Homemade Playdough

For Christmas Amelia got some Play-Doh and she loves it so I thought I would give it go and make some myself. It’s really easy to do, really quick and makes lots!

Thought I would share the recipe with you guys in case anyone wanted to try it:

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The  only cream of tartar I found was in sachets and one sachet seemed to do the job for each lot! I got a bit carried away and made 3 colours, but I love how bright they came out.  (This recipe makes one ball shown above!)

  1. Put all ingredients in a saucepan and stir until combined add choice of food colouring.
  2. Put over the heat and keep stirring until you feel the texture change.
  3. Take off the heat and keep stirring until one big lump attached to spoon.
  4. It will be quite sticky so you’ll need to work it with your hands until it isn’t.
  5. Store until cool for use – always keep air-tight so it doesn’t dry up!

There are lots of different ways of making playdough you can do it just by adding boiling water which might save on washing up! You can also use wholegrain flour for a different texture, glycerine to give it a shine, glitter for fun, or different scents and if you use self raising flour it makes it super stretchy!!

The only down-side is you don’t get the amazing smell of shop bought play-doh (or is that just me?!)

Hope this is useful and thanks for reading!xx

Big Girl Painting

 

For Christmas Amelia got her first paints and paint brushes. We’ve used odd bits and bobs before but she has never sat up at the table like a big girl and just experimented!

A perfect addition to painting or any kind of messy activity is Amelia’s new painting apron. It’s another one from My 1st years, who I have mentioned before. It’s wipe clean and has large velcro on the sides making it adjustable. It is a tiny bit big for Amelia but is so great to put on when doing messy things! Plus how cute is it!!

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She had different sized brushes and a few different colours but her favourite were the sponges. These were in the shapes of different animals but Amelia just loved dipping them into the paint then wiping them across the paper.

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Her knowledge of understanding sequences has improved recently; she knew she needed to go paint brush- paint-paper-repeat. It was interesting to watch her figure out and see what she would do next. We did go through lots of sheets of paper as after a while there was just too much paint on the paper.

It made for a lovely Sunday afternoon and she concentrated for about 30minutes which I was really impressed with! I could tell she lost focus when she started screaming with excitement and scooping the paint up with her hands…That was when I feared for a paint covered toddler running around and decided to stop.

It’s so fun now Amelia is big enough to enjoy and start to do things like this learning and exploring as she goes! You could really see the concentration and determination in her face, so cute!!

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I know painting can be messy but I just laid down some newspaper and the table was protected and then 5 minutes of washing up afterwards. The painting apron just wiped clean and managed to get most of the paints off of Amelia’s hands and arms with a quick wash in the sink.

I don’t know about you but I think I’ve got an artist in the making…

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Thanks so much for reading!xxx

Play At Home Teacher

Jelly on a plate!

Messy play is a really good way for babies to learn new things so it has always been something I’ve enjoyed doing with Amelia and it is so fascinating watching her face explore the new textures.

We haven’t done a messy play activity so decided that we would have a fun jelly filled afternoon. I haven’t used jelly before as I didn’t want Amelia to just eat the props, which she probably would have done when she was younger!

I got some jelly from the shop which was super cheap it cost me £1 for three different colours and I made it up in the morning and put it in the freezer and it was set fine by the afternoon.

I used one tray from her sand and water table to put the jelly in, set it up at the table and put an overall on Amelia.

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To begin with Amelia wasn’t sure as it was a new texture and quite cold! After a little while she was really enjoying picking it up squeezing it through her fingers and using her mini rake bashing it as hard as she could. This was probably our most successful messy play task from an attention span point of view. Not sure whether it’s because she’s that little bit older but she played for 30 minutes before she started to lose interest.

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I could tell that Amelia was losing interest once she started to put her fingers in her mouth to taste it and ten she started licking the rake (haha). She did not like the taste as the green jelly which there was the most of was lime flavoured and it made her shudder. Pretty amusing to watch as she re tried it multiple times….yes Amelia it is still that flavour!

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Thankfully most of the mess was contained and I’ve got half of the jelly unused that I can use next time and I definitely will do it again. Next time I would maybe add some different textures in amongst the jelly so that she can feel the difference or let her be able to put her feet into it and see what she thinks of that!

Messy play is always much less hassle than I think it’s going to be and this was simple and fun!

What messy play have you done or have you ever tried jelly with your little ones?

Thanks so much for reading! xxx

Baby’s first trip into the Sea!

