I got this awesome shirt from In The Gap Clothing for my son and I love it! Local is surely lekker and to top that, this is a growing family business to watch!
Wearing Christian clothing is not everyone’s cup of tea but for some people it can be a great opportunity to share their faith and answer questions around the clothing they wear. It can be a whole ministry field on your way to work or at the shops. I think its awesome!
About In the Gap:
“Well, it all started with a dream. When my husband awoke one morning with several designs still in his mind, he realized that the dream of printing Christian t-shirts was from God. More than a year later (in God’s perfect time) the opportunity came to start our Christian Clothing Company and countless details fell into place within a matter of weeks. We were amazed at our King, knowing that this step and the timing was from Him.
In the Gap Clothing is situated in Mossel Bay, South Africa, and we seek to design and distribute quality Christian clothing aimed at promoting Kingdom life.”
They have some pretty cool pillow cases, wall stickers and shirts & hoodies so hop over and have a look!
There is so much to learn from most of the Dr. Seuss books, but The Lorax… Oh the Lorax!
The Lorax has affected us in more than one way, but the most stunning and beautiful thing is how my children, at only 3 years old, are focused on protecting the environment. My son especially, mentions the Lorax almost every day, sometimes multiple times a day…
He says things like:
When he plays with water, “Do I have to turn off the water now? We have to save water for the Humming-fish.”
When his dad chopped down a non-indigenous tree in the yard he went on for weeks, “Is the Lorax sad when we chop down trees? Some trees are not like Truffula trees, they damage the environment, its OK to chop down bad trees.”
When there was soot in the air from a large fire, “The air is polluted, the Swomee-Swans are going to fly away.”
How stunning is that!
For a three year old to have an understanding of the environment like that, all you need is Dr. Seuss!
“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.” -Dr. Seuss, The Lorax
To download the quote, click on the image below.
Getting smaller kids ready for school in the morning can be a daunting task, especially if its something new to the mother and child. Here’s a fun way to keep schedule of what to do in just a few quick steps. These are all activities a small kid should be able to do by themselves. They simply finish the task and drop the flash card in the “Done” holder.
The chores are written down in one word for small kids so they can familiarise themselves with the words associated to the actions.
The activities I listed are:
- Make bed
- Feed the dog
- Eat breakfast
- Brush teeth
- Get dressed
- Brush hair
- Grab lunch box
- Grab backpack
What you’ll need:
- Cardboard or project board for the Schedule. I used one of those boards that comes with new sheets… you can also cut a piece off a cardboard box
- Different colors of project board
- Bostik Clear Adhesive
- Velcro dots or a piece cut in squares
- Bostik Blits Stik Super Glue Gel
- Bostik Colour ‘n Paint Twisters
- Small container for the flash cards
- Bostik Prestik
- Bostik Wax Twisters
Cut the rim of the container that the “Done” chores will go into so that it will be flush with the project board.
Use the Blits Stik Gel to attach a piece of project board to the container. Write “Done” on the container with Colour ‘n Paint twisters.
Create your own listed schedule in simple picture cards with project board, using Clear Glue Adhesive and round off the details with Wax Twisters and Colour ‘n Paint Twisters.
Paste the rough part of the velcro at the back of each flash card using Clear Glue. You can keep both sides together but make sure you paste it in the middle of the card so that all the velcro will align neatly when pasted to the board.
Now put glue on the soft side of the velcro and align all the cards to once again make sure the velcro will be in line when the cards are removed.
Fix the container to the project board using Blits Stik Gel and Bob’s your uncle… easy as that! This is so easy you can do it with your primary school kid. Have fun!
This post is sponsored by Bostik smart adhesives.
Here’s a fun way of showing your Primary School kids what’s on the extra curricular calendar for the week. When they are still so small they are excited about what they are doing when, so this is a nice way for them to be aware of what happens what day. The time labels are there for the older ones who have an idea of time but mostly it helps for mom to also know whats going on!
What you’ll need:
- A3 Hard project board and an optional A1 to cut to size for a frame (you can also use two A3’s and cut one of the pieces smaller if you prefer a smaller calendar)
- Bostik Crazy Clay
- The lid of an ice cream container
- Whiteboard marker
- Bostik Rainbow Glitter Glue
- One or two different colours felt
- Bostik Art and Craft Sprayable Adhesive
- Bostik Clear Adhesive
- Bostik Glue dots (extra strong)
- Velcro (5-10cm should do) You only need the rough part
- Bostik Sew Simple
- Bostik Prestik
Create your activity pieces with Bostik Crazy Clay and allow it to dry for about 6 hours. This clay is really easy to work with and dries into a nice spongy piece. I created activity pieces for swimming, hockey, maths classes, reading classes, tennis, piano lessons, art classes and birthday parties.
