Desperate Housekeeping for busy mums and dads

From one mother to another

Archive for the category “Entertaining”

New blog! Hope to see you there!

Hi all!
As some of you know, I recently launched a new blog: Expat Mum in Luxembourg.

At the begining, I thought it would make sense to maintain both blogs, with separate themes, but quickly I figured it out that my themes are always around Family Life and Kids.

So, I decided that the new blog will be my new online ‘home’, with new and fresh ideas. As for the Desperate Housekeeping for Busy Mums and Dads, I’ll start to gradually migrate the best contents into the new blog as well.

Hope to ‘see’ you at the ‘Expat Mum in Luxembourg‘ blog and, please, don’t forget to “Follow It”.

Cheers!
Rute

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Munchkin Snack Products Review

Spring is out there and as the weather gets warmer, it’s really nice to go with the kids to the park. Even the most picky ones enjoy to eat some snacks, especially when it’s a surprise for them.

On my quest to find the best way to keep all sort of snacks fresh and well conditioned, I’ve found very good reviews about the Munchkin products, so I decided to give it a try.

1. Munchkin Tower Snack
These 5 containers can easily be used as 1 single tower or converted into 2 snack towers, so it can actually hold a variety of snacks and treats. It’s ideal for the picky ones, so they can try a pinch of so many different things. It has a slim design, so it fits easily in any kind or crowded bag.

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2. Munchkin Baby Snack Catcher
This bowl is simply fantastic, not only because it prevents messy on-the-go, but also because it’s cute and funny to be used by the little ones.

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Homemade Glue for Babies and Toddlers

Following the line of Homemade Paint for Babies and Toddles, today I’m sharing other quite interesting recipe for you to make with your little ones: Homemade Glue!20121113-024346.jpg

One very funny activity is to pick one theme, like Disney characters for example, then cut several character photos from old magazines and allow toddlers to paste it into a cardboard. You can also suggest them to paint the cardboard.

Ingredients:
– 1 cup of flour
– 1/3 cup of sugar
– 1 tbsp vinegar
– water

Preparation:
Put the flour and the sugar in a saucepan. Add 3/4 cup of water and stir together until there are no more lumps. Add another 3/4 cup of water and stir until smooth. Add the vinegar. Cook on medium heat and stir it constantly. Allow it to thicken. Let it cool.
Keep it in an empty jam jar, for example and store it in the regrigerator.

Have a nice cut & paste activity!

Homemade Paint for Babies and Toddles

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When it comes to let babies and toddlers use their imagination, painting activities are really the best! However, it’s true not all kinds of stuff are cheap and safe for the little ones.

So, I’m really a fan of homemade great and edible solutions like homemade paints. You can simple googling it and you’ll find lots of recipes you can use. I found this one a good tip.

Ingredients:
– 2 cups of plain flour or corn flour
– 1 cup of cold water
– 4 cups of boiling water
– Liquid food colouring of your choice

Preparation:
Mix the flour with the cold water and stir together. Pour in the boiling water, cup by cup, and stir between each cup. You can add more water or flour to achieve the desired consistency. Separate it into small containers like iogurt cups or jam jars. Add colouring.

And all you need now is to have a nice and fun family activity!

Oil Cloth – One of mom’s best friend

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Are you constantly trying to get rid of those horrible stains on your dinning table linens? Are you always worried about new spots whenever your guests spoil wine or tomato sauce over the table? Are your kids always painting over your table, even if you’ve put a new cloth on top of it?

I recently found my new best friend for this matter: oil clothes. Nowadays you can easily find very nice patterns and it can be on the table all day long. Once it is dirty, you just have to simple clean it with a moist cloth, or use a cleaning product if necessary.

Some shops sell oil clothes at a very high price. I’ve found that it is cheaper to buy it from DIY stores and sew a sheath all over the cloth, if you have a sewing machine.

Super Quick Housecleaning Tips

Did you ever had unexpected guests or last-minute visits at home? I’m sure you did, everyone does! But worse, did it happen just in that day when your house seems a complete mess?

Well, if you cannot follow the Keep-It-Simple Method all the time, there’s no miracles! 😉 But there are some tips you can use to face this challenge of getting your house prep in just a few minutes.

Step 1: Design your action plan
– Select the rooms where your visitors will enter. I assume that the living room, the kitchen and the main bathroom are always included;
– Get a quick analysis of the mess within each room;
– Set the timer. If the visits arrive within 1 hour, set the timer to 45 minutes max. The remaining time will allow you to check everything one last time;
– Light some very discrete candle scent;

Step 2: Declutter each of the selected rooms
– Pick up any dirty clothes, lost shoes, bags, dirty dishes, trash, lost papers…
– Keep all the clutter in its right place, unless you don’t have enough time. In this case, just gather all the things and keep it in a separate room;

Step 3: Clean the critical spots
– Mop and/or wipe the floor;
– Wash your dishes or put it into the dishwasher;
– Clean the kitchen counter and stove;
– Clean the bathroom and change towels;
– If you have any pets, clean the litter boxes;
– Turn off the candle scent.

Indoor Activities for Toddlers – Part 1

Let’s Paint:
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-Use an old table plastic cover to protect your living room floor (or other open place in your home).
-Join several white sheets with tape on the back side and cover the plastic cover with it.
-Let your toddlers play on top of it with watercolors, wax pencil or simple coloring pencils.

Let’s Re-invent Paint:

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-If you have babies at home, it’d be a better idea to prepare your own home made paint, as they will allways try to eat it!
-You’ll only need to mix some water, flour, a pinch of oil. You’ll need to mix all the ingredients until you reach a slightly thick consistency (add more water/flour until it’s ok). Pour the liquid in small cups (yogurt cups, for example) and add some food coloring to reach the three primary colors. If you want to achieve some of the secondary colors too, you’ll only need to mix parts of each primary colors.

Let’s Cook:

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Have some fun in the kitchen and cook some of your kids favourites with them. And please, Do Not Worry with the mess for one special day! They’ll love it!

Here are some ideas:
Cupcakes
Flower Cake Pops
Mini-Pizzas

Comfy Food Ready-To-Go

Busy mums and dads are always looking for finding just some extra minutes each day of their already so busy day. Aren’t you the same?

One of the most important part of your life is to eat. You should always eat well and have healthy cooking habits. Not only because of your health but for all of your family’s well being, specially when you have kids.

So, in this post lets talk about some great recipe ideas to cook really good but simple and easy comfort food.

Specially now, I’m worried about the next big and happy phase of my life: my little girl (and second child) is going to meet this world in just a few weeks! 🙂 So, I’m preparing some comfy food in bigger quantities, and I’ll be freezing it in separate bowls. I’m using some tupperware bowls, as well as some aluminium boxes.

Until now, I’ve found the following yummy easy-to-cook and good-to-freeze recipes:
Fish Rice
Cod and Tomato Rice
Cod with Chickpeas
Cod with Potatoes, Eggs and Crispy Bread Crumbs
Aromatic Chicken Rice
Chicken Beer Spaguetti
Lasagne
Meat Pie
(I’ll write the detailed recipes separatelly)

Note that all of my mediterranean influence is in each recipe. Hope you’ll like it as much as I do!

What about you? Have other easy and comfy recipe ideas to share?

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