Monthly Archives: October 2012

Ever wondered how to make a Pom-Pom

What did I do to keep busy & take my mind off the astronomical Hurricane Sandy raging outside my window, well I made a pom-pom of course!

One thing that I love to add to a Knitted Ribbed Hat is a pom-pom. It’s a great way to spruce it up and make it look that little bit more fabulous. I usually only add them to hats for children and women; guys do not seem to like them so much!

A pom-pom is a decorative ball made of loose fiber, which is easy to make. In this posting I will show you how.

What You Need

  • Yarn (for this example I used 2 different kinds, pink & white)
  • Scissors
  • 2 pieces of cardboard cut out in a donut shape, keeping in mind the bigger the circular cut-out the bigger the pom-pom. Or, alternatively you can buy the plastic template kind you see in the picture below in a craft/knitting store. I prefer the cardboard, as it is easier to get off at the end and personally I am not a big fan of plastic.

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Ring A Ding Ding is Beautiful!

Last week Miles Storm and I were invited (by Mama Drama NY) to attend the colorful English production “Ring A Ding Ding” at The New Victory Theater in Times Square NYC. And, I am so glad we went! The acclaimed British based Children’s Theater Company, Oily Cart, have created nothing short of a Wonderland in this 1 hour interactive show, which wowed my little boy’s socks off! I was pretty impressed myself. It was such a beautiful experience to be apart of.

Incorporated into the story of a girl, Alice, looking for her lost dog, are all kinds of wonderful things like the man in the moon, a motorbike, a boat, a milkman and a funny sailor captain. All of which are created by intertwining the use of people and puppets. It was all very clever. The main stage was unique in that it required the audience to sit around a wooden wheel of a table with the actors performing mainly in the center creating an up close and personal vibe. The effects were fun too including water-mistings, fog and lighted balls!

My Son has just turned 2, and although the show is recommended for 3 years and up, he was able to handle it perfectly. He really enjoyed watching the dog traipse around on his antics riding a motorbike and flying in a hot air balloon! He kept pointing and saying “Mummy Motorbike Dog” – it was very cute.

The interactive element included the children being encouraged to get up from the stage to walk through hoops helping to find the Sailor Captain’s drink and biscuits, and the grand finale of dancing at a moon party with the help of George the one-band band – who rides an awesome looking oversized bicycle around the stage by the way!

For $20 per ticket, you cannot go wrong with this as an outing with your Little Ones. I definitely hope to see it with my little boy again before the season ends on Sunday November 11th.

Want more information? You can contact “The New Victory Theater” on 42nd Street at 646.223.3010, or you can click HERE for show times and availability. Go See it, you will be happy you did!

Say NO to plastic in your Home too! Help make a difference

Did you know, that some conservationists estimate that at least ONE MILLION animals die in the United States annually from plastic related issues? Just let that number sink in – ONE MILLION animals die because of plastic. While, apparently the fish that are killed in the wild each year is a lot higher. Let’s take it a step further and say, that around 500 billion plastic bags go into circulation each year. Sit there and consider that for a moment! I mean, it literally just breaks my heart.

According to the EPA – In 2010, the United States generated almost 14 million tons of plastics as containers and packaging, almost 11 million tons as durable goods, such as appliances, and almost 7 million tons as non-durable goods, for example plates and cups. Only 8 percent of the total plastic waste generated in 2010 was recovered for recycling.

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Inspirational Vibes – Little Duck Organics

Inspiration – A divine influence directly and immediately exerted upon the mind or soul.

Today, I had a chat with Zak Normandin who is the brainchild CEO, of one of my favorite under-4-foot snack companies, Little Duck Organics. Zak is a Daddy of 3 who in the year 2010 started making healthy fruit snacks in his basement, driven by the fact that he could not find anything that he felt was suitable to feed his children (I know that feeling).

To me, this is INSPIRATION. Zak had an idea, which he followed through with and now, thankfully like-minded parents bringing up Little Tackers (Australian for infants) have a choice to safely buy a packaged good that is… WAIT FOR IT …certified organic, no-sugar-added, Non‐GMO, gluten free, 100% real fruit snacks!!! Wowzer. I know this is a BIG mouthful, but you have to read it all so you get the whole scope on how awesome it is. Let it sink in a while… It is hard to come by.

