Monday, 21 December 2015

Making Memories with Burger King SA

Yesterday,my inlaws looked at Squish puzzled when he told them 'we went on a picnic to Burger King'. He wasn't exactly wrong though- this weekend, Burger King SA treated us to a picnic to celebrate the launch of their delicious new King Snack meals. We received a stunning hamper stuffed with everything we need for the perfect picnic- picnic blankets, sunhats, water bottles, frisbees, bats... you name it! (I loved the fun messages printed on the various items). 

picninc frisbee bat ball

Most importantly, we received vouchers to collect the perfect fuss free picnic meals- the new King Snack meals (plus drinks of course). I think picnics are all about family fun and relaxation. Why spend hours slaving away in the kitchen for a picnic when you can just pick up your picnic food on the way? 

Saturday was a perfect sunny day- ideal weather for our #Kingsnackspicnic. We decided to have our picnic at the beautiful Walter Sisulu National Botanical Gardens in Roodepoort, famous for its plants, breathtaking waterfalls and black eagles. While our usual Burger King is the Rosebank one, for the picnic, we stopped at the new Burger King at Clearwater Mall, which happens to just down the road from our chosen picnic destination to pick up our picnic lunch (if you are looking for this particular Burger King, it is in the upstairs section of the food court). 

clearwater mall

While we like the Rosebank branch for its location and play area, at this one I was impressed by how friendly and knowledgeable their staff were and by how quickly and efficiently they dealt with a minor glitch with our card. While waiting, I was tantalised by the flashing poster for the King Snack meals we were about to enjoy- each King Snack consists of four chili cheese bites, four King nuggets, four King chicken ribs, two small fries and two barbeque dipping sauces. Everything contained works well as finger food for a picnic and it is perfect for one very hungry individual or two less hungry people. For us, two King Snack meals were just right for two adults and two little ones with tiny tummies.

fast food

After a quick drive to our destination, we found the perfect picnic spot under a large tree and we settled down to enjoy our meal- still piping hot in the cooler bag. 

I must say, we really enjoyed the new King Snacks. I think those chili cheese bites are my new favourite snack- they are beyond divine and I am dreaming of them while typing this up! I was very curious as to what chicken ribs were- did I miss that biology lesson? It turns out that they are succulent chicken wings in a spicy rib sauce- quite tasty but with a bit of a bite. Look- they kind of look like ribs!

The nuggets were firm favourites with the kids and the wings were yummy too. I don't need to tell you the fries are good- you already know that I am sure!

While every calorie consumed was well worth it, we decided that after lunch it was time to burn off some of that deliciousness. We played with the bats and balls, which the kids really enjoyed!

Then it was time to play some frisbee. This was fun for a few minutes until Noodle got whacked in the face. 

After the tears settled, we got even more active with a walk to the picturesque waterfall, followed by a hike up the ridge. 

We were quite impressed that Noodle got all the way to the top all on her own. It is quite a steep and tiring climb and hubby A built some muscles carrying Squish all the way to the top. We were all completely out of breath by the top but luckily, I still had some Burger King bottled water stashed in the cooler bag- boy did that go down well!

eagles roodepoort

The long trek was worth it as the view of the West and North of Johannesburg from the top is quite spectacular and you have a good view of the waterfalls below too! 

All in all, we had a super fun day which we will all remember for a long time to come. Thank you to Burger King SA for making it happen!!!

*Sponsored post

Friday, 18 December 2015

Fun at the Jo'burg Zoo with the So Funny Safari

If you are anything like us, I am sure you are looking for things to do with the kids over this holiday period... because lets face it, when they are home all day, you are likely to lose YOUR sanity.

We went on a blow-the-budget holiday in September, so, other than a two day mini-break that we had earlier this week, these holidays we will be around Jozi.  We have been planning to do a few day trips and one of the trips we planned to do this holiday was a trip to the Johannesburg Zoo


The zoo is always a great educational experience and Squish, at nearly two, is obsessed with animals so I think he will love the zoo now! I have just found out that there is even more reason to race over to the Johannesburg Zoo now!!!