Living on the coast fortunately means that a trip to the beach is possible pretty much whenever. Although Amelia has been to the beach many times and felt the waves she has never been in the sea and experienced it properly.

It has been so hot this last week that a morning at the beach seemed inevitable. I’m really lucky that my parents have a beach hut at Sandbanks beach so it provides great shade and a place to store the mountain of stuff that comes with any baby day out.

The weather was so hot and sunny that it was probably warm enough to take Amelia down to the sea and see what she thought. I always thought I would just put her in a swimming costume and never really liked the idea of the SPF wetsuits but since having this hot weather I’m much more conscious of Amelia’s skincare so they provide great cover leaving only her hands and feet out. Also it helps to keep her warm. This one that Amelia has is from Jojo Maman Bebe and looks so cute on. Amelia isn’t usually one for leaving a hat on but I think with all the people and things to look at she was distracted and pretty much forgot it was on.

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We went down to the sea and it was so nice! It was quite choppy but it was so refreshing; I walked in and dipped her in and out and threw her up when the waves came. It was quite noisy so I wasn’t sure what she would think but she seemed to enjoy it. But the best bit for Amelia was sitting on the shore line splashing in the wet sand. She loved picking it up and feeling the waves coming up to her legs. Amelia got quite overexcited and was pretty much covered in wet sand after a few minutes.

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I’m so pleased she loves the water and isn’t phased by the beach as it’s somewhere I have always spent a lot of time and want to continue to do. Safety wise after a couple of hours it really was just too hot for Amelia so we came home. We are really lucky that we are able to essentially just ‘pop’ down to the beach and enjoy it.

Here is a video of Amelia enjoying the beach:

View this post on Instagram

Pretty excited by the sea 👶🌊☀️

A post shared by Alice (@alice.andamelia) on

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What did your little ones first think of the sea?

Thanks for reading!xxx

Messy Monday

If you have read my blog before you will know that I really enjoy doing fun messy play activities with Amelia. Here is our latest…

So the idea started as being frozen chalks but ended up becoming frozen water cubes with different things frozen into them.

I literally mixed half a cup of cornflour with half a cup of water and added a choice of food colouring. This amount made enough for about 6 cubes of each colour and I put these into an ice cube tray and into the freezer! I also have this silicone cake pop tray (pretty sure its Christmas shapes but hey!) that I used one side of (the side without the hole after flooding the kitchen surface once..oops) and just put some water into. I then delved into the baking cupboard and sprinkled into the water a selection of different hundreds and thousands and little sparkly cake bits. I then put these into the freezer too.

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It only took a couple hours for them to be solid so I popped them into a bowl and got set up. It wasn’t that sunny today but it was quite mild so thought it was best to do this kind of activity outside. I again used our trusty blue paddling pool and filled it with a little warm water. I put Amelia into a swim nappy and costume and we got started.

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Just to warn you the pictures aren’t that great and it does look quite gross. Once the cubes started to melt all the different colours mixed together and created a rather unpleasant murky water but who said messy was going to be pretty?!

When the cornflour cubes melted they went to a really strange texture and Amelia’s face was brilliant she was rubbing the cubes in her hand and was so intrigued watching them get smaller and smaller until she was left with a solid lump of cornflour. She really liked picking up the different colours and chasing them round the water with her hands, this did let out a few screams and squeals of excitement when she managed to grab one.

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The frozen water with the sprinkles inside were great too. Once they melted all the sprinkles and shapes were floating in the water or appeared into Amelia’s hands once she had watched the water melt and I think she was also pretty fascinated by this!

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As there was water involved Amelia obviously splashed so much that I may as well have been sat in the pool next to her I was that soaked! It was a really fun play activity that developed from one idea and became our own (I’m sure someone has done it before but I thought of putting the cake decorations into water without using google!) She played for about 20minutes and it was a different experience for her to learn from and enjoy. There was different textures as the water melted away leaving the shapes and the cornflour.

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From a safety point of view I wouldn’t use sprinkles and things like cake decorations if your baby is just going to eat them; I thought Amelia wouldn’t but literally the first frozen cornflour cube she picked up went straight into her mouth. I think it was a little shock as it was so cold and she didn’t do that again! But it could be a choking hazard so be careful! Again messy play always calls for an impromptu daytime shower so be prepared for that too!

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It was really easy to clean up as I just tipped the paddling pool water away and washed the ice cube trays and bowls. If I was planning to do this again I would probably use something bigger than ice cube trays and freeze bigger things inside the water for Amelia to find.

Have you done something similar before?

