Starting School: Tips to Help your Child to Adjust

Helping Your Child Adjust to School
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On Tuesday morning, he bounced down the hallway with an enormous smile on his face. When he saw me, the smile only got wider and he started jumping up and down on the spot. It was his first day of school. My little boy was ready to start school, so ready. I gave him a cuddle, exclaimed loudly how exciting it was that it was school day and scolded him for growing up. I keep telling the kids that they need to stay little. They always ignore me. He giggled and puffed out his chest proud of the fact that he was now such a big boy. He declared that today all his dreams were going to come true. He was going to big school!

First day of School
Trent’s First day of school

He proudly dressed himself in his uniform and went to grab his bag to leave. “Hang on”, he said, and ran into the bathroom, stood on a little stool and gazed at his reflection. “Yep,” he declared, nodding. “Just right”. Then he picked up his bag and scampered out the door and into the car. His big brother followed, a little more reluctantly. School isn’t his favourite thing in life. “But it’s OK Mum,” Jonty said, “I’m kind of looking forward to going back to school now. I want to play with Noah and Corinne every day again.” Social life is the most important aspect of school after all.

Trent has now completed his first week of school. I’m so proud of him. He has blitzed it with flying colours. He’s a confident little man and has settled in wonderfully. Mind you, there was one source of consternation when he arrived home after his first day of school. “I can’t read.” he sighed with disappointment, “I’ve been to school, and I can’t read. When is that going to happen?”

Sibling Photo First Day of School

Despite his easy transition from Kindy to Big School, there still is an adjustment period for little ones to get used to school life. Jonty also is having a period of adjustment from holiday mode back into school mode. Here are some tips to help your child get back into a school routine or adjust to full time schooling.

1. Serve Healthy Foods

Serving your child the right type of food will aid concentration, maintain stamina and increase alertness. Make sure your child starts the day with a healthy breakfast. My boys particularly love oats. Trent normally cooks his own porridge. He needs help getting the quantities and turning on the stove, but he will sit stirring it until it is ready. Jonty is a big fan of raw muesli. Jonty summed up why it is so good for them to eat a slow release food such as oats yesterday when he told me, “I like eating muesli better than cereal now because when I ate cereal I used to get hungry before morning tea, and then I would be sitting in class thinking, ‘When is morning tea?’ But now I don’t even think about it and we have break time, and I eat and I’m not hungry again until lunch.” It’s not vanity to admit when he said that I was giving myself an inner high five, is it?

2. Ask questions about their day. Be interested.

For some children and/or parents this will be easier than others. I find with boys in particular, I need to deliberately ask questions about their day in order to get dialogue happening. And even then, Trent has given me the “I forgot” response on 3 out of his 4 school days! I then find it useful to ask very specific questions to obtain answers. Some examples of questions I ask are:

Who did you play with today?
What was your favourite thing you did today?
What did you do in (subject) today?
Did you find something tricky at school today?
How did you fail today?
Did your teacher do something funny today?
Who is kind in your class?
Talking about your child’s day sometimes isn’t easy, I find they are not always forthcoming with answers. I find around the dinner table at night Alex and I always ask each child something specific about their day. Besides getting to know what your child does while away from you, being interested in their day communicates buckets to your child that you care about them and what they do. It is also setting yourself up for a lifetime of communication with your child.

3. Visit their old Kindy/Daycare

Trent had half days at school this week to ease. (He cried when he found out he needed to leave at lunchtime.) On Thursday we went to his old Kindy and he delivered her a letter and showed her what he looked like in his new uniform. Oh my, this was such a special moment. It brought tears to my eyes, and to his Kindy teacher! It was also nice to give the Kindy teacher and aide feedback on how he adjusted to big school. I know the Kindy spends so much time preparing them for big school, it was so nice to report back that their hard work had been worthwhile. You should have seen the size of both of their faces when they heard Trent’s tale that the teacher said that Trent and a former Kindy friend had been the best listeners that day. There were High Fives all around! The adults all beamed with pride as Trent explained how he learned the “b” sound chuckled as he seriously told his Kindy teacher that, perhaps when she become a Prep teacher when she grew up. I love it how children often categorise their Kindy teacher’s as one of their own.