From 18 December to 17 January, Boomerang (DSTV channel 302) are inviting families to visit the zoo and jump on the 'So Funny Safari' tractor. Boomerang is all about family entertainment and now they are moving the experience away from the television screen to the great outdoors, while promoting animal conservation.

So what can you expect if you hop on the tractor? I know my kids will be super excited by the tractor ride itself, but there is so much more to look forward to! As well as getting to see the furry creatures that always attract us to the zoo, they will also get to see some of their favourite cartoon characters such as Tom and Jerry, Garfield, Scooby-Doo, Pink Panther and the Tazmanian Devil.

Edu-training adventures will take off daily from the  'So Funny Safari' pick up zones at 10h00, 12h00 and 14h00 respectively. Visitors will head to six different enclosures where some of the zoo's favourite animals will be paired up with a Boomerang furry friend. This will also be a great learning experience as kids will get to learn some interesting facts about the chosen creatures. 

It sounds like fun, doesn't it? I know we will be headed that way soon (I will hopefully post some pics afterwards).  

(*Sponsored post)

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Easy Marshmallow Pops

They are cute, super easy and great for kids parties or school bakers man days. 

My kids love these and they are fun to make- the kids can do most of it themselves.

sweet candy sprinkles

All you need is marshmallows, some skewers, chocolate to melt over and sprinkles or sweets for decorating.

Here is how you make them:

1. I cut the sharp tip off the skewer first using a scissors as I am a bit paranoid with smaller kids but you can skip this step with older kids.
2. Thread three marshmallows onto the skewer (or you could do just one for mini marshmallow pops).

3. Melt chocolate over a double boiler or in the microwave. I used good quality baking chocolate this time, it is easy to work with and gives a smooth dry result but you can use something fancier if adults are going to be indulging (try dark chocolate and nuts).
4. You can either dip the marshmallow stick into the chocolate or you can spread with a spatula.
5. Decorate with sprinkles, nuts, sweets or drizzle with chocolate in a contrasting colour. Make funny faces or just go wild with colour- you are limited only by your imagination here. We just put different sprinkles and a jellytot on the end of each one this time

This will keep in an airtight container for a week or even two at a push.

P.S. For a healthier treat you can replace the marshmallows with fruit- serve immediately.

Friday, 11 December 2015

Win With Kids Book Club

Guess what? We are giving away another one month subscription to Kids Book Club- delivered to your doorstep!

If you have been living under a rock and don't know about Kids Book Club, then read more about our experiences with them here and here.

As a family of bibliophiles, we all get excited when our monthly delivery arrives. We just got our latest monthly delivery yesterday and I am thrilled with the books they have chosen for us this month. 

Noodle starts school in January so the books about the first day of school and about making new friends are incredibly apt. 

These books also follow on from a clock book that we received in October featuring the same characters. There is a hard mini book about playing in the snow (Squish has taken this one) and and a book with lots of Christmas craft activities (there are some cute ideas and most of them can be adapted to the rest of the year so they are less seasonal). Craft ideas will definitely come in handy while the little ones are at home for over a month and of course Noodle likes all the shiny stickers in the middle! 

We also get a bunch of magazines each month. While these are meant to be for mom, Squish has taken a liking to these and 'reads' the magazines to me. I love paging through them while he tells me stories about what is happening in the pictures (his stories are a bit bizarre sometimes but always cute and entertaining).

So I am sure you are dying to win a Kids Book Club subscription. To enter, just follow the Rafflecopter steps below. Note- only step one is needed to enter but the other steps earn you bonus entries.

This competition is only open to individuals who reside within South Africa. The prize is sponsored by Kids Book Club, who will be solely responsible for delivery of the prize to the winner. The winner will be selected randomly using online digital software. The competition closes on 18 December 2015. Good luck to all who enter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

2015- The Year That Ran Away

It is hard to believe that it is already mid December- it feels like each year just goes faster and this year just vanished in no time!

