Friday, December 18, 2015

Gingerbread dough that holds it's shape!


Who doesn't love gingerbread at this time of year? {Don't answer that if you don't...don't rain on my parade, thanks.} The children ask me to make it every year as we don't eat the gingerbread from the houses they decorate because they tend to be made with not the greatest of ingredients, so I kind of owe them in a sense, for being THAT mum. Haha!

So i've always had issues with my gingerbread mix in the past. I've proudly made the dough, then rolled and cut out the little men, put it in the oven then when i've gone to get them out they've melted into undefined blobs, not even vaguely resembling a person...urgh. NOT festive.

But.....duh duh duuuhhhhhhhhhh!!! After pinteresting for a while I found a recipe I liked the look of and that claimed it wouldn't spread. So I gathered everything I needed and got baking.

It's LEGIT. They totally worked, and were actually super straight forward to make. I took some pics to show you a few of the steps and what it looked like when I was doing it to give you an idea. The recipe is linked above and below, so use either link.


 The dough came out perfectly without any tweaking with flour!
 Look how sweet my little guys are...
 
 They came out exactly the same as they went in. Perfection!

 We had some googly eyes left over from Halloween so I just used those,
and used mini m&ms for the buttons/necklaces/bows and bowties. Adorbs, no?
 So if this recipe looks appealing to you, head over to The Kitchen Paper blog and try the recipe out for yourself. If I can do it....so can you!!! Seriously!

{After cleanup and counters were wiped down I put purification in the diffuser 
and  I'm now sat with my feet up updating the blog and relaxing for the rest of 
the evening as a lasagna bakes in the oven. Bliss.}


 ~Stay well.....xoxo

Monday, December 14, 2015

Audio books for young children

We are a family who loves books. I always loved them as a child, and so did my husband. We always knew we wanted our children to fall in love with books as much as we did. Along with books, my two brother and I also listened to audio books at bedtime. So much so, that I know a few almost by heart. We even listened to a couple television/radio series on tape, The Goon Show (which is utter ridiculousness, and I barely head nor tail of it, but we would giggle all the same) and Fawlty Towers which was basically just the shows audio, and we would laugh at John Cleese and co. until we fell asleep.
I am here though to give some ideas for younger listeners (8 and under). There are many reasons we love audio books... It's not always possible to read every night to children, especially when you're spreading yourself between multiple children, and the younger ones don't want to sit still, sometimes it's just fun to hear someone else read and do fun voices, they think it's a treat to listen to a story and all the while they're absorbing language, vocab and feeding their imaginations.
Here is a little list of some of our favourites, and also a few that we have yet to listen to:

  • Harry Potter, read by Stephen Fry, because he is the ABSOLUTE BEST. Trust me on this. (So far we only listen to the first two books. The others get a little intense. Our rule is once they are old enough to read the next books then they can get the audio book and watch the movies)
  • Peter Pan (found on audible.com)
  • Bedtime Stories by Johnny Morris (This one is for 6 and younger I would say. Super fun and lots of great voices for the animals. Found on itunes)
  • The Peter Rabbit Collection by Beatrix Potter (iTunes)
  • Just William by Richmal Crompton (iTunes)
  • My Naughty Little Sister by Dorothy Edwards (iTunes)
  • The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate (audible.com)
  •  Any Roald Dahl that is made for a young reader, because you can't really go wrong with these awesome books. James and the Giant Peach, Charlie and the chocolate Factory, The Twits etc.
  • Enid Blyton's Famous Five or Secret Seven series. These are BRILLIANT for the upper end of the age group and even older. We listened to these as kids for a long time. (I had such a hard time finding these and ended up ordering the disc on amazon and then loading it onto my iTunes that way)
  • Enid Blyton Mallory Towers, or any of her one off books. They are CHARMING! 



