Last updated by at .

Capture Beautiful Memories with the OneDay App #OneDayKids

The OneDay App helps you create moments to record with your family, then turns them into a movie with music, in a matter of seconds. It makes sharing with loved ones easy, too!

If you’re a parent with an iPhone, you’re probably like me and have thousands of photos and video clips of your kids on your camera roll. Although I love the ease of taking and saving photos and videos with my phone, I’ve always thought that it would be great to make a complete professional quality movie with the click of a button. The OneDay App can do this! It helps you create moments to record with your family, then turns them into a movie with music, in a matter of seconds. It makes sharing with loved ones easy, too!

See more about how this fabulous app works in my post at Scratch Mommy. Check out the movie I made with my girls, and also enter to win a $250 Target gift card!

DIY Halloween Trick-or-Treat Bag Sewing Project

These are the cutest little trick-or-treat bags and they have so many other uses! You could make a few of them with different fabrics to use throughout the year.

What are your favorite things about fall? Letting go of summer has always been tough for me but I find comfort in the beautiful fall colors, food, gardening, and walks that we take outdoors. I love DIY projects with my little girls this time of year, like our Halloween Trick-or-Treat Bag Sewing Project. These are the cutest little trick-or-treat bags and they have so many other uses! You could make a few of them with different fabrics to use throughout the year.

This is a simple project that’s great for any level of expertise on the sewing machine, even with little ones by your side. I had to smile because my toddler pressing the pedal on the sewing machine reminded me of my siblings and I trying my mom’s patience while she was trying to sew. I hope you’ll enjoy making memories with your little ones and that you’ll love using your tote bags through out the years! Head on over to Scratch Mommy to see my full tutorial on how to make them.

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Kit Review & Giveaway

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit Review & Giveaway @ DailyPea.com

Thanks so much to everyone who participated in our Natural Earth Paint giveaway! Congratulations to Dawn G., our winner. Please stay tuned for more healthy giveaways in the near future!

I was excited when Natural Earth Paint asked me to review their Wooden Eggs Craft Kit and Natural Egg Dye Kit because I love doing eco-friendly crafts with my daughters. I really wanted to try these paints and dyes since it’s tough to find truly non-toxic art supplies that also work well. Here’s why these natural egg kits turned out to be a huge success for us, and how you can enter to win a Wooden Eggs Craft Kit to try!

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit Review & Giveaway @ DailyPea.com

In this kit we received 6 wooden eggs that are 2″ high, and 6 Children’s Earth Paint colors (blue, green, yellow, white, orange and red.) The high quality eggs are handmade in the Pacific Northwest with sustainable FSC certified wood. The powdered paints are made of natural earth pigments and organic milk protein.

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit Review & Giveaway @ DailyPea.com

We mixed the paint in little ceramic bowls by adding a little bit of water to the powder to reach a creamy consistency. We just mixed a little of each color at a time so we could save them for future painting projects. Each color mixed together very smoothly and easily, unlike some other natural paints we have tried. You can make the paint a thinner consistency for a watercolor effect, but we liked the thicker consistency for the eggs. It covered very nicely and the hues are so vibrant and beautiful!

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit Review & Giveaway @ DailyPea.com

After the paint dried, I used a homemade natural beeswax polish to seal the eggs and prevent the paint from smudging from moisture.

Success! My four year old daughter had so much fun spending hours carefully painting her eggs, and loved the bright colors. From a mama point of view, I love this kit because I have peace of mind knowing my kids are not ingesting anything toxic when they get the paint on their skin or even in their mouths. I LOVE how these eggs can be reused every year at Easter time, and also how we can paint some every year to create little keepsakes for the kids.

Natural Egg Dye Kit

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit Review & Giveaway @ DailyPea.com

In the Natural Egg Dye Kit we received 4 colors of dye (green purple, orange and blue) made from pure fruit and vegetable extracts (spinach, purple carrots, turmeric, beets, red cabbage, and blueberries.)

We filled 4 glasses with a half cup of hot water each, poured in the powdered dye and mixed. We dropped a hard-boiled egg into each and let them sit for 15-20 minutes. We used brown eggs, so they turned out to have a vintage look to them. The earth colors are so beautiful and rich. We preferred these natural colors over the synthetic colors in conventional dye kits.