Thanks for reading xxx

SAM_2241

Our Week in Photos

I love taking photos so this is just a quick post to show you what we have done this week in photos; 9th June-15th June.

Monday- Messy Play

Monday- Messy Play

Monday- Selfie

Monday- Selfie

Monday- Dog walk

Monday- Dog walk

Tuesday- Little & Big breakfast

Tuesday- Little & Big Breakfast

Tuesday - Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Tuesday – Strawberry Cheesecake Cupcakes

Tuesday- Getting Strong!

Tuesday- Getting Strong!

Wednesday- Homemade Cheese Scones

Wednesday- Homemade Cheese Scones

Wednesday- Being cute before bed!

Wednesday- Being cute before bed!

 

Thursday- Garden Princess

Thursday- Garden Princess

Thursday- Fun in the Garden

Thursday- Fun in the Garden

Friday- Girls in Blue

Friday- Girls in Blue

Sunday- Lambretta & Jammscoot buddies

Sunday- Lambretta & Jammscoot buddies

Thanks for looking, hope you like some of our pictures from this week!xx

Spaghetti Fun

I love the idea of messy play and have lots of different things I would like to test out with Amelia but I do tend to put it off. So when I saw this Beebies post on messy play it gave me the kick up the bum I needed to do another messy play activity.

http://www.beebiesbabystore.com/#!-we-love-beebies---Some-exciting-news/c21m/219FAF6E-0DA2-4A7A-8E24-DA7CC0F54D57

Make sure you give them a vote for the’Best Independent Retailer’ category in the Loved By Parents Awards here

 Over the weekend we had the paddling pool out for water fun which you can see here and previously we have made cornflour paints which you can read about here.

Spaghetti is a really great idea to use for messy play and it’s so simple. I got one pack of spaghetti from Tesco which was 20p (don’t need the fancy stuff for messy play) and just cooked it as I would normally. Once cooked I ran through with cold water and poured a little olive oil over it to stop it from sticking together when it began to cool. I then divided it into bowls and added 5 different food colourings. I think I mentioned in my last messy play activity post that I love these colours as they come up so bright!

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I decided to keep this messy play as contained as possible so used the paddling pool. Paddling pools are good ideas for messy play as you could do it indoors but as it was sunny we did it outside!

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I put Amelia in an old vest that no longer fits to save washing or ruining any of her nice clothes but the none of the food colouring came off the pasta (think this was because I left it for about 40minutes whilst we had lunch). I also decided to cut up some straws and put them amongst the spaghetti to add a different texture to the pool.

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To begin with Amelia was a little grossed out and was just poking at it but she soon got stuck in. She was concentrating so hard to pick up individual strands and liked transferring from one bowl to another. I blew some bubbles for her which she enjoyed popping whilst sorting out the spaghetti. Amelia also liked picking up the straws from the piles of spaghetti and putting them to the side or trying to eat them once she had found the. By the end she was having so much fun; she kept her attention really well as usually she gets bored super quick.

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We also had some company…

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Archie, thinking it would be a great snack to eat the spaghetti!!

I gave her a quick shower off afterwards popped her in some fresh clothes and she fell straight to sleep. I think that is the sign of an activity going down well, job well done.

I put the spaghetti into some freezer bags as we might use it again tomorrow or Sellotape the bags shut and have them as feeling bags rather than throwing it out immediately.

Messy play is a fun activity to do for babies or toddlers or children you can simply adapt it to make it age appropriate. Amelia wasn’t too interested in trying to eat it but it is only spaghetti so it wouldn’t have been the end of the world if she had. As it was fairly contained it wasn’t that hard to clean up.

Don’t forget to check out the Beebies website or get involved with this messy play task!!

Have you done any messy play recently?

Thanks for reading xxx

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Spontaneous Pool Session

Wasn’t expecting much sun today but it’s turned out to be a lovely afternoon so got some water in Amelia’s paddling pool and had some fun! A great easy way to entertain babies. Amelia loved it and enjoyed a huge sleep afterwards! As you can see from the pictures Amelia didn’t like keeping her hat on, nightmare baby. And obviously was in need of big cuddles with Nana to warm up afterwards. xx

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Cornflour Paints

Ok so just to clarify this ended up more like cornflour gloop but still gave the same effect as finger painting! So if you do this be prepared to get VERY messy!!

I had seen the idea from Instagram and thought it was great to do something homemade with paint or messy play. The great thing is that they are just made from cornflour and water with a drop of food colouring so it really wouldn’t be the end of the world if your little one put their fingers into their mouths!

