Thursday, October 13, 2011

Toddler Play: Rice Sensory Bowl

It's the little things in life when it comes to toddlers huh?

I am learning this more everyday. Simple, Amy, keep it simple. Little man will be more than happy with simple. So this is what we were up to today...

I had a leftover bag of rice that was getting old so I thought it might be fun to play in. So I gathered my tools. They just so happened to be two plastic bowls, two measuring cups, two fun kitchen utensils and a bag of rice.

I put a table cloth down on the kitchen floor and set the supplies on top and poured the rice in a plastic bowl. Then I brought Noah in and let him play. And play. And play.

He LOVED it! And it was so simple and easy. I better enjoy it while it lasts eh?

Monday, October 10, 2011

Cloth Diapering- Guest Post By Gail Lantz

I could do it to save money--Korea is the land of morning calm, but it’s also the land of charging 3x the import price for baby items! I could do it so I won’t have to make midnight runs to the convenience stores--the Hubs likes that ones! I could do it for the environment--I wanna do my part and I’m starting to do what I can. But that’s not why I cloth diaper. I do it because of all the cute prints!

I can’t even remember the first time I talked about cloth diapering, but I think it has always been a thought in the back of my mind…you know, for that “some day” when I got pregnant. And then I did get pregnant and I had to really consider what kind of diapering system we would have. Like I said, there were several good reasons to choose cloth over disposable, but I had no idea what I was getting myself into when I chose cloth.

The Hubs and I became pregnant in Fall 2010 and started working at ICS Pyeongtaek, South Korea the same year. We’ve been here for some time before, so the move wasn’t a huge adjustment. Soon we started befriending the other families in the faculty with small children and we found a lot of cloth diapering mommas as well. They showed me their diapers and all the new gadgets and gizmos of CDs today.

It’s not a “cloth and rubber shorts” world anymore! Now there are a variety of choices, including easy-to-wash pocket diapers and “old fashion” cloth with cute covers. For the sake of time, I’m only sticking to my favorites (and you can visit my blog to learn about more).

What’s a Pocket Diaper? Take a look!

Pocket diapers are exactly what they sound like. There is a pocket opening between one layer of microfleece (wicks the moisture off of baby’s heiny!) and PUL (waterproof material with a pretty print or color on the front). In the pocket you insert an absorbent, washable pad. There is even room for more than one if you have a super-soaker child. ;) These are the easiest diapers to use because they are assembled just like a disposable. They are soft on baby’s rump, adjustable around the waist and fun to look at. MY favorite is HipKiddo from Canada.

My Other Go-To: The “old-fashion” cloth and cover. Take a looksies here…

The biggest improvement for these cloths is that we don’t have to use diaper pins anymore. There is a stretchy blue thing in my pictures that is called a Snappi and it holds the cloth part in place really well. (The cloth is thick enough that the grippers on the back of the Snappis never touch baby’s skin.) So, just like when I was in cloth as a kid, fold that cloth part around baby’s bum and attach the Snappi.

The waterproof layer is the next big improvement. Instead of those ugly, giant plastic panties, now there are tons and tons of cute, fashionable, leak-proof covers. The cover goes over the cloth just like a disposable diaper. They are adjustable around the waist as well. The cool part is that you can reuse the covers without washing them every single time, (as long as they aren’t soiled) so you get a lot of mileage out of them! MY favorite Cover is Thirsties Duo Wrap.

Now that I’m head-over-heels in LOOOOOVE with fluff, (that’s the new lingo for cloth these days) I’m so glad that I made this choice. My initial reasons weren’t great, but now I enjoy diaper rash-less baby booty, a good choice for the environment, sleeping in the bed instead of running out the get diapers and I thoroughly enjoy hanging my diapers to dry! I absolutely love all the colors!

And, seriously, who can resist an adorable baby with a fluffy butt!?

Gail Lantz is a good friend and blogging buddy to me and a wonderful mommy and wife. She is a stay at home mom currently living in South Korea. If you want to read more about cloth diapering and other fun mom type things check out her blog: Soko in Cloth.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Cinnamon Twist Recipe

Ok, now these, these are good. They are not to hard to make and and they are the perfect dessert. You'll know what I mean once you tried them. Recipe is from Taste of Home

Cinnamon Twists

  • 1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup warm water (110° to 115°), divided
  • 4 to 4-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 cup warm 2% milk (110° to 115°)
  • 1/4 cup butter, softened
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 4 teaspoons ground cinnamon
In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in 1/4 cup warm water. Add 2 cups of flour, sugar, salt, milk, butter, egg and remaining water; beat on medium speed for minutes. Stir in enough remaining flour to form a soft dough.

Turn onto a floured surface; knead until smooth and elastic, about 6-8 minutes. Place in a greased bowl, turning once to grease top. Cover and let rise in a warm place until doubled, about 1 hour. 

 Punch down dough. Roll into a 16-in. x 12-in. rectangle. 


Brush with butter. Combine brown sugar and cinnamon; sprinkle over butter. Let dough rest for 6 minutes. Cut lengthwise into three 16-in. x 4-in. strips. Cut each strip into sixteen 4-in. x 1-in. pieces.

 Twist and place on greased baking sheets. Cover and let rise until doubled, about 30 minutes. 

Bake at 350° for 15 minutes or until golden brown.

 Serve with your favorite glaze dipping sauce and enjoy!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Toddler Play: Crayon and Box Play

Ok, so this was so easy. And I didn't know what to expect from my son. Would he play with it for a minute and then move on? I wasn't sure, because to me it seemed too simple.

But for a toddler, Simple is good. Very good.

My son played with this simple toy for 30 minutes. Yes, 30 minutes. That is a record for him. But he enjoyed pushing the crayons in the tiny holes and then dumping them out and putting them back again. He loved it. And he still loves it. Wanna know how to make this special toy? Here we go.....

Crayon and Box Toy
I know, the name is super creative right?

A box (one that can open and close easily)

Take the box and poke holes in the top of it. Put the crayons in the hole, lay a blanket down, put it down on the blanket and let your toddler enjoy it. You'll be amazed how long he/she will try to figure it out. 

Sit with your toddler and spend some quality time together. Show them how to push all the crayons in and let them push all of them into the box. Then let them dump it out. Then teach them how to put them back in the whole. This is a great hand-eye coordination game for them!

Make sure you watch your child during this activity. Since it is crayons, if you leave them alone, you might have a beautiful new mural on the wall when you come back. I repeat, This is not a good alone time play.