Kindy Teacher
On Trent’s last day of Kindy last year with his teacher.


4. Get to Bed early!

To be truthful, my problem here wasn’t getting the children to bed. The greater challenge was encouraging the boys to go to sleep once they were in their rooms!

Having a good night’s sleep will greatly assist your child to be alert and engaged in learning the next day. Set an early bedtime, particularly for younger children during the beginning of school. They use large reservoirs of energy during their school day, well rested children often will achieve more during their school day. You want to set them up to succeed!

5. Start establishing a morning and afternoon routine.

Routine  is so important for children. It gives them stability and predictability. When a child is secure and knows what is expected of him/her and when, it eliminates worry and helps them to focus on end results instead of worrying too much about process.

In the mornings, set your routine up so their is a breakfast routine. Teach your child to be responsible for packing the bag with everything necessary for the day. If you wish your child to do any chores before school, also establish this routine now during the start of the school year. In our house the children are expected to Make their bed, tidy their rooms and clean their teeth in addition to packing their bag and getting dressed. I generally do not get them to do too much more in the mornings, because it is always my goal for children to exit the home as calm as possible. Extra jobs would increase the morning rush for us, but may work for other families.

It may take a few weeks for you to work out the perfect routine for your family. Each year this plan will most likely need tweaking. Some parents find they need to let their child play immediately after school, others plunge straight into homework and other activities and then the children can have uninterrupted play for the rest of the afternoon.

It will be less work for you throughout the year, if you spend extra time during these first weeks

Explain to your child upfront if you are experimenting with what works for the best for your family, and let them give you feedback on what how they like to complete tasks and unwind. (Although they also need to know that you have the final word in routine application. You have a lot more considerations to factor in that they may not be aware of.)

6. Don’t plan too much. (After school and Weekend)

Your kids do a lot at school. Make it easy for them to have R&R after school and on the weekend, especially in these first weeks back at school. We are making sure that the pace of our weekend enables the children to recover from their first week back. So even though we are socialising, it will be laid back and low stress. I also limit after school activity. Normally I only allow for one extra-curricular activity per week. I knew this would be too much for Trent though, and pulled him out of after school activities until March when his little body may not get as exhausted from learning new routines.

7. Expect Back to School Tiredness

Both boys were mentally and emotionally exhausted by the end of this week. I’m so relieved they only had a four day week to begin!

It is common for a child to have little emotionally break downs during the first week of school. Be patient and understanding with them. It takes a lot of energy to be well behaved at school all day, recognise that little meltdowns when your child gets home is also because he or she feels emotionally safe not to hold the tension in anymore. Of course you need to teach your child to be respectful still, but allow them to release their pent up emotion. Give them lots of cuddles and reassure them that they are doing well and it’s OK to feel overwhelmed, but give them strategies to overcome any problems they might be worrying about.

Giving your child a chance for physical release is an excellent way to assist an emotional child. Giving time in the backyard to play or kick a ball, stopping at a park on the way home or packing swimmers and dropping in at the local pool might help curb the temper and let them release energy through play and activity.


Did you have children starting school this week? Any first timers? What strategies have implemented to help the transition from holiday mode back into school routine?

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Moments in Childhood – Spiderman Visit in the Shower

I was showering. Spiderman appeared silently and stood at the screen door watching.

“Hi Spiderman.” I reply. Sometimes it’s best to treat random with normality.

He continued to stare.

Then it was gravely stated.

“It’s just me Mummy in the shirt you gave me.”

“Oh, that’s good to know.” I give a relieved sigh. “I was feeling a bit awkward having spiderman watch me have a shower.”

With a giggle and a skip Spiderman disappears and I continue to wash my hair.

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Potty Training Triplets – Update

Potty training triplets is not for the faint hearted. It seems that my mantra during these days is, “You can wash your hands with soap.” I say this to myself constantly as I encounter all types of undesirable outcomes and my hands often come into contact with all sorts of elements and germs. Oh my, the germs. Best not to think about them for too long. Although it is very necessary to think about them because the triplets certainly do not think about the wealth of virus, germs and diseases that can be associated with toilets and all areas within its vicinity. I am not a germaphobic my heart is so often quivering as I see them enthusiastically embrace the toilet bowl and put their hands in regions that hands should not be.

