We all want to spoil and treat our children on their birthdays but sometimes it’s not always possible. If money is tight and your child’s birthday is on the way, don’t panic. There are plenty of ways you can throw your little one a fantastic party on a budget. Remember, cutting down on birthday party spending, does not have to mean cutting down on the fun for the big day.
I’ve never met anyone who does not like or love the children’s book The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson. It has been a favourite in our home for the last 8 years and my three never tire of hearing it over and over. I think I have read it so often as both a parent and a teacher that I can recite it verbatim. I love a themed party so when my eldest son turned 4, […]
How to make a Gruffalo cake My son wanted a Gruffalo cake for his 4th birthday. It was such fun to make and far easier than I expected! It was a perfect addition to his Gruffalo themed party. I baked a dome shaped cake in a rounded cake tin and 3 small circle layers. Using vanilla butter cream, I sandwiched the layers together. I used a regular sponge cake recipe, but any dense cake (easier […]
Superhero Party Food Ideas Superhero party planning is such fun. I had a great time coming up with food themed for the day and found it a great help to use a ready made party pack to help label and decorate the food and drinks I had on offer. I purchased a rather lovely superhero pack . It has printable and customisable invitations and other items. The superhero party pack included: Invitation 5×7”,2“ Party Circles (Cupcake […]
What little guy doesn’t enjoy playing dress up as a superhero? When my son was almost 5, he informed me that he wanted a superhero dress up party for his birthday. I loved the idea and got quite excited about preparing the activities and games as well as the party props.
A great theme! When my daughter turned 7, she wanted a Mad Hatter’s Tea Party or Alice in Wonderland party. She had recently watched the film and read the book and I suggested it would be fun to have a tea party.
As a child I always thought staying up late and going out on New Year was so exciting and cool. Then as a child-free young adult I got to go to all those parties and celebrations and they were as fabulous as I imagined. Then along came the kids… Have you tried to find babysitters for New Years? have you seen how much it costs? Have you tried dragging along tired children to a New […]
This festive season my children were invited to a Kids Christmas party at their cousins. Ages ranged from 6 month old twins to my almost 9 year old daughter. Ages 2,4 and 6 were covered by the 4 boys between. That’s 6 boys and one girl! Christmas Party Ideas My cousin arranged the event, I just had to show up and help out. Bonus! These are some of the lovely Christmas party ideas we enjoyed […]
The adventures of Jingle, Our Christmas Elf Day 18 3 Little Pretend Elves During the night , Jingle crept into my boys bedroom. They had chosen to sleep together on the bottom bunk, as they often do, so he made himself comfortable on the top bunk to watch them sleeping. When they found him, his note said that he wanted to play pretend at being elves and that he had hidden 3 elf hats for […]
The Adventures of Jingle, Our Christmas Elf, day 17 Jellybeans for breakfast anyone? We were led on a bit of a hunt this morning by a series of messages Jingle had left on our mini whiteboards. As we came down the stairs , this is what we saw. It didn’t take them long to find him sitting on the window sill behind the Christmas tree. Looking in all around the lounge, we struggled to find […]
The Adventures of Jingle, Our Christmas Elf Day 16 A letter to Santa Jingle thought it about time we wrote our letter to Santa. So when we found him this morning he had writing sets for each child. Each set contains 2 sheets of paper, a pre-addressed envelope, a pencil with a Christmas eraser and a sheet of stickers. As you can see it has already got the Dear Santa and the love from part […]
The Adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf Day 13 Indoor Snowball Fight! Jingle was found sitting behind a huge pile of Snowballs in our lounge. The snowballs were soft, white and a little bit sparkly, in fact there was glitter lightly sprinkled on the carpet. These Snowballs were the perfect size to throw-slightly smaller than a tennis ball. He said he had brought these magical-never-melting-soft-safe-to-throw-inside snowballs from the North Pole and told us to share […]
The Adventures of Jingle , Our Christmas Elf Day 12 Today Jingle was found sitting on the windowsill in the kitchen inside a sleigh ornament. He had put Christmas hat chair covers onto the 5 chairs and left 3 super shiny Christmas party hats and a pack of Christmas stickers on the table. He invited us to decorate and personalise our party hats using the stickers. It was a lovely start to the morning and […]
The adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf, Day 11 How to stay on the NICE LIST At almost the half way mark, Jingle decided to remind us of some ways we can stay on the nice list. Let’s hope the children try hard to stick to these hints… 😉 We had a little chat about what we could do to show we are following those hints and this is what the children said: Be Good: […]
The adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf, Day 10 Wow! I can’t believe it’s already the 10th of December! I am embarrassed to confess I have done absolutely no Christmas shopping at all! yikes! I wonder if we can skip that bit this year? Think anyone would mind?? Anyhow, today Jingle was found sitting on the coffee table with all our nativity scene characters in a semi circle at his feet. He was reading to […]
The adventures of Jingle, Our Christmas Elf, Day 9 This morning Jingle made, what he called a ShoeShoe Train. This is essentially a row of shoes lined up and filled with “passengers”. He had rolled out a piece of wide Christmas ribbon to make a track for him and his fellow passengers in front of the Christmas tree. He lined up a random selection of my children’s shoes along the ribbon and in each of […]
Jingle, our elf visitor, played it lo-key after his busy weekend and was found sitting at the top of our newly trimmed Christmas tree this morning. So instead of writing about Jingle today, I’m hijacking this post to talk about Christmas trees! My 6 reasons include Family togetherness The search for the perfect tree is one of our favourite family outings. We all get dressed up in our Christmas jumpers, wellie boots and Santa hats […]
The Adventures of Jingle, Our Christmas Elf, Day 7 You know that cosy place when you’re dozing all warm in bed somewhere between awake and asleep? Well that is where I was when I heard the excited yelling and calls of “Mum, come and seeeee!!! Come and look what Jingle has done!” I grabbed the camera (I’m known as the “Mama”razzi -as opposed to “Papa”razzi- by friends and family) and followed the sounds of excitement. […]
The adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf, Day 6 Jingle was really sweet this morning. It was a really, extremely cold night and I guess he was too cold to stay downstairs on his own. Poor little guy! Just to give you an idea of how cold it was: we took this pictures at 11am. It was still really icy and frosted over outdoors. Sometime during the night, he crept into my daughters room (look […]
The adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf, Day 5 Jingle was hanging off the mantel holding onto a silver coin and holding onto a candle when we found him. We think he was about to hide the last coin when he heard us coming and froze. He looks really uncomfortable! We hope he moves while we are at school! Today Jingle invited us to go on a treasure hunt around the house looking for Silver […]
The adventures of Jingle, our Christmas elf, Day 3 Bright and early I hear a shout. “There’s toilet paper everywhere! It’s going down the stairs!” and then “Mom! Come see what Jingle did!” Our elf, Jingle had hopped into a roll of festive toilet paper (yes, I like to have reminders of Christmas, ahem, everywhere!) and had rolled down the stairs. The children thought this was really funny, but were concerned about him having to […]
The adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf, Day 2 I had forgotten that Jingles visits mean early morning wake ups! Our usual house rule is stay in your room or even better your bed until 7am. My children are really good about abiding by this rule and often they won’t come through to our room til around 7:15 at the earliest..later (on the weekends) if we are lucky. BUT with our elf, Jingle Glitterbottom’s arrival, […]
The Adventures of Jingle, our Christmas Elf, Day 1 It’s the first day of December and things are starting to get Christmassy over here. We arrived home from school to find that our Christmas elf, Jingle Glitterbottom had arrived for his annual December visit! As we drove up to the house, my daughter spotted something hanging from the front door… Look at the joy and excitement on their little faces! When we got inside, this […]
Throwing a party for a group of children can be a daunting experience. This article highlights the do’s and don’t of throwing a birthday party for young children The whole children’s birthday party process can be just as easy or as complicated as you’re willing to make it. Just remember a few simple rules for planning a children’s birthday party.