All I can say is, thank goodness for the day young Zak walked down those basement stairs!! Because now LDO is a reckoning force in the supermarket aisles.

Little Duck Organic HQ is based in Brooklyn, and I am so happy they are here. Besides being one of Willy B Mum’s biggest fans, they are always so encouraging and ready to help out the community in any way they can, and I have to say that is a rarity.

Not to mention Miles Storm loves their snacks, actually obsessed might be a better word? As an example – on his first day at school, a few weeks back, he was insistent that he take a packet of “Duck Duck” with him. And, as a chain reaction, his school (which was only serving cheesy goldfish snacks) now also have LDO as a healthier option. I am also very proud to say that my Son is not into chocolate, nor soda, nor chips BUT try take away his fruit snacks and you will have a fight on your hands!!

Little Duck Organics is launching a new super-amazing product in Whole Foods this month called “Mighty Oats” which Zak talks about in our little video shoot. Want the inside scoop, watch it here!

Miles Storm and I, on the roof of Little Duck Organics HQ today

VIDEO OF WILLY B MUM INTERVIEWING ZAK, CEO OF LITTLE DUCK ORGANICS

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Quick & Easy Ribbed Beanie

One of the my favorite past-times during the colder months is Knitting. I am extremely grateful to my Grandmother who taught me the skill at a very your age. I have made some beautiful things over the years – curtains, blankets, scarves and hats.

At the moment, I am going through a phase where I am knitting a lot of hats! The more hats I knit, the more people comment that they want one and so it goes around and around like that. I honestly can knit one of these hats in a few hours. It is a very simple hat, and as you are knitting in the round on circular needles there is no seam to sew-up at the end – LOVE THAT.

This is a pattern which I have adapted to suit the way I like it. Pretty much, it is a One Size fits all kind of pattern, however if you want to make it bigger or smaller decrease/increase in 8 stitches.

WHAT YOU NEED

  • Any kind of worsted weight wool, say 2 hanks to be sure.
  • Size 7 16″ circular needles
  • Double pointed needed Size 7
  • Stitch markers
  • Tapestry needle

PATTERN

  • Cast on 80 stitches and place stitch marker
  • For the brim of the hat Knit 2 stitches/Purl 2 stitches for 3 inches in length (longer if you like)
  • Knit one row to acknowledge where the folded brim will be
  • Knit 2 stitches/Purl 2 stitches all the way around till the hat measures between 5.5 – 7 inches from the folded row. To explain, if I am knitting for a child I keep it at 5.5 inches, but if I am knitting for an adult I keep it at 7 inches.

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Pumpkin Picking at Kesicke Farm

Did you know that the North American native Pumpkin is the largest fruit in the world, and close to 1.5 billion pounds are produced in the United States each year! That is a whole lot of Pumpkin.

The fabulous fat orange Pumpkin is low in saturated fat, cholesterol and sodium (Love That). As well, as being an ample source of Thiamin, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium and Phosphorus. By eating pumpkins you also take in Vitamin A & C, Potassium, Copper and Manganese (among other benefits)  This may sound like Chinese to some, if so, just be assured that eating pumpkins are good for you.

One of my best-loved Annual Autumn activities is Pumpkin Picking, and it is definitely something that is way more fun now that Miles Storm is around.

This year, our favorite local Lobotsky Farm did not produce any pumpkins due to environmental restraints, which is a hard blow for them and many in the immediate area who love visiting their land every year to pick pumpkins.

Having no choice but to find another place to pick pumpkins we stumbled across Kesicke Farm which is in the neighboring town of Red Hook, close to where we spend every weekend Upstate NY.
And, what a find it was (as the photos show)!

There was so much to do, including;
- Pick Your Own Pumpkins
- Corn Maze
- Wagon Rides through the corn (which Miles & Mohawk loved, Daddy not so much)
- Hay Rides
- Horse Drawn Carriage Rides
- Corn Pit (Just like a sand pit but yellow)
- Pumpkin Painting with Arts & Crafts
- Mini Hay Maze for little ones
- Petting Zoo
- Fresh Farm Produce

We spent about 3 hours at the Farm, but we could have easily spent the whole day if we were prepared. It is a great family outing, with plenty on site to keep Little Ones busy.

P.S – Dogs are welcome!

**All of these photos were taken on a IPhone 4S, being lightened and sharpened with the Snapseed Application and then finished with a filter with the Photo Toaster Application.