When I started potty training I thought I would follow the triplets progress here on the blog. Then my blog got broken and I lost the momentum. So, I will give you an update of what has been happening in the month or two since.

Firstly. My success story. The girl.

I’m so proud of Imogen. She was pretty well potty trained during the day within the first month. A lot of people had said that she would be easier to potty train. I made no assumptions. My sister has three daughters and two sons, and her sons have been far easier to potty train then the daughters. I’m very happy for her that she fulfilled the stereotypical prophecy and is confident going to the potty, and in fact now she favours the big toilet. Go girl power!

It was obvious right from the start that she had excellent bladder control. Initially Immy found the whole concept of the toilet abhorrent. Therefore, she was holding on for hours at a time until she had a nappy put on her or until she just couldn’t hold on anymore and then the currents would gush. I had stopped her sleeping in nappies during the day so she wouldn’t be waiting for them, but she was still holding on.

The first time we had a waterfall in the potty she looked at me, completely disgusted as it happened and then gave me the cold shoulder for about an hour afterwards. I had been sitting watching a TV show with her while she sat on the pot, stroking her back because she desperately needed to go, but didn’t want to do it and didn’t want to sit still enough for it to happen. When it did happen her looks and actions communicated very clearly, “That was so disgusting. I can’t believe you made me do that. Peeing into a nappy is so much more civilised.”

potty training triplets
During the ‘Make Imogen Relax So She Does a Wee’ period. Big brother Trent was very caring. He’s stroking her back for her while she grudgingly watched TV.

The breakthrough moment came when I started dishing up bribes. We now have potty lollies situated in our pantry. They are housed in this particularly stunning one of it’s kind art on a jar. Made by eldest when he was in Kindy. Despite it’s looks, it isn’t anything sinister. It’s a self portrait, and at the time, he was keen on including bones in all drawings of people. The poor love also worked out at a later stage of his development that his arms don’t grow out the sides of his head.

Rewards for Potty Training Triplets/Multiples

It turns out that children will do amazing things for an M&M, not the least of which includes peeing in a potty. After the first day of potty lollies, Imogen was up bright and early, parked her potty at my feet while I worked on the computer and sat there for almost an hour until a wee was produced!

Girl on potty
OK, so it was first thing in the morning, she still had bed hair and breakfast on her face.

Within a day or so, she had worked out what the feeling was and knew when to head to the potty. By the end of the week she was taking herself to the toilet to wee and poo. Champion child. She still does love her nappies which she wears at nights. She is known to immediately do a wee in them when she gets it on after bath time, which is a little disappointing, but hey, I haven’t had to clean up any dirty pants for over a month now of hers, so I can easily forgive her transgressions.

Potty Training Toddler Girl
Proud big brother again.

The boys on the other hand. Well, it is discouraging work to say the least. They also love receiving potty lollies. They will go to the toilet most of the time when asked, and are very good at peeing on demand in order to receive chocolate. However they hardly ever take themselves to the toilet and will happily wee all over their clothes and remain that way until discovered sopping wet and smelly. Never, ever have they done a poo in the potty. Which means that I have cleaned countless dirty pants. And my boys are great at dirtying said pants many times a day. And to gross you out further, they mostly don’t produce the lumps that you just drop into the toilet. There pants are more likely the take into the backyard, put in a garden bed and hose down with a high power hose. Come springtime, our garden is going to be positively blooming with all the organic fertiliser I am dosing it with.

On Saturday I declared that I was giving up and putting them back in nappies. They have worn nappies the previous two days, but really it didn’t have anything to do with my declaration, we were just out of the house both days, and I only take the boys out of the house in pants for short trips. For obvious reasons. Imogen always leaves the house in pants now, because when she needs to go she asks. The boys don’t and while I clean them up, there needs to be someone else around to watch the other two. Also, ever since they were newborns, the identical boys mostly toilet in sync. So while I’m cleaning one up, the other is normally waiting dirty or wet, so it’s a very time consuming process while out and leaves me spending far too much in public bathrooms, which are one of the least desirable places to hang out in.

