Friday, 24 February 2017


The lovely Suzanne at Nom Nom Kids has kindly sent me out some of her reusable food pouches and snack bags to test out.  The first thing that struck me on opening the package is the fantastic design on both pouches and snack bags. They are so eye catching and appealing for young children they instantly make a great first impression. 


The pouches come in two different sizes. The animal pouch is smaller and holds 140ml which is perfect for young children and those starting out with solids. The monster pouch is slightly larger and holds 200ml perfect for older toddlers and school children. Both designs have a handy section on the back which allows you to write on your child's name, contents, date filled and instructions as to whether the pouch needs to be kept chilled or warmed up. 


These food pouches are by far the best I've used! They are so easy to operate. The fact that the pouch opens on its side means it gives you easy access for filling and cleaning. You don't need any fiddly funnels or spoons you simply open the pouch, make sure the cap is on then stand it on its side and pour in. There is also a fill line on the side which is extremely handy. Once full you simply close by pressing down along the zip lock. These are incredibly durable and unless you have a mini hulk toddler then once it is sealed it will not open unless by an adult. 


So once your pouch is full either pop it in the fridge, a lunch bag with ice block or in the freezer. I love that they are freezer safe as it's a great way of reducing waste. You can even use your frozen nom nom pouch as a make shift ice block for your child's lunch and it will be nice and defrosted by lunch time. 


You can pretty much fill the pouches with any liquid as long as it doesn't contain large solid items. We mostly do smoothies but you can also fill it with soup or if you are weaning it's perfect for purees. The pouch can not go in a microwave but if you need to heat the contents up just simply sit the pouch in a warm jug of water until it reaches the desired temperature. 

When it comes to cleaning them you simply rinse and pop them in the top rack of the dishwasher. Alternatively you can clean them out with a bottle brush and as it's a side opening it cleans easily. 

Nom Nom Kids also do really handy snack bags. They come in two fun designs a blue monster and a pink monster. On the other side is a handy space to pop your child's name. The snack bags work the same as the pouches with the respect that they are sealed by a very strong double zip lock. 


The snack bags are a great size for transporting toddler snacks around and once sealed keeps items fresh. 

Both the pouches and the snack bags contain no nasty chemicals and is a fantastic alternative to shop bought pouches. 

These Nom Nom pouches and snack bags really are fantastic and we are thoroughly enjoying using them. If you would like to find out more check their website at www.nomnomkids.co.uk.









Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Valentines day is just around the corner and its a great time of year to incorporate some easy food art fun into your little ones meals. Food art doesn't have to be complicated, only a few extra minutes can make a meal or snack more fun or educational.



Putting food on a stick is a way to instantly make a meal more fun! Sometimes just changing things up is a great way to keep kids interested in food or to encourage picky eaters to try new foods.


So to make some valentines fruity sticks you will need some wooden skewers and a heart cookie cutter. You can use whatever fruit you like but I went for strawberries and watermelon just because they were red.


Simply cut hearts into your fruit using your cookie cutters and then carefully place them onto the skewers. That's it, it's that easy! Enjoy as part of breakfast by perhaps dipping it into some yogurt or having as a healthy snack.




Sunday, 22 January 2017

Peanut butter was not a big part of my life when I was growing up, my parents didn't like it so myself and my sister never ate it. It just became one of those things in life I thought I didn't like. I never actually offered Jessica any peanut butter maybe for the same reason, it was something I never bought so it didn't occur to me to let Jessica try it for herself. I got given a free jar so I then thought I may as well try it with her but she said she didn't like it. I tried some myself and was pleasantly surprised. I didn't think wow where has this been all my life but it was definitely something I could start using. When it came to weaning Oliver I had no hesitation in offering him peanut butter from an early age (we have no history of nut allergy's). Well it was safe to say that he loved it. He really is the peanut butter fan in the house.


National peanut butter day is on the 24th of January so I've complied a round up of some fantastic recipes for you to try out all containing the magic ingredient! Some of them are really going to surprise you!




Sweet Treats

1) Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Oat Muffins (Kat's Delicious Kitchen)

A super yummy chocolate muffin that children will love.


