upgrade to remove)

Do you let your kids use your phone? What’s you favourite app for kids?

Make Your Own Wrapping Paper

Make Your Own Wrapping Paper

It was Paul’s birthday recently and I thought it would be fun to try some messy art while making some cute wrapping paper at the same time. Here’s how it’s done.

You will need:

  • paint (we used tempura powder paint, but any washable/child friendly paint will do)
  • 1 plate per colour (we used tough melamine plates that are easy to wash)
  • 1 dish cloth per colour
  • 1 outdoor tap, or a bucket of water
  • large sheets of paper (we used recycled paper from an architect friend)
  • one or more enthusiastic children

How to:

~ dampen each cloth, fold into a square and place on the plate.

~ pour paint onto the cloth. You need just enough to turn the cloth into a stamp pad.

~ set up your paper, lead the children to the paint and stamp away!

~ when you’re done leave your wrapping to dry and hose off plates and children.

Make Your Own Wrapping Paper

Tips:

  • Use sticky tape to secure your paper to the ground before you start.
  • Have extra paint ready to top up the ‘stamp pads’ as needed.
  • For easy clean up keep this activity outdoors (you didn’t need me to write that, did you?).
  • Go straight from art to bath if the backyard hose isn’t working out for you.
  • Tempura powder paint does flake off a little with handling. If you want to avoid further mess try poster paint.
  • I highly recommend having a go yourself. There’s nothing quite like the feel of paint between your toes. Instant childhood, right there.

Make Your Own Wrapping Paper

Or you could….

  • try this with any age child – or adult!
  • we stuck with footprints but you could try out all different parts of the body, or grab some leaves from the garden for leaf stamping.

What takes you back to your childhood?