The reason why I am hesitating, is the can go to the toilet for wees. They just need the prompting. It seems a shame to go back on all our hard work. Also, my in home carer, Miss Stacey, has been doing a great job with toi

let training, and it feels like I would be giving up on her work too. (Sidenote: I’m grateful that she has also cleaned up her fair share of dirty pants also. One of the yuckiest jobs in the world.) To be truthful she’s a lot better and reminding them to go to the toilet. Normally I am so busy doing other things I will forget. Either that, they will be really focussed on an activity, so I give them a bit longer before insisting on them doing the trip to the bathroom and the inevitable happens during that time.

Another reason for persisting with the pants and just putting up with cleaning dirty and wet pants is that triplets are all about equality. This is one of the reasons we have been potty training together. They are very good at looking at each other and demanding the same treatment. I’m afraid that if I start putting nappies on the others Immy could regress, because like I’ve said, she still loves her nappies. She may have meltdowns and stop going to the toilet in defiance to being the only kid in pants.

I have a feeling that come the warm weather the boys will go a lot better having no pants on. I think it will give them a better awareness of when they were going. That’s the way it was with my 2nd son anyway. He would go to the toilet (he never used the potty, which was fine with me) if he had no pants on, but if he had pants on then he would always wet them.

And so, here I am today. They are still in the jammies and I’m trying to decide which way to go pants – nappies. Let me know what you think!

Toddler Triplets Eating
I thought I should include a photo of the triplets fully clothed. It does illustrate the triplets are all for equality though. Look at Immy checking out she had the same lunch as Jayden!

Linking up today with Essentially Jess for I Blog On Tuesday. (IBOT)

PS. If you are having trouble commenting, please feel free to copy that comment and leave it on my Facebook page, I love hearing the feedback.

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Big Book of Aussie Dinosaurs

Dinosaurs are just one of those topics that immediately capture a child’s interest. Large scary creatures (that can also looked friendly according to an artists depiction) certainly encourage imagination and curiosity. Scholastic sent the Big Book of Aussie Dinosaurs by Kel Richards and illustrated by Glen Singleton to review. My immediate reaction was one of delight, because I love that it is Australian.

Excuse my little models bed hair. Is any other mother of boys regularly guilty of not combing her kids hair?

My grandparents used to live in Hughenden, close to where the Muttaburrasaurus was found, so I was well aware of that dinosaur, but when I was reading this book to the kids, I was surprised just how many Aussie dinosaurs there were! We visited my grandfather in Hughenden when Jonty was very still a baby. The kids, especially my nephew who is older than Jonty, especially loved visiting the dinosaur museum there. After I read the book, I kind of wished my grandfather still lived there so we would have a convenient excuse to visit it again. I’m sure we will get there again someday, but not in the foreseeable future! You kind of need a reason to travel the many hours to outback Queensland.

My Grandfather with my niece and nephew and Muttaburrasaurus in 2007 – the kids look so small! 

Trent has been learning about dinosaurs at Kindy, so when I mentioned this book to his teacher, she was immediately excited, so Trent brought it in to share with his Kindy friends. (I have a feeling it’s going to be on the teacher’s list to obtain a Kindy copy for next year’s class.) When he brought it home he said that his friends loved it because it had lots of funny pictures in it. Well done Glen Singleton – your vibrant illustrations are certainly loveable! In particular Trent told me that they laughed very loudly for a long time (see below) where a plant eater was squirting tomato sauce. I got him to pose with that picture and he said to say in my blog (so I will quote directly), “They likeded the piece when he put tomato sauce on. They laugheded.” (I’m trying my best to get him to drop the double “d” sound at the end of words, although I’m tempted not to. It’s so cute.

The favourite page.

