Tuesday, 28 April 2015

Bread Machine Donuts

Yep I am still obsessed with my bread machine.  I think this little obsession of mine may last sometime considering it has been a love of mine for at least 12 months.  Oh and have I mentioned it is actually easier to put ingredients in a bread machine and press the magic button than take three kids to the super market just for bread. Over the holidays I blurted out to the kids one day "I wonder if we could make donuts in the bread machine".  The cheer went up from the tribe so on to good old google I went and guess what donut bread machine dough is pretty easy.  Although don't expect perfectly round pretty donuts but they are yummy cinnamon coated donuts!

We used this recipe so pop on over and try them.  The only Tracey change we made was that we didn't use any cutters to make the holes we just flattened them out and stuck our finger through the middle.


The hungry tribe gobbled these down.  Stay tuned for our attempt at Jam Donuts in the bread maker.  Maybe a weekend treat!

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Getting a Mummy Job Done

At the start of the school holidays I explained to my kids that somedays we would be doing fun stuff they like and sometimes we would have to do some mummy jobs. So today I pulled off a mummy job. Painting part of the outside of our house extension. The kids and I rode part of the way to work with our number 1 dad. We had a great play and rode home. We chatted about what mummy would be doing, painting the outside of part of our extension and we talked about what they could do.

The criteria for what they could was:
  • It had to be something they could do without mums help, Lego, sandpit, drawing etc
  • There couldn't be lots of questions or interruptions
  • They had to help each other
  • I put cups out for them and had a plate of food ready to go

Then I sent them off, once they all seemed settled I went work. And to my surprise and delight it worked well. They wandered around every now and again to see what I was doing. I had a bucket of water and paint brush in case miss 2 wanted to copy me and paint the fence or concrete but in the whole I hardly intervened in there play.  And I have to say there were a couple of times when I was super proud of them like when they got out the dress ups and miss 2 bought the dinosaur costume out for me to put on and mr 7 followed her out and took her hand and said, " I will help you put that on".

Here's to more Mummy jobs in the future!  Warning be prepared for the mess and in all fairness my criteria didn't include keep the house tidy or tidy up once your finished.  I think this is evidence that we definitely passed the mummy job day.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Take a Moment

Today I took a moment. We rode part of the way to work with our number 1 dad and had a play in a park by a lake. Miss 2 was enjoying throwing her soft doll off the play equipment jumping off after it and running a loop to do it all over again.  I looked over and watched the boys climb a Grandpa tree (a tree that was surely the grandpa for other trees there, hanging over the water) and I took a moment.  I took a moment to watch them. I just watched. I watched them confidently climb a tree. I watched how much they enjoyed nature. I watched them make games up in the tree. I watched them climb higher and higher and watched as Mr 7 jumped of a high branch into shallow water and I gave myself and number 1 dad a pat on the back.

As parents we often wonder are we making the right choices, are we doing a good job and today I went yep we are doing OK for our kids.  In that moment I saw happy, confident kids who were enjoying exploring a great old Grandpa tree.

I could see somethings to give us ticks about

  • Our kids love nature play. We think nature play is important in our house.
  • Our kids can play happily together and enjoy playing together
  • Our kids can get along, share and cooperate with each other
  • Our kids are creative and can entertain themselves
  • Our kids are confident
  • Our kids are happy to problem solve and create there own solutions

Our children are still all WIPS (works in progress), the idea of ticking every box really is absurd but today I took a moment to look up from being in the middle of it all and go hey we are doing ok.

Here's to OK! 

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Flubbery Blubber

"This feels so good I wish I could get inside it", said Mr 5.

There's nothing like mixing, making and then getting your hands into it.  So with it being school holidays I once again went to my go to book of the moment, 150 screen free activities and found the perfect activity that my 3 children would love.  Best of all I had all the ingredients in the cupboard. Asia calls it flubber but my kids renamed it blubber so flubbery blubber we have.