Natural Earth Paint Wooden Eggs Craft Kit Review & Giveaway @ DailyPea.com

Success! My daughters were excited to see the bright, pretty colors on the eggs when they lifted them out of the glasses. We put rubber bands on some eggs to make stripes, and painted some with the paint left over from the wooden eggs. From a mama point of view, I love that these dyes are 100% pure, natural and non-toxic. I know that most conventional egg dye kits contain some pretty toxic chemicals. Here is a New York Times article that Natural Earth Paint passed along to me, about synthetic dyes: F.D.A. Panel to Consider Warnings for Artificial Food Colorings. Natural Earth Paint also mentioned this:

“The “natural dye” currently used for red in most naturally dyed products (lipstick, cherry coke, some natural egg dyes, etc.) is the blood of the cochineal bug, also called carmine. These bugs are farmed and crushed in a very ecologically irresponsible way.”

I’m very happy that there are 100% safe and non-toxic options available! Making your own dyes out of fruit and vegetable pigments at home is also an option, which is a bit more time consuming and messy. I love the Natural Egg Dye kit because it’s so convenient.

GIVEAWAY!

Enter below to win a Wooden Eggs Craft Kit just in time for Easter! Thank you to Natural Earth Paint for sponsoring this giveaway.

About the Natural Earth Paint Company

Leah Fanning Mebane, a professional visual artist, founded Natural Earth Paint with her husband in 2011 with the goal of providing non-toxic paints to artists and health-conscious parents. This quickly growing family business focuses on an eco-friendly business model and holds the Gold Certification from Green America. They currently have about a dozen products sold on their website including Natural Face Paint and Earth Oil Paint, and they’re always working on the development of future products. They use recycled and biodegradable packaging, and use vegetable-based inks for printing.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Picky Eater On Your Hands? Tips To Get Your Kids To Eat Healthy

This guest post by stay-at-home mom and writer Naomi Shaw is really helpful for me, and I’m sure it will be for many of you as well! Picky eating is a common occurrence in households with toddlers, and Naomi shares lots of great (and realistic) tips here.

Do you have a picky eater in the family? Is it getting harder and harder to win those mealtime battles? Check out these tips and tricks for introducing new and healthy foods into your child’s diet.

Picky Eaters on Your Hands? Tips to Get Your Kids to Eat Healthy (Guest Post by Naomi Shaw) - DailyPea.com

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

Let Them Choose

Is your spunky little sprite relentless on running the show? Feed your child’s blossoming sense of self by letting them make a few choices on their own.

  • When you’re cooking a meal, pick out two healthy items yourself and then let your child choose between them. Once the choice has been made, stick to it.
  • You can do the same thing at the grocery store where everything is on display for them to see. Ask your child to help you select fruits, vegetables, and other healthy foods. When you get home you can encourage your child to help you make the meal.
  • If your force your little one to eat something, they’ll likely push back even more. They will eat their food of choice if they’re hungry.
  • Keep the whole picture in mind and consider what your child has eaten over the course of the week. Don’t worry, this tumultuous time of finicky eating habits won’t last forever.

Make Meals Fun

Sometimes, all the motivation your child needs to start eating are some fun and games. This is an opportunity to be creative and playful with your little terror.

  • Serve vegetables like broccoli with their favorite dipping sauce.
  • Cut healthy foods into fun shapes, like stars and hearts, with cookie cutters. Make a “face plate” by arranging vegetables into a grinning face.
  • Serve a variety of brightly colored foods and intersperse the healthy tidbits amongst other, more desirable foods.
  • Make funny sounds (like the fork “airplane”) as your child eats. The hilarity may be motivation in itself.

Respect the Appetite (or lack thereof)

According to the Mayo Clinic’s article, 10 Tips for Picky Eaters, you don’t want your child to associate anxiety or frustration with mealtime. Here’s how to prevent this from happening so you can reinforce healthy eating.