I’m sure they learned a lot about dinosaurs as well as enjoying the illustrations. There are loads of pictures and facts on every page – and even a pronunciation guide to help kids say all those tricky dino names! They can find out which Aussie dinosaur was the biggest, or the fastest, or the hungriest – and everything else you never knew about the dinosaurs that roamed down under! There is even an Aussie Dinosaur Gallery at the end of the book!

If you have kids who loves dinosaurs, I’m pretty sure this is a book they will adore.

So, have you or your kids heard of the Muttaburrasaurus?

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Screen Time Suspension

Don’t you love it? There’s 120 acres of property to roam outside our back door, motorbikes, dogs, swimming pool, etc. yet I constantly have children begging for indoor activities that requires eyes glued to screens. Jonty had some friends around on a weekend, and I walk in and find them like this.

In our house this week, there is a suspension, until further notice, of the children’s screen time activities. So this week, and possibly longer, the TV is not being turned on, DVD’s are not being played, the DS and Leap Pad is out of action, computer games are not allowed and playing games on phones are prohibited.

I am not against any of the above, but there have been addictive behaviours creeping in, and there has been a lot of discontent and unhappiness. It’s crazy that the joy the child gets from playing the safe little games and shows can totally disintegrate and be not so harmless once the device is turned off. Trent particularly has been very cantankerous and is constantly begging to play or watch something on a screen. When the privilege is denied, there is much weeping, wailing and the preschool equivalent of  gnashing teeth – normally in the form of a tantrum or incessant whining.

Already it has been so much calmer since Friday when I pronounced the no screen verdict. There was much mourning on Friday. Happily, Saturday was Trent’s birthday, and except for asking a few times, they had plenty of new toys to play with and a party so the transition was smoother.

The ban was temporarily lifted for half an hour yesterday. The piano tuner arrived and the triplets, who fancy themselves as pianists were fascinated and constantly trying to bash on the keyboard, so I had to take desperate measures to divert their attention. Good old Chuggington saved the day.

Of course, it’s more work for me at times. It’s often so convenient to let the kids watch ABC 2 while I get a few jobs done in the morning, or let Trent play my phone while the triplets sleep in the middle of the day while I answer some emails or do some other little job. We don’t have the TV on all day, so I haven’t found that we have increased the non-TV activities as much, we have always had imaginative play, outdoor time and craft activities during our day. Instead, I’m finding that Trent has got used to the idea and is finding his own way to occupy himself during the times when the grown ups are doing other things. At the moment he is colouring-in and before that he had been vacuuming.

I’ve been suprised that the triplets have happily adjusted to not having their daily fix of television viewing after the bath, as has been their tradition.

Peppa Pig’s assistance with after bath activities. The triplets rather like a spot of ABC 2 while they get their PJ’s on.

It would be tempting to have a complete shutdown and completely ban screens totally. Unfortunately, this is not the world we live in anymore. It is important that children learn self control with electronic devices, even if during these early days the self control is imposed. In time, the lesson will be learned. The challenge will be re-introducing the screens into the household, and yet maintaining harmony, contentment and encouraging the children to be motivated to find  off-screen activities on their own.

At the moment I’m considering a chart with time limits attached. Once the time is gone, the children should be able to see that it is over for the day and think of other things to do so that we don’t have the continual begging and negotiation for more electronic time.

So do you have little screen addicts at your home? What are some of your strategies to regulate screen behaviour? I love hearing other peoples strategies.

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Soft Playdough

I cam across a recipe for super soft playdough the other day while I was wasting time researching on Pinterest. It was one of those Pinterest moments where I thought, I’m going to do that as soon as I can. (As opposed to the 200 ideas that are still filed away for future use.) I shared here that the triplets have been very demanding of late, so I recognised that this would be an easy thing to make and play with. As it turned out, the triplets enjoyed it, but they weren’t in the mood at the time. (I’ll try again soon with them) Trent had his best friend around though, and the two of them had a fantastic time using this playdough.

It was a totally different sensory experience to normal playdough. The dough is really soft and smooth. It’s very moldable. It will stretch if you stretch it gently, but it also breaks apart easily. Even though it feels soft, it actually takes quite a bit of manipulation to play with. I could feel that the muscles in my fingers had received quite a workout playing with it. Which means it is a great activity for developing fine motor skills.

