How to make a Go-Jetters style Jet Pack

Sometimes Monkey announces he wants to make something with me and after much head scratching I either a) give it a go and fail massively, producing something really rubbish, or b) persuade him that doing something else would actually much more fun and seriously hope he forgets his idea.

Other times, he says he wants to make something, and a flash of inspiration strikes. Thankfully this is what happened when Monkey announced last week that he wanted to make a Go-jetters Jet Pack last week. Becuase the feedback on social media and here has been so positive about said jet-pack I thought I would share the very simple method of making it.

1. Raid your recycling bin/junk modelling supplies to find the following.

  • A large cereal box,
  • 2 empty pop bottles (2ltr) and lids
  • 2 toilet rolls
  • Duck Tape
  • PVA Glue
  • Paint
  • Stickers
  • Tissue Paper

2. Cut the tops off the bottles and the bottom from the cereal box. Insert into cereal box and affix as best you can with Duck tape. (Try not to get too annoyed with tape sticking everywhere but where you want it to).

20160607_0956443. Mix Paint with PVA glue to make it stick to the glossy cereal box and help your preschooler paint everything.

4.While the paint it still wet stick the toilet rolls onto the front of the box.

5.When the paint is dry stick stickers and the pop bottle lids on to the front as buttons.

PhotoGrid_1465306510630

6. Try and make some kind of straps. I did this using another random bit of cardboard and loads of duck tape to widen the back as the cereal box was a bit narrow. Attach to this some long bits of paper and find something else in your to use to do up the straps. I randoml had some little velcro fasteners which work quite well. (I haven’t made too much about the straps as they are possibly the worst thought out part of our creation and advise you to try and find your own way of making the straps.)

7. Stuff some strips of red yellow and orange tissue paper inside the toilet rolls to be fire.

8. Watch your child blast around the garden so happy to be alive and wearing a jet pack and chuckle at their poses while they model it to perfection.

PhotoGrid_1465825408302

TATBest of Worst

A wildflower meadow in the suburbs

We live in the suburbs. A very leafy open suburb built in the early 80s mind you which is a lot less crammed in than some modern developments, but is a suburb nonetheless. I’ve always liked the idea of living somewhere more rural but I am a pretty practical person, and well I like my conveniences close by. Also as a teenager my best friends lived on a village with limited bus services and it was a complete pain for them to ever get anywhere without lifts from parents and I don’t want that for our kids. May seem like a daft reason to some I know! I do love the peace of the countryside but like to think we have the best of both worlds where we live as there is lots of open space to run and play but we are also close enough to everywhere we want to be able to ‘pop’ to.

Why am I banging on about this? Well, randomly amongst our little suburban area is a touch of the countryside. A little meadow filled with wild flowers that changes with the seasons. I have no idea why it is there and hasn’t ever been built on but I love it. It is actually surrounded on all sides by housing estates and a dual carriageway… But through so many layers of trees that while you are there you can almost forget that you aren’t in the countryside.WP_20160524_16_16_10_Pro

I took the kids there the other day and enjoyed watching them run free, chase bubbles in the wind, hide in the grass and generally just enjoy themselves. With the blue skies and sea yellow buttercups it was a beautiful summery afternoon.field 1

As you can see, the kids absolutely loved it, monkey especially loved exploring and letting his imagination run free as he did so. And I loved watching, and taking hundreds of photos of course!field 2

There is no greater purpose to this post than that really. Just a lovely afternoon in the sun with my kiddies.

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays CornwallLife UnexpectedMummascribbles

Dancing Monkey, age 3

Earlier in the year Monkey and his Auntie Ericha went to see a couple of shows at our local theatre, one being the Northern Ballet’s “The Elves and the Shoemaker.” As he enjoyed it so much, for his 3rd birthday Auntie Ericha bought Monkey vouchers for some dancing classes. At the moment Daddy goes with him and it is safe to say that Monkey loves it. He is forever doing “good toes, naughty toes” (good toes being pointed and naughty toes not) which I remember doing at ballet as a little girl! He is also dancing round the hosue a lot more since starting the classes and I thought I would share an example of his amazing dancing with you.

Shot in portrait on my phone but you get the idea… I love how he does different dances according to the tempo of the music! Watch this space, he’ll soon be on the stage ;)

Do your kids love to dance?

Not My Year OffBest of WorstEthans Escapades

At the park with Nanny

Wednesdays are normally a day where Monkey spends the day with his Nanny & Pops, but every now and then Pops is at work on a Wednesday. Sometimes those days are just Monkey and Nanny days, but sometimes LM and I join them for a bit of fun, I don’t quite make up for Pops’ absence but it’s nice to spend some time with my Mama too :). Last Wednesday we went to our local country park together for a picnic and playtime, and it was just lovely.

