Thursday, September 7, 2023

Improving Kids Skills In The Kitchen

 Are you interested in improving your kid’s cooking skills? This is a great idea and will ensure they are well prepared for later life challenges. Here are some ways to do this. 

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Choose Delicious Choices 

When it comes to getting your children involved in the kitchen, it is all about enticing them with delicious food choices. If you are cooking things they won’t enjoy eating then you will have little luck getting them to cook it in the first place. However, if you are inviting them to cook sweet treats with you then you are far more likely to get a yes answer out of them. Don’t be alarmed that you will be filling your kids with sugar, just because we say sweet treats. There are healthy options and alternatives out there that are both fun to cook and delicious. If you are looking for ideas that are tasty and sweet then how about an apple turnover recipe for dessert

Prep For Mess 

Having your kids in the kitchen will always end with a messy kitchen, there is no avoiding this. It is okay for your kitchen to be a mess and for your children to have fun while they are in the kitchen. Flour all over the kitchen side? Don’t worry about it, get over the mess and have fun making memories with your children. Mess can always be cleaned up and it will never stay like that. The flour can be wiped, the dishes can be washed, the important thing is you and your children have fun together. 

Kid Proof Your Kitchen 

You will need to kid proof the kitchen. This is important whether you are planning to cook or bake with your kids. If you don’t do this, then there’s a chance that they might suffer burns or minor injuries such as cuts while cooking. There’s a few ways that you can kid proof your kitchen. For example, you could think about investing in a heat induction hob. The benefit of a heat induction hob is that it only heats the surface of the pan or pot being used. This means that you’ll never have to worry about accidental burns. There are also ovens where the door slides underneath out of sight, again preventing issues with burns. Alternatively, you may want to consider purchasing some small kid friendly kitchen tools that will be perfect if you’re teaching little ones to cook. 

Cooking Classes

You might also want to think about exploring cooking classes. Cooking classes are great fun and they can be suitable for the whole family. This means that it’s something you can do together with your kids either at the weekend or even after school. It’s often just a matter of finding a class that matches your schedule and fits in with your family plans. 

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Be Patient 

Next, you should make sure that you are patient with your kids when you are cooking or baking. It’s important to be aware that they are never going to get things right the first time. There’s always going to be a little trial and error here. Let’s take baking cookies as an example. Baking cookes can be tricky because you need to get the ingredients right and ensure that you are preparing them correctly. If you don’t do this, then they’re not going to rise properly. You may know how to do this but for kids, it’ll take a little time and that’s okay. Of course, you can always help them by using tricks such as setting up a YouTube video that they can follow along with. 

Add More Fun 

Finally, you might want to think about making it more fun for your kids. There are lots of ways to do this. For instance, you might want to think about setting up a shop. This is a great way to make it a little educational too because you can add in different processes such as buying the treats with fake money. You can also create menus and take pictures of your little restaurant. The important thing here is to use your imagination and explore lots of different possibilities. 

We hope you found this article helpful and that it gave you some useful tips and tricks on how to help your kids get started in the kitchen. Asking your children to help out in the kitchen will prepare them for adult life and give them skills they will always remember. Children are also far less likely to rely on unhealthy fast food options if they know how to cook and what to cook. 

Monday, September 4, 2023

They Grow Up


Since I was young, I have loved reading.  It was always something I made time for.  Amelia Bedelia when I was a little girl, Nancy Drew, the babysitters club, R.L Stine, Christopher Pike, Stephen King, romance novels and mysteries. 

When my kids were small, I didn’t have a lot of time to read, but when I did have some moments to myself, that’s what I was doing.   

Years ago, we had a membership to a local hotel pool. I had visions of reading on a lounger, while my kids swam. That NEVER happened, because they were too young and needed supervision. 

When we made the decision to put in a pool, I couldn’t wait to float on a lounger and read a book.  The first few summers it rarely happened.  Between work, the kids soccer, and things around the house, the only pool time I really had was with the kids.

This summer though, I have spent more time reading by (or floating in) the pool than the last 3 years combined.  Why? Because kids grow up. 

