How not to bake with kids….

Baking is not my thing!  However, my daughter enjoys it, so on occasion I don an apron and we have a go at making cakes or biscuits. 

It’s all about the gear!

A few weeks ago, I bought a cake mix, preheated the oven, mixed it up and then realised I don’t own any cake tins!  Luckily, my neighbour across the road was kind enough to lend me a couple and she also lined them as well!

Last week I was sent a Fairy Cup Cake Set from Candy Stripe Party.  So again, I donned my apron and we proceeded to make the cupcakes.  There were eggs and flour everywhere.  Apparently, there is a difference between cupcakes and fairy cakes.  The recipe I was using said it would make 24 fairy cakes.  As there are only 3 of us I decided to halve the recipe, and for the life of me I couldn’t work out how I only ended up with six. Now I know that fairy cakes are much smaller than cupcakes.

What to do if you don't have a piping bag for icing

So we ended up with a ‘Fairies Cake’ instead of ‘Fairy Cakes’.  I still think they’re beautiful though.

Not Again!

And again, I discovered that I was missing a crucial kitchen tool, when it came time to decorate them, a piping bag.  But again thanks to YouTube I found this fabulous video for using a plastic sandwich bag.  Not as environmentally friendly but it saved me cleaning the piping bag and I think the effect was excellent.

So I don’t get caught out again, what ‘must have’ baking utensils/equipment should I have in the kitchen?


How to play cards with kids

I come from a long line of card players.  Some of my first memories of my Grandfather was playing cards.  He was a dreadful cheat. This is how he used to babysit us.  I learned how to play cribbage from a very early age and so did many of my 22 cousins!

We’ve recently started introduce our 5 year old to a variety of card games.  Snap, Go Fish, Memory and Old Maid.  Have you ever tried playing cards with a 5 year old especially when it requires them to hold a mittful of cards?  She is forever dropping them all over the floor and becomes increasingly frustrated.  Bless!

But then I discovered, thanks to the net, this handy little trick.  It’s pure genius.

How to Play Cards with Kids

It’s so simple.  Just using a clothes peg, then they can hold the peg.  Problem solved!

Do you have any other tips when playing games with kids?  Please do leave them in the comments.

If you’d like to learn how to play Go Fish here are the rules.

Friday 5: How to entertain kids in the pub

Before you get the wrong impression, my daughter does frequent the pub on occasion but we don’t go as often as you may think.  If it’s a sunny day we will pop up to our local pub as it has a garden and enjoy a few drinks.  However, we always go prepared!

This is what I’d recommend taking:

How to entertain kids in the pub

  1. Bubbles – hours of fun and they won’t knock any glasses over.
  2. Magazine – stop by the local shop and buy one of those crappy children’s magazines with tat on the front.  The cheap toys will entertain then for a bit and there are usually a few puzzles/games inside.
  3. Skipping Rope – do bear in mind the size of the garden as it can turn into a weapon of destruction;  but beyond skipping it can be turned into all kinds of fun (e.g horse reigns)
  4. Dog – invite your friends who have dogs to join you for a drink, hours of fun for the little ones.
  5. But most importantly, don’t forget a fully charged Ipad loaded with games and movies.  And of course to minimize pissing off the other patrons take head phones!  Plus, they also work well as a drinks tray????

More uses for an Ipad

Apparently the sun may be out this Bank Holiday weekend so get down to your local pub and don’t forget to pack a bag.

Do you have anything I should add to the list?




How to display kid’s artwork

Kids Toys

This is so true!  A while back I naively thought I’d get Madame to help me go through her toys.  Big mistake, we unearthed things that she hadn’t played with in years and then she insisted on keeping them.  Next time, I’ll do it when she’s at school.

The same goes for all of the artwork she brings home.  It’s a nightmare, when she’s not looking I do burn a lot of it, heaven help me if she catches me,  but I do keep any pictures that she is truly proud of or makes me laugh hysterically, like the one below.  Apparently it’s a rattlesnake but I thought it looked like a……

Kid's Artwork

But what the hell do I do with it all, I’ve started a scrap book but recently I bought this frame from (£24.95) it’s freaking brilliant.  The end is open so you can just slot in her artwork, it makes her so proud and we can have an ever-changing art installation in the kitchen.

Displaying kids artwork

Do you have any other clever ideas for displaying children’s artwork?

Disclosure:  Coincidentally after purchasing one of these for myself, I did receive a second one from The Handpicked Collection for review purposes.

Hail to McDonald’s!

£145 for Wet wipes !?!?!?!?

This goes out as a WARNING TO ALL PARENTS.

Romantic Bath

I need to rewind a bit, on Saturday night, I was having a bath, you know all romantic candles etc, who am I kidding, I was surrounded by plastic bath toys.  Anyhow, when I drained the bath I heard an unfamiliar gurgling sound.

I really didn’t take much notice, but it quickly became apparent that both our loos were blocked.  We tried the usual caustic soda and plunger but to no avail.  We called Dynorod, but luckily for us no one was free on the weekend, as this would have cost us a fortune.  So we waited until Monday.

The problem gets worse

In the meantime, we thought it was isolated to the loos.  I had to pop out to a Birthday on Sunday, Soft Play Hell and as I left, I popped the washing machine one, you know, perpetually multitasking.  I received a distressed phone call from hubby who was ankle deep in waste.  I did laugh.  Apparently the block went beyond the loos.

It’s amazing how reliant we become on convenience.  We could no longer use the loos, shower or use the washing machine.  Luckily we have a McDonald’s around the corner for a McWee and a McSh*t.  I’ve traveled the world and they will always have a clean loo!


However, for a 5 year old it’s not as easy.  I won’t go into graphic detail but it did require looking for a kitchen utensil that you could throw away and a bit of fishing!

Help arrives!

My knight in shining Armour arrived late afternoon on Monday, after a covert trip to McD’s.


This is when we realised that, being mid terrace, we had no access to the pipes.  At one point we had a discussion about lifting the tiles and cutting a hole in the floor.  Pound signs flashed before my eyes.  Luckily for us, the lovely chap, who could have walked away and come back after we had a plumber in to reveal the pipes, went beyond the call of duty.  We had to remove the toilet, which is beyond their remit and he used what I’d call a toilet ‘snake’ which was about 30 ft long, it ‘just’ reached the blockage.

Sneaky Bugger!

I knew damn well before he even told me, who the culprit was.  I was going to hide the packages before he arrived, but he said there was no point, as he would have worked it out.  He said when he sees a blockage straight away, if the water doesn’t recede, it’s baby wipes.  Apparently, they make a rather impressive seal.  Paper will break down, baby wipes will not and they hold onto the pipes for dear life!

I can’t believe it was our beloved baby wipes; I’d never bought them before having kids but would never live without them now!  They take off everything from mascara to permanent ink to crayon to scuffs on your shoes.  They are a wonder to be hold, but DO NOT, I repeat DO NOT ever put them down the loo!  But if you do it may cost you £145!