Ok, so those are some of our absolute faves.
We get ours from two main places. iTunes is great as it directly downloads to iTunes and we just load it onto their ipod. The other place is Audible.com, this site is AWESOME. (No i'm not being paid for this, haha!) You can sign up for a free month where you can try it out and you get an audio book for free. Then you have two options, for $14.95 you get one book a month on credit, or for $22.95 you can get two. It's a pretty nice setup, and the download process is simple and explained clearly. With both services you can preview the reader, this is a super important step for me. It really makes a difference who is reading and what they put into it, the voices and how they speak, as believe it or not there are some who are pretty uninspiring or even annoying to listen to. So make sure you listen a little before you buy. Once we have loading the ipod with the books we stick it in the dock outside their bedrooms. They listen at bedtime, 7:30pm and fall asleep to them. You'll be surprised how much of the stories stick and will notice them falling in love with these stories that they will want to read later on, or will inspire them to read more books.
Obviously nothing takes away from parents reading, but this is something we like to add to our children's lives, and something I adored when I was growing up. They are awesome for long car rides or when you're waiting for some children in clubs etc.

Don't forget about yourself too! I love browsing and treating myself to an escape every now and again. Also, remember podcasts are free and there are a BUNCH of those I love. I listen to all the "How Stuff Works", Desert Island Discs (these are BRILLIANT if you enjoy getting to know celebrities/public figures in a more personal way...really great guests on that show), Stuff you Missed in History class etc. They have podcasts for every interest out there, so you can learn while you are doing your usual mundane activities. Give it a go!!

Any ideas for children's audio books? Podcasts for adults? Share below!

~Stay Well...xoxo

Young Living earning possibilities...

If any of you are like me, the idea of working from home sounds a little ridiculous, since it already feels like my days are filled to the max. However, Young Living is truly one work from home company that I think might be a fit for you. You don't HAVE to share the oils, but you will probably find it happens organically as a result of you sharing your experiences with them....which you will inevitably do after trying them. When you find something that works brilliantly for you and your family, you want all your friends and family to know, right?
I wanted to share a post I made on Facebook the other day that might explain a little as to how you can actually earn within the Young Living company and how it really doesn't take too much effort depending on what you want to put into it.

If this explanation below doesn't cover all your questions then feel free to comment below with questions or contact us using the contact form on the right of this post. Thanks!!



"Remember after you've purchased these oils you have the opportunity to work with Young Living by sharing your experience and love of these oils. If people ask you to sign them up you can benefit from this. As an example, if in the first month you get 3 people signed up then that is your money for the starter kit BACK! From there if you continue sharing and more people sign up, if you have a monthly oil order you can essentially have that paid for with the money you earn from sharing. If you love this product as much as we do then there is no need to go out and "sell". This product sells itself with the unmatched quality and fact that oils are truly beneficial.
I made a quick graphic that shows how successful you can really by just by sharing your love for these little bottles of magic!* (No they're not really magic...but in my opinion they may as well be....haha!*)
This graphic is and the numbers are not an exaggeration, we know a few people who are very close to the top and have made big life changes due to this awesome rewards program.
Again, you don't have to be a great "salesperson". If you have a social media account and like to talk about things you love, then use that, if you enjoy teaching then set up a class or two and teach people about these oils. There is no set way to do it, but once you have started truly using them in your home, I know you're going to want to talk non-stop about them.
If you haven't signed up yet then get in touch, our team is an AWESOME team and has so many tools to help you get started in the business side. They cover everything you will need to know and Clyde and I are happy to give support including helping you out with your first class or ideas on how to get started with sharing. PM me and let's get you set up to receive your oils so you can start on your own oily journey. Get those toxins and chemicals out of your house into the trash, and learn about the awesome oils that can replace ALL of that nasty stuff with things that will improve your wellness in SO many ways. I have recipes galore so again, ASK ME!" {This is from a post I made on our public Facebook page for An Ameriglish Home...go find us on there!}

Hope Holiday plans are coming together for everyone. I have to admit to feeling a little flustered, but five children might have a little something to do with that though! haha! At least most of my wrapping has been taken care of for now, thanks to my mum! Wahoo!

