Coronas on the Shelf

When Lockdown was announced, I thought of doing something everyday to entertain the kids (and myself)… That’s why I came up with”Coronas on the Shelf”. It works similar to “Elf on the Shelf” which we do in December… Except, instead of finding an elf every morning they look for 2 Coronas every morning. They really enjoyed it! And I must say it was exciting for me too. I planned to do it for 3 weeks but then Level 5 Lockdown was extended… So the coronas stayed.. For 35 days! (Although some days they did run out of ideas.)

I made a video out of it every day to share with friends and family. My favourite video is probably Day 20-Lockdown with Kids. At the end of Level 5 Lockdown the coronas “lost their magic” and the kids each got one as a toy… They didn’t last long after that.. But their job of providing some lockdown entertainment was done…

It doesn’t look like Leo will be going to school again any time soon… So I still need to plan daily activites for them to do… If only we were allowed interprovincial travel that we could have a “Ouma Jane on the shelf” for a while!

Click on the Day to watch the Corona video of that day on YouTube:

Day 1 The two Coronas make their first appearance in the house. The kids were very excited about this!

Day 2 Getting enough sleep is one way to improve your immune system… But daddy got woken up to see the coronas… I don’t think the sleep theory counts for parents.

Day 3 Chilli and Rexi’s Birthday. We celebrated our doggies’ 6th birthday. This was lots of fun!

Day 4 Eat Fruit. Luckily Leo and Nate do like fruit.

Day 5 Facemasks before we were wearing them every day.

Day 6 April Fools Day. The coronas made jelly look like juice and had put toy eggs in between the real boiled eggs… Silly coronas!

Day 7 Corona means crown… So that’s why the coronas wore crowns on this day.

Day 8 Could drinking water regularly prevent Corona?

Day 9 Hazmat suits look like astronaut suits.

Day 10 SARS CoV2 causes CoViD19… I pretended to be a news presenter then Marc and the kids came rushing in.

Day 11 Pandemic…

Day 12 How do they test for Corona. Leo demonstrates how to do a temperature reading and Ouma Jane tells us a bit about her testing experience.

Day 13 Random. The coronas were hiding in the fridge. Marc puts a couch outside.

Day 14 History Lesson.

Day 15 Keep Moving. Trying to exercise. We do the tiktok plank challenge.

Day 16 Easter Weekend.

Day 17 Easter Weekend.

Day 18 Keeping Entertained… Finding different ways to stay entertained. Apps, Lego challenge.

Day 19 Marshmallow Test. This was funny to watch! The kids get 1 Marshmallow while we secretly film them. If they don’t eat their Marshmallow they will get another one when we return.

Day 20 Locked Down with Kids… This is probably my favourite one… We try to demonstrate what lockdown is like with kids and what we imagine it is like without kids. The “without kids” sections took us forever to make.

Day 21 Bored in a House.

Day 22 Science Experiments…

Day 23 Ouma Dakkie’s Birthday.

Day 24 Remember Gumpie?

Day 25 Still in Lockdown… The coronas are wearing hats and I’m playing around with my Tiktok app.

Day 26 Tasting… Decreased sense of smell (and taste) is one of the first symptoms of Corona. I test to see if the kids can still taste.

Day 27 Bats… Bats are really interesting! They say Corona originated in bats… But it’s definitely humans fault for allowing it to be spread to humans.

Day 28 Screening for CoViD19 in South Africa. How does the screening process work?

Day 29 Keeping busy day 29 of Lockdown with more science experiments. Kids try on their masks.

Day 30 Lockdown is getting long. Leo loves science experiments!

Day 31 Playing Outside.

Day 32 Bostons and Talking Coronas!

Day 33 Thank you for the Facemasks.

Day 34 Family Egg Challenges…

Day 35 Level 5 Lockdown is over!