All about a fairy party This was my daughter’s First birthday party. I wanted to do a really girly theme and settled on fairies as I found some sweet fairy party accessories online. I had found a really cute white and pink fairy dress with mini wings attached to the back too. It was so sweet I just had to put her in it with pink tights and white and pink and silver shoo shoo […]
15 child friendly advent calendar ideas Advent calendars can be any sort of count down you wish. Many people opt for the simple store bought chocolate calendars, but what if your little one has an allergy? Or if you just don’t enjoy chocolates? Here is a round up of advent calendars that don’t have chocolate. Wrap a small Christmas themed book up and number the wrapping paper..one per day Fill small boxes with sweets or […]
North Pole Breakfast A wonderful part of the Christmas Elf tradition is to have a North Pole breakfast . This is usually the first of December or the first weekend in December although many choose to have it even earlier if their elf arrives sooner in the year. Our family elf likes to appear during the night the Christmas tree is put up and decorated so the North Pole breakfast is the next day and […]
Spending on a trick-or-treat bag to collect your Halloween treats can often feel like a waste of money. If you have not already got reusable buckets or fabric trick-or-treat bags and are out of time to head to the shops, you can try this fun activity instead. You’ll be encouraging your children to be environmentally friendly by recycling, reducing , and reusing.
Family Movie night can be such fun! Snuggling up on the couch in front of a warm fire and munching on popcorn and snacks is a fabulous way to spend cold, dark, wintery evenings. Once a month is a good frequency to aim for and makes it special as it is not a common occurrence. How to organise your Family Movie Night 1. Choose the theme: Animated Scary movies Adventure Comedy Animal 2. Choose the […]
13 Fantastic Face Paint ideas Gallery Does your child like having their face painted? Mine do. So much so that whenever we go to any festivals and fairs we end up standing for ages in the queue waiting for our turn to get painted. This annoyed me, as did the price tag at times that I decided to invest in a few packs of good quality face paint to keep at home. Now we paint […]
Looking for some inspiration for your children’s Halloween costumes? Take a look at our picture gallery. These are my three kid’s costumes from the last 8 years. I always go for whatever is quick, easy and the cheapest costumes we can find or create. As you can see my girl likes to be a witch or zombie but my boys change their ideas often. We have black cats, ninja, pirate, princess, zombies, mummies, vampires, Dracula, […]
I’m always looking for ways to create childhood magic for my children. I like to keep the fun, laughter, and silliness of being young alive for as long as possible, and inviting a Christmas Elf into our home for some pre-Christmas fun and games seemed the perfect way to do this.
Whilst chatting to readers on social media, one of the mums, whose child has recently started school asked this question. I am now a mom to a son who goes to school and he has received a birthday invite. This would be my first party that I don’t know the kid or parents. What do I buy the child?? ~Anon I too have been a little anxious about this. I have 3 children and have […]
My older boy just turned 6 and for his special day he wanted a Minion Party based on the Minions from the movie Despicable Me. Here are some ideas to use when planning party bags and food for your One in Minion party. Tank Yu! Minion Party bag treats and favours: To make your minion party bag, take a hint from their colour. Use yellow or blue paper bags or party boxes and stick minion […]
My son recently had a birthday and for his special day he wanted a Minion Party based on the Minions from the movie Despicable Me. Here are some decorating ideas to use when planning your One in Minion party. I’ve included some PDF printables for you to download and use for your little person.
My gorgeous middle child just turned 6 and for his special day he wanted a Minion Party based on the Minions from the movie Despicable Me. Here are some ideas to use when planning your One in a Minion party. We did some of these activities but not all, I’ve included all the ideas I found when organising the party so that you have a wider selection to choose from, Tank Yu!