My two rarely got along when they were younger.  Even at ages where I should have been able to leave them alone, I couldn’t - because someone would get hurt.

This year though, what a difference. They have both grown and matured so much. 

It makes me happy that I can have some down time to enjoy on my own, but it also makes me catch my breath a little.  They are 13 and 16. The oldest is taking virtual drivers Ed classes this summer, and will soon be going for his G1 (learners permit).

My Facebook memories show me all the photos I posted when they were little, and it’s like a time warp.  Transported back to where I felt like I was in over my head…trying to enjoy all the moments, but being frustrated with how hard some days were;  wishing for a little space, a little breathing room. Now, here we are - that time has finally arrived. 

I am so looking forward to seeing what the world has in store for my boys….  But I will still be over here, holding my breath a little as I watch. Remembering how their tiny little hands fit so well in mine. Remembering what it was like to watch them sleep, so tired out from a busy day.

They grow up.

Tuesday, August 22, 2023

5 Enchanting Ways To a help Your Kids Embrace Magic & Mystery

Credit - Pixabay CC0

Magic and mystery often don’t get the love that they deserve. However, they have the ability to provide enchanting experiences that can blow a child’s mind. As a parent, the sight of their stunned faces will live long in the memory too.

Knowing that you want to tap into the magic is one thing, but actively doing it is another. With the right strategy in place, it’ll cast a winning spell for all the family to enjoy. Here’s all you need to know.

1- Dip Into The World Of Wizards

When thinking about magical worlds, it is virtually impossible to ignore wizards. And one boy wizard stands out as a cultural phenomenon. As such, knowing where to watch Harry Potter movies online can be the perfect starting point. All eight movies in the HP franchise are sure to win the kids over. Once they fall in love with the films, it can be a great gateway to reading at a more advanced level.

Harry Potter isn’t the only wizardry story to consider. Merlin and The Vampire Diaries are popular choices. Meanwhile, teens are likely to love Twilight. The whole world of witches, wizards, and vampires will truly unlock a love of creative mysteries.

2- Play Magical Role Playing Games

Watching movies and reading literature are both great ways to embrace the magical world. Not least when kids want to keep themselves entertained. As a parent, though, you will want to participate in the activities too. After all, it won’t be long before the kids no longer ask for your involvement. Films are still a good option. But role-playing games offer another fantastic solution that can be enjoyed by all. 

Video games like World of Warcraft work well. In fact, they offer a chance for you to game together when you’re apart, such as when working away. Board games such as Archmage or Fairy Tale Inn highlight the fact that there is something for kids of different ages.

Credit - Pixabay CC0

3- Embrace Creative Writing

One of the main benefits of embracing magical features is that it builds a creative mindset. There is no better way to support this than through writing and artistic exercises. Youngsters can create fun characters ranging from fairies to monsters while parents help them build the story. They could also draw or paint their characters, bringing their vision to life in a very engaging manner. Your praise will mean a lot to them too.

In today’s world, there are plenty of computer tools that can take the activities to new levels. For example, their stories could be turned into animated shorts. Or you could play music together as a family with a focus on mysterious melodies.

4- Visit Mysterious Attractions

Days out are a surefire way to create magical memories. Tours based on film franchises are certainly an option. However, magic doesn’t have to be about wizards. Cirque Du Soleil is an equally enchanting activity for all the family. You may spark something special out of your kids while it’s sure to be an experience you talk about for a long time to come. You’ll also be sure to grab some incredible photos in the process. We really enjoyed our outing to Corteo in the spring.

Theme parks often have attractions that celebrate magical concepts too. In turn, you can build an entire vacation around them. Staying at Disney and waking up in the magical kingdom is unquestionably one of the most exciting examples.

5- Create Magical Tours Of Your Own

With a little research, you will not be short of days out that celebrate magic. Nevertheless, you should also know that it is possible to create your own magic. Creating a fairy garden in the backyard is a great example. Or you could build a treasure hunt or make up fun stories on walks through the park. Young kids will be amazed and you can turn this into something of a routine. It will become a core memory for your kids.