2) Chocolate Chia Cookies ( My Fussy Eater)

Chocolate cookies with health benefits and only 4 ingredients!


3) Chickpea Banana Chocolate Slice ( My Kids Lick The Bowl)

High in fiber and protein you could almost get away with having it for breakfast!


4) Peanut Butter Granola Bar (Tiny Tummy Tales)

A fantastic recipe containing lots of healthy ingredients topped with chocolate, a sure winner!



Breakfast Ideas

5) Peanut Butter Honey Pancakes (Baby Toddler Foods)

These are perfect for a weekend treat breakfast


6) Peanut Butter Porridge Cups (All About Kids)

A delicious breakfast cup made with banana, oats and peanut butter to keep tummies full until lunch.


7) Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Smoothie (My Fussy Eater)

A smoothie recipe that includes chocolate but is still healthy enough for breakfast with some hidden spinach included!


8) Banana French Toast Sushi (Simply Hendrix)

A great alternative to traditional french toast.



Healthy Snacks

9) Raspberry and Coconut Energy Bites (My Fussy Eater)

An amazing healthy energy bite filled with protein and no refined sugar.


10) Banana Peanut Butter Sweet Potato Sandwiches (Healthy Little Foodies)

We love a banana and peanut butter combination and would never have thought of adding sweet potato to it!


11) Peanut Butter Oaty Protein Balls (All About Kids)

A great yummy energy ball full of goodies and no refined sugar.


12) Raspberry Peanut Butter Freezer Bites (Healthy Little Foodies)

A great refreshing healthy sweet snack only containing 5 ingredients.



Main Meals

13) Chicken Satay Burgers (Healthy Little Foodies)

A fantastic healthy meal that all the family will love.


14) Kid Friendly Vegetarian Chilli (Kitchen Counter Chronicles)

A superb vegetarian chilli recipe with a surprise addition of peanut butter.


15) Satay Pork and Egg Fried Rice (Babyled Blog)

A great Chinese dish that is quick and easy to make especially when you marinate the night before!


16) Satay Vegetable Noodles (My Fussy Eater)

A quick and easy 5 minute meal for the whole family




Thursday, 12 January 2017

So when any child free opportunity arises I tend to try and bake. I had an unprecedented 5 whole hours to myself on Tuesday so I tried to bake as many things as possible as I really needed to re stock my freezer stash! I made some of our favourtites including carrot savoury flapjack and some banana and blueberry muffins. I still had some free time and for some reason I still had ample carrots left over so impulsively started to pull together a carrot muffin. 



As I know my banana and blackberry muffin recipe works a treat I used that as a base but obviously decided to sub the blackberries for carrots and I chucked in a few apples. I was actually pleasantly surprised at how well this came together. Oliver absolutely loved them. I decided to give them a second go so I could also get some pictures and tweaked them slightly and now they are spot on! These muffins are free from added sugar and only contains naturally occurring sugars. These are perfect as part of a healthy breakfast, lunch or a snack. I hope your little one enjoys them. 



Carrot and Apple Muffins

Ingredients

1 banana, mashed
2 medium carrots (80g), grated and excess water squeezed out
2 small apples, grated and excess water squeezed out
2 eggs, beaten
175g of wholemeal flour
1 tsp of cinnamon
1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
60g of unsalted butter
!/2 cup of milk


Method

Melt the butter in a pan over a low heat then leave to one side. Sift the flour, cinnamon and bicarbonate of soda into a large bowl. Add the beaten eggs to the banana mixture and then add the melted butter and mix really well. Then add the grated carrot and apple to the banana mixture and make sure its all combined with the banana mixture. Add the wet bowl to the dry bowl and stir gently. add the milk in slowly and only use what you need. 



If the mixture seems too dry add a little more at a time until you get the right consistency. Then transfer into a greased muffin tin or use silicone cases. I put this in at 160 fan for around 25 to 30 minutes until they are well risen and springy. If you do not have a fan oven perhaps use 180 and keep and eye on them from around 20 minutes. 



Friday, 18 November 2016

Every Monday Jessica comes home from school with a new homework theme. This week in mathematical understanding her reception class are learning about sequences and patterns. They are being encouraged to create repeating patterns with objects from home. So we have been creating patterns using lego, cotton reels and even using Oliver's cars.


