Santa & Friends come to life!
White Chocolate Pomegranate Bark Recipe
Get creative in the kitchen with this sweet treat!
1 cup chopped white chocolate, white chocolate chips, or white chocolate melts
1/2 teaspoon chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon ground pistachios
1/4 pomegranate, arils removed, rinsed, and dried completely with a paper towel
Line a large baking sheet with waxed paper or parchment.
If using a high-quality white chocolate, temper your chocolate. Melt 2/3 of the chocolate over a double-boiler, to 110 degrees F. Remove from heat, stir in remaining 1/3 cup chocolate, and mix until the chocolate is melted and cooled to 80 degrees F. Return to the double boiler, stirring, until chocolate is 90 degrees F. (Link to full method provided in notes.)
If you are using a lower quality white chocolate, or using white chocolate candy melts, simply melt the chocolate in the microwave in short bursts, stirring often.
Once the chocolate is melted, pour it onto the center of your lined baking sheet. Use a spatula or spoon to spread the chocolate to 1/8 inch thickness.
Sprinkle chia seeds over the white chocolate. Then, sprinkle the pistachio powder, being sure to leave some areas of chocolate uncovered for the pomegranate arils to adhere to.
Scatter the pomegranate arils over the chocolate, focusing on areas where the chocolate is exposed.
Gently press the pomegranate arils into place. You can also gently press in the chia seeds and pistacho powder in areas where it is heavily concentrated.
Chill bark, on baking tray, for 15-20 minutes, until the chocolate is completely set. Gently peel off the waxed paper, and snap the bark into smaller pieces. Store in a closed container or sealed bag. Bark will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge.
Recipe provided by: KitchenInTheHills.com
Keeping kids busy
3D Christmas Tree Cards! All you need is coloured paper!
Collect up all of your spare wrapping paper and cardboard! Make your own beautiful Christmas Cards to give to friends and family this year. All you need is some coloured paper, glue and scissors! Cut paper into circles and fold in half. Glue one half to the card to form your 3D Christmas tree!
kids in the Kitchen!
Decorating cookies is a great way to keep your little elves busy in the kitchen! Select a range of cookie cutters and icing ingredients in centre. Plus turn your creations into a thoughtful homemade gift to give to friends, family or neighbours!
Seriously Hand Made!
Knit a chunky knit blanket at home in just 45 minutes using your arms as the needles!
Approximately 36″ by 60″
– Cast on 18 stitches using the long tail cast on method
– Knit 34 rows (depending on tension) keeping your stitches as tight as you can
– Bind off
– Weave in the ends
Get colouring this Christmas!
Give your little elves some fun colouring in templates to share around as Christmas decorations or cards for family and friends. We are sharing these FREE Crayola colouring in print outs, get yours here!
DIY Marble Nail Polish Art Pieces
What you'll need:
-nail polish in several shades (don’t use quick-dry if possible).
-disposable stick to stir paint
-plastic gloves to protect your hands
1. Fill your tray with water, not too much, just enough to get a flat surface. Whatever you use will pretty much get covered in nail polish so I would suggest using something you plan to toss afterwards.
2. Pour in your nail polish and move it around with the stick to spread it a bit.
3. Place your paper right over the polish and leave for a few seconds. Then transfer on to you old newspaper to dry.
4. Get creative! Add a second color and combine using your stick.
Craft activity provided by: Cutoutandkeep.net
At home fitness for over 60's
Its important to stay active if you are self isolating right now. Try these movements before getting active:
Warm up, cool down and stretch
Before you start a workout it’s important to warm up. Just five minutes of light activity is all you need. Things like:
- Jogging on the spot
- Pumping your arms
- Shoulder rolls
- Controlled punches
- Circular ‘windmill’ arm movements in the air.
After your workout, cool down by following any of the above activities, again for five minutes. This is also a great time to stretch your muscles holding each stretch for 20-30 seconds. Make sure you hold at a point where you can feel the stretch but you shouldn’t feel discomfort or pain. Don’t bounce through these, just slow steady movements.
Active tips provided by: Healthier.gov.au
Become a Mocktail expert at home!
