Testing the 100 Cookie Recipe

I’ll admit I was skeptical but little Lottie and I gave it a shot and now we are drowning in cookies! We got over 100 cookies and there is still a good chunk of dough left in the freezer.


We went with Lottie’s favourite chic chip for this first batch but with Christmas coming up the next lot will be red and green M&Ms

Here is the recipe I used for this batch – 100+ Cookies from on Mix by The Organised Housewife

We’ll definitely be doing this again!

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Our Play Kitchen hack

Our very own play kitchen make over is complete!


We picked up this pink, grimy Barbie kitchen from Gumtree a few weeks ago and got to work on fixing it up for our little princess.


So so happy with the results! The marble wallpaper from Kmart Australia is a popular hack I picked up from others on Facebook and Instagram and it adds the perfect touch. The black and gold was Hubby’s idea and it looks great.


Our little Lottie is obsessed with her new kitchen and we look forward to many more tea parties and creative play this weekend!

Liz x

My Essentials; VeraTemp No Contact Themometer

Lottie was the most unsettled baby I have ever come across. Her first flu at 7 months was a month long ordeal and taking her temperature was an epic task. She wriggled, kicked, bit and screamed as I tried to hold a digital thermometer under her arm for 30 secs and never got a decent reading. The tympanic ones that take temperature from the ear were no better and on the rare occasion she had dozed off and was lying still enough to try this method, she would wake up immediately when it touched her ear and we’d have to start again.

But then I found the VeraTemp no contact thermometer (home use version) at the Baby & Toddler Show 2 years ago and the chaos and exhaustion that comes with a sick little one was made that much easier.

Point & Click. That’s it.

The VeraTemp Home thermometer not only measures body temp but also surface and room temperature. I’ve measured bath water and bottles as well as feverish kiddos. Oli measured everything from the Xbox battery to his cup of tea when we first brought it home.

  

The VeraTemp is listed on the Australian EvoMed online store and at YourDiscountChemist however you can usually find it on eBay too. Stockists tend to vary.

This is not a sponsored post. A contactless thermometer is just one of the most useful tools I’ve come across since becoming a parent and I wanted to share it with others.

Preschool Reading Lessons with an Alphabet Puzzle

A combination of ABC Reading eggs, bedtime stories and Lottie’s wonderful preschool have been bringing her literacy skills along great.

But things went turbo charged on the letter recognition and pre-reading skills when I picked up this thing for $8 at Kmart a few weeks ago.

It’s just a simple wooden puzzle board with the letters of the alphabet but the effect on Lottie’s literacy has been instant and massive.

She’ll sit at the table and pick up each letter listing the words she knows that start with that letter – the friends names she learned at preschool and basic words from our books at home, arrange them to match small words like “Pig the Pug” and hand out the letters to visitors who’s names start with them. Auntie Kate gets a K, Daddy gets a D or an O for Oli.

We’ve come up with a few little literacy games, perfect for the evening while dinner is cooking or weekend afternoons.

Lesson #1 – Match the Letters

This is my favourite. All you need is one of your child’s favourite books. Boards books with few words and large print work best. We’ve been using a Peppa Pig one.

Just choose a page, ask your child what is happening in the story and then to pick a word on the page. They then choose the letters from their puzzle and lay them beside the word, sounding out the letters as they go.

Lesson #2 – Amazing Letter Race

This works best with two children but another adult can play along too. Pop all the letters from the puzzle in a bag, give each player a basket and then pull a letter from from the bag. Put 1 minute on the timer and race to find as many objects that start with that letter as possible. A calmer option would be to walk together around the house with the chosen letter pointing out all the things that start with that letter.

Lesson #3 -Alphabet Bingo

Always a solid choice, another game for 2 children or you and your child. Keeping the puzzle pieces in the bag, have a piece of paper with the alphabet written on it or the child’s name and some markers to place on the letters as they are drawn.

Liz x

 

Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea

Slightly sick of years of paying $45pp for High Tea each May (and alarmed at a guest list of 10+) I decided to host my own this Mother’s Day.

