Tuesday, November 30, 2010

i wanna be robin!

Yesterday this wee one decided that he wanted to be Robin (Batman's sidekick) for today's kindy superhero and fairy party.

I did a bit of google research and scrounged an old red tee from the about to be given to charity box.  Some embroidery thread, felt and hot glue and it was done (although it seemed to take me forever!).  The cape is one of our play cloths, they really do get a lot of use.

After last years Power Man (invented character) mask mission, we both decided a face paint mask would be much easier and more comfortable too.  I imagine his face might be a huge mess when I go to collect him but I don't mind.  I found last years photo for a comparison.  His hair has grown so fast!.  Last years costume was made from an old shirt of B's which I chopped up and added velcro at the neck.

yummy cinnamon rolls

Due to popular demand here are more photos and a delicious recipe for the cinnamon rolls we made on Sunday.  Make sure you wear your best apron and get mummy to tie your hair back if it's falling in your face (like Mr R in our photos). 

How can you not love it when they're concentrating so hard?

So I mixed the dough by hand without realising it was a bread maker recipe.  Oops.  Never mind. Once I figured out that I needed to mix the yeast with the water it was fine.  Cinnamon Rolls Recipe from the Remington Bread Machine book slightly adapted by Louise at The Morrisons: and then adapted again by me who doesn't have a bread maker any more.  We gave it away to someone who really wanted one and I prefer to use my kitchenaid now if I need help making dough.

1 cup + 1 Tbls water (luke warm)
1 tsp salt
3 tsp sugar
4 cups plain flour
2 eggs
3 Tbsp of butter or marge, softened
2 1/2 tsp yeast

If you're making it in a bread maker then just add the ingredients in the order listed.  I mixed the water with the sugar and yeast.  Left it to melt in for about 10min and then added the other wet ingredients and the flour last. Once it comes together knead it till it's smooth.

Then you roll it out into a rectangular shape before smearing on the melted butter or marge.
3 Tbsp melted butter (or dairy free margarine)
1/3 cup brown sugar (or slightly more to taste)
1 Tbsp cinnamon (or more to taste)

Sprinkle on the sugar and cinnamon and smear it around.

Roll it up tightly.

Chop into about 16 pieces and arrange in an oven dish.
Leave to rise for 20min or so.  Preheat your oven now to 160 (fan) or 180 (regular).

Because I didn't use a bread maker it's possible that we missed a rising step 
(before the rolling out) but they turned out just delicious anyway.

Bake at 160 degrees in a fan forced oven (180 for regular) for about 20minutes.
When you take them out flip the whole lot of them over in the pan so that they don't stick to the bottom.

Glaze them while still warm if you like with 
1 cup icing sugar, 1/2 tsp vanilla essence and 1-2 Tbsp (soy) milk.  


Sunday, November 28, 2010

A blissful Sunday so far...

Some prep work on the deck.  

Baked wonderful cinnamon rolls.  Can't you just smell the spice?
Have more photos to post and a recipe too.

Cooked a big pot of brown rice for salads and lunches (super organised!).

Ate some of those yummy rolls (with icing).

Lay in the hammock and read my Simplicity Parenting book.  Utter bliss.  Our umbrella is on it's very last legs and  we didn't have the shade sails up so I made do with the half shade and a bit of green muslin (play cloth) to cover my feet.

The boys rediscovered some old favourite toys, and made chocolate sand pies.

Deck is looking good with it's first coat of paint done and dry.

We found the last Smoove in the freezer (pink guava and coconut) and chopped it in half. 


Friends coming for a bbq and a game tonight so will be pretty much the perfect day.  Right then, off back outside now that I've cooled down a little bit (it's hot out!).  B just put up the shade sail so it'll be lovely.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

red and green

I know red and green are kind of Christmas colours but they've always been my favourite colours too.  I took the camera on the kindy and school run the other day and ended up (unintentionally) with a lot of red and green. It's not going to be long before the kindy run is no longer part of the equation... we had the first school visit this week.