Here's a couple of our fave delicious and fun mocktails to make at home.
Virgin Pina Colada
Sit back and sip those cares away with a non-alcoholic piña colada that's basically a tropical milkshake. It's creamy, tart, and sweet and just what the doctor ordered. One drink and you'll be hooked!
1 Pineapple wedge, for serving
How to Make:
1. In a blender, blend together frozen pineapple, ice cream, coconut milk, and pineapple juice.
2. Divide between glasses and garnish with a pineapple wedge!
Grapefruit and Rosemary Mocktail
- Rosemary Simple Syrup:1 cup water, 1 cup granulated sugar, 3 sprigs of rosemary
- 2 cups fresh pink grapefruit juice
- ¼ cup of the rosemary simple syrup
- 4 cups sparkling water
How to Make:
Rosemary Simple Syrup: In a small sauce pan on the stove, add 1 cup of water and 1 cup of granulated sugar over medium heat. Dissolve the sugar for about 5 minutes. Do not let the mixture boil or crystals will form. Once the sugar has dissolved, pour the simple syrup into a heat safe container. Add 3 sprigs of rosemary and let steep for at least one hour. The syrup will keep in the refrigerator for ten days.
Mocktail per glass: Add ½ cup fresh pink grapefruit into a serving glass. Add 1 Tablespoon (1/2 oz) of rosemary simple syrup. Stir. Fill the remainder of the glass with sparkling water (about 1 cup)
Garnish with rosemary sprig!
Recipes provided by: Delish.com
Virtual Book club
Missing your friends and reading up a storm while in iso?
Why not create or join a weekly virtual book club!
Ask your friends to join up on a video call to discuss your favorite reads and socialise at the same time!
Here's some free video call sites to get you started:
- Whats App
- Facebook Messenger
Fun for the fur-babies
Sweet and Simple Dog Tricks
We have collected a range of easy 'Do it Yourself' training tips for your dog!
The idea of this trick is to encourage calm self-control in your dog. By learning that they only gets a reward when he is calm and waits for permission then your dog will be focused to learn.
Dog trainers love this trick because it teaches a dog to focus and be controlled during training sessions and everyday life.
2. Shake Hands
Shaking hands is one of the more traditional dog tricks and remarkably easy to teach. Your dog will learn to offer a front paw in response to request and solemnly shake hands with first you and then visitors to the home. Shake is an old but impressive trick to teach any dog.
Dog trainers love this trick because the shake is a great alternative to teach that prevents a dog jumping up on greeting people.
3. Speak command
Teaching your dog to bark on command is easy and even more useful because you can then teach them quietness on command too.
Dog trainers love this trick and often teach it (and the next trick) in order to control a raucous barking canine.
Learning at home
Learn a language at home!
There is no better time than now to learn a new language and apply your self to upskilling your bilingual vocab!
Try using the following learning aids:
The Language Academy
Open Culture Online
Hygiene for kids
Hand washing for Kids
The next time you're cleaning up before meals remember these handy hints:
First, use warm or cold water when you wash your hands.
Work up some lathered soup on both sides of your hands (front and back!), your wrists, and between your fingers. Don't forget to wash around your nails. This is one place germs like to hide.
Wash for about 10 to 15 seconds — about how long it takes to sing "Happy Birthday!" (Sing it quickly two times or just once if you go nice and slow.)
Rinse and dry well with a clean towel.
Home fitness & wellbeing
Health and wellbeing is important, take the time to look after yourself with these great active tips!
1. Stretches in the living room
Whether you’d rather just have a bit of a stretch on your bedroom floor when you wake up or actually set aside half an hour or so every day to do a guided yoga routine. Free yoga and stretching apps you can download include:
2. Gentle lifting exercises
For your arms, why not use tins of tomatoes or fruit as dumbbells? It’s simple: with your arms outstretched, lift your hands to shoulder height or as high as you physically can, if your shoulder movement is limited, returning to by your sides when you’ve reached as high as you can go.
