A homemade Christmas

This year was a homemade Christmas in our family, and a very satisfying one at that! Here’s what we got up to:

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Salt dough impressions of Adella’s hands (and feet – forgot to take a photo!).

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Easy pompoms – find the link here. I always thought pompoms were easy – this was even easier!!! I bought the wool at Lincraft.

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Adella coloured in and painted lots of stars!

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Crepe paper circles sewed together.

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Some of our decorations on our table centrepiece.

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Christmas cake – Donna Hay recipe here.

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Apple and cranberry chutney – Nigella Lawson recipe from her Christmas book.

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Christmas spiced nuts.

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IKEA has awesome packaging!!!

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And it is TOTALLY worth making their gingerbread house – delish!

Can’t wait to try new things next year! Any suggestions or links would be great.

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A “Very Hungry Caterpillar” birthday party

I couldn’t resist doing something special for her first birthday… special, but simple! We planned to have a park picnic, so I wanted something that we could easily transport outside, however, we were thwarted by the pollution and had a living room party instead.

We had to be a little bit flexible with some of the foods. We couldn’t find strawberries, so we used Happy Baby strawberry snacks instead. I didn’t want to be serving ice-cream on such a hot day, so we did wafer biscuits. The head of the caterpillar was a chocolate cake, and the body was banana cupcakes – baby friendly ones, but the icing wasn’t baby friendly!! So I left a few aside for the little ones. All in all, quite a success, and pretty darn easy too!

The printables were found here.

There was quite a bit of sentiment in the cooking too. The chocolate cake is my great-grandma’s recipe, and the cupcake recipe is my Mum’s favourite that she always baked for our birthdays as kids. Below is my adapted, baby- and allergy- friendly version.

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Banana cupcakes

  • 60g butter, melted
  • 1 1/4 cup SR flour
  • 2 bananas, mashed
  • olive oil (2 eggs worth)
  • 3-4 tbsp soy milk
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon

Mix together. Put into patty pans. Bake for about 12 minutes. Makes about 16.

Baby-led Weaning – Mango Cake

The best thing about this cake?? The colour!!! It’s a complete sunshine, sunflower, banana yellow! So beautiful. It just made me want to gobble it all up. I did my best to stop after two slices. I may have eaten three.

It is a flourless cake, and it is made with ground almonds. But, nut allergies, you ask??? Yes, I know there is a risk of  allergies, since she has never had any before. However, I figured that I would rather have her eat almonds at home, and watch carefully for reactions that be out and about and have something go wrong.

Thankyou to my lovely playgroup-Mum-buddy Kate for this recipe! You can find the original recipe here. However, I tweaked it a little and here is mine:

Mango Cake

  • about 8 baby mangoes
  • 2 cups ground almonds
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 eggs worth of olive oil (because eggs are expensive!)
  • 1 tsp baking powder

1. Puree the mangoes in a food processor.

2. Add the almonds & baking powder into the food processor and mix.

3. Slowly add the eggs & olive oil on a low speed.

4. Put in pan and bake for half an hour in my crazy oven, but I suspect much longer in a normal oven. Until a knife comes out clean.

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Golden!

(excuse the slops on the side… I had a very short window of opportunity to bake this one… very hurried!)

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Thumbs up from this one!

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It looks much yellow-er in real life!

The pictures aren’t great… I could only find my mobile at the time! Sorry!

Here are some of my other successful baby led weaning recipes:

Zucchini slice and potato cakes
Banana bread
Pikelets