Toddle About Blog

Naturally Nice: 10 Eco-conscious Childcare Products

Naturally NiceIf one of your New Year’s resolutions is being kinder to the planet by purchasing more eco-friendly products, you’ll need to work out how to include your kids in your quest.

To get you started, here are ten eco-conscious childcare products that perform perfectly and don’t cost the Earth.

1. Teddy bear

Named after US president Theodore ‘Teddy’ Roosevelt, the teddy bear has been comforting children for over a century — bag an organic bear from kids’ store Childrensalon. But be warned — it’s so soft and sumptuous that you might kidnap it for yourself!

2. Baby gym

With their hoops, mirrors and musical features, baby gyms keep rug rats entertained for hours on end — ethical site Babipur has a wide choice of natural wooden models that are built to last and look lovely. Plus, they’re so durable that they can be passed on from sibling to sibling. Continue reading

More Than Just Fussy Eating

More than just fussy eatingWritten by Stephanie Elliot, the author of the young adults novel, Sad Perfect.

As a parent, you’ve most likely experienced some sort of picky eating in your child or children. Toddlers are known for – and prone to – refusing foods that don’t taste good, or look funny, or touch another food on their plate. Some kids are just naturally picky, refusing green vegetables or things that look weird to them. But when does it become more than just picky eating? When do you need to worry that maybe your child isn’t getting all the nutrients he needs?

My daughter was an extremely picky eater as a baby and toddler, and we were not initially concerned. We chalked it up to just that – picky eating. But, sandwiched in between two brothers who never refused any foods and excitedly ate lima beans and broccoli, we began to notice that our daughter’s aversion to many foods was becoming problematic. She would cry and scream, sitting at the dinner table, shaking her head back and forth, adamant that she would not be eating what the rest of the family ate. Her main diet as a young child consisted of very basic, plain and white foods, heavy on the carbs, very low on the protein and vegetables. She ate plain bagels and bread, Goldfish, French fries, pizza with the cheese and sauce scraped off, cereal, and waffles (but refused butter and syrup). She ate all sorts of sweets, and on occasion, I could coax her to have a peeled apple slice or a few raw carrots. Her only protein source was peanut butter and Carnation Instant milk. Does this diet sound familiar to you? Continue reading

Valentines Day Recipe: Shortbread Sweathearts

 

Shortbread SweatheartsHave some fun in the kitchen with your little ones by making these cute and delicious biscuits.

Ingredients: 
* 55g butter, softened
* 30g caster sugar
* ¼ tsp vanilla extract
* 85g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
* Pinch of salt
* 6cm heart-shaped cookie cutter, and another that’s a little smaller
* 40g white chocolate, chopped
* Icing sugar, for dusting
* 1tbsp seedless raspberry jam

Method:
1. Lightly grease two baking sheets.
2. Beat the butter, sugar, vanilla and a pinch of salt, then mix in the flour with a wooden spoon. Form into a ball with your hands. (If the dough is very soft, wrap it in clingfilm and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes). Continue reading

How To Introduce Your Baby To Solid Food

Introduce Your Baby To Solid FoodWritten by Sally Rowden, Nursery Nurse and Jo Fletcher, Clinical Team Lead, 0-19s Children’s Universal Services, Northants.

Getting the correct advice before introducing solid food to your baby will not only help your little one to grow up to be healthy, but it will also help you to enjoy this special time.

The most up-to-date research tells us that babies only need breast or formula milk up to the age of 6 months.  During the following few months, you can relax and really enjoy the experience of introducing solids, safe in the knowledge that baby’s nutritional needs are still met by their milk intake.

You may recall health visitors and feeding specialists talking about ‘responsive’ feeding – the style of feeding promoted by our teams and around the world to get children off to the best start. Responsive feeding means that the baby is offered food when they are hungry, and that they join in with the experience of controlling their appetite.  Continue reading

Scrumptious Slime

Scrumptious SlimeThis slime slows like liquid but can be rolled like a solid – and the best part is that it’s edible!

