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compassEaster is almost here and you can probably already smell chocolate in the house.  I can feel the excitement building.

What doesn’t excite me is the chocolate overload that some children have every year when they are given loads of Easter eggs from family and friends.  How can that much chocolate be a good thing?

I like the idea of giving a token chocolate and a real gift instead of more eggs.

Kids love presents no matter what the occasion and will usually be quite happy to find a toy instead of a few more eggs.

Here are a few “nest fillers” you might like to choose from at MooWoo.

Junior Navigator Compass – At $9.95, this is an inexpensive and educational yet fun gift.  Why not map your egg hunt and let your child hunt them down using the compass?

Wooden Maracas – Smiley faces on each maraca make music more fun than ever.  Made of wood, these will last until your child grows up.

Bobble Art Paper Doll Trinket Box/Tooth Keeper – Every little girl needs a special trinket keeper.  This is pretty and colourful, just like an Easter egg.

Roly-Poly Pen Babushka – When I was given my first pen I felt so grown up.  Only big people had their very own pens.  This pen is very cute, part toy and practical writing tool all in one.

There is a lot more to choose from, but these suggestions are all priced at under $10 and they are all fun-filled.

Stomp, stomp, stomp.  Who can it be?

It’s the Boogie Monster coming for me.

Shuffle, tap, twirl and boogie

Boogie Monster’s dancing with me.

B double O, G, I, E

Blast off to planet Boogie with me.

Boogie Monster is a book by Josie Bissett, featuring a colourful, lovable character with hairy legs and great big feet.

Boogie’s mission is to inspire kids to dance, dance, dance!  He teaches kids that there is no right or wrong way to dance. In the process kids build confidence while discovering the joy and satisfaction of movement, creativity and exercise.

The rhythm of the text is enough to get your feet tapping as you read out loud so you can imagine how your children will react to it.  Expect lots of dancing.

Give them their own hairy legs to dance in. Boogie Monster Legs are plush super soft leggings which are the official companion product to the “Boogie Monster” book.  They have a magical way of inspiring a child’s imagination.

Kids pull these funny leggings on to dance and instantly become just like Boogie Monster. Made for dancing, Boogie Legs are durable and washable.

Have you seen the Boogie Monster and his amazing moves?  Watch him in action.

B double O, G, I, E

Blast off to planet Boogie with me.

Kimberley’s Termite Towers

termite-mounds-the-kimberley-western-australia-cropped

One thing that fascinates visitors to the Kimberley are the tall, red-brown statues that are strewn across the landscape.  They are actually termite mounds which have been built up over the years and they look spectacular.

Each mound can hold millions of termites.  They build the mounds using saliva, excreta and soil, and the mounds can rise up to 5 metres in height.  Not all mounds have the same shape and scientists believe that the design adapts to suit the environment.

In the top end of the Northern Territory the mounds are tall and cathedral-like but in the Kimberley they can be smaller and more bulbous.  They are designed to help the insects store food for use during the wet season, and some of their acutal building material can be used as food during an emergency.  The shape of the mound allows the heavy rain water of the wet season to run off without damaging the exterior of the mounds.

Inside, the mounds are a complex maze of passages and ventilation shafts.  The temperature is fairly steady, making the mound a safe and comfortable home.

The termite mounds are unmissable in the Kimberley and they are famous right around the world.

This stunning photo was taken by Thomas Young and can be viewed at www.wildroad.com.au/galleries/australia-photos/termite-mounds-west-kimberley-australia/.

Jack The Giraffe

JackGiraffeOne morning Jack the Giraffe woke up and decided that he wanted to do something different that day.

Normally, Jack spent his day playing in the jungle and eating the leaves from the top of the trees where none of his animal friends could reach, but today he wanted to do something new.  Jack was ready for an adventure.

He decided to go exploring and see new parts of the world.  His mummy and daddy told him to be very careful and presented him with a packed lunch to keep his strength up on the long walk.

And it was a long walk.

It was a very long walk.

The landscape changed as he neared the coast and he spotted a great big ship that seemed to be waiting for him.  The captain was very pleased to take Jack exploring because he really needed someone new to talk to.

The ship sailed away and Jack’s long neck stretched high above the vessel.  He had the best view.

After a few days Jack spotted land.

“Land ahoy!” he cried.

The country was nice and hot, just as he liked it, but the dirt was bright red and the leaves were different.  They tasted funny.  (Lucky he had a packed lunch with him!)

Jack had landed in Australia, right up the top near Kununurra and it wasn’t long before his long legs walked him all the way to MooWoo where the trees had the best and most delicious leaves for him to eat.

