Chocolate Goo – Recipe

I am going to start this recipe with an apology! I was going to include a nice picture of the finished article to tempt you all into making this easy and tasty dessert. Alas it turned out it was too tasty and it was all gone before I remembered to take a picture ….

Too good to wait...

 

 

Ingredients:

4 tablespoons of cornflour

4 tablespoons of sugar

4 tablespoons of cacao power

1/2 liter of milk

 

 

 

 

 

Method:

Mix all the dry ingredients together and slowly add the milk whilst mixing to make sure there are no lumps. Pour mix into a pan and gentle heat whilst stirring until it thickens nicely ( approximately 5 minutes). Pour the mix into separate bowls or cups. You could be adventurous here and put some chopped banana in the bottom of each cup. Wait for them to cool down and top with whipped cream or just tuck in!!

mmmm more please!!

Happy Chinese New Year – Year of the Dragon.

We are at the very start of our journey into Home Education but one of the things I always liked the idea of was marking events and celebrations from around the world as a way for the children ( and me!) to learn more about other cultures.

Yesterday was Chinese New Year and the start of the Year of the Dragon. We read a story about the Chinese zodiac and why rat got the honour of the first house. Then they coloured the matching colouring/writing sheet and wrote as many words as they wanted about the picture. We got our resources from Activity Village

Hear me roar!

Because it is the year of the dragon we decided to make a really big Chinese dragon. We painted a big box red using finger paint and then we stuck squares of tissue paper onto the wet paint to make the dragons scales. An offcut of yellow voile has been stapled on to make the body and a big ribbon the fire coming out of the dragons mouth or its tongue. It comfortably fits two children and boy is it a loud dragon!!

Ruben and Eleanor also made a model of the great wall of China and we all looked up pictures of the real wall on the internet.

Going back to the Chinese zodiac we also had great fun looking up what animals represented our family. We discovered that:

Ruben is  a dog

Ben is a monkey

Eleanor is a tiger

And both myself and Colin are horses

 

Then to round off all our hard work we made some noodles as an afternoon snack which were pronounced incredibly yummy!!

Yum! Noodles.

What is a sling?

My question is ‘What is a sling?’, how do we see slings in the modern world and how does that compare with how I believe slings should be seen.

Slings are often described as the way forward to enable a new parent to get on with life in exactly the same way as before they had their baby. ‘Be hands-free’, ‘Let’s you cook’, ‘Breast feed on the go’ and I could go on for a while.

Whilst the above is perfectly true life has changed irrevocably the second that little life popped into the world. The suggestion that life can carry on as usual sets new parents up for a fail as usual has just changed dramatically. Slings can and do help with the transition to the new normal and a sling is in my opinion the most valuable tool any new parent can get. But it is just that a tool. And like any other parenting tools it does not and should never replace our senses.

A sling is like an extra pair of arms but arms which cannot feel. Slings cannot see, they cannot hear, they cannot smell. All senses that the vast majority of parents rely on when looking after their children. Which is why I feel it is important that parents are extra aware of their senses when they carry their child in a sling. It is not a bouncy chair in which the child is placed to be looked at from a distance. It is a way to keep your child close where the crave to be and where they are designed to be just like we are designed to have the senses to look after them.

What is a Babywearing consultant and why would I go and see one/train as one?

A babywearing consultant is someone who has been trained to advice parents about slings and teach them how to carry their child safely and comfortably.

I have been showing parents how to use slings for 6.5 years which is nearly as long as   I have been using them and also nearly as long as I have been a parent. I started my training to become a babywearing consultant in November 2008. Why some people asked me did I feel the need to go on a training course when I had already been advising parents for nearly 4 years. For me the answer is simple. I needed to know that the advice I was handing out was accurate and safe. I also wanted to learn how to teach people effectively.

Coming home from that first course my head was overflowing with information. I had never imagined that it would be possible for me to learn so much more about babywearing!

At first it felt strange to start charging people for a service that I used to give out freely. But then I thought about it. Before I did my course I would always be happy to help someone and would stand up and teach someone while my children played at my feet. Teaching someone generally involved tying a child to them or tugging on strands of material. Now as a babywearing consultant I set aside 1.5 – 2 hours of my time to teach someone a specific carry or teach them how to use a specific carrier. Gone were the days of pulling and tugging. And the children playing at my feet were gone too as when charging someone to come and see me I did feel I had to make sure I could focus my attention on them and not on my own children. I also noticed a difference in how people felt when I was finished with my consultation. Without fail they all left feeling confident in their ability to carry their child. Some coming back for another consultation but for most of them it was just the initial skill set they needed and then they were able to build on it themselves.

Teaching someone how to do a specific carry or how to use a specific carrier is a world away from enabling someone to use slings. Tweaking, troubleshooting, hints and tips are all still part of the free service I provide when out and about at meets and groups. I am more then happy to help someone!

So why do people still come and see me for consultations? Because they want to have that service and dedicated time from a trained professional. Unbelievable to some but it has taken me years to feel happy with that label. Still it is what I am I started my training in November 2008 and have done several more courses and projects to continue my professional development. The learning never stops which with an ever changing industry is a good thing. Being a babywearing consultant connected to a recognised school hands me this on a plate as not only do I get to benefit from my own learning and growing but I get to share in the journey that others are undertaking too.

In Germany where the concept of a babywearing consultant is much more accepted cities can have more then 10 successful consultants. Competition can increase business as well as creating a local network of skills.

For more information on training as a babywearing consultant please see www.trageschule.co.uk ( where you can find out more about me in the trainer section too!) and for information on where to find a consultant local to you please see www.slingguide.co.uk