It was quite obvious the kids who had older siblings at school and the ones who were a little spooked by the huge number of visiting kids.  Our school has new entrant intakes twice a term.  I think it works well for such a large school.  It means that the new entrant teachers have the kids for about 5-10 weeks and they get to know the school routines etc before they're moved into a year one or zero class.

Friday, November 26, 2010

this moment

{this moment} -  A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. Thanks SouleMama for the inspiration.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

more creative play

I love watching their wee brains at work making up imaginary games.  This time the play cloths were used to build nests.  Magnetic balls were used as eggs and the boys took turns sitting on them waiting for them to hatch.  I'm reading a brilliant book called Simplicity Parenting.  It's pretty much about kids having less stuff, less clutter, less books, less toys, less scheduled activities, less information (news, Internet, adult concerns) and them having more space to play, to be, to grow up.  It's quite inspiring.  Have already done a massive cull on their books which I might see if Starship would like.  We've put some toys on trade me too, all proceeds are going towards a family trip to Rainbows End.  It's $150 for a family so it may take a while!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

advent calendars for everyone

There are so many cool advent calendars that you can make yourselves.This was our advent calendar for the past three years.  This year we're doing something different (top secret).  Anyway I found a whole heap of cute ones online.  I won't post pictures (I only use my own pix on the blog) but there are links to all sorts of awesomeness at the bottom of this post.  This post was from um 2008?  Each little drawer holds a note of a Christmas activity to do, event to go to or sometimes a sticker or jelly lolly. 

advent calendar

pull out the drawer
read the note -
this one says "decorate the house with lights"

pop the drawer in backwards to make a picture

Friday, November 19, 2010

making granola and a wee rant

When all the mixing is done by hand there's a fair amount of licking required at the end!

And just a wee whinge about advertising and McDonalds... at kindy today I noticed a huge poster had just been put up advertising a free magic show.  Mostly what I noticed though (and I'm sure all the children would have as they wouldn't be able to read) was Ronald McD and his buddies in all their bright coloured glory.  I understand that marketing to kids is probably their main advertising objective - creating life long customers (with the happy meals, toys, playgrounds, free burger vouchers and certificates they hand out at kids soccer games etc).

We work pretty hard at keeping our kids away from as much advertising as possible (we record tv and skip the ads or watch dvds) and so I was not impressed with McD's ability to infiltrate the kindy!  Needless to say the poster is no longer up and I even phoned the store in question to complain (so not like me!).  

Grrrrrr McDonalds, bugger off and leave our kiddies alone! (please)
What do you think?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

sleepy loves


A wee slide show of the boys sleeping, I realised that I had so many photos of them asleep!  The music is from my most favourite kids album called "It's a Big World" by Renee and Jeremy.  It's full of beautiful sweet lullabies and we know most of the songs off by heart.  I don't know their second album but I imagine it's just as lovely and if anyone is stuck for a Christmas present (hint hint).  They said I could use the music which is very kind of them.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

don't you love it when...

 ...your plastics drawer is really tidy?  Mine doesn't look like this for long sadly.

I love my egg moulds,

and cute sauce containers,

oh yes, and these animal toothpicks.
I love Japanese kitchen stuff.

If you're in Auckland these are my fave Japanese stores
http://www.3japan.co.nz/ in Queen Street (online store too wahoo!)

Do you know of any others that you'd recommend?

Monday, November 15, 2010

growing up too quickly!!

So I can't believe it's that time already.  We're off to meet the (lovely) principal today and fill out all of those school enrolment forms!  Speaking of which I need to go and find his birth certificate hmmmm......

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Monday, November 8, 2010

finger knitting is awesome

We found some cool rainbow wool at the warehouse (though I was looking for something less pastel... any suggestions?) and looked online for a finger knitting how to.  It's so quick and easy, very satisfying for a small person to do.  This piece has found it's home in the box with the play cloths and has found a variety of creative uses already.