Cut rectangles of about 5,5 x 4,5cm for the non-repetitive activities that only happens that week out of the lid of an ice cream container. Cut half of them in three for the time labels. Round off the edges with Bostik Crazy Clay or Bostik Glitter Glue. I did the non-repetitive labels with Crazy Clay and the time labels with glitter glue. Leave to dry.
Spray an ample amount of Bostik Art & Craft sprayable adhesive on the project boards and firmly press the felt to the board, smoothing it out to ensure there are no wrinkles. Turn the boards around and cut the squares out in line with the edges of the boards. Apply Bostik Clear Glue on the excess edges one by one before you close the tabs otherwise the glue may dry into the fabric too quickly and dry out too soon.
If you use an A3 project board and measure the width in Landscape it should be around 60cm. That gives you 7cm per day of the week with one extra for the activity pieces, so draw lines with Bostik Glitter Glue 7cm apart, leaving one bigger space at the end for the extra pieces you won’t use for the week. Leave to dry.
Cut the rough part of the velcro in small squares, press the backside firmly on a glue dot, pull it from the film and stick it to the backs of all the activity pieces and labels.
I just love Bostik Sew Simple… I hardly use a needle anymore (oops). Apply it abundantly on both sides of the covered project boards, smooth out with your finger or a piece of cardboard and allow to dry for 10 minutes. Press firmly together and set aside to dry.
Finally write the days of the week with Glitter Glue at the top and there you go, time well spent for organizing your kids’ extra curricular activities.
Use a piece of Bostik Prestik to put the eraser marker on the wall next to the activity board for the blank labels used for the non-repetitive activities. Have fun!
This post is sponsored by Bostik smart adhesives.
The first day of school is one of the most memorable events in a kid’s life and counting down to the day will make it so much more fun! I have had the wonderful privilege to make this awesome Back to School countdown calendar with Bostik smart adhesives. Although this is a sponsored post, Bostik has been my favorite choice of adhesives since I was a child so you can just imagine how excited I was to work on this project.
In South Africa, the new school year starts on the 13th of January 2016 so I filled 10 boxes with back to school stationery that will each be opened in turn from 10 days before school starts.
On the day before school the last one, which is the school Read the rest of this entry
So proud of my KraftiMama merchandise to be delivered at Restaurants wherever I go. So far the reception has been wonderful and I am pleased to say the owners are loving the gesture.
I created my own coloring pages, drawn from 4 basic shapes: Circles, Triangles, Squares &
Stars for kids to color in and cut out to play a matching game. Download the free printable HERE!
Ive been wanting to do the Art project printed on the side of the Robertsons Epsom Salts box for a while now and finally did it today! Its very easy and lots of fun.
You will need:
- Robertsons Epsom Salts
- Card Stock (or normal paper but it may get soggy)
- Wide paintbrush
- Kettle close by to boil water with
I recently started giving my home-schooled nieces and nephew Crafts classes as part of their education so I decided I’ll try this project on their Crafts workbooks’ covers.
Draw a picture with wax crayons
Mix equal amounts (I used a tablespoon) Epsom Salts with Boiled water and paint it over the whole canvas.
Leave it to dry. It’s difficult to photograph but when its dry the Epsom Salts will leave a wonderful sparkly crystal residue on the surface. Enjoy!
Rhebokskraal Olive Estate
There’s one thing we never run out of in our house and that is Rhebokskraal Olive Leaf Extract (OLE). There are different kinds of OLE available on the shelves, but they are not nearly as effective as Rhebokskraal’s Muti. So what makes it so different? Rhebokskraal OLE is a whole bottle packed with nature’s medicine extracted from the Read the rest of this entry
I’m currently reading Calm Parents, happy kids by Dr. Laura Markham and thought I’d share ten of my favorite quotes from the book.
1. “The most important Parenting skill: Manage yourself”
I believe a happy Mother creates a happy home. When all is good with the Mother, most of the time all is good with the family. When your cup is empty and you have not been looking after yourself, your energy becomes low and so does the ability to harness your emotions. Look after yourself and show them how to manage yourself. When you are falling apart, how are your kids supposed to stay afloat?