It can’t get simpler than this. A paper heart for any occasion from Valentines Day to just a everyday show of love, this love heart is sure to please the recipient. Age group: 9months + How to make love hearts What you need: Paper or card (coloured or plain) Tissue/crepe paper (tear and scrunch or roll into balls) glue (PVA is good) glitter What you do: Cut out a paper or card heart shape. Cover […]
When you have small children, it can be difficult to create a fun and child appropriate Christmas eve celebration. Make Christmas eve a special and entertaining one for the whole family by trying out some of these simple Christmas Eve party ideas. From gingerbread houses, to story time and movies, there is something on this list for everyone. Why not pick a few for your Christmas eve party this year? We like to start our […]
Now this one really is made for an emergency at Christmas – when all your guests have gobbled up the other cakes and biscuits. You may also prefer this as it has a much lighter texture than a traditional Christmas Cake. How to make this Christmas Cake Ingredients: 2 cups of flour 2 cups of sugar 2 teaspoons of baking soda 1 teaspoon of salt 1 lg. (3 1/2 c.) can of fruit cocktail 2 […]
After the excitement of unwrapping all those gifts on Christmas morning, how can you make the thrill of all those new items last? Organising your Christmas toys This article explores the different ways in which you can organise your child’s toys so that they never get bored of them.Decide what categories you would like to divide the toys into. Some of the categories I have organised my children’s toys into include: By toy type: lego, […]
Ever wondered what all the decorations mean and why we use them to decorate our homes at Christmas? Here are some of the more common symbols of Christmas and why they are used… The Meaning of Christmas Star: A heavenly signs of prophecy fulfilled long, long ago. From the biblical story of Christmas. A symbol of the star the wise men/kings followed. Colour Red: Symbolizing that Saviour’s sacrifice for all when he dies on the cross. Fir Tree: Evergreen- […]
A friend recently had a Facebook status asking for ideas about starting Christmas traditions with her 2 year old son. So I literally spewed all my family traditions into her post and then thought that it was a good idea to write them in a post for all of you. Traditions for the month of December Buy a few Christmas themed stories (or borrow from your local library) and snuggle up each night to enjoy […]
Autumn is a lovely transitional time of year when the fresh colours of summer give way to all things red, orange, golden and brown. I adore how the landscape changes and how the leaves glow in the sunlight. Decorating for autumn (or Fall for those readers in the US) can give your home a warm and cosy feeling just as the nights draw in and the weather chills. It is also the time when we […]
What is Australia Day about? Australia Day, celebrated on the 26 January, is the anniversary of the arrival of the First Fleet of 11 convict ships from Great Britain. It also marks the the raising of the Union Jack at Sydney Cove by its commander Captain Arthur Phillip, in 1788.
Christmas can be a stressful time for those who are hosting or organising a Christmas event. One of the things that should be fun, it styling your home for Christmas. I love transforming my home for the festive season. Everyone wants a stylish Christmas! Make your celebrations sparkle and less stressful with our inspiring tips and ideas. Choose a colour scheme. Kids love colours and getting them interested in all aspects of the celebrations […]
This is a really Quick Christmas Fruitcake for all of us who are rushed off our feet and haven’t found the time to do the Traditional “thing” — or couldn’t be bothered with the tons of ingredients that go in to the traditional cake. What you need: 1 cup unblanched almonds 3 apples, peeled and thinly sliced 3/4 cup butter, softened 1 cup brown sugar 4 eggs 3 cups cake flour 2 tsp. ground cinnamon […]
I suppose this one is really for the grownups — although you could substitute brandy essence for the real thing! Egg Nog Recipe What you need: 6 large eggs, separated 150 g sugar or sugar substitute (like Xylitol) 250 ml rum 1 litre 100% cream milk 250 ml fresh cream 125 ml brandy What to do: Beat the egg yolks and sugar together well. Gradually beat in the rum and milk. Fold in stiffly beaten […]