  • If your child is telling you they’re not hungry, refrain from forcing them to eat. Avoid bribery because they’ll learn that they can get anything from you, simply from throwing a fit.
  • Mealtime should not be a power struggle, so don’t barter with your child.
  • Try serving small portions to avoid overwhelming them; this gives them the chance to ask for more food on their own.
  • Even if your child says they’re not hungry, try serving meals and snacks at the same times every day. Your child will learn to eat at these designated times, eventually.

Lead by Example (sneakily)

Tips for Feeding a Fussy Eater, written by Heidi Murkoff and posted on What to Expect, a great resource for all things parenting, says to be a good role model and, if you have to, sneak in those nutrients.

  • Children mimic their parents and if their parents are eating fried chicken, well… It’s important for parents to eat their veggies and whole grains along with healthy desserts. Keep only healthy foods in the house so your little darling won’t get hooked on chips and soda.
  • If your child won’t even consider eating his/her veggies, try sneaking some broccoli bits into their bowl of mac c’ cheese or adding some sweet potato or shredded carrot into the pancake batter.
  • Never give up: according to Murkoff, it can take up to 15 failed attempts before a toddler learns to like a new food.
Picky Eaters on Your Hands? Tips to Get Your Kids to Eat Healthy (Guest Post by Naomi Shaw) - DailyPea.com

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com

Giving your kids the power of making their own decisions, lessening portion sizes so they can ask for more, and being a healthy-eating role model yourself are just a few ways to get your picky eater on the healthy train. Remember, never give up, sometimes it takes a few tries before your little one learns to love a new food.

Naomi ShawNaomi Shaw is a stay-at-home mom in Southern California. After being a stay-at-home mom for seven years she works full-time as a freelance writer. She enjoys blogging about food and healthy eating, providing insight, advice and more! She hopes you enjoy this article.

Visit Naomi’s website at naomijshaw.jux.com.

 

Do you have picky eaters in your family? What tips have worked for you?

 

Convenient Cloth Baby Wipes {Folding & Storing}

Convenient Cloth Baby Wipes {Folding, Storing & the Wet Method} - DailyPea.com

Cloth baby wipes are a wonderful alternative to disposable wipes because they save money, reduce waste in the environment, they’re soft on baby’s sensitive skin and they’re toxin-free. But, are they as convenient? They absolutely can be! I’ll show you some tips to make using cloth wipes hassle-free.

Different Types of Cloth Wipes

I’ve been using cloth baby wipes for a year and a half now without looking back. I absolutely love using them alongside our cloth diapers! We’ve used a few different types of wipes, and the ones that have lasted through the many loads of diaper washes are the double-layer ones (one layer made of 100% cotton flannel and the other made of organic cotton velour.) The thickness of them is nice because I use less of them with each diaper change or mess that I clean up. They haven’t frayed or worn out. Above all, they’re super soft for baby’s sensitive skin. I’ve used single-layer flannel wipes which are nice, but they ended up showing more wear and tear and not lasting. They’re thinner like a disposable wipe is, so I use more of them when I’m changing a poopy diaper. I have also used terrycloth wipes which I didn’t care for because they’re not as soft on baby’s skin as the cotton flannel and velour.

Right now I have a few dozen of the double-layer cotton flannel/velour wipes, which ended up being the perfect number for my diaper washing routine (every other day or two.) I didn’t make them myself, although I’m going to try my hand at it soon! I bought some that were handmade locally and sold at my favorite diaper store where we used to live in Michigan. I also use Kissaluvs cloth wipes which are similar to my favorite handmade ones. Etsy is another place to buy handmade cloth wipes. The investment in the double-layer wipes was well worth it for me since they last.

Homemade Cloth Wipes Solution

I wrote a post a while back on how to make cloth wipes solution. This is my favorite solution that has always worked the best for my baby’s sensitive skin. It only takes a few minutes to whip up a batch of it. Read the full post here.

Homemade Cloth Baby Wipes Solution @ DailyPea.com

The Wet Method and the Dry Method

One way of storing your cloth wipes is the dry method. You keep a spray bottle of solution and a pile of clean wipes next to your changing station, and you spray a wipe to dampen it when you’re ready to use it. The other way is the wet method. You keep a container of damp wipes at your changing station and pull them out as you use them, like you would a container of disposable wipes. I tried both methods and the latter method works best for me. Omitting the extra step of spraying the wipes during diaper changing time makes it much quicker and easier on baby and mama! It’s easy to whip up a batch of wet wipes every few days, and if they’re stored right, there are no mildew or odor issues.