2. “What kids need that no one tells you: a safe place to express feelings while you listen”
Sometimes its hard to REALLY listen when your toddler throws himself on the floor for the millionth time. What he really wants is for you to stop and listen to him. Hear him out… hear that he needs YOU! Dr Markham says children can only manage behavior when they learn to manage the emotions that drives that behavior. Sometimes kids needs a safe place to allow those emotions to flow free, where they won’t get in trouble for feeling what they don’t even know they are feeling.
3. “What your child wishes you understood: Shes just a kid, trying as hard as she can. Expect age appropriate behaviour, not perfection, and keep your priorities straight.”
Sometimes I find myself all of a sudden stop myself midst scolding my 2 year olds and think, “Wait a bit… they are only 2 years old!!” When kids are linguistically advanced and talk like a three year old even though they are only 2 years old you tend to think that they should be able to listen and obey you like a three year old. Well, they’re not!
They are a year behind a three year old which means the three year old has had a whole year more of emotional “coaching” and a whole year more of getting to understand this strange thing called life.
If you are an imperfect being, how can you expect them to be perfect? If you make mistakes all the time and loose battles with yourself daily, wether its about chocolate, swearing or smoking, how can you expect your toddler to sit down every time you ask her to?
4. “The most useful mantra: Don’t take it personally”
Yawza, this one is one of the most difficult ones for me. I take everything personally. Everything! Dr Laura encourages to avoid power struggles by cultivating a sense of humour. I have been trying this more and more and I must say, making jokes has saved many a battle with my kids. Whenever I want my kids to do something these days I just pretend to bite their bum…
Let me explain… they absolutely LOVE dinosaurs and they love it when I chase them so when, for instance, they don’t want to get out of the bath and its starting to get a whining-crying-business, I just hold my hand like a puppet dinosaur and say, “Oh dear, you’ll have to come out or the dinosaur is going to bite your BUTT!” and when I say “bite your butt” I grab a chunk of bum and squeeze softly and they break out in laughter and get their buts out of the bath!
5. “All misbehaviour comes from basic needs that aren’t met.”
I have experienced, from observing kids in the past, that “naughty” kids usually are in need. They need love or attention of an example of a healthy relationship between parents for instance. Sometimes its just an immediate need, like you cant expect your child to sit still in a trolley for two hours at the grocery store when they are hungry. They don’t neccessarily know they are hungry or realise they are thirsty but act out because they feel something is not feeling good.
Make sure they get enough sleep, are fed, have enough free play time, cuddle them, talk to them and make them feel safe. Dr Markham believes children want to be successful and when they don’t, they have a relationship problem, not a behaviour problem!
6. “Because no matter how bad your child’s behaviour, it’s a cry for help. Sometimes the behaviour requires a firm limit, but it never requires us to be mean.”
I have been mean so many times, only for me to realise later that there really was something in her shoe or he really did want to pee AGAIN. Sometimes I have just not been taking care of myself so my threshold would be VERY low and then I’d expect too much of them.
Theres never an excuse for bad behaviour and discipline is very important to me but its NEVER ok to fight their behaviour by being mean. By doing that we teach them how to handle things by being mean, just causing more bad behaviour on their side.
7. “The best parenting expert? Your child.”
This is my favorite quote! We learn from our children from the day we are born. When we observe them and meet their constant needs, we learn from them. They are basically giving it to us, we just have to learn to listen without having to hear!
8. “One generation full of deeply loving parents would change the brain of the next generation, and with that, the world. – Charles Raison”
Theres a saying that goes. “All you need is love and a place to call home.” In Afrikaans the saying is more true because it translates to “All you need is love and a little water.” Children that are neglected and never touched have found to be very far behind developmentally. This shows how important love and physical touch is for human beings, we can not function without it.
Song of Solomon 8:7 says, “Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot wash it away. If one were to give all the wealth of one’s house for love, it would be utterly scorned.” How powerful love is!!
9. “Parenting is not about what our child does, but about how we respond.”
Much too often I find myself thinking a behavior my child portrayed, shows what kind of parent I am. I have responded in a bad way so, so many times… My only comfort is in God and the fact that He has grace for me and therefore my child will also have grace for me, through Him! My mistakes can not be undone and I am making them as I go, but God is guiding me every step of the way and will never fail to show me the way. I know Its going to be OK because thankfully God has made kids adaptable and He has given us the strength and courage to change.
Dr Laura says “you’ll have to manage your own triggers and emotions to effectively coach and connect with your child” man is it difficult to manage my triggers when the kids find all of them within a 5 minute frame. I have issues, I know that by now, and much too often they come out in situations where I am trying to coach my children. They learn to regulate their emotions and behaviour by watching us do it. We have to be OK for them to be OK. That’s a scary thought!
