Wednesday, November 11, 2015

DIY: How to make a diaper cake tutorial



Been wanting to share this tutorial for the longest time. It was my bff's baby girl's full month, her being my bff, I wanted to give her something special but at the same time having sticky bean in the house also means I will not have the luxury of time for complex and time consuming items.
I always like the idea of DIY-ing things for someone special and my bff is someone who is really special to me. When I chanced across a diaper cake, I was thinking, that's it! A diaper cake it shall be!!!

Diaper cakes are available for purchase too but its ridiculously expensive, it's relatively simple to make and if you DIY a diaper cake, you can save upto 60% of the cost, depending on the diaper brands you chose.

For my very first DIY diaper cake, I use Merries in size S. We all know that babies grow really first and outgrow their diapers before we knew it. So forget about newborn sized diapers, go for sized S or size M.

Materials required:

  1. Diapers of course. I used 1-1.5 packets of Merries Size S diapers
  2. Pretty ribbons
  3. cake base
  4. glue
  5. empty paper towel roll
  6. elastic bands, plenty of them
  7. pretty headbands for babies
  8. A cute soft toy as cake topper
  9. very much any other baby stuff you want to add

Let's begin!


 Roll up the diapers as depicted in the image above. For aesthetic purpose, I purchased the transparent rubber bangs used for hair instead of the usual red rubber bands that are common out there. 

This is the bag of transparent bands commonly found in the neighbourhood areas, even provision shops. Other hair accessories shops such as Aries, Chameleon etc probably carry similar products as well. I bought this at a mini-mart near my place for just $1. You'll need 2 packs of this.

Stick the paper towel roll onto the middle of the cake base

place 6 rolled-up diapers around it and secure with a rubber band. As this is the innermost layer, I used the ugly red rubber band since it won't be visible at all.

Do a 2nd round of rolled-up diaper, if you can find huge elastic bands to hold this layer, all the better. But I couldn't hence I used a ribbon to secure this layer.

Ideally if you managed to find a mega sized elastic band that can stretch really well and whole the outermost layer, that will be ideal and you won't have to do what I did. I bundled 2 rolled up diaper and secure it to 1 rolled up diaper from the middle layer. As this is the biggest piece of cake base I found, and it's obviously too small for my outermost layer, I need the outermost layer to be really really secured since not 100% of the outermost layer is sitting on the cake base.

Top view to give you a clearer picture.


Finally done with the 1st level

Because the diapers in the outermost layer are individually attached, you will want to use another ribbon to tie them all together.

Notice any difference in the paper towel roll? Ya after I was done with 1st level then I realised my paper towel roll was way too short. But no worries, just extend it with a toilet paper roll =p

and then do the same again for the 2nd level. this time round secure 5 pieces to the roll instead of 6.

The 2nd level will only contain 2 layers. It's getting easy isn't it? Secure the outermost layer with ribbon as well.

The top level is the easiest! Any red elastic band can be used to easily secure the 1 and only layer on top. 

When this is done, you can decorate and cover the first layer of ribbon with a nicer looking one. Get the thickest ribbons you can find! I secured it with staples.

I used a variety of designs for each level.

And then the cake topper which is the minnie mouse soft toy is added. I've also added a headband to the top layer. It makes a really pretty embellishment on its on.


Saw the lollipops? Yes those were wash cloth lollipops, super easy to make as well. I'll share that in a separate tutorial later on. So I made the wash cloth lollipops and stuck it on my DIY diaper cake as well.
I've also made use of the remaining ribbons and make it into a messy bow.

And then I realised that it's not secure to bring this out and hand it over at the party. There's definitely a need to wrap it up in clear plastic wrap. So we head downstairs to get the clear plastic wrappers. and yes you'll need rolls.