Here’s what you’ll need:

* Saucepam
* Plastic Sandwich Bag
* 10g (1 tbsp) Cornflour/Cornstarch
* 45ml (3 tbsp) Chocolate Syrup
* 395g (14oz) Can Sweetened Condensed Milk

Instructions:
1) Pour the mil into the saucepan and heat on a low heat.
2) Slowly stir the cornflour into the warm milk. Continue heating and stirring over a low heat for 20 minutes or until the mixture thickens.
3) Remove from the heat and stir in the chocolate syrup.
4) Place in a sandwich bag and refrigerate.
5) Once cold, roll and squeeze into any slimy shape you want – and watch it flow! Continue reading

Review: Real Food Kids Will Love Book by Annabel Karmel, worth £16.99

Real Food Kids Will Love by Annabel KarmelReview written by Toddle About VIP Club member, Sarah Cocks.

At first glance the ‘Real Food Kids Will Love’ recipe book by Annabel Karmel looks like yet another recipe book with foods that are designed only for children with no consideration for foods that will feed the whole family.

When I delved further I was pleasantly surprised to find a range of recipes that would appeal to both children and adults, separated into easy to navigate sections. With 15-minute meals such as tortilla pizzas and chicken and vegetable pasta that are easy to throw together with leftovers in the fridge and make a filling supper and then you have the family favourites which include Cauliflower, Ham and Macaroni Bake and Beef Casserole which are filling for both daddy and baby, making meals more cost effective. Continue reading

Review: Organix Goodie Bag, worth over £7.00

Organix Goody BagReview written by Toddle About VIP Club member, Emily Short.

We were recently invited to taste and review some of the new products in the Organix and Organix Goodies range and they didn’t disappoint. Organix’ is synopses with yummy and healthy snacks  for babies and toddlers and are proud of their tagline ‘Great Taste No Junk’  and as a family comprising of a 3 year old girl and 16 month old boy/girl twins as you can imagine we love Organix products as a snack or to pop in our picnic or packed lunch box.

When the box arrived we couldn’t wait to rip into it and try the goodies, the main contents were the multi-packs of the new pea puffs and cheese and onion lentil hoops, the pea puffs are marketed at 6 months plus whilst the lentil hoops are for 12 months plus, the ingredients and nutritional advice is visible on all bags. Continue reading

Review: My Little Sous Chef, £22

My Little Sous ChefReview written by Toddle About VIP Club member, Katie Pavey.

When I first received these cook books I had the initial flick through and was really impressed at the layout and format.  I think they are very engaging and I know my 5 year old daughter was really excited to start cooking.

The adult and children’s book are clever with the corresponding page numbers and I think the ‘little sous chef’ is very apt title and Daisy has enjoyed calling herself that.

The books aren’t for the novice cook/baker which isn’t a problem for me but I was initially struck however with a bit of disappointment over the choice of recipes.  This is in fairness, possibly a more personal opinion but I don’t think I’m alone with a child who, left to their own devices, would choose either Pizza, sausages or something beige 3 times a day and I felt the recipes in this were perhaps a little random and I can’t say there is any main dish I would make for dinner apart from the home-made burgers.  The recipes are more angled towards vegetarians/vegans with very few meat dishes. Continue reading

Simple Feta Frittata Muffins

Feta Frittata MuffinsThis one-bowl recipe is simple, nutritious and perfect for family picnics. The ingredients can easily be swapped to include your  child’s favourite flavours so even the pickiest of eaters will love them.

SERVES: MAKES 6 MUFFINS.
TOTAL TIME: 25. MINS
AGE: 12M+

Ingredients:
• 6 eggs
• 1 medium courgette, grated
• 30g (about a handful) of frozen peas
• 2 spring onions, finely chopped
• 30g cheddar, grated
• 30g feta, crumbled
• Oregano (other fresh herbs optional e.g. parsley or dill)
• Pinch of black pepper

Our top tip: Swap out ingredients to include your child’s favourite flavours!

Continue reading

Hot Cross Bunnies

Hot Cross BunniesThis Easter, why not try Annabel’s twist on the traditional hot cross bun. Little ones will love to help create their very own bunnylicious buns!


Prep: 45 minutes (excluding proving time)
Cook: 15 minutes
Makes: 8 large or 12 medium hot cross bunnies


Ingredients:

100ml milk
100ml cold water
450g strong white bread flour, plus extra for kneading
1 x 7g sachet easy blend yeast
50g soft light brown sugar
1 tbsp ground mixed spice
1 tsp salt
50g butter, melted
1 egg, beaten
110g raisins
30g mixed peal
Sunflower oil, for greasing Continue reading