Wednesday, 2 September 2015

Popsicle Stick Patterns

Recently I was wandering the isles of a little dollar store trying to find pom poms. I found some, which was great! I also happened to come across giant popsicle sticks, in rainbow colours.

I decided to buy them, not knowing what to use them for. After hours of thinking and not coming up with anything I thought Grace would find fun, yet reasonably challenging. Eventually (at 3am in the morning while needing to pee) I thought of the perfect little activity.

One that can be done over and over, inside, and no mess. Sounds good, right?

If you would like to make some for your little one too I will explain how I did it, although it is pretty simple. 

-First, I found some colourful paper, the only stuff I had that had the closest colours was some thin card, so  I used that. 

-I had little popsicle sticks also, so I traced lots onto all the different coloured card and cut them out. I did about 5 or  6 for each colour. These are to represent the large popsicle sticks. 

-I then used some plain white photocopy paper and cut it into 4 pieces, use as many as you like. 

-Think of some patterns and glue them on using the little pieces of coloured paper. These will be templates for your child to follow to make his/her patterns with the large popsicle sticks. 

My child decided to follow a couple of the patterns and then just made her own, bigger and better ones. She likes using alllllll the popsicle sticks, something to think about if I were to re-do this little activity. 

Here are some of the patterns I used: 

Pregnancy Week 28

My mother needs to stop taking me shopping with her, because her self control is not doing so well at the moment and loves bakery food. So does Grace, I am a little out numbered.

Every morning I wake up and say to myself "I am really going to try eat super healthy today!" blah blah blah.... Things will be going well. Then we go shopping and to a cafe. MMMMHM. I guess it is good that I start the day off right, right?

I just purchased a juicer on yesterdays shopping trip, I am super excited for the next few weeks to actually use up ALL the fruits and vegetable in the fridge. Cleaning the juicer, mmmm not so much.

Current weight: 103 kgs (227 lbs)
Total Gain so far: 13 kgs (28 lbs)

Ok, so 2 kgs for a whole month is not tooooo bad. Considering I have had some reeeally naughty days. Also, still sick (I would go to the doctor, if it were more than a stupid stuffy nose). The weather is still terrible, Spring just started, it can only get better from here? Ugh. Excuses.

I can do better!





Hummus is also going to come back into my snack stash, my midwife told me when I first got pregnant that hummus is bad because it is a breeding ground for bacteria or soooomething. But you know what, I still eat ham from the deli and a whole bunch of other things I am not supposed to. SOOO I welcome that healthy snack (with carrot sticks) back. YAY!!! I missed it so much. And just to keep it on the safer side, me and Grace devour a little pottle in a day or two!

Friday, 14 August 2015


Today I decided to get Grace in the kitchen to take advantage of it being clean for once, even though you can see a little pile of dishes accumulating in the sink.

Something quick and easy to setup with not toooooo much mess? Baking soda reactions will do.
I'm sick. She's sick. It's cold outside,  but the sun has been shining for days now. Brrrrr.

I was surprised Grace had as much fun as she did. She has been in a bit of a grump lately, probably from being so blocked up. Poor girl.

I let Grace pick 2 colors to start off with. PINK and BLUE. The blue was a surprise to me, pink, I expected right off the bat.

She was very good at helping me measure out the baking soda, I gave that job to her thinking it be best for me to in charge of the food colourings and very full vinegar bottle.

YELLOW and GREEN were the next choices.  We finally got them to fizzzz up too.  Grace got a little scared, so let me do the next one.

We were running out of colors at this point, so BLACK and RED it was.

Lastly, Grace begged for PURPLE. A good time to attempt to teach her  a bit of color mixing,  don't you think? She seemed to understand quite well, even though it turned out to be a very dark purple.

She was such a good helper, cleaning the bench after each colour. She got very curious about what was inside the bottle though hehe! I know you aren't supposed to reward children, but for being such a good girl which is quite rare the past few weeks, she got a bowl of burger rings, her favourite chippies at the moment (I think because it is the only thing I give her, without taking a bite first, yuuck!) 

Monday, 3 August 2015

Pregnancy: Week 23. What I ate.

Ups and downs of healthy eating have always been a struggle for me. Except one summer when I managed to lose over 10kgs easy as.

It is winter. I don't like winter. I miss strawberries and watermelon and basically everything colourful about summer.