A Good Container for Storing Wet Cloth Wipes

How to Conveniently Store Cloth Baby Wipes - DailyPea.com

I found that a major factor in the convenience of cloth wipes is a really good storage container. I chose the Oxo Perfect Pull dispenser over an old disposable wipes container because it’s BPA-free, phthalate-free and PVC-free. It’s also really sturdy so it stands up well to everyday use, and I wash it frequently with warm water and soap to avoid mildew growth. It holds 15 to 20 of the double-layered cloth wipes snugly under a weighted plate. The plate makes it easy to pull one out at a time while the next is ready underneath. The dispenser lid opens up easily with one push, and there’s a silicone gasket in the lid that helps keep the wipes moist.

When we’re on the go, I put my cloth wipes in a mini wet bag and keep them in my diaper bag.

How to Fold Cloth Wipes Like Disposable Wipes

You can fold your wipes so they pop up out of the container like disposable wipes do. Starting with a batch of wipes dampened with wipes solution, here’s how:

  • Put 2 wipes on a flat surface, one halfway underneath the other.

How to Fold Cloth Baby Wipes @ DailyPea.com

  • Fold the the bottom wipe up and over half of the top wipe.

How to Fold Cloth Wipes @ DailyPea.com

  • Add another wipe on top of the folded wipe.

How to Fold Cloth Wipes @ DailyPea.com

  • Fold the bottom unfolded wipe up and over half of the top wipe.

How to Fold Cloth Wipes @ DailyPea.com

  • Repeat until your batch of wipes are folded. When you pull one wipe out of your dispenser, the next wipe will pop up.

No matter which type of wipes you choose, and whether you end up using the dry method or the wet method, you’ll find the way that best suits your diaper routine! It’s comforting knowing there are different ways to make cloth wipes just as convenient, if not more convenient than disposables.

How to Wash Cloth Diapers in a Top Loading HE Washer {vs. Front Loading}

How to Wash Cloth Diapers in a Top Loading HE Washer {vs. Front Loading) - DailyPea.com

I’m writing this post on how to wash cloth diapers in a top loading HE washer (vs. front loading) because the two types of machines are very different when it comes to diapers. If you cloth diaper or think you might consider it in the near future, AND are shopping for a new washing machine, I would recommend a top loader. I’ll explain why in a minute. If you have a front loader, it’s not the end of the world. I’ll show you the workaround that helped me. (None of this applies for regular laundry – both types of machines have worked just fine on our clothes.)

Modern HE washers are awesome in the ways they save water and energy, but they sure can throw a wrench in the ease of washing cloth diapers because of this. Combine that with today’s cloth diapers; the all-in-ones for example (these are the ones we use and love,) and it can be downright challenging. I have heard that the “old fashioned” top loading washing machines clean diapers the best.

How to Wash Cloth Diapers in a Top Loading HE Washer

How to Wash Cloth Diapers in a Top Loading HE Washer {vs. Front Loading) - DailyPea.com

This is what my LG washer’s control panel looks like. One of the biggest advantages my top loader has over my front loader is the *WATER PLUS setting, where the machine adds the right amount of extra water based on the size of the load. Extra water is needed to thoroughly clean/rinse the diapers during the prewash and wash cycles. I found that with this machine my heavy duty setting uses more water than the delicate setting. For some reason the delicate setting used more water on the front loaders, but no matter which setting I tried, I always had to manually add extra weight and water. My current wash routine is easier with the front loading washer:

We go through 6-10 diapers every 24 hours and I wash them every other day. Sometimes I’ll go an extra day. I wash no less than 12 diapers at a time, and no more than 20.

