Product Review: Crayola Colour Alive!

Product Review: This review is brought to you by Nuffnang and Crayola.

IMG_3134A cool packaged arrived. Not one, but FOUR awesome colouring books from Crayola for our enjoyment and review.

Crayola Color Alive – Disney Frozen
Crayola Color Alive – Marvel Avengers
Crayola Color Alive – Mythical Creatures
Crayola Color Alive – Enchanted Forest

 Asher, being 3 soon, absolutely loves to doodle, draw and colour. Crayola has been one of our first choices of first crayons to purchase. One of our favourite products would be their paint and huge pavement chalk. IMG_3139

Crayola Colour Alive uses current technology to bring our children’s colouring literally to life. I remember hubby (Being in the IT industry), telling me how cool toys would be as they turn 4D. Imagine his happy smiles when he saw Colour Alive technology come to life. 

IMG_3145

The generosity means that Asher and I spent quite a few hours of quality time together, choosing the pages and colouring over them. Mr Bossy of course decided that I would colour and he would let me know what colours he wants. As a mum, I like anything that is easy to package and bring along in our travels, so I’m pleased to see a little pocket at the back where the crayons can be kept. 

The colouring books are simple enough for a 3 year old to flip through, hold a pencil and colour. He still needs plenty of my help, but those material isn’t unfamiliar to him. When you watch the video, you will see that Ash is particularly fond of Frozen….

IMG_3147

All we needed to do after colouring is to download an App “Colour Alive” onto our iPad or phone. Turn the App on, choose the theme, point the camera over it, and select 4D or magic effect. Then see your colouring come to life! 

IMG_3162-2

I recommend saving your special 4D character. That’s where the fun begins! You get to turn it around, make it kick, and even take photos with it.

The products RRP at $7.99 each and are available at major leading retailers. Each pack includes six Crayola Crayons, one Special Effects Crayon, 16 Action Coloring Pages, and FREE app download (iPhone, Android and Windows Phone). Drawings with the Special Effects Crayon will add amazing animated effects to your coloring page within the Color Alive app.

 For more information on this please visit the website http://www.crayola.com.au/products/color-alive-product/.

Chocolate Teddies (Paleo, Gluten Free) + A day at home

IMG_3144 (640x427)I haven’t done one of these posts in a while now. Documenting what I did with Asher in a day. I wrote about child led play back in June 2015! These days are getting rarer because I always seem to be busy. Busy with what? I wonder at times. 

Monday

6:30am- I woke up. AMAZED that it is a sleep in!! 

6:30-7:30: WOAH! Time to myself. Wash up, ate breakfast in silence. Catch up on emails, reading. Start to prepare broth for dinner.

7:30- Asher is awake! He greeted me with his messy hair and sleepy eyes. “Where is daddy?” 

(Usually daddy greets him while I take the night routine).

7:30-8:30am: Brush his teeth, change his clothes, feed him breakfast (Apple pie he wanted. I made some a few days before and I’m saying yes to that because I made it just a few days ago), vacuum, mopped… Asher joined in with me, spraying my enjo mop, pushing the mop, putting away the cords of the vacuum. 

8:30-9:30: Mummy’s guilt. I had to work. Settled Asher back to his breakfast, attempted to turn on music rather than tv but nope.. didn’t work. Tv it was.

09:40-09:40: Call time with daddy.

10-10:30- work time for me again. Asher started to play by himself. He checked in with me a few times. Started flipping and playing with newspapers near me. 

10:30-11:30: I got off work. Asher and I went outside. We turned on some music. We traced our feet and decorated it. We draw buses and ambulances. I’m impressed. Asher has started to draw! We worked on our letters. Today was letter A and B. We said A was for Asher, Ambulance, Apples and Ants. We went hunting for ants around the garden. Then we did B. B for buses (and that was where it stopped). We saw that a lemon was ripen, and we picked that. We smelt the lemon. Took it in. 

Then Asher wanted to make something.. so we made.. chocolate chip cookies! I followed this recipe again. He enjoyed whisking the egg up and mixing it all together. Best of all, he sneaked in a few of the sugar free chocolate in his mouth. While it bakes in the oven, I heated up our lunch

12- 12:30. Lunch time! He became distracted as the cookies were ready. Straight after lunch which was mushrooms, lamb roast and pumpkin…he ate 3 cookies… 

12:30-2pm: We clean up. Then as I decided to tidy up the study room a little, Asher took his trains and played there with me. I put things away, and he wanted to do some colouring. As I picked up a pen, he changed his mind and wanted stickers instead. Alright then! So we pasted stickers. Looking at different shapes and colours. 