It can be useful to practice breath work or meditation to help manage your head space. The following apps can be downloaded from the app store which teach you how to meditate and complete relaxation exercises:
De-clutter your life
Imagine a wardrobe that’s neat and orderly, where everything has a place...
Well today’s the day? Out with the old, in with the same, but do it differently!
Sift between socks, underwear, shoes and whatever else is lurking in the depths of your drawers and reap the rewards of a tidy and organised bedroom.
Here’s our 5 rules of wardrobe organisation:
- Make your clothes visible
- Is it really sentimental?
- Store your holiday looks separately.
- Pack special occasion items away
- Protect your clothes
Fun & Games
Board Game Fun!
Or shall we say bored games? If you're lucky enough to be in quarantine with company, then why not Dust off the games and have some old school fun.
Family favourites may include Cluedo, Scrabble and Pictionary (Monopoly should be chosen at your own risk)
And don't forget about Virtual Games!
There are heaps of games available on the app store which allow you to play with your friends online! Try Words with Friends, ScrabbleGo and The UNO app!
Helping the environment at home
Here's an easy way to create your own at home compost:
1. Choose a place
The best place to out your compost tub or tumbler is a dry shady spot that is close to a tap or a hose.
2. Add compost ingredients
Add your organic food scraps. This includes fruit, vegetables, scraps, egg shells, teabags and coffee grounds. Don't add things like meat, cheese or bread scraps.
3. Add water as needed
Your compost pile should feel wet like a sponge, check it regularly and add water as needed.
4. Keep things moving
Turn your mixture every three days
5. Wait for it to 'cook'
You'll know your compost is ready to feed the garden when it no longer gives off heat and becomes dry and crumbly.
Beauty at home
Self-care tips in isolation
Sometimes it's the small things in life that make us feel better so take some time for yourself and create your own body scrub to rejuvenate your skin and leave it with a healthy glow! The best part – you don’t need to go further than your pantry or fridge to create one!
Combine the below ingredients in a small bowl, mix, apply and gently scrub!
Brown Sugar Scrub
Brown sugar is a wonderful natural exfoliant that works for all skin types.
- - Brown Sugar
- - Honey
- - Coconut Oil
You'll enjoy a brilliant glow after using a coffee face scrub. Adding brightness to your skin and reducing puffiness.
- - Instant Coffee Grounds
- - Honey
- - Yogurt/Cream or Milk
Items around the house perfect for dress ups!
- - Lengths Of Fabric or coloured material
- - Hats, Gloves, Scarves for Imaginative Role Play
- - Assorted Bags And Baskets
- - Glasses Or Sun Glasses
- - Silly socks and funny shoes
- - Tablecloth or fabric used for capes or hero masks
- - Old wooden spoons can be used to make a fairy or wizard wand
DIY no fuss Play Dough Recipe!
What you'll need:
- 2 cups of corn flour / corn starch
- 1 cup of hair conditioner (cheap brand)
- assorted food colouring
Place hair conditioner into a medium bowl and add a few drops of food colouring.
With a spoon, mix the colouring through the conditioner.
Add 1 cup of cornflour and stir. Then add the last cup of cornflour to the mixture.
Constantly stir the mixture until it begins to form a thick blob.
Turn the play dough out onto a clean surface and knead into a smooth ball with your hands. Add more cornflour if the play dough is sticky.
Store in a plastic zip lock bag or air tight container.
If you don't have cheap hair conditioner try using moisturiser or hand cream.
recipe provided by: Learning4kids.com
Happy craft at home
How to create your own Happy Egg Head Growers!
- Empty Egg Shells
- Seeds (use a couple of different types of seeds to compare, peas and sunflowers or just seedlings from the garden)
- Spoon or small scoop
STEP 1: Set up your egg shells in the egg cartons and fill with soil. You can use a couple of different types of seeds, make sure to separate one set of eggs from another.
STEP 2: Push one seed gently into the soil of each eggshell, making sure the seed is covered with dirt.
STEP 3: Use a small spray bottle or similar to dampen the soil. Do not over water!
Leave the eggs for a few days to see how the seeds grow, leave in a warm place with a small area of sunlight.
Recipe provided by: Littlebinsforlittlehands.com
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