  1. Rinse/Store: I use my diaper sprayer attached to the toilet (this is the one I use) and thoroughly rinse all the poop off. I then store the diapers in a wet bag (this is the one I use) until I’m ready to wash.
  2. Prewash Cycle: I run a heavy duty cycle with cold water and no detergent first, with the extra rinse and water plus setting. Lately I’ve been adding Rockin’ Green Funk Rock to my prewash to help prevent ammonia buildup from urine on the diapers.
  3. Wash Cycle: I then run a heavy duty cycle with hot water and detergent (I use Rockin’ Green Soft Rock for soft water,) with the extra rinse and water plus setting.
  4. Done! Clean! If the diapers are totally clean, they won’t have an odor. You won’t be able to smell urine, poop or detergent. My favorite way to dry our diapers is outside on the clothesline.

Another advantage our top loader has over the front loader is the soak setting. Sometimes extra-stinky diapers need a little extra soak before washing. (Read about stripping cloth diapers here.)

How to Wash Cloth Diapers in a Front Loading HE Washer

I’ve washed my baby’s cloth diapers in 2 different brans of front loading washers until we moved last July (the one at our old house and the one at my mom’s house.) I had the same outcome with both machines: it was a challenge to get the diapers completely clean unless I used a workaround. My how-to infographic is below and you can click here to read my full how-to post.

How to Wash Cloth Diapers in a Front Loading HE Washer - DailyPea.com

Do you currently use an HE machine to wash cloth diapers? Please share your experience!

A Way to Strip Cloth Diapers Naturally

A Way to Strip Cloth Diapers Naturally @ DailyPea.com

This post is featured in Homegrown & Healthy’s Cloth Diapering Made Simple series. Head over for the entire post and to stock up on lots of other helpful cloth diapering tips! You’re not going to want to miss it if you’re new to cloth diapering.

After a stressful long distance move this past summer, this view was such a beautiful one: clean cloth diapers hanging from our new clothesline. And, they smelled like nothing! Nothing but fresh air. Aside from unpacking and organizing the entire house with my two little ones, these clean diapers were quite an accomplishment that came from lots of frustration and hard work. I finally found a way that worked for me to strip our cloth diapers naturally. Read the full post…

Red & Roasted Tomato Soup

Red & Roasted Tomato Soup by Anni Daulter @ DailyPea.com

This guest post is written by Kristin Revere, who is an instructor of Anni Daulter’s Sacred Pregnancy classes. She recently completed her Sacred Postpartum certification; the sister program to Sacred Pregnancy.

Part of my Art of Sacred Postpartum training through Sacred Pregnancy included making nourishing foods for new mamas. We were taught the importance of warming the mama’s body and raising her internal temperature through warming foods. Anni Daulter created this recipe for Red & Roasted Tomato Soup and it is one that I like to bring the women who complete my Sacred Pregnancy Grand Rapids classes after they give birth.

Red & Roasted Tomato Soup - Anni Daulter

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 50 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 5 minutes

Serving Size: 8

Red & Roasted Tomato Soup - Anni Daulter

Ingredients

  • 8 large beef steak tomatoes (cut in half + heavily seasoned with thyme/salt/pepper/garlic powder/olive oil), roasted
  • 2 full garlic heads, roasted
  • Sea salt & pepper to taste
  • Thyme
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 16 oz. of chicken broth (or you can use veggie stock)
  • 2 veggie bouillon cubes
  • 1 tablespoon brags amino acid or 1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
  • 2 pats of butter
  • 2 limes, quartered
  • 4 cups of water

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees.
  2. Put seasoned, halved tomatoes in the oven along with the whole garlic cloves that have been drizzled with olive oil and roast for 40 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, in a big soup pot, add the butter and cook down the chopped onion, adding in salt, pepper, thyme, brags or low sodium soy sauce. When the onion is nice and browned add in the stock and bouillon cubes. Put on low and let all the flavors meld together.
  4. Add in roasted tomatoes and all of the roasted garlic and bring to a nice boil.
  5. Using either a hand mixer or blender, puree the soup.
  6. Squeeze a little lime on top before serving.