Ultimately, the chance to spend time together and feel engaged in family activities will benefit you all. Deciding how creative you’ll get is a personal choice, but you can always grab inspiration from other people via parenting forums.

The Final Word

Even if magic and mystery aren’t major parts of your life, they have a telling impact on young minds. As such, every parent should be open to activities built around those ideas. Even if they only stay in your life for a few short years, it is something you will cherish forever. 

Now, that’s magic.

Thursday, June 29, 2023

Cirque Du Soleil - #Corteo

School ended this week, and we decided that a family outing would be a great way to celebrate.  When I was contacted by Cirque du Soleil and offered tickets to opening night in Ottawa, it seemed like the perfect fit.

Cirque du Soleil #Corteo #Ottawa
A photo of the stage from our seats!

Hubby and the kids had never been to a Cirque performance before.  I have seen one, although it was many years ago.  When we arrived, I picked up our tickets from the box office and we headed to our seats.  We were sitting in the 2nd row of the 100 level. The view was great.  I did not know exactly what to expect from the show. I had read the description (which is below for you to read) but I did not realize just how funny it was going to be.  There was so much comedy and laughter through the night.  I looked over at my boys and husband a few times to see huge smiles on their faces, and sometimes surprise. Some of the performances had me holding my breath with worry....but definitely was not needed. Everyone did such a terrific job. And laughter, so....much....laughter!

A night out at Cirque du Soleil Corteo really was an amazing way to celebrate the end of school and start of summer  vacation.  If you have a chance to go, do it! It is great for all ages, young and old! Family outing, date night, with friends or even by yourself!  I was too engrossed in the show to worry about photos, but I did snap one.  A highlight of the event was the interactive portion with Valentina!

#Corteo #Ottawa #Valentina
Valentina! A delightful surprise during the show

Some tips for those that are going or considering it:

- Parking is $20

- Doors open 1hr prior to the show start

- Arrive slightly earlier than planned to get through security. Bags are only allowed if they meet the size guidelines, and will be searched. Also, phones and keys and belts or anything with metal need to be removed before walking through the scanner.

- The show runs for approximately 2 hours, with a 20 minute intermission

- No flash photography is allowed

- Drinks, snacks, and food are available for purchase, but are expensive. Also, Canadian Tire Center is cashless now, so you will need a debit or credit card to make your purchase

Corteo is in Ottawa until July 2nd, and tickets can be purchased here. Corteo will also be in Kingston from July 6-9, and those tickets are available here.

I would love to here from you if you have seen any Cirque du Soleil shows before! The kids were a little hesitant about going (they really did not know much about it) but both were very glad they came, and would love to see more shows!

For 7 performances only,

Cirque du Soleil’s festive and theatrical show


in OTTAWA, from June 28 to July 2, 2023, at the Canadian Tire Centre!


“Corteo, which means cortege in Italian, is a joyous procession, a festive parade imagined by a clown. Combining acrobatic feats, comedy and acting, the show plunges spectators into a theatrical world of fun and spontaneity situated in a mysterious space between heaven and earth.

 In a carnival atmosphere, the clown pictures his own funeral taking place, watched over by quietly caring angels. Juxtaposing the large with the small, the ridiculous with the tragic and the magic of perfection with the charm of imperfection, the show highlights the strength and fragility of the clown, as well as his wisdom and kindness, to illustrate the share of humanity within each of us. The music sometimes turns lyrical, sometimes playful, carrying Corteo through a timeless celebration in which illusion teases reality”

Tuesday, February 14, 2023

Happy Valentine’s Day 2023

Hello there everyone.  I can’t believe how long it has been since I have made a post on my little piece of the internet. It’s Valentine’s Day, so a perfect time to pop in and say hello.