It was our first event in our new place and was a complete success! Any one just starting life with marriage, kids and setting up homes will understand that things have always been a little too small, not enough chairs, ran out of plates, only Peppa Pug cups left – but not this time. This time was our chance to host a really great afternoon for our families.

(Lottie “helped” with the jelly)

Hubby’s mother made tons of finger sandwiches and his little sister made a beautiful chocolate cake. Tea and conversation flowed and Grandmother-in-Law declared my scones ‘incredible’! I loved seeing so many people we love (12 of us all up) so happy and relaxed. It was a perfect day.

The most perfect part of my Mother’s Day was sharing it with my little Lottie. Her cuddles, her stories and the cupcake she iced and decorated for me were the greatest gifts I could ask for.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mums/aunts/grandmothers/guardians who’s posts I read with interest, love and empathy.

Liz x

If lost…

Like any other parent, I often find myself in crowds with my excitable and stubborn 3yr old who is a “big girl” and can “walk by herself”. Writing my phone number in Sharpie on her arm then spending the next three days after we’re home safe and sound scrubbing it off wasn’t ideal but it worked.

Of course I saw this brilliant idea of of phone number bracelet on Pinterest. I can’t find the original post but there’s dozens of variations out there.

I think it turned out great and Lottie likes it too (enough to keep it on her wrist).

ABC Reading Eggs – Learn to Read program 3-7yrs

We just did our first ABC Reading Eggs lesson and Little Lottie is happily writing ‘m’ all over her notebook at the kitchen counter.

abc-reading-eggs

She’s turning 3 in a few weeks but loves singing the alphabet, pointing out letters and loved Jolly Phonics at daycare so I thought I’d give her a go at the preschool Reading Eggs lessons. The whole online lesson in a single letter was only 20mins and was set up in a series of interactive activities that made it seem like a game. A game with singing ants and lots of bright colours. By the end she was confidently pointing out the letter Mm, identifying pictures with M words as their names and making mmmmm sounds.

reading-eggs-screenshots

ABC Reading Eggs is a full learn to read program for ages 3 – 13 and it links to a math program called Mathseeds, and an online store of early reader material. I’m using the 14 day free trail available to parents and teachers worldwide and was honestly surprised at how popular the program is outside Australia. 12 month subscriptions are around $80 and the book packs are $80 for one level or $119 for both levels. I see them in ABC stores and book shops. We left it at one lesson today (they’re designed to do a few letters a day) but it was a success and I’m looking forward to trying out the next one tomorrow. We will definitely be purchasing a book pack very soon.

Liz x

Lottie’s Room

Turning a house into a home is more than just filling it with furniture. Lottie’s room being cosy, functional and easy to tidy is a priority of mine. She loves every doll and toy and book and spends hours playing and putting them in particular cubbies and drawers that mummy isn’t allowed to mess up!


A basic white cot from Target Australia turned out to be a great investment as it became a sweet little toddler bed. A family heirloom dolls house filled with Sylvanian Families is probably my favourite thing in her room. Nana was ahead of the curve with the Indigo Jamm workbench she got last Christmas and cubbies full of Fisher Price, Mellisa and Doug, and Little Golden Books make up the little girl’s room I envisioned when I was pregnant (almost 3 years ago!).

Ever walked into a baby store only to be visually assaulted by Leander, Stokke, Boori and 4 digit price tags? Yeah, me too. They all have wonderful products and the Stokke pop up baby bath is seriously underrated as far as baby crap goes. But quality comes in all budgets and I would’ve expected Hell to freeze over before Kmart became THE decor destination of 2015.


They chain I grew to hate growing up poor and dressed head to toe in their cheapest attire must have hired a designer who knew what they were doing. I can’t leave Kmart without an armful cushion, throw rugs, baking supplies and home wares these days!

Seriously, how cute are these cushions!?! At $7 a pop, it’s a splash of colour that won’t break the budget and they’re popping up on every Australian mummy blog and Instagram.

The happy sun cushion has made my day and will hopefully tempt Lottie into a nap.

Liz xx