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Myers Briggs Birthday Party

Last year I also had a very enjoyable and interesting birthday party… A Myers Briggs Birthday Party! I’ve been wanting to post it on here but haven’t gotten around to it. (Typical INTP behaviour!)

The Myers Briggs Type Indicator is a type of personality test and was developed by a mother and daughter team; Katherine Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers. It uses an introspective questionnaire focused on different psychological aspects of the personality to divide people into 16 possible types. They initially developed it to help women decide which areas of work they would be more suited to when most women were new to the industrial workforce during world war 2. You could read much more about it online but basically you end up with 4 different letters: I or E (Introvert or extrovert), N or S (Intuitive or Sensing), T or F (Thinking or Feeling) and J or P (Judging or perceiving). Here is a link to a quick version of the test online: Myers Briggs Test. Obviously we can’t shove people into boxes just because of their Myers Briggs personality but I think it does teach one more about oneself and about how other people think and act.

I consider my sister an expert on the Myers Briggs because she really knows a lot about it. I always find it very interesting talking to her about it. So I asked her to be my guest speaker at my party. I made all the guests do the short version of the test before the day and then we had a fun discussion about the results and what they mean on the day of my party.

Natey, who was 8 months old at the time, got so sick just before my birthday he ended up in hospital with severe bronchitis. I also had bronchitis, which sucked. So the week before my party we were in hospital with Natey which is not a lot of fun. Thankfully we were much better and went home the day before my party. After our rough week my party really felt like a celebration of life! The venue, Blu Bottle Café at My Housey did an awesome job to make the event extra special. (Although the huge poster with just my face on was not quite INTP style, it was very thoughtful.). I think everyone also learnt a bit more about each other.

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Bob Ross Paint Party

We don’t make mistakes, just happy, little accidents. Bob Ross

Marc’s “Bob Ross” party exceeded my expectations! It was really lots of fun and I was so impressed with how everyone’s painting looked. We all ended up with different paintings although we all had the same equipment, paints and watched the same Bob Ross video.

I also had to google Bob Ross when Marc first said he wants to have a Bob Ross party… but now I can’t imagine never having heard of him. He is best known for his show, The Joy of Painting, which was on TV from 1983 until 1994. He teaches people how to paint but many people watch his shows just because of Bob’s soothing voice and calm manner. His landscape paintings are amazing! In 20 minutes he paints an absolute masterpiece!

We watched season 16 episode 12. But there are so many to choose from. After the party we discovered a website called: www.twoinchbrush.com which you can use to see all the Bob Ross paintings, what colour paints you need to paint that particular painting and there are people who have uploaded their version of that particular painting.

So, for the party we asked everyone to bring a plate of snacks and their own drinks. We were 11 artists in total so we covered 6 small tables with newspaper and 2 people sat at a table. We made an easel for each person and provided a blank canvas, brushes and the coloured oil paints which were needed. We all first had to apply a layer of liquid white. Bob Ross is known for painting “wet on wet.” Marc read us some “happy little facts” about Bob Ross, we then first watched the video and afterwards played the video again to paint along. We had to pause a few times because it’s actually really difficult to paint as fast as Bob Ross! But we all had a finished product under an hour.

It was so interesting for me to see how everyone’s different personality came out in their painting. It was really a very enjoyable evening!

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Our Getaway to the Drakensberg

We packed our bags, the kids, the kids’ bags, the kids’ pram, the kids’ toys, the kids’ snacks, the kids’ day bag and …. off we went passed Clarens, passed Sterkfontein dam to Cayley Resort near Winterton. Cayley Resort looks over the Cathkin Peak and Champagne Castle ranges of the Central Drakensberg.

We had an amazing view from our unit, number 33. Cayley Resort is similar to Kiara Lodge in Clarens. There was also a big jumping pillow and a play area for the kids. Although it’s still winter we wandered down to their “beach area” and were amazed to actually find a guy working there although it seemed empty. Could be fun in summer and if one had a babysitter.