10. “Our children need to know that we take joy in them or they don’t see themselves as worth loving. In fact, your ability to enjoy your child may be the most important factor in his development.”
Life can distract us so much from whats happening right under our noses. How sad is that when theres children happening right under our noses! Was it not important for us to know our parents took joy in us, or very sad when we knew they didn’t? Isn’t it important for us to know our spouse takes joy in us, or sad for us when we know they don’t?
Our children are not as emotionally developed as we are. Imagine how badly affected they are when they don’t experience us having joy in them. They are our worlds, let’s make them know they are!
I have to admit that I have not been painting with the kids nearly as much as I want to because I have been lazy when it comes to the messes it makes when the kids put their hands in the paint tubs and paint everything around them except the paper in front of them… no, I have not been lazy… I have been drop dead tired and not up for cleaning!
Even though I absolutely love crafts, I am a pain in the butt with messes.
I walk around with the washcloth, cleaning every little drop I see, put the washcloth down and tell myself its good for them to mess… But after like, 5 seconds I just find myself with the washcloth again trying not to yell at them, not to mess around… Not cool, I KNOW!
So when I saw these in Mr Price Home I had to try them out. My kids love painting so this was an opportunity for me to try it out and maybe we’d get to paint a bit more. Well, we did! I got some white shirts that they can wear every time we paint and I had some plastic aprons that wipes off easily… Ready to go!
The pens had tight sealing caps inside that needed quite some force with a knife to get out. It was pretty messy and took a while with the kids waiting in anticipation for me to finish so make sure you do this over paper or in a basin before you start. After opening them, also make sure to turn them over and squeeze until the paint seeps through… Once thats done, Bob’s your uncle!
Once they were all open it just took a minute or two for the kids to figure out that you have to turn it upside down all the way to get paint out but once they were on a roll they loved painting with the pens. They are almost mess free (cause can you ever be mess free with toddlers??) but the best thing of these Chunky Paint pens is that they dry really quickly and even after it has dried it wipes off hands and tables easily with just a wet cloth.
At only R39,99 it’s not too pricey either if you consider the prices of other proper paints. This paint is good quality, theres no clotting and when the colors mix it just takes a squeeze to get the original color back. I have re-used them multiple times and can say that they haven’t dried out yet as I keep the caps sealed tight when stored.
I love to draw them each a circle, triangle and square to show them the shapes and give them a basic starting point in drawing and color and then they usually try to imitate them or color them in. After this we move on to other activities like coloring or free painting on white paper. I found with this age that they have more confidence once there is a starting point.
The nice thing of the chunky paint pens was that I could make dots to give them some color guidance on their coloring pages. I believe its good to also give them free play on paper but following instructions is also a good part of development so sometimes I try to give them instructions to follow too. Coloring in specific pictures with given lines is great for fine motor skills to teach them control of the pen and helps them to have better handwriting but free drawing on white paper allows them to unleash their creativity and conquers fear of the open paper. Don’t neglect one of the two, they are two totally different activities that are both important for development
We will certainly enjoy lots of this in future and I’m pretty sure I will be buying some more soon! Head to any Mr Price Home store or order them online at : http://www.mrphome.com/en_za/jump/HOMEWARE/Pack-Of-6-Chunky-Paint-Pens/productDetail/2_3201016423/cat860009/general
If it wasn’t for the fact that I had twins that didn’t catch on to sleep that well I would never have gotten a pram and just stuck to my carriers like moss to a tree.
Some days however I needed something close to a wagon to carry all we needed but my trusty carriers was always in the basket. Always. I just couldn’t go anywhere without them…
In the first few months I had a stretchy wrap that really did the job for me. It kept the twins close to my chest and close to each other and it was just really comfy and both me and them were assured of their safety. Soon though they grew out of it and I tried a ring sling for a while that didnt really serve me well. Eventually I opted for an OM BABA Mei Tai.
I liked the Mei Tai so much and felt like I was finally part of the baby wearing community now that I had a Mei Tai… I mean seriously, Mommies can go on about their Mei Tai’s and now I also know why. The Mei Tai is classic and comfortable and there are many different ways of tying and carrying.
With twins I realised I needed two strong carriers though and honestly all the wrapping and tying multiple times a day every time they wanted to get in or out of the wraps got to me so I searched for something that just clips in.