So getting to how my weight/diet/exercise is going... Ugh.

My weight: 101 kgs. (222 lbs).
Weight gain so far: 11kgs (22 lbs)

Goals: Water intake: Yes, I fill up my 1.5L water every night. Sometimes mid-afternoon.
            Biscuits: No.... Definitely having less though.

Over the past few days I have definitely been getting back on track. I did a lot of walking yesterday going shopping with my mum and chasing after Grace. Unfortunately my legs ACHED for hours because I wore jandals ): Silly me.

I have found some Youtube videos that I like to do and have done them 3 days in a row (I know, that's not a lot, yet) and my intake of fruits and vegetables has increased. Breads and cereals etc are only used when I cannot think of anything else I feel like at the time.

Here are the Youtube videos I have been using:

Long one
Short one (Grace likes joining in with this one sometimes)

Here are some pictures of what I have been eating throughout the last few weeks. I forget to take a pic of everything, but this shows a pretty good variety I guess.

Breakfast most days is a green smoothie (spinach, berries, banana, chia seeds, yoghurt) or yoghurt and fruit/granola (HM)

Lunch, I never seem to capture (too busy) but it is ALWAYS different. I have salad wraps for maybe 3 days a week and the rest is whatever I see in the cupboard first. 

Dinner is my favourite meal of the day to cook. I sometimes have a plan, but when my family is home I have to ask what they want, so most of these are nights when I only have to cook for Grace and I. I am trying to incorporate more and more vegetables into every dish.

Snacks are once, sometimes twice a day, depending on what we are doing. When I say once a day, I mean every day is two, but sometimes Grace just munches on an apple for an hour if I am not hungry or feeling creative. 

Goal for this week: Finish the 5 Litre container of lettuce in the fridge before it goes yucky. This week I got lots of tomatoes and other yummy stuff to go in a salad so they won't be too boring this time around.

Friday, 31 July 2015

Window Painting

I have realized my addiction to Pinterest has gone on too long and I need to start spending more time with my baby girl.

I love talking with her, every day she comes up with something totally random and I am always blown away with how much her speech has developed. 

After some new custody issues with her father, I really need to make the most of the time I have with her (I still see her 6 days a week).

So all my hours spent on Pinterest have finally come in handy. I have a list, half a page long almost, of things I want to make with Grace. Mostly crafty things, and a few learning things. 

She knows all her colours, I am pretty sure she knows the basic shapes (and parallelogram, woohoo!). Also a few numbers she can recognize

So first on the list was something simple, because we went shopping today for a few supplies which need to be prepped while she is at her daddy's house for the night. 

I should not have waited so long to do this for Grace, she would have been 100x more excited if I had done this about a year ago! She had fun anyway, and it kept her occupied for probably..... 20 minutes....

What I used:
-Large ziplock bag.
-Packing tape (or duct tape, although packing tape is clear which looks nicer)
-Paint (I used kids finger paint, it has the weirdest texture, but was all I had on hand)
-A child, but I won't judge if you set this up for yourself! I had a blast too!

First I opened up the ziplock bag as wide as I could, keeping it flat on my counter. With each colour bottle I just squirted in about a tablespoon amount of paint then sealed it well. 

Grab your tape and cut off about the length of your ziplock bag, attach to the bag at the top, then the window. Secure on all four sides, double checking the side with the ziplock opening. This is a mess-free activity, it would be a bit of a disaster if the bag were to start leaking! Uh-oh!

This kept my girl occupied for about 5 minutes then she ran off to do something else. I jumped back up on the couch to rest my aching feet for a few minutes and before I knew it she was back to play with it again! 

 It is now 9pm and it is still stuck to my window, I would like to see how long it will last until it goes yucky. But I'm sure it will depend on what kind of paint you use. We will be making our own paint for the first time tomorrow which I'm sure will act very differently to the stuff I used today. 

Stay tuned for the other activities I will be doing with my girl over the next few weeks! (:

Thursday, 16 July 2015

Newborn Cloth Bum Pants Tutorial

Cloth bum pants, or harem pants, either way the shape is super cute on little wee ones.

I made a pattern after being too lazy to find a good one online for free to follow so I thought I would share how I did this. 

