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Homemade Father’s Day Gifts for Kids

So following on from my homemade Mother’s Day gifts post in March, I thought it only fair that the dads/gradands/papas get the same treatment! I’ve based the gifts on both the kind of ability a toddler can join in on, and on the kind of things I think the men in Travis’ life would appreciate.

handmade-fathers-day-cardHandmade Cards
A handmade card adds a great personal touch, and gives you the chance to make a card that really reflects dad, grandad, step-dad etc, rather than having to trawl through card shops or websites to find the perfect message or funny quip (just me who does that?). All you really need is some A4 card, some pens, crayons and your imagination for the rest. If dad’s into golf, why not add a pom-pom football and make the card 3D? You could get messy and get your toddler to add some handprints, footprints or finger painting – hands can be high-fives, little fishes on a rod, a little monster, whereas a foot can be a trophy, a rocket to the moon, walking in daddy’s footsteps… you get the idea!

homemade-fathers-day-gift-couponFather’s Day coupons
This one is a great fail-safe if you’re unsure what to give your dad, and it’s a great addition or fallback gift that kids can get involved in making. All you need is paper/card of various colours, some markers and colouring pens, and a stapler or some glue to hold the pages together.
Get your toddler involved by asking them the type of thing daddy/papa likes and how you can turn that into a coupon. Plus there are heaps of standard coupons to include, such as breakfast in bed, a cup of tea made, charge of the remote control, undisturbed PlayStation time etc that can be used on Father’s Day and beyond. Let your child choose the colour for each coupon, and draw a picture on each. They can even sign their name (i.e. scribble) like a cheque on the coupon.

handmade-fathers-day-keyringPhoto keyring
Does dad drive a lot for work? Maybe papa has a separate set of shed keys? Either way, their little pride and joy’s face on their keys will be sure to brighten their day. All you need for this is a nice photo of your little one(s) with their dad/grandfather etc – be sure to print 2 copies as the keyring will be double-sided – and either a laminator or a little plastic photo keyring. The latter is probably the easiest, and you can buy them in bulk from a craft store like Hobbycraft, and then Bob’s your uncle! Or Jim’s your grandad…. (sorry)

homemade-fathers-day-gift-shaving-creamHomemade shaving cream
Most men need to shave at some point, if even to trim and tidy their beloved beard. A homemade shaving cream adds an extra special touch, with natural ingredients to ensure a soft, moisturised face that’s perfect for giving a kiss goodnight. Although I’ve not made one for myself yet, I did discover this great recipe on The Garlic Diaries which not only sounds lush, but is apparently also a great shaver/moisturiser for your legs too, so double-win!

homemade-fathers-day-hamper-giftBig night in kit
This is another one that can be personalised to dad’s taste. Maybe it’s a Saturday night in with the family, or maybe dad’s got a night to himself? Either way, all you need is a hamper and some of dad’s favourite things. Ask your toddler to help choose some of dad’s favourite things, whether it be a beer, chocolate, movie etc. Maybe there’s a game you always play together? Or there’s a big sports match coming up? For the latter, you can make a “ticket” to watch it on TV on the specific day, with a coupon for a takeaway too. Maybe dad likes a good bath too – no discriminating here! You can also add in the shaving cream above to the night in kit for another double-win.
Tip: If you have more reliable weather than Scotland, why not switch this for a big day out kit? Add in picnic items and garden games the whole family can join in.

 

homemade-fathers-day-gifts-toddlers-make

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Homemade Mother’s Day Gifts

I’ve already listed some of the great crafts you can do with your toddler to create fun Mother’s Day gifts, but I’m also planning to give some handmade Mother’s Day gifts of my own this year. Because no matter what age, you’re still someone’s child!

While my ideas of gifts are a bit further reaching than hand crafted cards and tokens for chores and tea, it doesn’t mean there’s any less thought or love going into them. It just means there are usually more steps to take and items required to make them!

Here are some great Mother’s Day gifts you can make at home

Homemade Candles

I shared a post around Christmas time, all about how to make festive candles. The principle is basically the same, though I’ve bought some nice rose and jasmine oils which I plan to use to scent the Mother’s Day candles. I will also be steering away from Christmas ribbon to decorate, instead opting for more pastel shades, and some lovely washi sheets to decorate. I’m still undecided on whether to write Mum/Happy Mother’s Day anywhere on them yet.

Homemade body scrub

Who knew that body scrub was actually insanely easy to make yourself? Literally all you need are 2 or 3 ingredients, with the main decision being: do I use salt or sugar as the exfoliating element of my scrub? I would recommend using almond oil within your scrub, as it’s highly rated for its nourishing properties, but coconut oil works well too (and smells great!). I’m going to test out some brown sugar, coconut oil and honey, but there are endless possibilities with homemade body scrub – add loads of natural ingredients (think leaves, fruit etc) or essential oils to achieve your desired scent and consistency.

Homemade cookies

Flowers and chocolates are the go-to Mother’s Day gifts, but what about swapping the Milk Tray for something handmade? Whether you’re a baking novice, or fancy attempting this stunning cupcake bouquet I found on Pinterest, there’s something extra special about a sweet treat that’s been handmade. Plus your mum might share your wares with you, so a win all round!

