The life of me

A new year.. new goals.. new experiences… new opportunities!

I wish everyone a healthy and happy new year!

Looking back to last year, I achieved some amazing goals. I completed my Masters in Education, I worked hard to achieve the accomplishment of teaching in a different school, I became Maths lead in the new school, and started to revive my classroom ideas to provide the best opportunities I can for the children I teach. I participated in an event and stood in a lecture hall to inspire upcoming teachers (twice!), I met the amazing author, Greg Bottrill, who inspired me to continue to pursue my teaching dreams. My partner and I worked hard to reach saving goals, I went on holiday with a great friend of mine and we had the best time exploring Barcelona, I have enjoyed watching my nephew and twin nieces grow and develop. Towards the end of the year I took the plunge to update my blog to offer teaching resources and a shop (coming soon).

 

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I have a lot more goals to build on this year, and I am determined to work hard to achieve them. I have some blogging opportunities lined up which I will be excited to announce at the end of this month. I also aim to develop myself further with personal and professional goals in mind.

Over Christmas I have had time to reflect, recharge and I am ready to work hard to achieve more this year! I find making a list and writing goals down helps to achieve them. Plus ticking them off when you have reached it feels amazing!

So today I pulled down the Christmas decor… tidied my study room and lit new scented candles, ready for the new goals of 2020.

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Do you have goals that you are aiming towards this year?

 

#MissPinnock

The life of me

Christmas crafts for 2 year olds

After spending Christmas Eve with my twin nieces they went home with lots to tell their mummy and daddy and lots of smiles and laughter too!

I created some open ended play experiences along with some traditional Xmas activities too!

I filled a tuff tray (one of their early Xmas presents) with play dough, baubles and crafts for them to crest their own art.

They absolutely loved it and were constantly going back to add to their creativity.

We also played a pass the parcel that was filled with peppy pig books. They loved unwrapping and finding lots of new books!

Using a simple ginger bread dough kit, they also enjoyed rolling and making their own gingerbread men. This went in the oven and smelt delicious when baked!

They also loved decorating and of course eating them too!

Another messy tuff tray activity! Using a simple salt dough recipe I created a range of shapes and pierced a hole in each one….

After putting it in the oven and leaving it to cool, they painted the salt dough, and made their very own Christmas baubles!

Of course we danced and listened to Christmas music too!

Lots of Xmas sensory fun for busy little people!

#MissPinnock aka Auntie ‘Fini’

The life of me

My Jamaican Christmas Cake!

So this isn’t an educational post but it was too delicious not to share!!!

I love baking when I feel like I have the time, so making this Christmas cake was great. It also tasted amazing! I have decided to make another one for New Years too!

I soaked sultanas in a bottle (yup a full bottle!) of sherry. After a week or so I added some Jamaican rum not too much! I left this soaking for 2 weeks in total, the rest of it is still there in the fridge ready to be baked!

Ingredients:

  • 250g (9oz) butter
  • 250g (9oz) dark muscovado sugar
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 250g (9oz) self raising flour
  • 1 tbsp nutmeg
  • 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
  • 100g (4oz) glace cherries

1. Pre heat the oven to gas mark 3 (160c). Place the butter and sugar into a large mixing bowl. Use an electric mixer to mix until smooth.

2. Gradually add in the eggs and a little bit of flour if it starts to curdle.

3. Stir in the flour and spices. I added cinnamon, nutmeg and glacé cherries too!

4. Spoon out the mixture into a large cake tin

5. Place in the oven and bake for up to 60 mins. Smell the delicious flavours as it bakes!

6. Leave to cool down and taste the delicious cake! You may decorate it but I didn’t think it was needed!🤣 I added custard to mine for a great Christmas Day dessert.

Enjoy!

Do you bake for Christmas Day?

#MissPinnock

The life of me

DIY Christmas Gifts….

I love how creative children are. They see things in a completely different way to us.. I decided to encourage the creativity of my nephew’s love of cars this Christmas. Not only is it reusing resources and stopping them from being dumped in landfill.. it is loved by my nephew and pretty easy to create!

I purchased a wooden reel from a local scrap store. If you haven’t visited one then you really should they are amazing!!