Like most four year old's Jessica is well and truly excited about Christmas. I just love seeing the excitement build so we are slowly getting our Christmas on. To help with repeating patterns I created a really simple but fun after school activity using bits and pieces from our craft drawer.

I decided to make some Christmas baubles as they are fairly fast and easy to make! Firstly I traced some circles onto a piece of coloured paper using a tin can then I added some bead caps. I then cut them out and drew on different lined patterns. I used a hole punch to create a hole so that once finished some ribbon can be added. 


I raided the craft drawer for suitable things to decorate the baubles with. I picked out some buttons, sequins and foil shapes but you can really choose whatever you like. I used our oogaa baby divided plate as a craft holder as it's the perfect size for craft projects. 

On her return from school she then got stuck into creating her own repeating patterns. She chose what items and colours to use on each bauble. I helped her squeeze out the glitter glue along each line and she then stuck down all the items in her chosen order.


This activity is not only great for creating repeating patterns but also great fine motor practice depending on the size of the items you are using. I was surprised at how much concentration she had doing this considering she had just finished a long day at school but she made sure to carefully choose each item ensuring that it matched the rest of the pattern. 


Not only is this a very easy repeating pattern activity but it's also a great Christmas activity for preschoolers to create their own masterpieces.







Monday, 14 November 2016

It's no secret that I like making food fun. I especially like using cookie cutters to help create fun food extra quick. Cookie cutters are great if you don't feel able to create something free hand. I was thrilled when Eatwell UK asked me to review The Lunch Punch. 


If you have not heard about The Lunch Punch they are sandwich cutters designed to create fun designs maximising most of the sandwich minimising waste. 

They come in 5 different designs with 4 punches in each design. There is the a very girly sand wishes pack that contains a fairy, a heart, a frog and flowers. There is a critter set which contains an elephant, butterfly, a dog and a whale. There is a sweet treat set which can create ice creams, a cupcake and a birthday cake. There is a vrrrm set containing a car, train, truck and plane. Finally there is a match and munch set which contains 4 different jigsaw puzzles which is the set we are testing out. 



The Lunch Punch is thicker than a traditional cookie cutter so it allows for the easy cutting of a sandwich. It's made of food certified plastic, contains no nasty chemicals and is dishwasher safe. 


It's really easy to use and works great on sandwiches, eggy bread and toast. When using it in a lunch box with small compartments it really maximises the amount of sandwich you use ensuring you don't waste a lot. 



The Lunch Punch definitely adds more fun to lunch boxes and I can't wait to try out the other designs. You can buy them from EatWell UK by clicking here.

Friday, 28 October 2016

Jessica is obsessed with presents, well I don't blame her really. It's always nice to receive a present. She also loves picking out other people's presents and then decorating the wrapping paper! I'm too much of a control freak to let her wrap any presents, but that may be about to change!


We were lucky enough to try out some brilliant new gift wrap called Instawrap. This is a brand new product set to revolutionise the gift wrap industry. The paper contains a self adhesive glue, the same found on stamps, that allows you to lick the paper so it cuts out the need for sticky tape. It is 100% recyclable and comes in 4 gorgeous Christmas designs. 


It's such a genius but simple idea! We had lots of fun testing it out. Firstly I cut out some sheets for her and told her to choose some books to wrap. She absolutely loved this!! She instantly got right into it and found it so easy to lick the paper. The glue doesn't have any taste and is really no different to licking a stamp or envelope. She loved perfecting her corners then licking the paper to stick it down. Once she had wrapped each book she wanted to add a bow to each present. On the back of each sheet of paper is a handy how to guide and template for a bow. Again I cut them out for her but she did all the licking and sticking and made each bow. She was so precise about it's placement. 


She thoroughly enjoyed wrapping all the books and she did such a good job! I think I'll have a helper this year when it comes to wrapping presents! Instawrap is so easy to use and the creative options you can give yourself is only limited by your imagination. I can't wait to do my Christmas present wrapping this year!


To find out more about Instawrap and to buy your own click here