Despite the pace, so much has happened in these twelve months. The year began with us celebrating the first birthday of my chubby BABY boy, who was just taking his first tentative steps and talking baby language. Now, I have a long and lean, fully-fledged TODDLER, who goes to school three days a week, talks in full sentences, knows big words and zooms past me on his plastic scooter. For numerous reasons, we have decided that December is time for weaning off the breast (for real this time, we have tried before but this really is the end of the booby road), so that is the next big step for him. Also, it is time for potty training soon- although he already makes his number two's in the toilet (sometimes anyway) I have not yet been brave enough to leave him without a nappy. I am having an internal debate about whether or not it is time to give it a go.

If I compare pictures of my little girl at the beginning of the year, it is obvious that she has grown a lot physically- she is miles taller! Now five, she has figured out how to write a few words, draw complex pictures, roller-skate and ride her bicycle without trainer wheels (sort of- she is still a bit wobbly and hasn't mastered turning without falling but she is getting there). Of course, she has also matured emotionally and has grown to be very philosophical- always pondering the meaning of life and asking complex existential questions. She has just graduated from nursery school and we have just had a week filled with awards ceremonies and medal collections for various extra-murals. She is now about to take the big transition to grade R at primary school. I think we are both excited but a little bit apprehensive and it is odd to think of my little baby in school uniform soon.Exciting times ahead!

February 2015 was the month that I started this blog, on a whim. My initial plan was to start a fancy expert blog in my area of professional expertise (which turned out to be a bore, even to me). Of cause, I have a very non-technical background and knew nothing about blogging, web design, SEO or social media management at the time (in fact I am still a learner driver when it comes to most of this), so I decided I would first do this one to dip my feet into the water with a 'starter' mommy blog and just write about whatever came to mind to see if I am cut out for this blogging thing. Since then, I have gotten quite attached to this blog so it is not going away any time soon. I also met lots of wonderful online friends via this blog, a few of whom I have met in person and many that I have not. 

Work wise, the second half of the year found me spending a large portion of my time committed to a part-time contract which is in my field of expertise but in an area that I would not have imagined myself entering- but found myself enjoying. 

This year was all about finding a balance between work and play- and I loved the fact that I managed to spend lots of quality time with my family and that we managed to do new things and  learn new things together. We found time for life, travel and play.

What were the highlights of your 2015? Please do share. 

Tuesday, 8 December 2015

Interview With A Noodle

Noodle turns five this week- where has the time gone? I swear it was just yesterday that we were bringing an infant home from the hospital!

I have decided to interview her about some of the important stuff in her life. I did this last year just before her fourth birthday too, but in a notebook that I have misplaced (kicking self in head). I will start the tradition afresh this year and plan to do this on an annual basis to see just how much she has grown and evolved. 

cake candles 5

What makes you happy?

Flowers, hearts, standing in the rain, when a kitty comes to me, ice-creams, sweets, when someone does something nice, my baby brother, painting.

wreath flower heart

What makes you sad?

Thunder and lightning

What do you be when you grow up?

(‘Doctor’, screams baby brother. ‘No, a butterfly!’)

Noodle: I want to be an ambulance driver (note: the answer to this one changes on an almost daily basis, ranging from doctor, teacher, lawyer, policeman or cashier).

What is your favourite colour?

White... and my second favourite colour is really, really dark pink.

What is your favourite programme?

Agent Oh So (weird, I have never seen her watching that one), Doc McStuffins, Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Sophia the First and Jake and the Neverland Pirates.

What is your favourite food?

Boiled eggs. (True story, Noodle is really passionate about her hard boiled eggs- a pity since I hate making them).

Now ask me what is my favourite animal!

What is your favourite animal?

A chicken! Because it lays the eggs! (Oh, but of course.)

What food do you really not like?

Mushrooms .... ewwwww! 

What does it mean to be a good person?

I don’t know. Good people always hug us and are nice to others

What was your favourite holiday ever?

When we went to the desert!

What is your favourite toy?

My robot and my helicopter! 

What is your favourite season?

Winter, because I like to be cold.  

What is your favourite sport?


If you could be president of South Africa for a day, what would you do?

I can't tell you, it's a secret! (What was I thinking trying to infiltrate state secrets.)
What is your favourite book?

Alice in Wonderland 

Have you tried interviewing your little one? What were some of their answers?