(oh my gosh just noticed my spelling mistake with "Platinum"...urgh. Apologies to any spelling crazies out there!!!)

~Stay well....xoxo

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

When cold/flu season hits.... {BE PREPARED WITH A ROUTINE!}

 

           Yes!....i'm going there. Let's tackle flu season and kiddos! Because...it manages to creep into everyone's home. I have some tips that REALLY work, and will help you get through the sick days with the least stress and mess.

I'm going to cover snotty children, puking children and coughing children...and all the stuff in between. So just use the stuff that applies to you at the time...hopefully not all at the same time (God bless you if that's the case!!)

{Disclaimer: I am NOT a Doctor, and this is simply a routine we use as a family to feel better, it is NOT a medical treatment and is not intended as a cure! These are MY thoughts and opinions only. Always refer to your Doctor in cases where you are at all concerned, if they have a fever etc. before trying someone elses ideas out!}

Firstly let me say, there is no sure way of keeping sickies out of the house, but this is how we help the situation not escalate or worsen by:
  • Keeping hands washed (we use Thieves handwash, Honest or California baby)
  • Keeping home surfaces clean. I try to make sure I wipe countertops/bathroom door handles/flush handle/remote controls/keyboard surfaces/fridge door handle etc down with thieves household cleaner daily. That might sound like a lot, but if you have children send them around the house with a damp cloth and a thieves spray, they'll love that they can be the "sprayer" and are helping you. Never underestimate what your children are capable of, and you can rest knowing that the cleaner is non-toxic so won't be harmful to them in anyway. Bonus, the house will smell great! I would always feel so guilty before I knew about theives as I hated spraying everything with a chemical filled anti-bac spray knowing that the harsh smell couldn't be good for them to be breathing in, but wanting germs killed all the same.
                                                    
          Thank goodness for thieves. Seriously. {To read more about Thieves cleaner, click HERE. I'm hearing that angelic music again!!}

  • During cold & flu season we diffuse a few different oils depending on the situation. Thieves obviously spends a lot of time in our diffuser but for stuffed up noses/sinus problems we are all about R.C. I use a couple extra drops for a stronger effect when one or more of them are really stuffy. Other oils you can diffuse for these symptoms are: Peppermint, Raven, Eucalyptus Radiata and Lemon, on their own or mixed.
  • When a child is really feeling under the weather with a cold I usually have a set up that they all love and know will happen so they know the drill pretty much every time now. This is when they are truly not well and not just for a little seasonal sniffle, but more severe cold/flu/stomach bug:   
The Recliner Rehab:

        • We have a recliner chair that is known as the sick chair when someone comes down with a cold/flu. I cover it with a waterproof sheet and a bed sheet (because you know....bodily fluids are a thing with cold/flu) and so when they are feeling better you can just lift it all off and throw in the wash rather than steaming and anti-baccing the chair.
        • Have their favourite (washable) blanket to cover them.
        • A teddy that is o.k to get tossed in the washer at the end of the day. Explain that their favourite teddy might be best left in bed when they are poorly.
        • A sticker/activity book. I tend not to have them read as I don't want to encourage headaches at this point.
        • Hot water bottle/heated lavender bean bag teddy (like this one) if wanted.
        • I put an audiobook or two on the family ipod and give them headphones to listen with, which is a novelty in itself. Some of our favourite audiobooks are Harry Potter (read by Stephen Fry...he is simply the best!), Peter Pan and The Secret Seven by Enid Blyton, that one is read by multiple children and is read like a play...it's brilliant!)
        • As a treat I set up my laptop on a chair next to them and they choose their movies all day (this is to make sure they stay put and rest rest rest!)
        • I always keep a few of those 16/32oz soda cups on hand for when they are vomiting. I stick a paper napkin in the bottom so there's no splashback, and from age 2 they know if they are going to be sick and can't reach the bathroom to put that to their mouth. It contains the puke and you can empty the contents in the toilet bowl and then toss the cup in the trash, so there's no need to wash any vomit in your sinks (thus spreading germs) and no extra cleaning work for you on top of looking after a sick child.
        • Peppermint oil roller for them to apply as they wish when feeling nauseous. 
                                                                                       https://yldist.com/anameriglishhome/
        • A box of tissues with an empty tissue box taped to the side of it. Seriously, this is rather genius in that there's no more finding gross crumpled up tissues all over the place. They take one, use it and toss it in the empty container when done. Then when it's full throw that one away and use the newly empty one as the new "trash" box. Brilliant, no? Also babywipes are on hand at all times.
        • A small bowl of crackers to pick at if they're a little peckish and plenty of fluids/electrolyte drinks. But take my word for it...ALWAYS stick to clear or barely there (never artificial) coloured food/drink....when they puke the bright colours up your furniture will never be the same!! haha!! Don't say I didn't warn you.
  • With any sickness that involves sniffing/coughing we apply a homemade vapor rub. The recipe we use is: 
Essential Oil Vapor Rub 