Oh my Ergo!!! I am absolutely in love with the Ergobaby Sport and I won’t trade it for the world… In fact I have no idea how I’ll be able to part with it one day when they have grown up. It will probably always stay in my chest of precious keepsakes unless I have a VERY good friend to give it to by then!!
The Ergo is strong, light, comfortable and it saves a lot of wrapping time. By simply going Clip, clip… you are ready to go and my kids have never been as happy in any other carrier. They are really versatile and made of very strong fabric. A sleeping hoodie is attached to a front pocket (not suitable for carry-ons) and snaps easy peasy at different tightness settings to the shoulder straps to protect baby from the sun and hold their head in place while sleeping.
The best of all is that it really looks cool on dads no matter what their size! My husband, like many other men doesn’t like to wear girly things but wants to be involved with the kids as much as he can. He LOVES wearing them in the Ergobaby Sport and it is so great for their bonding as well.
I have worn them both front/back in the Ergo’s and I have also used them with one in Ergo at the back and Mei Tai in front which I preferred. They are really versatile and made of very strong fabric. A sleeping hoodie is attached to a front pocket (not suitable for carry-ons) and snaps easy peasy at different tightness settings to the shoulder straps to protect baby from the sun and hold their head in place while sleeping.
A friend asked me the other day how I have been able to keep them happy for so long in the carriers. They are Two years and two months and still loving spending time in the Ergo’s. Well partly I believe its because I started wearing them from the beginning but I believe the most important part is both our comfort in the Ergo’s. If it wasn’t for that we would have given up long ago. Its not that they are not busy toddlers… Oh believe me they are busy and they can run around like maniacs sometimes but when it comes to that or they just want to be picked up while Im trying to cook or doing something in the house theres no greater life saver than my Ergo’s!
Wearing my babies have kept us close together and helped so much to have and extra pair of hands when I needed it most. For a long time it was the only way I could put them to sleep and till this day, when the other methods doesn’t work that day for some or other reason, the carriers always win!
Many Mommies turn over to natural products and I get a lot of requests to share what I use. I love making my own because I know exactly whats in it and it makes me feel like a “real” Home maker! My biggest purchases is always Bicarbonate of Soda (Baking Soda), Epson Salts and Vinegar. You won’t believe what you can do with those three ingredients… a paste of Bicarb and Vinegar cleans like no other cleaning product can. I buy it by the kilos and litres so it makes household products very affordable. Here are a few of my tried and tested products:
1. Baby wipes
Many mommies use cloth and I still believe its the way to go but for handy disposables when you go out I buy Mother Nature’s bio degradable and flushable nappy liners (R75 for 100) and cut it in half. I then roll the cut liners (about 1/4 of the whole pack at a time) into a roll and stick it into a re-usable wipes container and pour the following solution over it:
2 cups warm water
2. Roll on
3. Dishwasher Pods
I calculated the difference in price of store bought dishwasher pods :
4. Washing soda recipe:
5. Washing Powder and Softener
7. No more tangles spray
Just add one to two tablespoons of your natural conditioner to an empty used spray bottle and top up with warm water. Remember boiled water melts plastic bottles and leave enough space to shake. Start at the bottom when combing hair and spray on sections before combing through. If the hair seems oily or sticky you used too much for your particular conditioner… Just throw some out and top up with water again.
That it for now… keep in touch for more updates!
Rhebokskraal Olive Leaf Extract
There’s one thing we never run out of in our house and that is Rhebokskraal Olive Leaf Extract (OLE). There are different kinds of OLE available on the shelves, but they are not nearly as effective as Rhebokskraal’s Muti. So what makes it so different? Rhebokskraal OLEis a whole bottle packed with nature’s medicine extracted from the Olive Tree Leaves itself Read the rest of this entry
Theres a new conscious farmer’s supporter in town! Sometimes I long for the olden days where people used to trade between each other with the produce they had and quality used to be a given trait of each and every product. I find it hard to find good and affordable Organic and free range foods where I live so I was very exited when someone, not too far from me, started Read the rest of this entry
A few of you have asked me after I wrote this post to give you ideas for alternative products. Believe it or not… it was actually going to be my next post. So here goes… the long awaited list of alternatives I use.
Natural products take some time to get used to if you’ve used conventional products your Read the rest of this entry
This is what I’ve been trying to say and since I can’t think of a better way to say it I just love Eureka Flour… I shall quote this piece from the home page of Eureka Mills, South Africa.
“It all starts with an idea… A need to do something out of your own volition or out of reaction to a certain situation. Read the rest of this entry