Flubbery Blubber
  • 1cup of water
  • 2tbsp Metamucil
  • Food coloring
  1. Stir to combine, it will thicken
  2. Microwave for 2 minutes watching to make sure it doesn't boil over
  3. Stir
  4. Microwave at 30 sec intervals stirring after each one
  5. Pour onto a plate and refrigerate to cool it down

Then bring it out to stretch, push and pull. Mr 5 loved using his toy car in it and wanted to climb inside. Mr 7 experimented with stretching it and pulling it apart and miss 2 rolled it around on the plate. To my surprise it was Mr 7 and Mr 5 that spent the most amount of time playing with our flubbery blubber.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

My Bread Machine Obsession!

I confess I am totally obsessed with my bread machine. 
I love that I can put ingredients in turn it on and leave it.
I love the smell in my house.
I love the taste...........it nearly always comes out yum.
I love that it is cost effective for a family of five.
I love that it is something everyone in my family eats.
And I must admit I do like the ideal of providing fresh food for my family.

Over the last year I have started to cook more than just a loaf of bread in my bread machine and it has just indulged and feed my obsession.  One of our favourites are these Italian Bread Rolls

Italian Bread Rolls

  1. 1 cup of warm water
  2. 2 1/4 tsp yeast
  3. 2 tbsp sugar (I often use honey)
  4. 3 tbsp melted butter
  5. 1 tsp minced garlic (I use the stuff from the jar)
  6. Fresh herbs finally chopped (whatever is in my herb garden)
  7. 3 cups of bakers flour
  8. 1 1/2 tsp of salt

  • Combine water, yeast and sugar in the bread machine and leave for ten minuted to activate the yeast.  
  • When it is fluffy on top add the butter, garlic and herbs.
  • Lastly add the flour and salt.  
  • If I think the rolls are going to last more than a day I add 2 tsp of bread improver now.
  • Put your machine on dough cycle and let it work its magic.
  • When the cycle is completed pull the dough out give it a quick knead, shape portions into rolls or sticks, pop them on a greased tray and cover them with a tea towel to have a second rise.
  • Sprinkle on some Parmesan and pop them in the oven for approximately 20 minutes. 

And yum fresh baked rolls for everyone to eat!

A great roll making tip that I once read you know rolls are ready when you tap the bottom and they sound hollow.  I am not sure where I read that one but it always seems to work.

Sunday, 12 April 2015

Bang the Drum

I am a big believer in keeping things simple.  In fact lately I have really embrassed the idea of keeping life small and simple for our family so when I am making decisions about our day or week I often ask myself does this keep our life small and simple. 

And sometimes kids activities can be small and simple.

Miss two was in a banging mood, she was using her toys to make a wonderful banging noise on the kitchen bench shouting bang, bang, bang.  So before I headed out to hang out clothes I grabbed some bowls and a stick and invited to bang her heart away.

Small and simple just the way we like it!

Wednesday, 8 April 2015

Comment of the Week

 "Your surprisingly good at that mum" said Mr 7 as I folded a paper airplane.
 "Especially since I only taught you recently"

You see Mr 5 asked me to make him a paper airplane so I gave him a piece of paper and said you make one with me and he folded his piece as I folded mine.  Our expert airplane maker Mr 7 was watching and came out with the comment above.

Always nice to know I can surprise them!

Thursday, 2 April 2015

Jelly Animals

With Mr 7 and 5 at school and busy afternoons I have been trying to make sure that rather than just being busy that Miss 2 and I do some fun stuff during the day that is all about being two.

So while looking in the pantry to see if I had the ingredients to make new playdough I discovered some Gelatin.  So I went to may favorite activity book of the moment and soon we were making what we called Jelly Animals.  Asia calls it Reusable Gelatin in her book 150+ Screen Free Activities for Kids.

Make your Gelatin as instructed on the pack ours was 1 tablespoon in half a cup of  hot water to set 400ml of liquid. 

We added it to water

Added blue food colouring

Had fun placing animals in a muffin tray

And then poured away

Miss two had great fun checking the fridge to see if they were set over and over.

Then when it came to reading time for the boys she had great fun playing with her jelly animals.  A win for us all as reading is much easier if miss 2 is not trying to join in or needs attention.

And once animals were extracted and played with in the wobbly jelly.  The goo was just as much fun.

We saved some for the boys to play with after reading and stay tuned to see the activity they have dreamed up after doing this one.