Thursday, 30 April 2015

Teddy with a Story

bib for doll

This curious little teddy bear you see in the picture above is as precious to us as a teddy can ever be. Her name is 'Teddy' and no, it is not a typo, it is a 'she', not a 'he'. 

She was a gift for my son from a friend of mine when he was first born but he has never been a big fan of soft toys, of course except for his 'storm friend'. Also, these days, he enjoys watching TV with Snoopy the dog (about the size of our 4yo daughter) at times but no other soft toys have been much of an interest to him. Therefore, teddy was left lonely up until Miss Junior was born and was close to the age of one, I believe.

teddy bear bib

Out of all those dolls and other soft toys that we had at home at the time, she chose her, Teddy, to be the most precious and even share her bed with. When she was approximately 2 years old, when we said that it was a boy, she was totally upset with our misinterpretation and incorrect assumption. Luckily, she had the intelligence and patience to explain to us (and others who called her a boy or 'he' a few times over the years) that it was a girl, just wearing her brother's pyjamas! To that explanation, there was no other word we could argue or add. That was it. It -now- is a female teddy wearing her hand-me-down jimjams of her elder brother. 

star themed bib

Now, Teddy has a family of her own. Her mother is the 'Brown Teddy' and father is 'Snoopy'. She also likes to call her 'her baby' which qualifies her as a second mother. Don't be fooled with the word 'second', she is no less than the first in any way. 

Normally, she is too precious to leave home in case she gets damaged or lost. Only when we go on extended trips or holidays she comes with us, The last time we went overseas for a break, we kept checking our passports and Teddy each time, to make sure there was no trouble awaiting us. 

Teddy has claimed the doll stroller and the doll highchair at home, of course. Even though my daughter has recently started to pay a bit more attention to dolls, no doll can compete with Teddy at this stage in her life. She even asked me to put away some of her 'now-small- clothes' for Teddy. She uses her unused nappies that were left over from when she used them for her, she sleeps with her in bed, and each time we have a meal, she places Teddy in the highchair and puts the highchair next to hers at the table. She doesn't feed her or anything but she really enjoys the 'pretend' games and this is a great opportunity for her. 

teddy in a highchair

Recently, she has told me that she is tired of washing Teddy's clothes and there are so many food stains on her clothes and she really needs some bibs. She also told me that 'she likes the sky, and the moon, and red'. Then she went to my fabric stash and picked out this fabric in the picture saying that 'she likes stars too and Teddy said OK to pink'. She is quite a decisive person. She just looked at the stash and easily and very decisively told me which fabric was to be used for the bib I was to make for her. Don't I wish sometimes my customers over at MADE BY Y  were as decisive?

The same day, she went to bed for a nap and I started making the bib for Teddy. I also added a little teddy bear applique to the bib to surprise her as well. She seemed to be quite happy and Teddy seemed to be quite curious about her little friend. Now, Miss Junior puts Teddy's bib on her during meal times and then takes it off when she remembers or when she takes her off the highchair. Appearantly, Teddy is getting cold and now needs a pair of shoes too but I am yet to decide how to come up with a pattern for her tiny feet. I may have to crochet a pair instead of sewing but that still is up in the air. Until then, a pair of Miss Junior's socks on her should do.


Does your child have a precious toy too? Have you ever needed to make anything for it?

Friday, 24 April 2015

Lunch Ideas for School Kids (2)

I have been longing to make this post for such a long time now but it looks like today had to be the day. I seriously am one busy woman! (Who isn't, ha?)

I had shared four lunch ideas/recipes with you here previously. I prepare lunch for my son on a daily basis, and Miss Junior now has lunch at school a few days a week as well, so, do expect many more to come in time but for now, enjoy the ones below:

1. Lunch and Snack:
  • (Homemade organic) bread and spreadable cheese with chia
  • Avocado slices
  • (Homegrown) cherry tomatoes
  • (Organic) cranberries
  • Pineapple slices
2. Vegetable and cheese kebabs:
  • Red capsicum, 
  • cucumber, 
  • mozzarella cheese

3. Lunch: 
  • Carrots
  • Raw fresh garden peas
  • Slice bread
  • Cheese slice
Snack: Fruit Salad
  • Blueberries
  • Kiwi
  • Strawberries
  • Nectarin

4a. Lunch and Snack for Mr. Junior
  • Homemade roast beef - cold cut.
  • Baby spinach and fetta cheese salad
  • Flat bread chips
  • Cucumber, yoghurt and mint dip (tzatziki)
  • Fruit salad with melon, kiwi and strawberries

4b. Lunch and Snack for Miss Junior
  • See 4a for content.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

All for a Special Person

MADE BY Y finger puppets for a birthday celebration

Recently, we have celebrated a special day of a very special person in our family, our little daughter's 4th birthday. This year, her birthday fell on a day during the term break, only a few days before Term 2 started. She attends a Montessori school and they have a particular way of celebrating birthdays, which embeds a lot of learning about the solar system into the celebration. They use a globe that represents the planet we live on, and a round yellow candle to represent the Sun. The candle is lit and is placed in the middle of a circle (they have a particular mat that marks a circle - or rather an oval, really - and the children sit around it, just behind the line); the birthday child holds the globe and walks around the circle as many times as the number of their new age. For instance, if the child turns 3 on the day, the child turns around the circle three times, which represents the fact that since the child was born, the Earth has circled the Sun 3 times, once a year. The child's family also provides a photo for each year of the child and the children in class get to see the photos in the order starting from birth to understand the evolution of the child in time.

birthday breakfast

We don't normally have birthday parties or do traditional birthday celebrations at home, but we make every effort to make sure that the birthday person feels 'extra special' on the day (or perhaps the week!) just to make sure that they understand, once again, how special they are to the rest of the family. We all try very hard to spend the day (or the closest convenient day) together, spoil the person with a special breakfast (it is pretty much the same for our children as the request comes from them and it has not changed much so far: some homemade pancakes with lots of berries and fruit and some honey, maple syrup or berry sauce), do things that the birthday person enjoys doing the most or that has put in a request for. We also aim to do some donations on behalf of the birthday person.

cantaloupe, pineapple, strawberries and blueberries,

This year, I asked my daughter just before the term break whether she wanted to have a Montessori celebration at school as well or not and she said yes. Therefore, the teacher marked the first day of school in Term 2 for her birthday celebration (half an hour of the day). The school's procedure is that every child that celebrates birthday at school is to bring in photos of themselves (one per year since birth) and a fruit platter.

fruit platter for school celebration

 At the end of the day, every child gets a little gift from the birthday child, which is totally optional. Our little princess wanted some finger puppets for her friends and we worked on it throughout the holidays. Even my son made his own finger puppets for a few of his friends, all on his own!

Handmade puppets by MADE BY Y

My daughter actually asked for 3 puppets for each of her friends but luckily, I was able to negotiate with her and we settled for two. We also packaged them together at the end. I now have one happy class-full of 3-5year olds. We still keep getting compliments from the school and the families about the puppets. Just today a mum was telling me how her 3year old son's puppets are also a favourite at home for her 14month old daughter too. They even play together! I surely had quite a few late-nights to make all those puppets but it was well worth it!