Rainbow rice

This morning we have been playing with rainbow rice, this is a perfect activity to perfect fine motor skills such as pouring in a variety if ways. The sounds and colours of the rice also make it a fantastic sensory activity, keeping young children engaged.

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You will need
Rice (I used basmati)
Food colourings of your choice
Freezer food bags (preferably one for each colour you use)

To make
01. Add equal amounts of rice to each freezer bag.
02. Add a little blob of your desired food colouring to each bag.
03. Seal the bag and mush about the rice in the bag, until your rice is coloured evenly.

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Simple play dough recipe

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Here’s a simple recipe for home made play dough.

You will need:

250g plain flour

50g table salt

140ml water

2 tbsp. almond oil (or any other unscented oil)

Food colouring

To make:

  1. Mix the flour and salt into a large bowl.
  2. Mix up the water, oil and food colouring into a jug and  then add to bowl.
  3. Gather dough and knead until consistency of play dough, this can take up to 10 minutes. You can add more flour or water if you need to.
  4. Finally, go and have fun squeezing this irresistible play dough!

Why I love baby wearing!

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It’s no secret to my friends and family that I love baby wearing. I have never used a pram or a pushchair (to date) with my youngest, and I don’t plan to use one ever again, even with subsequent children. I am a ‘full time’ baby wearer. My only regret is not discovering baby wearing (and the benefits) sooner!

How I came to baby wear

When I was pregnant with my youngest, I was terrified about how difficult it would be, going from one child, to two children. I had so many friends telling me how hard it was going to be, which didn’t help. Anyway, I did some research and asked around. I basically asked friends with more than one child how they coped, a friend recommended baby wearing, so I bought my first wrap!

I remember the first time I wore Emily in the wrap. She was just two days old. I was so excited and yet so nervous. After a few tries, I had gotten the hang of it – it was incredibly liberating! It was like she had never left my womb, I still had her close. I still had a sweet little bump to lay my hand upon, but it was now my baby, just in a wrap! From that moment on, I fell in love with baby wearing!

Like any relationship, my relationship with baby wearing grew and changed. I found more reasons to love having my baby close to me. My youngest daughter is now 7 months old, here are my personal reasons for why I love baby wearing.

1. Allows you to carry on with everyday life – while baby is all snuggled up to you, you can carry on with cooking, cleaning and everyday activities in general. It’s really no different to pregnancy. Not only that but I personally love the fact I don’t have achey arms and an achey back from holding a baby for a long period of time.

2. Strengthens the bond with your baby – now, obviously the majority of mothers bond with their baby. However, speaking from personal experience, I feel there is definitely a stronger bond between me and my baby because of baby wearing. Again, I want to reiterate that I am basing these points on my own personal experiences. I am not suggesting that people who don’t baby wear, have a lesser bond with their babies, compared to those that do.

3. It helps you keep fit – with the extra weight of baby, you’re bound to be shedding those pregnancy pounds!

4. It gives you a break – you know those days where your baby just won’t stop crying? Teething, feeling under the weather, wind, reflux, over stimulated etc. These are all factors to an irritable baby, it can be extremely stressful when it seems you have tried everything. For me personally, 5-10 minutes (probably not even that) in the wrap will always do the trick. The wrap is great for bedtimes too!

5. A great fashion accessory – this is probably the only ‘con’ but it depends how you look at it. Wraps should come with a warning… They are extremely addictive! They are available in hundreds of colours, patterns, styles, materials and so on. Personally I love the variety, it just means there are more choices and you can have one for every outfit if you want to.

6. Can help prevent older children getting jealous – my wraps were a god send, especially in the early days. My biggest fear through pregnancy was of my eldest getting jealous. I have no doubt in my mind, the reason there was (and still is) no jealousy issues, is because I could still give my eldest the same amount of attention while my youngest was also getting closeness through the wrap.

7. Guilt free shopping sprees – I didn’t babywear with my eldest at all, and whenever I went shopping I was always conscious of getting in everyone’s way with my big bulky pushchair. Babywearing solved that worry for me, it has also made my shopping trips much faster, as I don’t have to let people past before taking up the whole isle with my enormous pushchair.

8. Happy babies – everywhere I go, all I hear is comments of what a happy and contented baby I have. How could I not love babywearing? It makes someone that I love really happy. I love anything that brings happiness to the ones I love. I love nothing more, than to see Emily’s face light up when she sees one of our wraps.

9. Compact – similar to my seventh point, wraps are extremely compact and some are even small enough to fold neatly into your handbag. That will definitely free up boot space, more room for those shopping sprees! Eh? If you don’t own a car, then no more waiting for buses in horrible weather. I lost count of the amount of times I was left in the rain, snow and hail because the buses had exceeded their limit of prams. One time, I waited 90 minutes in the rain, I couldn’t board any of the (five!) buses that past, as they already had their limit of pushchairs!

10. Cheaper than a pushchair – now, this one is totally dependant on the user because as I said before, wraps are extremely addictive, and most ‘full time’ baby wearers will, more than likely, own more than one wrap. However, a decent, brand new pushchair will set you back around £500 to £800. A decent woven wrap, brand new, would set you back anywhere between £40 to £100, depending on the style. You can pick up a stretchy wrap for as little as £16!

So there you have it! My personal reasons to why I absolutely love baby wearing. Thank you for taking the time to read this article, please feel free to follow my blog and like my Facebook page.

Here is a picture of the first time I ever baby wore.

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Here is a picture of Emily in our Erna Im Wunderland, woven wrap.

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