The forecast was for a lovely sunny day, and it certainly started off bright, but then clouded over and turned decidely grey but it didn’t stop us having lots of fun.

park with Nanny

At one point we the only people in one of the play areas so Nanny, who loves a bit of silliness, went on the slide with Monkey, who thought this was brilliant!

WP_20150617_13_14_08_Smart

Then I thought LM should have a go on the slide too, purely for her sake you understand ;)

11425227_10152982727561239_1232503357369680250_n

Just an ordinary day having fun with the littlies and their Nanny who they both adore. It is her 65th Birthday today, so Happy Birthday Nanny/Mum!

Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays CornwalltheordinarymomentsbadgeShare the Joy linky at bodfortea.co.uk

The Yorkshire Coast: Whitby & Runswick Bay

When  you think holiday, you very often think seaside or beach. Not all holidays of course but they do seem synonymous. For our holiday to Yorkshire I knew that most of our days would be spent exploring the countryside inland, but, Monkey does love the seaside so I wanted to see what the Yorkshire coast offered us in terms of beautiful beaches, and we were not disappointed.

We kept an eye on the weather forecast and chose the best day weather-wise to head to the coast, as we knew it may be a little chilly or breezy compared to inland. First stop was Whitby. Hubs had been before many years ago but I had never been and it was a gorgeous day and Whitby is a lovely seaside town and really picturesque.

WP_20150421_13_28_50_Pro

It is also very hilly! We were in Yorkshire so I know I shouldn’t be surprised but pushing the buggy up some of the steep hills definitely gave my legs a good workout compared to the flats area that we live in! We loved the view from the clifftops down to the lovely beach below and across to the aAbbey. After visiting Fountains Abbey we decided not to see Whitby Abbey up close and focused on the town itself, having a lovely wander round, and we stopped at a gorgeous child friendly café for lunch.

Whitby

We then headed a little further North up the coast towards a little place I had found called Runswick Bay. A lovely small fishing village in beautiful enclosed bay with a gorgeous sandy beach. It was a lovely day and with the bay being enclosed we were very protected from any coastal breezes and had a lovely time.

Runswick Bay

It was LM’s first time on a beach and she was good as gold lying in the shade of our wind protector while Monkey and Daddy had a whale of a time making castles and exploring the beach.

Runswick Bay 2

It was such a beautiful spot and I was so glad we found it. The hill to get to the beach is massively steep though so worth bearing that in mind when thinking about carrying things/children.

 

Post Comment LoveCountry Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays CornwallMy Travel Monkey
#YorkshireFamily with Yorkshire Tots

Lotherton Hall, nr Leeds

Last week we headed up the A1 towards Yorkshire for a lovely little family holiday. We wanted to head off first thing in the morning during LM’s first sleep but couldn’t get into the cottage until 3pm. We decided we would stop off along the way, but actually made really good time that morning and decided to carry on a bit further than the halfway point where we thought we would stop. The question was, where to stop?

SatNavs are great but I love a good map, and this is the perfect example of why. I got the map out and had a look for some landmarks and places where we could visit. I found Lotherton Hall, just off the A1 not far from Leeds and after a quick look online (thank goodness for mobile internet) decided it was the perfect place for a little visit!

WP_20150417_10_12_31_Pro

Entry was £5 per adult, 2.50 for children but under 5s go free which was great for us and compared to a lot of places we have visited I didn’t think the price was bad at all! (There is membership available too if you are local and there seemed to be a lot of mums with kids there who go there regularly.

So what is there? Loads! It’s a lovely big house which you can go round, though we found plenty to keep us amused outside. There are manicured gardens where you can play games on the lawns, a rock garden to explore, a lovely woodland walk with some adventure play areas amongst the trees (more on that later) 2 big play areas, a cafe and outdoor seating area, plenty of picnics spots, and to top it off a big bird sanctuary in the centre of the grounds!

LM woke up when we arrived so we headed straight to the cafe for some refreshment. the cafe was lovely and not too expensive, with a lovely sunny seating area. I was also really impressed to see a section of the stables set aside for indoor picnics on days when the weather is less than warm. So many places don’t provide indoor eating areas unless you buy their food, so I thought this was a nice touch.

