Halloween/Autumnal Crafts & Activities: Pumpkin Decorating

For Penelope 1st Halloween last year we carved a giant 'P' into her 1st pumpkin, again wanting it to be a special precious memory I wanted to put a personal spin on things. I let Penny decorate her very own pumpkin to her own taste with her bare hands.

This craft is mainly self explanatory in itself by just looking at the pictures but what I will say is this. I cant now carve the pumpkin as I cant bare to loose any of the art work my little artist has done on it. It would be ruining all her hard work. Instead I've kept it on my window sill for all to see. 

We used normal paint and a variation of Autumn coloured paints placing them on a tiny plastic plate ready for them to me mixed up and messy. All I did was occasionally spin the pumpkin around so that Penny would paint the entire circumference of the pumpkin I had no further involvement. 

I feel like Penny feels proud as punch over her work with this craft because every time we walk past it or I pick her up and she spots it. She was to feel it, and look at it. I think she felt like she really had control of what she was creating. Hands were flying everywhere and she thoroughly enjoyed herself.

A super easy seedless mess avoiding craft! 


Do you always carve your pumpkins, why not try something a little different this Halloween?
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Halloween/Autumnal Crafts & Activities: Autumn Leaf Printing

 This is an craft I remember doing time and time again myself as a small child. Although I may have done it so many times, it was still just as enjoyable everytime. Each picture was unique as were the leaves. So perhaps you have not tried this craft yet with your child, maybe you think they are too young? Why not read on and see how I did it with a one year old...
 We'd gone out for a trip to the park, up until this recent visit there was only a light spread of leaves nothing too exciting really. When we went on this occasion it was asif the leaves were the new flooring. A thick multi coloured cushion covering the ground. I instantly had a flash back of collecting leaves for my leaf printing pictures and I knew we just had to do it.

I got Penelope involved encouraging her to pick up the leaves and passing them to me. I asked her if she liked different ones and I kept the ones she said yes too. I'd made sure we had different variations of colours and shapes to make sure she would be engrossed into the craft.

We got home and I prepared the set up and waited for a napping Penelope to wake up, she had a ridiculously long nap by some miracle.

I took her clothes off and left her in a nappy to avoid messy clothes,well and to make things easier for myself if I had to run an emergency bath. Painting with a one year old can be very messy thankfully for me this time she only had a few splats on her hands and chest.

I used a normal small plate with a few blobs of paint sent to us by Baker Ross, I made sure the colours were Autumnal and fun too.

I helped her with a few to show her the general concept in hopes she would learn from mummy; she did and would help me squash down the leaves giving them a little pat each and would peel them off. Penny gave each leaf print her own little touch rubbing the paint in a little which killed me a little as it ruined a fair few of the leaves, but it would be her picture if she didnt make it her own.

Overall, it was a fun day out walking around the park and we had a lovely afternoon painting with our wonderful leaves that we collected. The clean up was no messier than a dinner mess so for me it was no real hassle at all.

I absolutely adore this picture and want to keep it up for all to see in the kitchen. Do you display all your favourite pictures from your children? I don't suppose you can when every scribble and splat is equally as special theres not enough space on the walls, oh being a parent is heart throbbing.
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Halloween/Autumnal Crafts & Activities: Spooky Spider Playdough

Happy half term everybody, I'm sure your little ones are keeping you on your toes ...Do you want to keep them happily occupied for a while but don't want to much prep, mess or faffing around? Don't worry because up until Halloween I will be sharing a really fun compilation of crafts and activities that we have been doing this Autumn/ Halloween. All of which I hope you like and perhaps want to try out with your little ones. Keep your eyes peeled throughout this week to see more spooky and Autumnal crafts and activities inspiration from me. First up is...

Spooky Spider Playdough
I had never tried Penelope with playdough simply through my own naive assumptions, I always thought it was a much thicker and stiffer material than it actually is perhaps I had more of a clay substance in mind, nonetheless its something I had wrote off. I handmade this playdough from a fellow blogger friend Steph from RaisingEmily whom happened to recently post up the recipe on her new Youtube channel RaisingEmily. I was so keen to give it a go as it looked so simple and quick to do. I decided to go for a Halloween themed colour, purple to give it a spooky appearance. 

This was a really simple activity one you could prepare in just minutes. I bought these glow in the dark spiders from Asda for just a pound, but it actually came with around 10 in a pack, absolute bargain. 