We had lekker chats and ate lekker snacks… and learnt a lot about what vegans eat. When our beer ran out on our last evening Marc had the guts to go and ask our neighbours if they were willing to sponsor us a six-pack! And they did!

We explored the Winterton area a bit. On our first day we went to The Pig and Plough. They have good craft beer! On another day we ate at Waffle Hut and Pizza Shack which are next to each other. We also went to Drakensberg Brewery (where we also did some chocolate tasting!) and The Valley Bakery. All we did was eat and drink! Björn and Sarah live a few kms from Drakensberg Brewery. Lucky them! So we got to see them too which was nice.

I think Leo, Nathan and August also enjoyed the getaway. Although August took a few knocks to his head. We ended the weekend with a cherry on top at the Clarens Brewery. Thank you to Ansuné and Godfrey for a really memorable weekend.

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1,2,3 Let’s Blaze Birthday Party

1,2,3 Leeet’s Blaze! That was the theme of Leo’s 3rd Birthday Party we held this year. I made a Blaze chocolate mud cake which you saw on the previous post. When he saw the cake for the first time his eyes lit up and he studied the cake with an amazed smile on his face for about 15 minutes.

Ouma Jane bought Blaze cookies! Leo cherished those cookies. Luckily he didn’t have a problem letting his friends also have a cookie each. He even took one to school for his teacher on the Monday. The last cookie he held in his hand like it was a precious treasure.

Another highlight was our homemade Blaze Piñata! Leo, Marc and I made the piñata 2 weeks before his party and Leo just couldn’t wait to smash his piñata. Thankfully we had another piñata which my sister gave me so that Leo could smash his piñata by himself and his friends could smash the other one. He did share the sweets which fell out when it was eventually totally bashed.

Leo had a big helium Blaze balloon and a big number 3 balloon which were still floating around our house until yesterday. Ouma Dakkie managed to find a Blaze banner at China Mall. We also had party packs and served boerewors rolls and Dakkie’s yummy milk tarts. It was a really fun birthday weekend.

Now Leo is already counting down the days to his 4th birthday!

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Chocolate Blaze Sponge Cake

We had a blazing good time celebrating Leo’s birthday this year. I used Daleen’s chocolate cake recipe to make a “Blaze and the Monster Machines Mud cake.” It is really a yummy, fluffy cake. It tasted really good with the chocolate cream cheese icing I made. Marc got the little Blaze characters online. Leo really liked his cake! Will post some more pics of the party and our Blaze piñata in next post.

Daleen’s Chocolate Sponge Cake recipe:

Chocolate sponge cake:

Turn your Oven to 180’C

You will need:

8 eggs seperated

1/2cup cacao

1cup hot water

2 cup cake flour

2 cup sugar

4 tsp + 1 tsp baking powder

3/4 cup cooking oil

Pinch of salt

5ml vanilla essence

Method:

Mix hot water and cacao and let cool.

Mix flour, sugar, baking powder(4tsp) and salt.

Add egg yolks, oil and cooled cacao water.

Mix well for about 10 min.

Beat egg whites until stiff peaks can form. Add 1 teasspoon baking powder and fold into chocolate mix.

Bake for 40min

(Until you can smell the cake and it’s no longer wobbly. Or until a knife/toothpick comes out clean.)

Really yummy! Thanks Daleen.😊

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Best Play Dough Recipe

Leo enjoys playing with play dough. And when it’s not on his head (see pic) or in the carpet it makes for a fun activity.😊

This Play Dough is easy to make, feels nice, and lasts long. I originally got the recipe from Milene. Here it is:

1 cup Flour, 1/2 cup salt, 1 cup water, 1 tablespoon Cream of Tartar, 1 tablespoon oil

Add ingredients in pot and heat on stove, mixing until it is the right consistency. (Mini arm workout!)

He had two separate colours for about 2 minutes.

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