The recipe is super easy. It only has two ingredients – three if you put a few drops of food colouring in. Cornflour – and would you believe – Hair conditioner! As you can see below,  So it definitely isn’t edible playdough! The recipe advised 2 parts cornflour to 1 part conditioner, but to adjust the quantities if necessary. I certainly needed to add more cornflour. It was a little tricky to find the right consistency, having never seen it before. The first batch wasn’t as good as the second. I found it needed to be a little sticky as you finished mixing it in with a knife. Then you work it with your hands for a little bit and the stickiness goes away, to finish it off, I kneaded it on a bench sprinkled with cornflour, after that it no longer stuck to our hands very much and was still pliable. I used the cheapest ingredients I could find. The conditioner smelt like apples, so it was lovely to play with, and the playdough was soft on our hands and washed off easily.

But the best bit of all was playing!!!

Out came some playdough toys, and armed with two colours, the boys got stuck into playing. Pizza making was a big favourite. Even if mine kept getting flattened.

Then I started making a rocket. I was using lovely words like ‘cylinder’ and ‘cone’.

The boys were not so excited about the amazing learning opportunity I was presenting about the properties of 3 dimensional shapes. However they were very focussed on destroying my rocket ship before it even was completed. I had to go to extraordinary lengths to keep it safe!

Although it turned out that resistance was futile. Demolition was inevitable.

Once my rocket was obliterated, I started rolling playdough peas with my fingertips. Another excellent chance to develop fine motor skills. The boys weren’t too interested in that either, but wanted to squash my peas. This turned into an excellent training opportunity to teach self control and consideration. I explained to the boys, “I’m trying to roll a big pile of little peas with my fingers? Can you please not squash them?” There were a few squished at first, but I would say, “Oh dear, that makes me so frustrated because I’m trying to get a big pile. Can you please leave them so I can make a pile. Would you like to help me?” Eventually their hands would hover before they ceased and desisted! Excellent self control. The moment I asked for mushy peas they complied instantly!

Can you see yourself making and playing with this recipe? Let me know if you do!

Postscript: When we returned to play with this a few days later, the playdough was a lot harder and crumbly and we threw it out after that session, so it’s a bit of a one hit wonder. Although, perhaps different brands of conditioner might have greater success? I should also add, that it did crumble a little the first time, and was a little bit of messy play, but it did clean up OK, although I did hose the chairs off. It came out easily with water.

Today I’m linking up with Essentially Jess

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How to Catch a Monster

Chocolate Chip Cookies.

That’s how.

More precisely, a super-duper, yummy tummy chocolate chip cookie.

Oh my. I don’t believe in spoilers. But there you are. You now know the answer to the title of the book. Don’t be disappointed, you’ll still enjoy the story if you ever read it to your kids. And I highly advise that you do. Such a delightful little tale with totally bewitching illustrations. I got so caught up examining them that Trent was finished and begging me to turn the page.

The lovely people at Scholastic have been surprising me by sending me boxes of books. It has been totally, completely, utterly divine for the this little book lover. I thought it would be nice to share some favourites, because who knows, if they pop up when you are browsing a book club catalogue or see a title on the shelf, it’s always nice to have heard a recommendation.

I thought I would start with what has certainly been Trent and my favourite. “How to Catch a Monster” by Christina Bollenbach.

It really captured Trent’s imagination. Lukas is often scared by a monster at night, but decides to catch him by baking cookies, which of course are irresistible to monster taste buds.

I tell you, the delight that literature has brought my little boys as portrayed on his face in this picture warms this book loving mother’s heart. 

After seeing the entrapment, Trent was very insistent on baking his own batch of cookies. It hurts me to say that this is terminology he uses to refer to chocolate chip biscuits. This is the only drawback of the book. I have long insisted my children say ‘biscuits’ or ‘bikkies’. It’s the Australian (or British) way.