We then headed to the main playarea, which is huge! There is so much to do for all different abilities and Monkey had a fab time climbing, though Mummy did have to clamber up and help him on one of the difficult bits, after that we kept him on the younger side of the playarea hehe. He also got his first ride on the zipwire swing and he absolutely adored it! Trying to get him to hold tightly enough was a challenge though!

lotherton hall 1

After a bit of a play we went for a wander and discovered the bird sanctuary! We had no idea it was there and it was massive with lots of lovely fascinating birds with many of them in really nice roomy enclosures. they even had a couple of condors and one of them was suitably impressing us by showing off his awesome wingspan.

lotherton hall bird garden

Then it was picnic time and we headed to a big field, which is where we discovered another play area! Spread across the field was all manner of climbing frames, swings, monkey bars, spinny things, two more zipwire swings and all sorts – and there was a lot of children out there enjoying the sunshine and having a lovely play on all of the equipment.

After lunch we took a stroll to get LM to sleep and had a little look at the deer park,  then wandered through the woods. Which is where we discovered lots of lovely wooden play equipment spread amongst the trees. Some of the wooden beams took hubs and I back to our childhood and we had a great time running across the spinning beam – miraculously I surprised us all and managed it on my first run across… but couldn’t do it at all when hubs tried to catch it on camera lol. Monkey thought it was great fun seeing Mummy and Daddy playing!

lotherton hall woods

We headed back to the field after that and had a bit more of a play there before deciding to head on to our holiday cottage

lotherton hall field

We had a lovely time at Lotherton Hall, there is so much to see and do which to me makes the entry fee totally worthwhile. If we lived nearer I imagine we would go quite a lot as Monkey loved it too!
Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com

My Bored ToddlerPost Comment LoveCountry Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall
We're going on an adventure#ToddlerApprovedTuesday

Having some fun

My word of the week this week is a great one. One that I am really happy to talk about. It has been a lovely week, full of fun, so that is my word, fun!

After the past however many months of struggling, first with the difficult newborn days, with colic and reflux thrown into the mix, to just the endless parade of germs, colds and flus keeping us down, it is great to say we have had a fun week for a change!

Continue reading

Monkey & Daddy Make: Basic Chocolate Biscuits

Monkey loves baking, he would do it every day if he could and I do love doing it with him but I don’t have the energy to do it with as much at the moment. Last weekend as we were having a bit of a quiet weekend I thought it was a good opportunity to try and do some with him. With 2 parents it meant one could bake with him while the other could look after LM.

Hubs loves baking, he was the one who got me interested in baking when we met and he really loves baking with Monkey. He has more patience than I do too so they are a great little team. So it was an easy decision for them to spend some time together and do some baking! one of Monkey’s favourite programmes at the moment is Bing Bunny and there is an episode where they make Ginger Bunny biscuits. He loves it so I wanted to find a recipe where you can roll it out and cut out shapes as most of our biscuit recipes are for just free-formed biscuits really. Neither hubs or I like gingerbread very much though so we though either a plain or chocolatey one would be great.

So I found this lovely, simple, recipe to make lovely simple chocolate biscuits.

225g Self raising Flour
100g Caster Sugar
3 tbsp cocoa powder
100g Margarine
5 tbsp Milk
A few drops of vanilla essence.

Pre-heat the oven to 190°C and grease 2 baking trays.

Mix the flour, sugar and cocoa in a bowel and rub in the margarine.

Add the milk and vanilla essence and mix in well. Bring together with your hands and knead lightly on a floured service. (Ours still felt really gooey at this point but soon firmed up with some kneading in the flour).

Roll out to a thickness of 0.5cm and cut shapes. The recipe we used 7.5cm rounds and baked the biscuits for 8 – 10 minutes. We gave Monkey the choice out of all of our cutters and ended up with Star and Rhombus biscuits and only baked ours for 7 minutes which was perfect.

Monkey is so good at baking now – a far cry from the early days where all he wanted was to eat the raw ingredients, even the flour, now he is so good at measuring everything out and so careful with it all, and only ate some of the dough when we said it was ok to.

WP_20150208_12_29_12_Pro

He was less keen on getting his hands really mucky when mixing the dough, but loved kneading it and helping daddy roll it out (he hasn’t got the hang of rolling it out himself yet).

WP_20150208_12_37_54_Pro WP_20150208_12_38_02_Pro WP_20150208_12_45_19_Pro WP_20150208_12_44_34_Pro WP_20150208_12_47_25_Pro

Then of course was the important job of cutting out the shapes ready to bake!

WP_20150208_12_49_13_Pro WP_20150208_12_49_31_Pro WP_20150208_12_50_34_Pro

You can decorate these biscuits however you like, the recipe used a Chocolate Glace Icing but we used some little icing tubes we already had in the cupboard and again I was pleased to see how precise he was. Even since the baking we did at Christmas he has got a lot more precise and was great at putting dots and patterns on the biscuits.