 

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I also purchased some black chalk paint from Amazon. I love this stuff… it can be used to paint most surfaces and drys as a chalkboard. I thought this was the perfect way to paint the reel, that way my nephew can draw and create whatever he wants on it using chalk!

 

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Kindly enough I received some AstroTurf free from a local scrap store. I used this to decorate the top of the reel and added  a few dinosaurs purchased from Amazon too! I created a city using some chalk pens from Amazon. These are great and easily wipe off tables and wooden surfaces, as well as this chalk board paint too.

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The most open ended presents are the best right?!

I hope you had a great Christmas…

As always let me know your thoughts!

#MissPinnock

 

 

The life of me

7 Fun and Educational Ways to Pass the Time Indoors with the Kids this Winter

I am excited to post this written by a guest blogger:
Carrie Spencer created The Spencer’s Adventures to share her family’s homesteading adventures where she shares tips on living self-sufficiently, fruit and vegetable gardening, parenting, conservation, and more. She and her wife have 3 kids, 2 dogs, 4 cats, 3 goats, 32 chickens, and a whole bunch of bees. Their goal to live as self-sufficiently and environmentally-consciously as possible.
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Image via Pixabay

 

When the weather outside is frightful, the kids can get rambunctious and bored. On those inclement weather days, you might need a few tips to help keep your children engaged, entertained, and occupied. In this article, we discuss seven kid-friendly activities best enjoyed indoors, to offer fun and educational relief this winter.

 

Cooking and Baking Lessons

Bust out the old cookbooks or find an easy-to-make dessert online for baking lessons in the kitchen. Don the aprons and enjoy some quality bonding time over a mixing bowl. The kids will learn about ingredients and following directions. As a reward, they’ll get to enjoy their creations.

 

Virtual Travel Learning

Make use of screen time by creating a digital adventure. Consider choosing a new country and encourage your little ones to learn about its geography on a map, native wildlife, and culture. Create ongoing activities by having your children draw their favorite animals from other parts of the world, or play dress-up to reflect the cultural garb to celebrate worldly traditions.

 

Herb Gardening

Sometimes, kids need a little dirt in their hands. Consider creating a small herb garden and let them cultivate their minds, too. They can learn responsibility while watering and maintaining the health of the garden. After your herbs have fully grown, you can use them to create delicious dishes for the whole family.

 

Family Time Capsule

You may not be able to go outside to bury a family time capsule right now, but you can certainly take advantage of the indoor time to create one. This is a great way for the kids to reflect when they’re older and return to the time capsule. Have them create lists of their likes and dislikes, decide what toys or trinkets to include, and look for newspaper clippings. Pick out family photos together and add them to the capsule.

 

Reading

Encourage your children to read, whether it be a book, magazine, or on a device. Reading is one of the best resources for developmental learning and can also be one of the toughest to convince your kids to do. Let them have their screen time if it helps; you can download apps and e-books for your kids to use. Be mindful to always keep your devices protected, as well. The little ones may cozy up to your smartphone with snacks and hot chocolate, neither of which you’ll want to end up all over the device. Consider a LifeProof case to protect your phone from water, slobber, drops, and crumby fingers—all while giving your kids complete access to the phone’s functions. You’ll rest assured knowing they’ll be enthralled in a reading activity and have the ability to scroll and navigate properly without damaging the device.

 

Old-Fashioned Board Games and Puzzles

Your children may spend much of their time with video games and online funny cat videos. So, the old-fashioned board games might be a source of new-to-them entertainment. Introduce siblings to Battleship or play a friendly game of Sorry as a family. Even the only child families can enjoy new versions of solitaire card games. Learning a new game or engaging thoughtful patience over a puzzle can be wonderful in skill development.

 

Kid-Friendly Workouts

If your little’s are bouncing off the walls and brimming with energy with nowhere to put it, consider some family aerobic exercise. Have everyone sport their best workout gear and get moving! You can walk them through a video or two of dance routines or have them use hula hoops. It’s also a great opportunity to teach them the importance of proper stretching. Whichever workout you choose, the kids are bound to burn off energy and have fun at the same time.

 

If playing in the great outdoors isn’t an ideal option, there’s plenty of educational and fun activities the kids can enjoy inside. In case they come out to tell you they’re bored, have a roster of learning and entertainment ideas ready for them. You’ll not only help them pass the time, but you’ll also be fostering an environment of learning at home.