He found his pair of safety scissors and we started practicing cutting. “open and close” He got the hang of it! We used a community news paper and started looking for transport vehicles. With my help, we cut 3 trains, 1 helicopters and 1 garbage truck out. He said we need to put it aside for daddy to see.

2-2:15pm: I started to wind him down. I said we can read but we need to pack up. So around the house we went. This time round, I was so proud of Asher. He “drove” all his vehicles back and “parked them”. I packed away his books. He allowed me to put his trains back to the play room. 

2:15-2:30pm: We read on the couch. Snuggled together under a rug. 

2:30pm: Nap time! Asher turned off the music. He caught a glimpse of chuggington on the tv as he pressed the wrong button. BUT! he allowed me to turn it off. He even commented that he turned it off. 

3pm: Ok, finally he napped.

4ish: Awake. Cuddles. Drink of water. Snuggles. Light afternoon snack while daddy comes home.

So there we go. Documenting this may not mean anything to anyone but myself, but this was one successful day where we truly enjoyed each other company. Yes, it is not perfect as I needed to work. Still, any time with my toddler…. is precious.IMG_3146 (640x427)

Speaking of which, here is the recipe for my chocolate teddies. I’m collecting cookie cutters these days. This one was in a shopping centre in Malaysia. It was $2 for 2 cutters. I used the smaller one for this one. IMG_3147 (640x427)

[yumprint-recipe id=’133′] 

Vanilla Cookies Version 1 + Teaching sharing and Empathy

IMG_2837 (427x640)One of the joys of parenthood is to watch our little man grow. In his knowledge, reasoning and curiosity. The realisation that while the world “appear” to revolve around him, other people have feelings, thoughts and opinions. It is one of our goals to point out different ways we can encourage empathy, sharing and building relationships. 

One obvious challenge is that it is developmentally appropriate for a 2 year old to think about himself. After all it feels good- that’s all that matters to him at that age. My argument though is that what is developmental appropriate does not mean we do not expose him to what might shake his world a little. It might be a bigger shake up when he is 6 year old and continue to not show awareness of what is around him. The other thing that is frequently lurking at the back of my head are developmental disorders. Perhaps it is an occupational hazard but I do like setting little experiments to see how he responds to it- to my interest but as a little filling at the back of my head on what could be concerning or not. I think most parents do that, at least I hope that I’m not the only odd one out!IMG_2843 (640x427)

We also believe that it is our responsibility to teach him manners, thoughtfulness, being caring and kind (Asher’s future partner can thank us for that later). It does however, elicit some rather interesting responses. 

  • On sharing food- Asher has only started to share some with us. Often the most sour of grapes and when he has finished his meal. Still, we considered a win when he did attempt to give us a few pieces of pears on some days. Now, he would even use a small tongs and serve us food (ok, that’s because he likes tongs but hey, we try to reframe it to help him understand it is good to serve food to others when others want it and not when he wants to!)
  • Praying for others. We have our nightly prayers. When we pray for his friends, it’s really interesting to see the names he could recall and who he considers as friends and what they do during the day. 
  • Taking turns. Asher is better at taking turns than sharing. He soon realised that it is quite fun observing another child playing the same item and discovering different ways of playing the same toy. 
  • Sharing toys- woah! toughie. We are using words such as “It looks like you are not done with it yet, when you are, please pass it to xx. He/she would like to have some fun with this toy too” which most times now, he does! He would hand the toy to us to share to the other child. We find that this method works better than saying “Asher, you have to share now”. I like to think that it is a gradual process where he learned to hand that toy over. Sometimes, I would use “taking turns” as a gentler way rather than for him to give him a toy completely. 
  • Role plays with soft toys. We give cuddles to soft toys, have tea parties together where Asher has to pour out tea/water and cook meals for us. 
  • Role modelling- not just showing it to Asher but actually explaining to him why. E.g. we give Asher a dollar coin to put into the offering bag on Sunday. When we drop our offering in the bag, we ask him to do so and explain to him why we are sharing our money.
  • Read. We read about manners, about care and we read the children’s bible. 
  • Asking questions. When a baby cries, we ask Asher what would help baby feel better. Often he would say “baby crying and needs baby’s mamma”. Sometimes though he comes out with some funny responses “baby needs to sleep” or “baby upset”. If hubby and I has a cut on our skin he would stroke it and say “oh no”. Often asking if we need a band aid, a kiss or a ouchie spray. 
  • Teaching him how to say “I’m sorry”- we are not quite there yet. He refuses to say it! He would, however, shy away, often closing his eyes and pretending he isn’t there. I see that as a good sign that he realises he was in the wrong.