WP_20150208_13_18_32_Pro__highres WP_20150208_13_18_17_Pro__highres WP_20150208_13_19_40_Pro__highres

WP_20150208_13_31_38_Pro__highres

 

The finished biscuits! Obviously Daddy helped with some of the patterns but Monkey did a lot of them by himself.

These chocolate biscuits are super quick and simple to make although obviously baking them with a toddler takes a little longer but just adds to the fun. Monkey adored making these with daddy and actually they were really, really tasty!

Tasty Tuesdays on HonestMum.com

BakedPotato Mummy
#ToddlerApprovedTuesday
Mini Creations

Feeling Cheerful

Yep I am feeling cheerful this week :). It’s amazing how much better you feel when you are getting enough sleep isn’t it? LM has now slept through from 7pm till 430/5am for the past 6 nights, meaning hubs and I are both getting a good long sleep at night. After a troublesome week last week  we are so very, very pleased about this!

We are expecially grateful as we had a busy weekend. On Friday night my brother and his girlfriend came round for a takeaway which was really lovely and, well, the four of us can natter away til the cows come home so it was an uncharacteristically late night for us, meaning instead of our usual 9/930pm bedtime we went to bed after 11! Shocking I know! We were a little tired Saturday morning but had another busy day ahead of us as it was one of my best friend’s hen do. I had my hair cut in the afternoon and then in the evening I left hubs alone with both kiddies for bath and bedtime – the first time one of us has done this alone with both kiddies since LM became part of this routine!

Hard work for him but I had a lovely lovely time with my friends, having a good natter and a bit of hen do silliness :). I love my kiddies but I so need some time for me sometimes and this gave me the push I needed to get out of the house and enjoy just being me, rather than being Mummy.

hen fun

Sunday was a yummy lunch at my Mum’s with my side of the family and we had a very lovely time, Monkey so loves playing with all of his aunts and uncles and LM was good as gold too.

at mums

 

I love that pic of my Mum and Stepdad with Monkey and LM, just gorgeous :).

Monday I have to admit I was shattered from a 430am start to the day and the busy weekend, but as the week has gone on I have been feeling positively restored. Getting a series of solid nights sleep, even with the early start to the day, really is making a huge difference to my energy levels. LM has been a lot better too, she is still dribbling a lot but she doesn’t seem to be in as much pain with the teething and has been sleeping really, really well. This means I have had more time for me but also more time for Monkey.

We have had some lovely playtimes out in the cold this week while  LM has bee happily dozing. I have also been trying to be less negative towards him, to give more positive praise. I am a huge believer in positive reinforcement but it is so easy when you are tired and stressed to focus more on the negative behaviours. So instead we have been concentrating on the good and while we have had to threaten the naughty spot a few times, in general his behaviour has been much better this week and he is learning to say “please can I have” instead of “I want” which is actually going surprisingly well bless him! We are still having issues at dinnertime with him refusing to swallow food but there are a lot less tantrums and he is much more cheerful and so I am much more cheerful….or is that I am feeling more cheerful so he is feeling more cheerful hmm maybe a bit of both :).

WP_20150130_09_03_58_Pro

How has your week been?

The Reading Residence
Mama and More

Roley Poleys

You know how sometimes with kids, you do something once, and then they love it, so you have to do it over and over and it becomes a tradition? Well that is what has happened here lately. Bath and bed time have been a Monkey and Daddy time for a really long time, it has been their special bonding time. But since the arrival of Little Miss and some difficult days we have been taking it in turns a bit more to look after each of them.

On one day when it was my turn with Monkey I decided to change our bedding while the bath was running and so took Monkey to get involved with me. He wasn’t really much help but he thought he was and had fun doing it with me. After we had made the bed I had the spontaneous idea of doing roley poleys on the bed.

Well I have to say it was a hit. Monkey loved taking it in turns with me to roley poley across the bed and then “fall” off the bed where I caught him.

The photos are blurry because the lighting was terrible but you get the idea.

WP_20141210_18_50_22_Pro WP_20141210_18_51_19_Pro WP_20141210_18_48_52_Pro

We then did a few selfies on the bed which Monkey loves doing at the moment.

WP_20141210_18_48_32_Pro

It has become a bit of a tradition now and so is a very ordinary moment in our house. Now LM has a bedtime routine, she has a bath first and while one of us gives her a bath, the other is in our bedroom playing roley polys with Monkey :) lovely times :)

theordinarymomentsbadge