The aim for this activity was to make spider imprints into the playdough, simple but it was really gripping for my little one. She was so thrilled by the spiders and love pushing and pulling the spiders in and out of the playdough. Once we filled up our playdough we squished it all together and would repeat the game again counting each spider as we made them.

As I started to integrate counting into this craft I decided to separate the play dough in balls and placed a spider ontop of each ball and we began counting each spider in this manner. Penny would placed her little finger upon each spider ball really concentrating.

There is many ways in which you could use this idea but this is just a few in which Penny responded to the best.

Like Steph says in her video you can wrap up the playdough in cling film to reuse for another day, so you can use it again on another day this holiday that's what we've done and we've had a few fun afternoons repeating such fun.

 These spiders will come in handy for a few years to come yet, and I will definately be using them again throughout the next few days, I hope you all like spiders?!
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Now That You Have A Garden

We've been making great use of our garden since moving into our new house. Autumn is in full swing and the temperatures are swiftly dropping so we haven't got long left before the garden becomes a crispy frost and seemingly off limits for a while. After living in a flat we've been getting out in the garden as and when possible. Our garden is beautiful and was well kept by the previous owners, now I guess its up to me to keep it that way, no pressure at all. I'll learn to master my green fingers in no time I'm sure. Penelope has loved having such a new lease of freedom; having the chance to go into the outdoors running around freely has been great fun for her. We've been out in the wet, sunshine and even in our dressing gowns. She's eaten leaves and thrown hundreds of pebbles...


Retuning To Work: Leaving You Behind...

After having 15 months off on maternity leave mothering my first child, returning to work has crept on in. Its been amazing being able to spend my days with my daughter and knowing that no matter what she would have me right by her side. Every mealtime, nap time, and any time she felt sad or needed me id be just a whinge away. I wish it could of gone on like that until she started nursery but it just was not practical for our family. We've been lucky to have gone this long already. I know many parents that have chosen by preference or are forced back into work sooner by life circumstances. 

We needed some extra cash coming into the household to allow us to have a little more freedom. The time came in which we decided it was time to bite the bullet in me getting myself a small job during the week. I wont be working everyday more like 2 days a week; 3 days at most. I know its not full time work but its still a huge change for me as a parent who's cared for Penelope day to day for well over a year. I want to write Penelope a letter sharing my feelings about leaving her behind when I go to work. To show her how my heart strings tug and my eyes fill up when I walk down the road...


Penelopes 15 Month Update!

Oh my! This is the first month in a while that I've felt has dragged on, not in a negative way but I suppose we've been so busy this month that I kept thinking is it Penny's 16 month update or 15th. I felt like time has flown by when in actual fact it's still been the same old pace. It is infact her 15 month update. The more I sit and think about whats changed about Penelope over the last 4 weeks the more things that pop into my mind.

She has been so busy it would seem absorbing so much into her very clever mind that I'm sure her little head may pop. Its dawned on me how much my little girl now understands and how responsive she is. Everyone that has met Penny for the first time recently has been shocked at how 'responsive' she is. They cant believe how well she walks, talks, and understands. I suppose I don't really notice so much as I'm with her all day everyday I'm used to her but when other people start telling you, it made me all emotional and I became overwhelmed at how proud I am of the progress she's making.


Hooray! We've Moved

After our previous house falling through last minute we made the off the hand decision to put the move on hold. It broke our hearts to loose that house and we could not bare going through the hassle again, we felt we'd been through too much over the past few years and just needed a breather from any worries. Only a week or so later we were out looking at more properties (we didn't last long) and fell in love with another house. A house we eagerly awaited 6 long weeks to move into and can now call our family home.


Review: Brauns ThermoScan 7 Ear Thermometer

I'm really excited to review a product sent to me from Braun, its amazing to be reviewing such a well known brand.

Even before I had a baby and was infact in the early stages of pregnancy I bought my first thermometer. Thinking about it now it seems like the most unusual purchase when just a few weeks pregnant so that being said I'm going to put it down to pregnancy hormones. I didn't even consider the features nor brand of the product I bought. It was just a simple under the arm reading thermometer device. It was incredibly difficult to keep the baby still until the bleep indicating the results of the temperature went off. It felt like a lifetime trying to keep still a poorly baby, it was not ideal at all.

I had not considered another one as its something I've never took the time to think about but since being contacted to review the ThermoScan 7 Ear Thermometer a few weeks ago now its like a whole new experience, an easy, direct, and reliable experience.