For all chocolate lovers and reluctant bakers…this brownie mix is such a lovely gift to give at Christmas! Spend a little time layering the ingredients so that they look attractive through the glass of your jar and then decorate the jar to suit the occasion. At Christmas time, I like to dress up my brownies jar with festive fabric or paper lid covers and a bit of raffia, coloured ropes or strings or sumptuous ribbons […]
What would Christmas be without some genuine Scottish Shortbread to nibble on? Here is a delicious and simple shortbread mix to prepare in advance for your own home baking or to give as gifts this Christmas! Scottish Shortbread Mix What you need: 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 3/4 cup powdered sugar (caster sugar) 1/4 tsp. salt Clean, DRY, airtight gift jar, big enough to fit the ingredients above. Christmas tag or label for instructions. Ribbons, […]
I love baking with my children. Measuring and weighing, chopping, mixing and decorating our home bakes make for a fun and educational activity. It also gives us special time. We are totally focused on our activity and each other. We chat more, laugh together and learn together. Having your children enjoy creating in the kitchen is also an important life skill. I realise that one can cope just fine without mince pies, but I’m talking […]
This yummy chocolate is just what is needed for the cold winter days. Make a jar ahead of time to for your family to enjoy, or as a special treat for visitors. It also makes a super simple and tasty gift for teachers, neighbours or impromptu guests. Attach some mini marshmallows or other small chocolates to the jar too and make it an even more perfect present! Hot Chocolate mix What you need: 8 […]
Here’s a great gift for those Moms who did so much cooking, baking and decorating for Christmas. A wonderful way to relax after all the guests have gone home. 1. Coloured Bath Salts What you need: 1 cup Epsom salts 1/4 cup kosher salt or sea salt (Note: you may substitute cornstarch or baking soda for the kosher salt.) Food colouring Fragrance oils such as aromatherapy essential oils – Rose, patchouli, sandalwood, etc. (optional) Clean and […]
People always appreciate gifts that are thoughtful, home made and unique. That is what makes this Gift-in-a-Jar something different and special. For the nut lover , this is an especially decadent gift. The crunchy deliciousness of walnuts combined with the sweetness of syrup make a truly luxurious treat. Spiced Walnuts What you need: 1/4 cup water 1 cup sugar 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon ginger 1 teaspoon cinnamon 450g bag of walnuts Small glass serving platter […]
Making beautiful Christmas Gift in a Jar presents is fun, inexpensive and very unique. The kids (of all ages) can really get involved with this and make Christmas giving even more personal and special. Gift in a Jar mixes can be made using almost any type of basic recipe. Depending on the type and quantity of the mix, you could even use colourful coffee mugs, wide-necked bottles, etc. It goes without saying that whatever […]
Fruity Apple Raisin Christmas Stuffing 3/4 cup of minced onion 1 1/2 cups of chopped celery 1 cup of butter 7 cups of soft bread cubes 1 tablespoon of salt 3 cups of finely chopped apples 3/4 cup of raisins 1 1/2 teaspoons of crushed sage leaves 1 teaspoon of thyme leaves 1/2 teaspoon of pepper In large pot, cook and stir onion and celery in butter until onion is tender. Stir in about 1/3 […]
Now that the rain keeps falling, I thought you may like to learn some fun and funny poems about rain with your toddler RAIN, RAIN, GO AWAY Mother Goose Rain, rain, go away, Come again some other day, Little Johnny wants to play. Rain, rain, go to Spain, Never show your face again I’m waiting for a rainbow I’m waiting for a rainbow I’m waiting for the sun. I’m waiting for the rain to stop. […]
Good ideas fromAmazingMoms.com – to which I have added my own points. Combine dressing up in costumes with free candy and you create a kid friendly holiday! Although Halloween is a favorite holiday for children it does come with it’s own unique dangers that all parents and caregivers should be mindful of. With a few basic Halloween safety measures your family can have a fun and safe celebration! Make Halloween Costumes SAFE to wear To […]
Every office needs a funky and functional desk tidy. Make this for your home office or as a gift for your desk at work. using a few readily available supplies, this project is sure to delight whoever is on the receiving end… Age group: 2 years + What you need: A thick piece of cardboard Paints (in as many or few colours as you want) PVA Glue Plate (to use as a template for the […]