I've got my little helper who's having fun with the 2 rolls of plastic wraps

and some how she found her way to...............

the play ground!!! 

haha, finally back home after a reroute to the playground. Just put 1 layer of wrap at the bottom of the diaper cake and pull it upwards. I didn't really have a system for wrapping this, very much just anyhow and make do with what I have. If possible, try not to cover the cake topper if you're using a soft toy. At least I didn't cover mine and it turns out fabulous.

Tadah! My very first DIY Diaper Cake!





Sunday, November 8, 2015

DIY Edible Play Dough for Toddlers

And so I read about how much fun and sensory it is for young toddlers to be playing with play dough and how versatile it can be for toddlers activities as well.
I'm such a sucker for versatile products when it comes to toddlers activities so I tried my my hands on making our very own edible play dough.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of plain flour
  • 1 cup of salt
  • 1 tbs of oil
  • 1 cup cold water
  • Optional: food colouring, i use red and the dough turns out pink! pretty!!
Instructions

  1. Mix plain flour and salt
  2. Add everything else and mix well, you probably need to do quite a bit of kneading
  3. Add water if it's too dry or add more flour if consistency is too wet
This recipe's definitely not the best edible playdough recipe out there. I find the dough a little too crumbly and oily. It leaves bits of crumbs behind and a little bit of oil stain on our couch. Trying to be the smart alec, I added more water the next day when we bring out the play dough to play and when Sticky bean was pretty done with her play dough for the day, I kept the still-wet play dough back into the air tight container.

You can very much guess what happened to the play dough. It turned mouldy a few days later when i wanted to bring it out again. grrrr....
You can google for best playdough recipes and you'll get tons and tons of results. Most of the others require cream of tar tar, I guess that could be the key to it!

Check out some of the recipes I've found:
Tinker Lab

Care2
Kids Activities

Imagination Tree

Sticky bean got pretty excited when she saw her mama setting up her activity table. She observed the dough, saw what I did and tried to roll little pieces of dough into balls as well and tried to mould it.





I gave her items like pipe cleaners, straws and some beads so she can stick into the dough and have fun. But no, she's not into sticking things into the play dough.
Well she still have pretty much a lot of fun with the play dough though it kind of leave a mess.

It was an ok activity for Sticky bean but she's not totally into play dough yet. Shall try again couple of months later.

Age attempted: 24 mths
Duration entertained; 30 - 45 mins
Will I try it again?: Yes probably in a few months time

Thursday, November 5, 2015

DIY Toddlers Activities:Toddler activities with poms poms + Free printables

Even though I hold a full time job, I make it a point to do some form of toddlers activities with her every evening. It doesn't take a lot of time and the educational values and effect these toddlers activities have on your toddler is way too amazing.

For most of sticky bean's activities at home, I try to recycle the same materials over and over again, so you'll see a lot of 'same same but different' kind of activities I do with sticky bean.

Some of my favourite items which I feel is worth the purchase due to the high versatality of the items include poms poms, pipecleaners and popsicle sticks! There're just endless possibilities with them and perfect for activities to hone their fine motor skills, creating a sense of order, visual discrimination and so much more.

So here's another simple activity, plus there are free printables available online!
Chanced upon this website  http://www.busylittlebugs.com.au/category/free-printables/ with plenty of awesome free printables especially for toddlers - preK.  Though most of it are too advanced for Sticky Bean who just turned 2 last month.


These adorable pom pom mats are perfect for young toddlers activities and highly suited for sticky bean and allow her to practice her colour matching skills. For the past few activities, we've been doing a lot of colour sorting so she's definitely ready to do some colour matching right now.

All you need is a colour printer and if you have a stock card, do print on stock card, if not normal paper will do just fine as well.

Print out the pom pom mats, bring out your poms poms and voila! Your invitation to play is ready! By the way you will need smaller sized poms poms for this toddler activity. The poms poms I used in the images below were way too big.



Sticky bean's so excited with this activity, she even wore a matchy matchy dress to go with the pom pom. Haha ok, that's pure coincidence by the way.
As with all new activities with toddlers, I need to guide her along the first couple of time and she get the hang of it after a few demonstration.
This activity doesn't hold her attention for very long, she prefer to sweep the poms poms off the mat after a while.
Well all you need is a couple of minutes a day, I feel that's good enough. You'll be surprised by how fast they absorb.