I googled measurements for newborn and took the averages from each place to come up with good measurements. Bearing in mind, I got told I will be expecting another large (9-10lb) baby again. He's a little chunky bum already (only 21 weeks). 

You will need:

-Knit fabric (mine was only 1 way stretch, it worked fine)
-Ribbing (mine was from the bargain bin for cheap, YAY)
-Sewing essentials (sewing machine, scissors, pins etc...)


First make your pattern, since I don't know how to upload a file in the right sizing percentage. I might figure it out one day.

If you make it look like my one, drawing it planning to cut on the fold. The full waist measurement will be approx 13" so the bit you draw for the waist needs to be about 3.5" I did not include seam allowance into my pattern, I find it easier to just cut it, especially when using knits. 

Drop the crotch down as much as you like, I will be using cloth diapers so I dropped mine down 6.5". There is no way to get a full harem pant look when using cloth diapers, I'm sure. 

The total length of my pattern is 11.5" so go down from the bottom of the crotch approximately 5" to the ankle (on a slope). Check below for the kind of angle you want. Modify to your liking though. 

For the ankle measurements, I just winged it. It looks about right when finished, if you have a baby to measure though, do that. I did mine 3"  Remember, that's not including seam allowances. 


Cut out your pattern, obviously. Fold over your fabric, you only need a tiny bit folded over as these are pants for very little people (: 6 inches should be plenty for 1/4 inch seam allowances. 

Place your pattern onto the fabric with the crotch side on the fold. Pin it, if you find that easier to cut (I do).

Cut 2 of these pieces, keeping the pattern the same way. There is no need to flip it over, these are simple little pants. 

You should now have 2 pieces cut out that look something like this:

Unfortunately at the bottom there must have been a little snip in the fabric so I will end up having a shorter leg or band around the bottom, but hey, things happen.

Now place right sides together like so: 


Pin and sew along the legs and inside the crotch area. (Black lines) Remember to use a ball point needle and do a zig zag stich. I only just invested in some new needles, some of which are ball point and I don't want to cry every time I sew knits now, hooray!

Trim the edges as much as you like and turn in the right way now. 

This is where it gets a little confusing. I am new to working with rib and might do some things wrong, if you know how to do this better, go for it!

You will need 2 pieces of ribbing for the ankle bands. I just cut one piece about 5.5" long and 2.5" wide if you understand that. Now cut that in half about where my tape measure shows about 2.75".

Turn both pieces so right sides are facing together and sew along the raw side opposite the fold.

Now fold in half so the right side is face up on both sides. Ignore the chubby, swollen pregnant fingers. 

Place the pieces of ribbing onto your pants so the raw sides are near each other. 

Place the pants inside the ribbing, matching up the seams. Stretch out the fabric, making sure each half way point matches up and pin it together. 

Didn't realize all my pins were blue, that never happens! Anyway, do this to both sides.

Sew around them, this is pretty tricky because they are so little. Remember to stretch your fabric as you go so the pant fabric and the ribbing match up when finished. 

Unfortunately mine look a little silly because the ankle band is very little due to that little snip in the fabric. Make sure to use not much more than a 1/4" seam allowance when sewing. It will look nicer than mine do. 

This is the comparison between the two different pairs I made, the smaller band looks a little silly but will still do the same job. 

Now it's time to do the waistband. I cut out 6.75" of the ribbing. Making it 3.75" wide, sew along the short side with a small seam allowance, making sure right sides are together. I don't know if most ribbing matters which side shows, but mine has one side that looks nicer than the other. I am not a ribbing expert, like I said!

Just like the ankle bands, pin the pant fabric inside of the ribbing, raw edges near each other. Match up the hems on each side and pin at each half way point with which ever method works best for you. I added my new little labels I made myself this morning. 

Tidy up any raw edges as you would like to. But I am tired so I just make sure there are no loose threads that could cut off circulation to toes or legs or anything. Your little pants should be finished now! I hope they fit your wee one. Cloth bum or regular nappy bum. I also hope they fit my little fatty when he arrives!

Let me know how these turned out for you, and if there is anything to change for the next attempt. 

Oh my goodness, I can't wait until there is a little (or not so little) baby sitting inside those pants and diapers I made! I will be counting down the days. 134 days to go!

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

DIY Romper. Link to FREE pattern and tutorial!

