Monday, September 24, 2012

school holiday fun

YES!!!! School holidays are the BEST :)

And this morning I was pumped, ready and totally organised... see how long that lasts ;)

I had someone comment to me recently that my blog made them feel inadequate and rather like a bad mum because of all the things I do with my kids. Ive had this before, but the answer is the same.

I have found through my nearly 8 years of being a mum that when I am organised and know what Im doing as far as crafty things and generally spending time with my kids, it WORKS. As soon as I busy myself in my own world, or couldnt be bothered or am just generally off the planet as far as having a plan, it all falls to pieces on me and I end up wishing the day was over and wondering if my kids will hate me for it.
Its one of those things for me, when we've been productive and had a good day, I rate myself a "good mum".  We all do it. Dont even pretend you dont ;)
So my blog is to help you get to that place of calm productive awesomeness like me :) Sometimes you'll do it and give yourself a pat on the back. Sometimes you wont, cos sometimes I dont either. And thats ok.

So I decided to post about the things we are doing in the holidays on a daily basis, so you can see how its done, how easy it can be, and how cheap you can make it. Holidays dont have to be a time to spend all day everyday at the shops or spending money. Fun things to do can be found everywhere!!

So today, with my negative bank account, meant that we were doing things that were either free or paid me. Considering there isnt much to do with three kids  that I can paid for, we opted for a free day :)

Simple dolls furniture set up without  the dolls house!

Lego for Jared (Although the girls did get into for awhile)

Painting for the artists ( another Kandinksy creation from Jumeirah)

Pretend play with icecream. ( pom poms and $2 shop icecream cups)

Afternoon at the beach

Cost: FREE!

I have also written a list of jobs that I want to achieve in the holidays and worked it out to do one per day. I have tried to get it all done in the one day, but I end up having a crap day cos the kids have had no time and often the job never gets done anyway!

Todays job: clean up and sort out top drawer.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

story time

Its been a very long time between posts... I have had the traumatic time of losing a very close part of my life... my PC. Now before you scoff, its not just my PC... but  months worth of photos as well.

Now you may gasp in horror ( Ill even leave a pause)

Now Im not panicking... yet. My IT guru husband assures me he can retrieve it from the desktop somehow. But for the past week Ive been pretty much internetless nad very much photoshopless ( I lost all actions and everything in photoshop too but thanks to a friend who rescued me last time through multiple emails, I have managed to reload that all back tonight on my sparkly new computer)

So whilst I wait patiently for all my photos from the last few months, here is some I forgot to blog about that were still on the camera ;)

A little while ago, Jumeirah came home telling me she had to do a project on "Cam the cameleon" ( a stuffed toy cameleon from school) overnight. The idea was we would take Cam on an adventure to a wetland.

Thinking this could be more fun that first thought, I grabbed my camera and we set out.
What followed was a very funny afternoon with a stuffed toy, two kids just happy to be out in the "jungle, and one child who was able to breathe life into a stuffed toy and give him a great little adventure.

This is how it went.

(as told by Jumeirah aged 7)

Once there was a cameleon called Cam and a little girl named Jumeirah. They decided to go on a wetland adventure.
As they arrived at the boardwalk, Cam looked in surprise at the huge paperbark trees. 
He walked on till he found a creek. "I can see me!" he exclaimed.
Jumeirah held him tight so he could look closer without falling in.
Cam sat on a log for awhile, enojying the cool of the forest and the sounds of the birds. It was so peaceful.
Cam decided that  this was the best place to look up at the tops of the trees and clouds. And they went home very happy after their wonderful adventure.
Once we had the photos and printed them off, we made it into a book. It got me thinking of other "friends"of the stuffed variety that we could use in stories and take on adventures and how fun that would be to turn into a book!

Think we might have to do this again in the holidays : ( YAY!! HOLIDAYS IN TWO MORE SLEEPS!!)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

chore chart that works!!

Since Ive been able to get my kids to do jobs, Ive tried ways to get them to do it without the nag ( oh, how I HATE the nag). I havent found that bribery, threats or tears from me have worked all that effectively, so I decided to try something a little more visual.

All my kids are really visual beings. Much like their mum, both girls love writing and crossing off lists, and all have loved tasks when I write them out for them to see. So I created a really visual way for them to see what jobs need to be done and what they get paid for to do it.