Recipe:

  • Mix one cup cornflour with one cup cold water.
  • Add your choice of food colouring and mix (I have the gel so you literally need a tiny tiny amount).
  • Place over the hob on a low heat and one at a time add three cups of boiling water.
  • Keep stirring as it will thicken all of a sudden and take off the heat. It goes to a thick custard-like texture.
  • You can add more water to make it thinner if you like. When it came to using it I did thin it out slightly.

SAFETY: Make sure you let the paints cool before use!!

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This was my finished product I made a pink, green and a blue paint. I wanted to do yellow but didn’t have the food colouring, something I must invest in! I like how bright they came out and was pleased with the contrasting colours.

I put down a wipe clean mat and decided to put on an old vest on Amelia that was too small rather than bothering with an overall as it was only cornflour and water it wasn’t likely to agitate her skin as there is nothing toxic about it!

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Something to point out: make sure you dress yourself in something you don’t mind getting mucky I didn’t and at the end had to pick up a messy baby and covered myself in gloop!

I took the paints out of the glasses and into bowls and masking taped some sheets of paper to the mat which made it so much easier rather than it slipping around.

To begin with Amelia was a bit grossed out with the gloopy paint but soon got stuck in. I attempted foot prints but they didn’t work out so great and the hand prints turned into more of a rainbow! She played for about 20minutes and loved having the paints between her toes!

I then rushed her up to the bath (as you can imagine I was doing that awkward holding baby as far away from my body as possible slight run up the stairs) gave her a quick shower off and got her wrapped up in a dressing gown! The vest she wore I threw straight out and began work to clean up, as this did create a huge huge mess!!!

Here are some photos of the messy paint play in action:

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As you can see we had a great time and definitely something I would do again. Maybe next time I will invite some of her friends over for a messy play date!!

I would definitely recommend you have a go at. It’s super easy and creates a good afternoon of fun! I felt at ease letting her squish it in her hands and over her skin knowing that it wasn’t full of chemicals!

Have you ever done anything similar? Would love to know some more messy play/homemade paint activities!

Thanks for reading xx

Binky Linky

Tinyleaf | Review

Tinyleaf logo from tinyleaf website

Tinyleaf is an eco-friendly company I came across via their twitter account which took me to their website!

tinyleaf.co.uk

Once I got to the website I fell in love with these guys…

tinyfeet characters- Tinyleaf Website

tinyfeet characters- Tinyleaf Website

These characters are printed onto vests, jumpsuits and tshirts (how sweet?!)

My favourite was the zebra so I got the zebra jumpsuit for Amelia in 3-6months.

It arrived quickly in the post which I was very happy about!- nothing worse than waiting forever for that delivery you know is coming.

Amelia has now worn the jumpsuit a few times and I’m really happy with the quality. Its comfy, the poppers do up nicely and the product washes well and dries nicely without shrinking!

This is Amelia in her jumpsuit:

Made with Repix (http://repix.it)

I think its a really sweet lazy day playtime outfit. For comfort reasons and it is just super chilled. The cream cotton then just the one animal print on it means there isn’t too much going on.

Jumpsuits- Tinyleaf Facebook

Jumpsuits- Tinyleaf Facebook

Seeing them all in this picture above folded makes me wish Amelia’s wardrobe was filled with them all. Choosing one of the these fun cute characters to put on for the day would be amazing!! What I also think is lovely is that these items are unisex each item would look just as sweet on a little boy or a little girl and any of the characters would suit whatever baby you have!

Tinyleaf are all about organic clothing but not just the clothing itself they take this into consideration for every aspect of the product from start to finish.

Tinyleaf – Why Tinyleaf:

That’s why every decision we make, from the way our tiny clothes are printed to the packaging it arrives in, is made with a planet friendly attitude. If there’s a way to use eco-friendly, organic or recycled materials we’ll make sure we do!”

The fabrics, graphics, label, tags and packaging are all organic, previously recycled items, 100% water-based inks  and are then recyclable themselves.

This is such a great mindset to have and to bring into your child’s life. Not every item of clothing needs to be organic and eco-friendly but just having one or two bits could be really helpful!

I know I will definitely be getting some more.

A really friendly company, excellent prices and great communication.

Tinyleaf logo from tinyleaf website

Tinyleaf logo – Tinyleaf website

How to find Tinyleaf:

Tinyleaf Website

Facebook Tinyleaf

Follow Tinyleaf

Thanks very much for reading and I hope you follow Tinyleaf on twitter and buy some Tinyleaf bits for yourself!

xx