1/4 Cup coconut oil, Melted

6-12 Drops RC Essential Oil

6-12 Drops Lemon Essential Oil
4-8 Drops Peppermint Essential Oil
4 Drops Raven Essential Oil
6 Drops Thieves Essential Oil 
(give or take the drops...I think it's personal preference and depending on desired strength)
Carefully melt the coconut oil then add the EOs, 
whisk together until blended,
put in the fridge to harden and either leave there, 
or store in a cool place to remain hardened.
Apply to chest and back liberally, 
and bottom of the feet 
(we have them pop socks on over the top too!)

  • When any of them are suffering from Croup which happens quite a bit in the Winter, we usually take them into the bathroom sit on the edge of the bath and turn the shower on super hot and sit with them in the room as it steams up. I usually put a couple of Olbas oil drops on their jammies to help clear their sinuses. 
                                                      
    Did anyone else remember this smell as a child? It was one we used all the time when we were little. (As with ANY neat essential oil, be sure not to leave them in a spot children can touch them. They do not know how to determine which ones are safe to use where/how. Olbas should not be put near eyes/ingested etc, so make sure only YOU handle it. It's a wonderful tool when used correctly!). We sometimes will take them outside for a minute if it's chilly and let them breathe in the cold air. I know that sounds strange but their pediatrician suggested it and it really has worked for us in the past. Then I make sure they have a good vapor rub applied and diffuser in their room.
    Basically when sickness hits we have a routine, a routine that keeps them resting, happy and calm, all the while keeping me sane, and making sure I don't get overwhelmed by laundry, cleaning messes and overtired children. With five children who have, occasionally all been sick at the same time, routine is EVERYTHING.

    {Of course, when it's more than just a simple cold/flu or they have a high fever we call the Doctor. We would never bypass getting a Dr's opinion or going into the office when it is something more serious!!}

    Ok, so that might have seemed like a whole bunch of info, but it's pretty straight forward really. My favourite part of them being poorly is that they slow down for a minute, and so take the time to sit with them and read a book to them, watch a movie with them etc. 

    Sending all the healthy vibes to you this cold season, and hope if this is a time of year you celebrate, that you're almost ready and not feeling too stressed!

    What cold remedies do you have that work in your family?  I'd love to hear!

    If you would like to know more about the Essential Oils i'm referring to in this post, please get in touch via the contact page, or head on over to our website and read up on Young Livings AWESOME company. We get all our oils from them, and because of their unique "Seed to Seal" process we can trust that we are getting the purest form of oils and never have to worry where they came from, who tampered with them or the contents. I love getting people started on their oily journey, so please don't hesitate to ask questions!!
    Click on the image below to take you to our website.

                                     https://yldist.com/anameriglishhome/

    Stay well.... ~xoxo

Blogger template designed By The Sunday Studio.