Homemade makeup bag

So I haven’t made a makeup back since my Fashion and Textile class in high school c. 2005/6. However, if you’re a dab hand with a needle and thread then this shouldn’t be too much bother. The size I’m thinking of making is around 6-7 inches wide, so it’s probably more of a travel essentials/handbag size makeup bag. All you need is some fat quarters (Aldi usually have nice, seasonal patterns in their Special Buys aisle), some wadding (optional), a zipper, fabric pins, and of course a needle and thread. If you have a sewing machine, even better, although that’s not essential. Here’s a great tutorial video I found, showing how easy they are to make (minus the wadding).

 

Wee disclaimer: I’ve no affiliation with any of the external links shared, I just read/watched and thought they were useful, and hopefully you do too!

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December Firsts

I can’t believe our Year of Firsts has come to an end! How quickly the last 365 days have flown by, each one with a new experience and learning curve for both me and little bear.

As the year has passed, our milestones have become less, but even in December we managed to accomplish a fair few firsts.

Christmassy firsts:
We had a trifecta of Christmassy firsts on 1st December where we visited Helensburgh Winter Festival for the first time. It’s a great local festival that takes place across one weekend each December, full of market stalls, entertainment, festive food & drink and more. It was here that we took Travis for his first trip to see Santa. Last year he was barely able to see without squinting, never mind be expected to see that it was Santa, so we saved this first for his second Christmas. It didn’t go down well, there were lots of tears and tantrums and one big hug at Santa’s beard. I’ve heard that’s quite common, but it’s pretty horrifying trying to explain to kind strangers dressed as elves and Santa that you’re sorry your child is a Christmas hating weirdo.

A slightly better first from the festival was the first time seeing reindeer. Like actual, live reindeer! It may also have been a first for mum, I’ll need to check with my parents but I don’t remember seeing reindeer in the flesh before. We got to pet them and there was an opportunity to get photos taken with them, but at that point Travis spied some dogs which were far more interesting and of his size, so off he toddled to see them instead.

First time using a fork
This was a big feeding milestone as we hadn’t really let or encouraged Travis to use cutlery before. He was haply to either be spoon fed by us or use his fingers to pick at his food hinself. So we were equally surprised and delighted when he wanted to take my fork off me and use it himself, not prompted by us. Now, in fairness, it can be a fight to feed him as he wants to try and be independent (despite picking things off the fork half the time) and feed himself which is more time consuming and messy than I’d like it to be!

First nursery Christmas party
On Thursday 20th December (bizarrely not a Friday?) Travis attended his first nursery Christmas party! Unfortunately I was really ill so couldn’t go, but I heard he enjoyed eating party food (surprise!) And although he hasn’t been Santa’s biggest fan, he had to sit beside him when he got there and even managed to get a present from big beardie without crying!

First Christmas illness
I’d hoped I’d be able to share “first Christmas dinner” this December, as last year I think he was still only on about 6 oz of milk per feed at Christmas time. However it wasn’t meant to be, as we had our first Christmas illness instead. I think it was related to teething, but he spiked a fever and pretty much refused food except for fruit puree and a few mouthfuls of soup. There was advent calendar chocolate involved at some point in the day but that was as festive as it got. It will need to be third time lucky for first Christmas dinner!

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Should dads-to-be receive Father’s Day gifts?

One observation I’ve made over the last year or two is that mums-to-be seem to now me catered for in the mother’s day market.

From Clinton’s to card factory, there was a choice of happy mothers day mum to be cards. It’s fair to say I also noticed this more prominently on social media with more and more friends having babies in the past couple of years.But now it seems that dads-to-be are muscling in on the action too. Card, stationery and gift shops are now starting to populate shelves with dad-to-be cards and gifts, and social media is awash with cute graphics and e-cards.

I mean, you’ve literally got a lifetime of mother’s and father’s days to look forward to from next year, so why not wait till the bundle of joy is here to give you it in person?

Growing a baby is hard

It did strike me as odd that you would get a mother’s day gift for someone who isn’t yet a mother. Don’t get me wrong, it’s cute and cheesy to put things like “thanks mummy can’t wait to meet you, love from bump” on the card but do we really need to also lavish them with gifts?

In fairness, growing a baby isn’t the easiest thing to do, and granted it’s a sweeter deal for some than others. However, all women make sacrifices to grow a child inside them, be it alcohol, a favourite food, or simply the body they’ve come to know and love. So I guess it’s fair to be rewarded for that.

In contrast, we could question what a man has done over the same period to deserve a thank you from bump. I mean, without him bump wouldn’t be here but unless he’s picked up his fair share or additional share of the housework (which he absolutely should), been run ragged at midnight trying to find obscure ice creams or soothed a hysterical mum to be thought a wildly emotional phase, I find it hard to justify the whole gift thing here.

Practical and useful for baby?

To me, if you insist on getting a fathers day gift for dad-to-be, it should be something that’s not only a cute reminder of your journey into parenthood, but something that will be practical and useful for baby. Maybe you can get a matching daddy/baby t-shirt and baby gro set? Or perhaps a keepsake that you both can treasure?
Maybe it’ll be something you envisage daddy using/doing – a nappy bin he’ll have to empty or feeding apparatus he’ll need when you’re not around.

When baby is still in the cooking stages, it seems like there’s so much more you could be doing, celebrating and ultimately spending your hard earned cash on, over a present for someone who hasn’t spent a day of their life being a parent as yet. So, sorry to my baby-daddy-to-be, you won’t be getting anything extra from me or bump today. Except maybe brunch, but that’s only coz you’re on night shift.