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Dinosaur Tail

Quick little project to make a dinosaur tail for a toddler / child.

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You will need:

material

scraps of material or felt for the spikes

more material for the belt

stuffing

fastener

thread, scissors and sewing machine

 

Draw the shape of the dinosaur tail on the material. You will need two sides. Then cut out and pin, right sides together.

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Cut out the spikes on the felt (or scrap material). Sew them together.

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Then pin the spikes in place (place them inside, remember right sides are together at this stage). Then sew tail together.

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Leave one end open, and pull the tail right side out, so the spikes are on the outside

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Then fill with stuffing!

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At this stage you can either sew shut by joining together the opening at the middle, but I decided to have a round end, so I cut a circle out the same material then carefully pinned the circle in place. At this point you will also need to add your belt material, and pin and sew that in place.

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Finally, decide what fasteners you are going to use and attach these to the belt.

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Sensory Play (getting messy with toddlers)

Looking after a friend’s baby (toddler) today, as well as my own, means I need activities to get through the day, and keep them occupied.

I found this activity on the Imagination Tree website, so thought I’d give it a go.

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It kept them occupied for approximately 2 minutes…they ended up playing more in the water than the ‘mud’.

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I made my ‘mud’ with:

Baked flour (so it’s safe in case they ate any)

Very small amount of cocoa powder

Water

I mixed the above items together until I got the consistency I was after, then placed the ‘mud’ in a shallow container along with some farm animals, trucks etc.

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Then I had a water station, to wash off all the mud.

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The kidlets found the water to be much more fun than the ‘mud’. But they did spend some time squishing the mud between their fingers…so that’s something.

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At the end of the day, it was fun, but probably not worth the effort for the amount of time that they played with it. I’ll try it again when they’re a bit older.

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Upcycling: Maxi dress to jumpsuit (harem style)

Another dress to romper conversion. This time it started as a maxi dress, and ends up a stylish jumpsuit, with comfy harem pants.

Before pic: Maxi dress

First step: take any length off the bottom of the dress.

Then turn dress inside out and mark out a semi-circle (I used a pair of harem pants as a guide).

Pin together and sew.

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This material is very stretchy, so there is no need for a zip. Turn the jumpsuit right way out and try on. Adjust the length as necessary, and hem the bottom of the leg.

Finished jumpsuit
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Learning new skills – flower arranging. Part 2

Part 2 of learning new skills: Another beautiful spring day means another day full of flowers in the garden, so why not make the most of it and fill the house with fresh flowers.

This time I tried to make a smaller arrangement. The vase isn’t quite right, but it’s all I’ve got to work with….

Step 1: Gather your flowers and foliage, and prepare them by taking off all the leaves that will be below the water line.

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Step 2: Fill vase with water, and use sticky tape to make a grid across the top of the vase. Start placing foliage / greenery around the back and sides. (Leave a few bits of greenery in case you need them to fill gaps at the end)

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Step 3: Add flowers (big ones, then fillers).

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Final step: Use left over foliage or ‘filler’ flowers to fill any gaps.

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And there you go… a cute little posey to add some brightness inside, and it did not cost a cent

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Learning new skills – flower arranging. Part 1

Inspired by a recent holiday through the Australian countryside, I’d like to learn how to make a pretty floral arrangement (without using expensive flowers that will cost the earth). Instead, I’d like to use the beautiful native Australian flowers which I have in my garden and nearby.

After reading a few blogs and instructions on the internet, I thought I’d give it go….there’s only one way to learn right??

First attempt:

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Not enough flowers or foliage…it’s looks a little sparse.

 

Second attempt:

Added more foliage and flowers

 

Third attempt:

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Added some small blue flowers for a bit more colour.

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Looking better this time.

It made such a big difference to add more foliage and flowers. I ended up using loads more foliage, greenery and flowers than I thought I would need……lesson learned.

And I also used a grid of sticky tape on top of the vase to keep stems in place.

I love the different textural elements at play

 

Well that was fun, but I think I’ll have to keep practising.

 

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Baby gift idea: Fake Sushi

Here’s a cute idea for a present to celebrate the birth of a brand new human……sushi!!…made up of an assortment of baby clothes, singlets, socks, bibs, nappies, toys, books, rattles etc etc….anything works really… (although it works better if the items are mostly white)

All you have to do is roll up the items, and wrap black tissue paper around them, and arrange them to look like sushi. Then use a larger, coloured item, and place on the side, with a strip of black tissue around. For a finishing touch, place chop sticks on top. And wrap with clear cellophane.

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My go-to family meals!!

Numero uno: Pasta with bolognese sauce. Why? Because you can add as many (or as little) vegetables as you like. Even the baby / toddler likes it. You can change the flavour slightly by adding different sauces, spices or vegetables.

(other pasta flavours: roast pumpkin with pesto. Broccoli and bacon or mushroom and bacon, with a cream sauce. Salmon with greens, and a simple lemon dressing, lasagne).

 

2. Cheats Pie- I call it cheats pie because the meat is cooked to perfection first, then added to the pastry case, just to cook the pastry. Aaaanndd to make it even easier you can use frozen (ready made) pastry, or if you have the time and inclination you can make your own pastry. I love Maggie Beer’s sour cream pastry. This time I made a chicken and mushroom pie, but it works equally well with Beef instead of chicken. The toddler also loves this one.

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3. Good ol’ roast! Whichever meat takes your fancy at the time, whether it be chicken, lamb or pork. Great for left overs, or cooking up a big meal to use for a couple of nights.

Burgers!! Normally this would be beef burgers, but tonight I’m gonna make chicken burgers. Add some avocado, lettuce, tomato, and maybe even some grated carrot for extra veggies. Choose your sauce: BBQ, tomato, mayo, chutney….or my personal fave dijonaise…

 

4. Risotto. So many flavours to choose from: Chicken and asparagus (add mushroom and broccoli for more greens), Roast Pumpkin, Chorizo and capsicum (tomato based).

 

5. Soups: Healthy green soup (broccoli, spinach and zucchini). Hearty minestrone. Carrot and ginger.

 

6. Mexican: Tacos, nachos, enchiladas, burritos.

 

7. Moussaka, ratatouille, vegetable bake.

8. Chicken schnitzel / crumb chicken pieces.