Of course there are jobs that dont get paid for, and they know they cant start the paid ones until the unpaid ones are done first. And if they choose not to do their unpaid jobs and I do it for them, I get to pick a job for them to do that is normally mine. ( Thanks to the friend who suggested that awesome tip!)

So we worked out some jobs today and talked about how much it was worth, and what they could save for with the money they earn. All have wish lists ranging from a $1 bag of lollies to a dolphin ( amahli wants the dolphin) ( havent worked out if its supposed to be real yet, Im afraid to ask).

And so I typed out the jobs, added the value, printed, laminated ( yup, gotta have a laminator!) and magnetted them. Cleared a space on the fridge and told them about it, and waited to see how it would work.

I watched them play outside all afternoon, but when called to come in, all seemed to gravitate to the new things on the fridge.... and so it began.

I was truly shocked at how well it worked. I know that Jared really hates having to clean his room, but really enjoys vacuuming ( or feeding the monster as he calls it). Jumeirah went and did the kids bathroom and did a better job than me. And Amahli happily hung out a full load of washing completely by herself whilst singing so I knew she was happy too.

Once done, all three came to hunt me down for the cash..... luckily I knew earlier that I never have money on me but didnt want them to lose heart and not do it because I am forever promising it to them. I typed and printed ( yes and laminated) money values and placed them in a jar. They can take the money value and put it in their money box, and as soon as either I have money or they want to buy something, they can trade the card in for real money.

I am really hoping this system works for a bit longer.... I think having goals for them all will help but will see how it goes!!

How do you get kids to do jobs at your house?? How much do they have to do and how poor do you end up being????? :)

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

fathers day fun

Over the weekend we celebrated the Master of the House, Daddy :)

Fathers day is a bit busy here as I am heavily involved in kids ministry at church at fathers/mothers day is always a big thing ( the jars were part of fathers day). I had another idea for Fathers day at church, a photo booth. Not long ago, Tim and I went to a wedding where the reception had a photo booth. It was so much fun to be part of and it left us with a cute little momento to stick on the fridge :)
I thought this would be a great idea for the dads at church to have fun with but to also have something to take home with them.
So I set to task, helping to organise it and also organise some props for it.

I wanted to make some moustaches to add to the booth, knowing that it adds to the fun! So I cut some out of black cardstock, attached some to wooden skewers, and then took them outside to test with my own kids ( Well,  I cant waste the opportunity!).

Oh my gosh. This is currently my favourite photo EVER :)

They loved the moustaches, how they made them look and how funny it was.
So I decided to make a fathers day card for my dad and Tim for fathers day as well :)

This is the end result and I am so thrilled with it!!

Moustaches will DEFINITELY be part of my props for shoots now.

So if you want to take some funny moments of your kids/family/friends you totally should make some yourself!

I added it Click it up a Notch... go check them out!
Click It Up A Notch

Sunday, September 2, 2012

food ideas for the fussys

Amahli is a fussy eater.. but randomly so. She doesnt eat fruit unless she decides to. She'll eat only apples for a week then tell me shes never eaten them. She'll beg for berries, only to tell me they are terrible. And dairy is a no go unless its a milkshake at the shops.....drives me insane.

I have been trying every trick in the book to get dairy into her, she hates cheese unless I make cheesy toast ( shes an odd one I tell ya), she eats her cereal dry, and wont touch yoghurt...

I had the mindset the other day to change the yoghurt idea though... which is rare but I seemed to be up for a challenge!!

When we go to the markets, we always end up with dippin dots. Little tiny balls of icecream that are totally delish and my kids love em. I thought that I would have a try at making some from yoghurt and then she might just eat it!

I started making them by using a medicine syringe and drawing the yoghurt into it, then squeezing it onto a baking tray covered with baking paper. Jared came to see what I was up to, closely followed by Amahli.

I thought this might be my downfall, but she was pretty fascinated at what I was doing. Once Id finished piping out the dots, we put it in the freezer. I told Amahli we were making our own dipping dots, and we would have to wait for them to freeze.

All afternoon she paced the freezer, waiting.

Once they were finally ready, I pulled them off the paper and put them in her bowl. She was up at the table in a flash, the dots were inhaled so fast.

We made some more and she helped, knowing full well it was yoghurt we were making them out of.
It seems that Amahli's food pain can be changed with a simple rethink and a touch of creativity :)

Wonder what else I can get her to eat ;)

Anyone else got odd kids??