Jack decided to stay with MooWoo for a while and continue his explorations from there.

Would you like to show Jack the Giraffe what your part of the world looks like?  You can order him here and he will be with you as quickly as his long legs (or the postman’s little ones) can carry him.

bio fresh fruits and vegetables

Recently I did a post on Sinchies food pouches and thought I would include some healthy recipe suggestions.  These recipes come from the Sinchies blog page which also contains many other delicious ideas.

Mango Chicken

1 chicken breast

1 sweet potato

2 apples

2 carrots

1 cup of fresh or tinned mango

Bake your chicken breast.  Steam or boil the sweet potato, apples and carrot.  Blend all the ingredients together and pour into your Sinchies and serve or freeze.

Recipe from Elise Walton

Creamy Beef & Pumpkin

1 cup of cooked beef

1 tin coconut cream

1 cup steamed pumpkin

2 steamed carrots

Blend it all together and pour it into your Sinchies and you have dinner on the run for your little one!

Recipe from Elise Walton

Let me know what you think of these two recipes and also any suggestions you have for variations.  Do you have any other favourite recipes that you have used?

Hathay Bunano

Hathay Bunano is a not for profit organisation that was establish in Bangladesh in 2004 by Samantha Morshed.  Samantha established this community based business to assist the women of Bangladesh to have reliable flexible work that was close to home and where they are fairly paid so they can support their families.

With the support from Samantha, these women were able to develop their knitting and crochet skills to make the most beautiful handmade crafts that also provided them with sustainable employment.  Over time new production centres and training courses were being established that continued to support the women in rural areas throughout Bangladesh.

Due to the success of Hathay Bunano there was a need to establish its own brand that resulted in the launch of Pebble and this also allowed the story of the products, processes and women to be told.  Furthermore, due to the extraordinary work by Samantha she was awarded an MBE in 2009.

Underpinning these operations is Fair Trade which has a focus on the farmer, manufacturer and artists so they get a fairer deal with their products, how much they receive as well as access to greater markets.

An important issue with Fair Trade is that many of the communities simply want a fairer opportunity to trade their products which is why the message is “Trade not Aid”.  For more information follow the link that provides a background on Fair Trade.

Blanket___rainbo_4dce4687032b6Here at MooWoo we sell a range of products from Pebble Hathay Bunano that includes wraps, blankets and swaddles.  This includes the Pebble Fair Trade Rainbow Stripe Blanket which is bright, colourful and made from 100% cotton.  These are ideal as a swaddling blanket for a newborn or as a pram blanket as your little one gets bigger.

Crochet_patchwor_pinkAlso, the Crochet Patchwork Blanket – Pink is lighter than a fully knitted blanket and is ideal during summer or inside with central heating.  This blanket is also a great example of the extremely talented Bangladesh woman and their exquisite craftsmanship.

These are just some of the products from Pebble Hathay Bunano; follow the link to see many others that we have on offer.  These also represent our small but important contribution to supporting the women and their families of Bangladesh.

Have you seen our Sinchies and Squooshis reusable food pouches?  These are a great idea for giving your kids and toddlers a full and healthy meal or snack in an easy and convenient way.

The Sinchies food pouches can easily be filled with pureed fruit, dinners, vegies, yoghurt as well as smoothies.  Sinchies come with a spout so your child can suck or squeeze the food and as such there is no need for a bowl of spoon.

IMG_9608

They are also microwave, freezer and dishwasher safe.  As they are made free from BPA, Phthalate and PVC these are not only safe for your child but for the environment when you eventually dispose of them.

Even better, you know exactly what your child is eating and ensure it is safe, healthy and free from additives because you make and pack it yourself.

The Sinchies come in a pack of 10 and you can choose from two different sizes of 80ml or 200ml.

Squooshis are another great idea that can also be used for a snack, lunch or dinner for your toddler or child.  Simply open the super strong zip lock at the bottom to fill with your food as well as to wash.  Each pack of 4 come with 2 walrus Squooshis and 2 panda Squooshis.

squooshees

If you are looking for some recipes then pop over to the Sinchies Blog page which has some fantastic and healthy recipe ideas.

Another great recipe idea is this one for frozen yoghurt.  You can freeze strawberry yoghurt overnight and not only will it keep the lunchbox cool but it can easily be eaten the next day when it melts back to yoghurt.

We will share some recipes with you over the next few weeks but if you have your own recipes you’d like to share then post a comment to this blog.  I look forward to reading them.