Notes

This recipe is by Anni Daulter, author of the Sacred Pregnancy book, creative director and editor of the Sacred Pregnancy magazine and the creator of the Sacred Pregnancy Class Series + “LOVE labor” Method.

http://www.dailypea.com/red-roasted-tomato-soup

Kristin Revere, Certified Sacred Pregnancy Instructor and Art of Sacred Postpartum Mother Roaster

About The Art of Sacred Postpartum: The Art of Sacred Postpartum is a sister program to the Sacred Pregnancy Movement started by Anni Daulter. Bringing together ceremony, wisdom and culture!

About Sacred PregnancySacred Pregnancy was created by Anni Daulter. Daulter is the author of the Sacred Pregnancy book, the creative director and editor of the Sacred Pregnancy magazine and the creator of the Sacred Pregnancy Class Series + “LOVE labor” Method. Anni is a conscious family living lifestyle expert, a professional cook, national speaker on natural living and recently launched the Sacred Pregnancy Movement, which provides sisterhood, resources, and cutting edge pregnancy, birthing and parenting information for both new and experienced moms and has created a whole new vision for birth workers. For more information on Sacred Pregnancy the book, classes, courses and CD, please visit www.sacredpregnancy.com.

The Art of Sacred Postpartum: Honoring and Nurturing New Mothers

The Art of Sacred Postpartum

This guest post is written by Kristin Revere, who brought Anni Daulter’s Sacred Pregnancy movement to her Michigan hometown earlier this year. She recently completed her Sacred Postpartum certification; the sister program to Sacred Pregnancy.

As a Sacred Pregnancy Instructor, my goal is to empower women in pregnancy and childbirth, and it made sense to be able to support them during their postpartum time, as well, by receiving the Sacred Postpartum certification. I am drawn to the ways that women care for each other in tribal cultures during pregnancy and the postpartum time. Sacred Pregnancy’s new Sacred Postpartum Mother Roasting program honors women and reflects those traditions.

Sacred Postpartum Traditions

Sacred Pregnancy believes that crossing the threshold from maiden to mother is a massive undertaking that not only needs to be recognized and ceremoniously honored, but deeply necessitates a healing touch that can welcome the new mama with open arms. Sacred Postpartum receivers are charged with holding space for women on the other side of birth, they are reminded of being reverent with their service to them, and are blessed to be a witness as each mother starts feeding her baby milk, heals her body, and begins to seal the rawness of her birth experience. The Art of Sacred Postpartum Mother Roasters are there to wrap new mothers in a blanket of their loving care, warm her insides, massage her, create herbal tinctures for her, educate her on placenta prana™, feed her soups and gift her with ceremony.

Mother Roasters are caregivers who nurture new mothers after birthing while supporting their recovery and journey into motherhood; as women deserve to be welcomed into motherhood through gentle loving care.

Sacred Postpartum Tincture

On the first day of the four-day training, we circled together and told our birth stories.  We laughed and cried and became honest, and vulnerable and raw together as mothers.  We created birth story journals and decorated them as a way to honor the process and claim the birth.  We were introduced to ceremonies to warm and seal the mother. It was all done with the Sacred Pregnancy “beauty way” in mind.

Later that day we shed our clothes and swam to the dock in the middle of the lake and designed mandala art to create our own personal signature as a Mother Roaster.  I felt so liberated and so whole in that moment.

Sacred Postpartum Training

Sacred Postpartum Training

I will take bits of this training back to my family as well. The food that we created together with love and intention is something that I want to do with and for my family. I want my children to view the kitchen as sacred space and I intend to spend more time around the table together creating new traditions. I want to bring the women in my community foods that nourish and heal after they give birth or whenever they need support.

Sacred Postpartum Kitchen

Some of the services that are offered through Sacred Postpartum include: Benkung belly binding, milk and honey honoring, relaxation rebozo techniques, sitz baths and peri-care, mandala flower art, conscious cooking techniques, mother blessings and more.

Sacred Postpartum Benkung Belly Binding

Sacred Postpartum Sitz Bath

I am still in awe of all of the beauty in the program and am excited to share this with the women in my community. I want every woman to feel honored in such a way after giving birth. To be heard, to be healed, to be loved and celebrated for going through the amazing journey of birthing a child.  I bow in gratitude to Anni Daulter and all the women who created the Art of Sacred Postpartum.