The kids have grown so much (physically and emotionally!). They are 12 and 15 now.  They are both officially taller than me now - which makes me the shortest human in our household. Mr.K is in 7th grade at our local high school, and Mr.J is in 10th grade at our school boards virtual high school.  We realized not long into grade 9 that in person school didn’t seem to be the best fit, and second semester switched him over to virtual.  It hasn’t been all sunshine and roses, but it’s definitely better suited to him than the brick and mortar school was.

It’s amazing to me to see the differences with how kids do best education wise.  I always knew the traditional school system wasn’t the best fit for my children, but homeschool wasn’t appealing, and private school was not in our financial budget.  Virtual seems to be a little better, and once he starts taking e-learning courses next year I think it’s going to be a game changer for him.

Mr.K is muddling his way through the transition from a small elementary school to a huge high school. It’s taken a while, but I think he is starting to adjust now.

At home, we are still so glad to have Cerberus in our lives. Adding him to our family was definitely the right thing, at the right time.  He has been a wonderful addition to our family, and definitely the best part of 2022.  Not only is he a big, goofy, loving floofball… he also gets us out of the house.  This has been a great thing for me, not only physically, but also for my mental health.  We pretty much do twice daily walks (very rarely we may only do one, but generally it’s a long one if that’s the case).  Back in the late fall, he had a neurological incident that frightened us. We rushed to the emergency vet, but by the time we got there he was completely back to normal.  Their best guess, from our description, was that he had a small stroke. We are very lucky, and he didn’t suffer any Ill effects from it - physically or neurologically.  He was extra sleepy and clingy for a day or 2, but that was about it.

He does keep us on our toes - he went for a 30 minute escapade one day when the door didn’t latch properly.  He thankfully found his way home while we were out looking for him, and Mr.J was guarding the window for possibly sightings.  It definitely scared us though.

He celebrated his 7th birthday recently (which happens to also be our wedding anniversary).

True to the northern breed, he loves to be outside in the snow. The negative temperatures don’t phase him at all. Especially when he is meant to go out for the last time prior to bed….he will often lie down and settle right into the snow. Leaving me trying to bribe him indoors so I can go to sleep.

I think that’s about all the updates I have right now.  I would love to hear from you - feel free to pop an update or a hello in the comment section.

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

{giveaway} Ferngully: The Last Rainforest

When I recently received an email asking if I would be interested in hosting a giveaway in celebration of the 30th anniversary of  Ferngully:The Last Rainforest, it took me back to my childhood.  I distinctly remember when the movie was released originally.

I’m excited to tell you that my readers have the opportunity to win one of THREE copies!  The giveaway will run on Facebook, so make sure to head over there to get your entries in!

My children haven’t been introduced to the Ferngully adventures yet, but I am looking forward to sharing it with them.

The giveaway will run until Sunday August 21, 2022 at 11:59pm EST.  It is open to Canadian residents that are 18+.

Winners will be announced on the Tales of Mommyhood Facebook page and will have 48 hrs to respond to claim Thor prize. 

Good luck!

Tuesday, August 2, 2022

Downton Abbey: A New Era {giveaway}


Downton Abbey: A New Era now available for digital download, and coming up August 9th for purchase on Blu-ray.

I am a big fan of Downton Abbey. I was late to start watching it, but quickly became hooked.  When the series ended, I wanted more.  Luckily, “more” came a few years later with a film, and now a second one!  I’m excited to watch it.

“The much-anticipated cinematic return of Downton Abbey follows the Crawlets and their staff as they welcome a movie crew and their glamorous stars to Downton for the filming of a new silent movie, while other members of the family go on a grand adventure to a villa in the south of France to uncover a mystery about the Dowager Countess and her past”

If you are a Downton fan as well, then you will want to enter for your own chance to win one of TWO copies of Downton Abbey: A New Era on Blu-ray.

The giveaway will be hosted on the Tales of Mommyhood Facebook page and will be open to Canadian residents who are 18+.

BONUS ENTRY: leave a comment on this blog post letting me know who your favourite Downton character is (mine is Anna!) be sure to include your Facebook profile name so I can add the bonus entry 

**Tales of Mommyhood is not responsible for prize fulfillment**