This recipe makes around 12 delicious muffins so you will probably need to double it to keep everyone happy. Why not use it to make Muffin baskets for friends and family this Easter! What you need: 2 cups plain flour 1/2 cup white sugar 3 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 3/4 cup milk 1/3 cup vegetable oil 1 egg 3/4 cup chocolate chips 3 tablespoons white sugar 2 tablespoons brown sugar What to do: Heat […]
St. Patrick’s Day remembers the death of St. Patrick, the patron saint of Ireland. This public holiday has grown into a celebration of Irish culture with parades, special Irish foods, merry music, dancing displays, drinking and a lot of green decorations. In this article you’ll discover 3 shamrock themed crafts, and 3 recipes for St Patrick’s Day themed food to enjoy. Make the most of the rainbow, pot of gold and shamrock images to create […]
It’s nearly pancake Day, so with that in mind, we have put together some fabulous pancake recipes that can be enjoyed for breakfast lunch or dinner…as starters, main meals or desserts. Take some time to prepare the batter together and let your toddler be involved. Here is a great and easy recipe for pancakes that will suit both savoury and sweet fillings and sauces. What you need: 225g (8oz) plain flour 2 large eggs oil […]
Using hand prints are a fun, and easy way to get your little actively involved in creating a satisfying decoration. This activity is easy to do with only a few or with lots of children and can be done with any age group. The result is a fun and effective Christmas tree which looks great as part of your festive decorations. Christmas tree using hand prints Age group: 6 months+ What you need: A lot […]
It’s getting to that time when you are starting to think about getting your Christmas tree and decorating it. We like to get our toddlers involved in making decorations and it is usually it’s the simple ideas that are the best. It’s that’s true with these homemade glittery ornaments. Use cookie cutters to make paper cutouts, then cover in glitter to make pretty hanging ornaments for the Christmas tree.
Santa Claus is coming to town! But before he does, he has a personalised letter for every child excitedly waiting for his annual visit. The NSPCC’s Letter from Santa fundraising initiative gives parents, grandparents and anyone else the chance to nominate someone special to receive a magical letter from Santa for a suggested donation of £5. The letter is personalised with the child’s name and age and is sure to confirm that Santa will be […]
You know how at the end of Christmas, when you’ve taken down the beautiful Christmas tree that has brightened up your home, everything suddenly looks bare and sad? I always feel that packing away the decorations and taking down the tree is quite a depressing end of the festive season ritual. But what if we simply left it up all year and repurposed it for other celebrations? What if we could use it to observe […]
Fireworks are lots of fun but they can also be very dangerous. If you are not planning going to an organised fireworks event but rather to have fireworks of your own, make sure that you tell everyone involved all about keeping safe. Remember, remember the fifth of November, Gunpowder, treason and plot, We see no reason, Why gunpowder treason, Should ever be forgot! Follow these simple rules for a safer and happier Firework night! […]
With all the press that childhood obesity has been getting in recent years and knowing that obesity is on the up worldwide especially amongst children, we thought you might like some ideas for alternatives to the sugar-filled Halloween treats that are filling supermarket shelves at the moment. Perhaps you don’t like the idea of giving out sweets to other people’s children or perhaps you find sweets an uncreative, boring thing to give. Whatever your reasons, there are many cheap […]
Why not reuse some little glass jars and turn them into these glittering glass painted candle holders! This is really quick and easy for kids to do and they look gorgeous all lit up. Make a few and give them away to family and friends as gifts… Age group: 2 years+ What you need: A small glass jar (jam or babyfood jars work well) no lids needed Craft wire in your choice of colour Glass paint […]
Your little ones will really enjoy making this lovely drawing pin decorative candle. They are truly absorbed by the process of pushing the pins in, and even your youngest child (supervised of course) can create a really pretty effect.