About The Art of Sacred Postpartum: The Art of Sacred Postpartum is a sister program to the Sacred Pregnancy Movement started by Anni Daulter – Bringing together ceremony, wisdom and culture!

About Sacred Pregnancy: Sacred Pregnancy was created by Anni Daulter. Daulter is the author of the “Sacred Pregnancy” book, the creative director and editor of the Sacred Pregnancy magazine and the creator of the Sacred Pregnancy Class Series + “LOVE labor” Method. Anni is a conscious family living lifestyle expert, a professional cook, a national speaker on natural living. She recently launched the Sacred Pregnancy Movement, which provides sisterhood, resources, cutting-edge pregnancy, birthing and parenting information for both new and experienced moms, and has created a whole new vision for birth workers. For more information on “Sacred Pregnancy” the book, classes, courses and CD, please visit sacredpregnancy.com. For more information on Sacred Pregnancy Grand Rapids classes and the Art of Sacred Postpartum services in Grand Rapids, connect on Facebook at facebook.com/SacredPregnancyGrandRapids.

Photos by Heather Goodbread Photography.

Play Dough: Building More than Shapes

Homemade Play Dough Recipe

This is a guest post by Alicia Lawrence. She is a content coordinator for a 12 Keys and blogs in her free time at MarCom Land. Her articles have been published by Her Fitness Hut, Examiner.com, and Ask Miss A.

We all have childhood memories that we cling to. Whether they’re a way to remember life before the stressors of the real world took hold or a way to just feel young again, remembering our childhoods is a critical aspect of growing into and through adulthood.

For me, one memory – without fail – takes me back to a time when things were simpler. Here’s the thing, my mother worked hard, so the times we got to spend together weren’t as frequent as they could have been. However, when we were together, she made the most of it. One of my favorite activities? Play dough.

Homemade Play Dough Recipe

You see, it wasn’t just any play dough that could be bought in the store. It was something much more, something that I was a part of from the start. We made our play dough, made amazing creations, then enjoyed it in another way: we ate it.

My mom’s play dough was something special, it was colorful and delicious, something that couldn’t be purchased. Instead, Saturday mornings – or “play dough days” as we referred to them – we’d head to the grocery store. From there, I was given the freedom to pick any flavor of Jell-O that I wanted. We’d head home and get the process started.

Once we arrived home, I’d sit mesmerized, watching my mother mix the ingredients, smelling the delicious aroma that was released and anticipating the fun we’d have. As I grew, she’d allow me to help with the cooking process, teaching me important cooking lessons that I hope to one day pass on to my children. I never could have imagined attributing my cooking skills to play dough but, I can.

Once the concoction was finished cooling, we’d create sculptures. When I was small she’d make shapes and I’d learn their names and how many sides each should have. As I grew we’d punch animal shapes with cookie cutters and I’d learn the sounds they made and where they lived.

To us, play dough was more than a toy. It was a full-fledged educational experience that taught me about science, shapes and even math (if I have two play dough balls and I add two more…how many do I have?). We had a lot of fun and built memories, but I also learned about patience and the importance of building bonds with family.

When you’re thinking of an activity for the family to enjoy, think about trying out an edible play dough recipe. Whether you choose to eat it right away after playing, or to save it – use an air-tight container and it will last around four months – your kids will learn lessons that will matter later in life. One day, they’ll thank you for it, just like I thank my mother whenever I have the chance.

Here’s my mother’s recipe:

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon cream of tartar
  • 1 3.5 ounce package of Jell-O (any flavor works, but the reds will stain hands) **

Directions:

  1. Stir all ingredients together on a stove top over medium heat while stirring frequently until you achieve a smooth consistency.
  2. Remove from heat. Allow the concoction to cool until it can be easily handled.
  3. From there, flour a smooth surface and your hands and knead it. Allow the mixture to dry.
  4. Play right away or store in an air-tight container for later play.

** I tried the recipe with what I had at home: unflavored gelatin in place of Jell-O and natural fruit juice in place of water for the flavor/color. The play dough turned out on the sticky side, but after kneading it with plenty of flour and placing in in the refrigerator for a couple of hours, it was perfect for play!