Age attempted: 23 mths
Duration entertained: 10 mins
Will I do it again: probably yes since I've all materials ready and there's hardly any preparation time

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

DIY Toddlers Activities: Colour sorting again!

Not sure if I'm just addicted to creating colour sorting activities for sticky bean or was it because the colour sorting activities were just so easy to create that I kept doing different variations over and over again!

This time round was with some coloured wooden blocks I found in the house and it requires almost no preparation at all.

Materials needed
1. Wooden coloured blocks or you can use LEGO bricks too
2. Piece of paper
3. Crayon

I wrote the colour in its corresponding colour on a piece of paper and placed it on the floor. Did a demonstration by displaying the corresponding coloured blocks in the same row.
After a few rounds, Sticky bean follow suit.

Just making use of her newly found skill of colour sorting and creating same same but different activities.


Age attempted: 24 months
Duration entertained: 20 - 30 minutes
Will I do it again?: Definitely!

For more colour sorting activities ideas, do check out the link below. I love some of the ideas!

http://www.learning4kids.net/exploring-colours/

Monday, October 26, 2015

DIY Toddlers Activities: Colour sorting with Popsicle sticks

Another project using inexpensive and up-cycled materials.
Like I mention earlier in the colour sorting with pom pom activity, once your toddler mastered the skill of colour sorting, there're so many variations and endless activities you can do with them!

Here's one impromptu version that I came up with while staring at the empty carton which came with my iherb purchase and pondering what to do with it.

Materials required:
1. coloured Popsicle sticks (also known as ice-cream sticks) 
2. small carton box
3. scissors
4. crayons

Simply cut slits in the carton box, colour the slits with the corresponding colours as the popsicle sticks with crayon and voila! 
You've got yourself a DIY colour sorting toy!

As Sticky bean find the corresponding slit for the popsicle sticks, I'll say the colour verbally as well. As with all other activities with toddler, we need to verbalise every action as much as possible. This will help them register and learn new words too. 


Age attempted: 24 months
Duration engaged: 30 minutes
Will I attempt it again: hell YES!!!

For more colour sorting activities ideas, do check out the link below. I love some of the ideas!

http://www.learning4kids.net/exploring-colours/

Sunday, October 25, 2015

DIY Toddlers Activities: Colour Sorting with Poms Poms

I've started doing this Toddlers Colour Sorting activity couple of months back since Sticky bean was some 20 months I think and I still do this with her occasionally and added few variations of colour sorting activities ever since.

All you need are poms poms and a muffin tray for this activity. Once your toddler master this sorting skill, there're just so many variations you can do with a colour sorting activity!

Took me couple of times to do this with Sticky Bean before she finally understands that she is supposed to sort the poms poms in accordance to their colours.



 


Age attempted: 20 months
Duration entertained: 20 mins
Will I try it again: Definitely! In fact I've done a few variations of colour sorting activities for toddlers ever since. 

For more colour sorting activities ideas, do check out the link below. I love some of the ideas!

http://www.learning4kids.net/exploring-colours/




Simple Sensory Play with Upcycled Materials

Alright this is super post dated, been a long time since I posted. As I have a full time job and few months back,I just changed my job due to unforeseen circumstances. Took a while to finally find time to clear my backlog.

Here goes, couple of months back I found these tiny pieces of triangular cardboard pieces used as filler in our product shipment so I brought a bag home with me.
Thought it can be used as a quick and easy way for sensory play by simply dumping it into a bin with some of the shapes coming from her shape sorter toys.

It worked out pretty well, kept Sticky bean busy for a while



 
 

I've no idea this can be so much fun for a toddler


Age attempted: 21 mths
Duration entertained: 15 minutes 
Will I try it again? Yes, I see great potential in reusing this for sensory or I spy activities