I just have to document these under something I have made. I am sooo proud of these! OMG! All the credit goes to the lady who designed the pattern, that you can print off for FREEEEE! From sizes 2-11 years. 

I decided my first attempt at these would be a very cheap material I found at the Hospice. (op-shop thrift shop kind of place, whatever) It cost me $2 and I could probably make 2 more of these if I wanted to. This was just a practise one for the CUTE material I bought and didn't want to waste with a failed project. It turns out that I love this one just as much/ if not more than the other one. The thinner fabric sits nicer.

Isn't it just the most darling fabric in the entire world! We both have a tiny obsession over watermelons ever since I purchased a pair of pajamas with watermelons on them. Grace went crazy over them. She also went crazy over PINK WATERMELONS!!!!!
Excuse the blurry photo of a child that doesn't want to look at the camera, EVER. Those. Curls. Though.

I really hope you decide to make one of these. I can tell you that they are not hard to pull down quickly for a toilet training toddler! Grace gives me about 1 minute notice before she tinkles on the floor and I manage just fine (:

My Pregnancy Weight (So far)

I am 19 weeks pregnant. Around about. My dates are 6 days different and I can't remember which one I am following.

My pre-pregnancy weight with #2 is 90kg (198 lbs). I am currently sitting at 98kg (216 lbs) ish. For someone that is already overweight, I am only supposed to put on 8-11kg (17-24 lbs). So I really need to get back on track.

With my first pregnancy I started at 64kg (141 lbs) and went up to 111kg (244 lbs) right before Grace was born. That was a lot. I may have been addicted to Chocolate Self-saucing Pudding. There needs to be a support group for that.

My goal is to stay under 100kgs (220lbs) this time around, so I need to lose a bit of this extra weight. NOT by dieting or extreme exercise but just by eating healthy and keeping moving, which I did neither of with my first pregnancy.

My Goal for this week is to up my water intake. I currently drink about 1 litre of water a day. I want to double that number. Next week will be something like "STOP EATING BISCUITS". But let's not get ahead of ourselves.

I am also starting to measure my thighs, they seem to be where the fat comes and goes fastest, apart from boobs and tummy, but it would be silly to measure those areas!

Tuesday, 7 July 2015


I was thinking about labeling this post "Toddler Food" as Grace devoured this meal when I made it last week. Zucchini noodles with carrot noodles too and mushroom with some fancy sauce.

What child doesn't love noodles? Even better when they are GREEN and ORANGE!

This week she wasn't interested in the slightest. She had 3 pieces of mushroom and said, "I don't like it, mummy" drank her (very diluted) cranberry juice and jumped back to her room. She's a busy body.

It's the middle of Winter here and I miss salad and strawberries and basically every other Summer fruit. These ingredients were a little expensive this kind of year, but zucchinis are my thing. I have a zucchini loaf in the pantry that is almost all gone. It is the coolest vegetable.

I will make it again sometime soon and I bet she will eat it. She better, I love it! Mostly because it literally takes me 10 minutes from start to finish. What mummy doesn't love cooking a quick, healthy meal?


Welcome to my blog. No habla espanol. I may have taken Spanish at high school but that's all I can remember, somehow still my preferred greeting!

My name is Charlotte, I am 19. I have a 2 and a half year old daughter called Grace and one on the way, who I found out yesterday is a BOY. I may or may not be single. For now. I make some bad choices sometimes. Shoot me.

Some good choices I have made are using cloth diapers, or cloth nappies as we call them over here in NZ.

My daughter has just been toilet trained, at nigh-time too. Hate to brag, but it only took 1 week for daytime and 2 weeks before I realised she only had ONE wet nigh-time nappy that whole time. I do plan on using the same little stash for number 2.

My problem is now, I only purchased 15 OSFA cheapies when Grace was 7 months old. They do not go small enough for even big newborns. And I mean BIG. Grace was 10.4lbs. BIG.

Newborn nappies are far too expensive to spend an extra $50 to ship them to NZ. So I am going to attempt to make them.

But do you think I could find PUL fabric at spotlight, the only fabric shop in town? NO. My creativity is going to be in full swing to get something that works. AAAAHH. HELP ME!!!!

Follow me on Google + (yeah, that's a thing now) or Pinterest for updates on how I am working my way around becoming healthy and green in a town that doesn't give a s**t.