So there you have it, some of our ways that we are still fumbling along. Any ideas or suggestions are welcomed. IMG_2841 (640x427)

In the kitchen, we bake together. Sometimes we talk about who we bake for and how what he enjoys others would as well. This cookie was one of my little experiments. It wasn’t as “short” as I like to be, but Asher really loves this texture. I find that arrowroot provides that starch that some cookies need but also the butter to give it a really lovely flavour and melt in your food feel. Hope you enjoy having one of these with your tea or coffee. IMG_2840 (640x427)

[yumprint-recipe id=’116′] 

Berry Coconut Popsicles (Paleo, Clean Eating, Gluten Free, Dairy Free) + Toddler’s Conversations 1

Coconut Berries PopsiclesToddler’s conversations. 

Looking at the mirror…

Asher: “My name is Asher.”

Asher: Pointing to me. “Your name is Asher’s mummy” 

Me: “I have a name too! My name is Daphne.”

Asher: “No. Your name is Asher’s mummy.” 

Post dinner.

Me: “Would you like to try some jelly?” 

Asher: “Yes please!”

(after tasting it) Asher: “Nice. Well done mummy” 

Me: “Oh good. You like it? I need to make more then since the rest is for a party.”

Asher: “Good idea” 

Playing

Asher:”Car is thirsty.”

Goes to his play kitchen, found his kettle and pour into a tea cup. Proceeded to go to the front of the car with feeding motion.

Me:” What is the car drinking?”

Asher: “tea”

Me: “but car uses petrol for fuel and power.”

Asher: “ok. I feed car water” 

In the car

Hubby: “Ok Asher, we are heading out for lunch. You can have a cino later for a treat.”

Asher: “No daddy. it’s BABY CINO” 

Hubby: “Ok, baby cino.”

Me: “mmm.. can I have a baby cino too?”

Asher: “No. Mummy drink tea.”

Me: “Sweetheart, mummy wants a coffee.”

Asher: “No. Mummy drink tea.” 

Singing

Us: “Wheels on the bus go round and round..round and round…

Me: “All day long” 

Asher (Holding my face and shaking his head) : “it’s all through the town mummy! ”

Packing his toys

Talking to himself :”Pack away pack away. Don’t lose it” 

IMG_2804 (640x427)

[yumprint-recipe id=’114′]

My toddler’s choice: Sweet Potato, Carrot and Apple Muffins (Paleo, Clean Eating, Gluten Free)

Sweet Potato, apple and carrot MuffinsI appreciate my off days with Asher. We laugh, giggle and try to make the most of it.

It is not always fun and games though. There are things in life that we have to attend to regardless of how much fun is it to have fun with a toddler. 

Yes, you will find me multi tasking on some mornings. Perhaps trying to encourage Asher to eat his breakfast while doing a batch up cook. You might even see me folding clothes while trying to have a conversation with my dad over FaceTime. In between, the oven might ring and I will rush to check one of our bakes or a meal that is cooking, while making sure Asher stays out of the way of the hot oven.  The floor would need vacuuming and a mop. The toilets would be scrubbed and bed sheets changed. That, and it is not even 9am yet. IMG_2431 (640x427)

We have some mornings when Asher wakes bright and early at 5:30am, excited to face the day while I grudging wash up and get change. 

These muffins were made during one of those mornings. I decided to make the most out of it with a toddler who clearly would not return back to bed and wanted to “play”. I gathered up some ingredients and allow him to “design his own muffin”. IMG_2425 (640x427)

He chose 

  • sweet potato
  • carrots
  • apples
  • walnuts

If you are wondering what I put on the table… In addition to the above, we had yogurt, feta, almonds and pistachios. 

Not a bad combi I think. It could have been something like feta, apples and pistachios (come to think of it, it wouldn’t have been that odd either). 

Presenting my toddler’s muffin. if you are game enough to give it a try. IMG_2429 (640x427)

[yumprint-recipe id=’86’]