Anyway, personal quibbles aside, the story is really lovely. Not only does Lukas catch the monster, but they also have a frank discussion about scare tactics and they end up being the best of buddies. And you know it’s good because the story remained in the mind of a three year old enough that in a totally different context, with quite a gap of time between reading the story, Trent has wanted to make biscuits like the boy in the book.

We haven’t read the book for a little while, but today we made (white) chocolate chip cookies biscuits (there was the normal argument over semantics). This evening, I noticed that Trent had retrieved the book for his father to read him during bedtime stories.

So nice.

So. What do you say, biscuits or cookies?

Scholastic gifted me the books, but did not pay for me to endorse their products. My opinions are my own.

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Trent turns 1

There is few things in life that make my heart happier than celebrating my children’s birthdays. So hooray for the baby’s first birthday! You always have to have the first birthday cake photo, and I love this one capturing the thrill (and possibly sugar high) of eating your first birthday cake. Trent’s birthday was on Tuesday and he also had a first birthday party on Saturday. So he has now properly celebrated the momentous occassion of turning one, and now he can get down to the busy business of being one!

Teddy Bear Party – Games

The party went well, we had a first birthday Teddy Bears Picnic. The kids brought along their favourite teddy’s. Which was great for a game of “Musical Bears” which was basically Musical Chairs only instead of the kids sitting on chairs, they had to sit their bears on it. A little easier for that age group, and the kids LOVED it!


We also had teddy bear competitions We determined who had the biggest, smallest, best dressed and ‘fastest’. (Although no first place was declared in the teddy race and everyone got a prize!)



Teddy Bear Party – Food

After games we had afternoon tea. I was particularly happy with the service of this. I found some noodle boxes, which I bought in bulk which made them quite affordable. I wish I had found them at this price sooner, because I would have decorated the plain white boxes with glue and ribbon, perhaps some felt teddies glued on, would have also made a nice touch. But anyway, I filled the boxes with food and handed them out. So easy! It saved on preparation time, because I didn’t make a selection of goodies, the only baking was enough teddy bear shaped sultana muffins (nice and easy) for each child. I also included tiny teddies, chocolate teddy bikkies, a bag of fruit, a bag of gummi bears and a sandwich cut out in a teddy shape. One drawback was food wastage, as not all children ate everything. You could get the parents to choose the foods to go into the boxes to avoid this, but it would be a little more time consuming.


Teddy Bear Party – Party bags.

I couldn’t bring myself to buy cheap plastic toys that fairly promptly are disposed of for a one year old’s party. Instead I did goodie bags. (Bought the small clear plastic bags in bulk several years ago, had just enough left for each child.) I made teddy bear shaped sugar biscuits, iced them and put them in the bag with a few soft lollies. (in honour of the gummy baby and his little toothy pegs!) Much more economical, didn’t contribute to landfill and homemade always feels nicer to give away anyway!

Of course the birthday cake had to be a teddy bear! It’s actually become a family tradition. Mum made this cake for myself and my 2 sisters and brother. J bomb also had him. I was a bit rushed icing the cake, (was out the night before and didn’t start icing until 11:00pm. Eeep!) so I wasn’t 100% happy with him, and somehow I cut him so he was quite lanky. But never mind, the size of The Baby’s smile when he first saw the cake reassured me that bubs aren’t to fussed with the finer details!


It was a lovely party. The weather was lovely, pefect for children playing in the garden. The baby had such fun toddling around to his heart’s content, there was always someone to look after him! Being a social baby, he also loved having so many kids to watch and be around. I think it’s safe to assume he enjoyed the celebration.

On his actual birthday The Baby (for now, fast turning into The Toddler!) decided to start the celebrations quite close to 4:01am, the time he was actually born 12 months earlier. Needless to say, The Accountant and I considered this gesture completely unnecessary. In the afternoon his 4 cousins, 2 Aunty’s, Grandma, Grandad, Great-Grandad and Great-Nana came around to visit and help consume cake and teddy bear biscuits. Quite the family affair! Such a blessed boy to be surrounded by people who so completely love and dote over him.


We feel so very blessed that God has added Trent to our family. He is our little mischievious monkey, full of cheeky smiles. He’s cuddly and cute as pie!

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