Monday, March 26, 2012

Awesome iPhone Apps

Following on from my iPhone Tips and Tricks post I have also compiled a list of my favourite apps. I'm guessing this list will change and grow over time but here's a current list of apps I am enjoying and finding useful...

Photo Taking/Sharing/Collating:
Project 365

Draw Something
Words with Friends

For kids (toddler age):
Tom the Talking Cat
Old McDonald's Farm

FeeddlerRSS (for Google Reader)
Genius Scan

(The links go to either a website I've found for the app or the listing in the app store.) 

Do you have any apps you'd recommend?

Thursday, March 22, 2012

My Creative Space: Mini crochet pouch

I was going through my recent-ish photos and realised I never shared a picture of this quick and easy project.

Hubby plays football and doesn't wear his wedding ring when he's playing. He usually puts the ring in the coin zipper part of his wallet but was worried it might get scratched so I offered to make a little pouch to keep it in.

It only took me about 15 minutes to make start to finish! 
I made up a long-ish rectangle of double crochet and then folded the bottom up  to make a pouch. I joined the folded up part by the sides and edged the pouch with orange yarn adding a loop for the button closure. I sewed the button on to the pouch section so the top could get folded down and closed with the button.
I'm not convinced these instructions make sense so I've attempted a rather amateur diagram to show what I mean...I hope it makes sense!...

Linking up with Our Creative Spaces.

Monday, March 19, 2012

A visit to the Butterfly Park

Did you know that there is a butterfly park being developed in Palmerston North?
It's at the back of Apollo Park in Milson and you can find out more about it on the Monarchs In Apollo Park Facebook page.
Yesterday they had an open day for people to visit, find out more about the park and raise some funds for the upkeep and signposting of the park.
We went along at around 1pm and had an awesome time. We hadn't been to the play park there before so Mr Mischief loved having a rummage before we made our way to the back of the park.

We headed over and looked around the beds they have planted out. All the plants there are still small but I can imagine it will look amazing once the plants develop and grow. There were a few Monarch's fluttering around and I managed to get some photos of them as they landed on trees and bushes...


We met Melissa from Flutterby Monarch's (who were donating Monarch butterflies to be released) and she showed Mr Mischief a caterpillar and let him hold it! He wasn't too keen to begin with but you could tell he was amazed to have it wriggling and crawling on his hand!

We entered the raffle where for a gold coin donation you could win the opportunity to release a butterfly. I bought two tickets and was amazed when my number and name were called given how many people were there (I'm guessing over 100 people at the time the raffle was drawn). 
I took Mr Mischief to the front and we collected a triangle box containing a Monarch butterfly. I carefully undid it and following instruction from the experts let it climb onto my finger. 
It was an amazing experience and Mr Mischief was entranced! It even stayed perched on my finger as we went back to our place in the crowd to show my hubby. We were able to transfer the butterfly onto Mr Mischiefs hand and I got some great photos before it fluttered away!

It was so awesome to see such a great project happening locally. If you are local I fully recommend liking their Facebook page to keep up to date with events and maybe going for a visit.
They are keen to gather more volunteers that can help with the upkeep of the park as well. I am quite keen to help out some way myself so you might even see me there!

Thursday, March 15, 2012

iPhone tips and tricks

Now I'm guessing people that don't have/want an iPhone won't care about this post and people with iPhones may already know this stuff but hopefully it might help someone out :-) 

It's been a couple of months now since my lovely husband bought me an iPhone. I am absolutely in love with both him and the phone! I am wondering how I did without the phone in the first place to be honest. I know they are pricey but it's basically my phone/calendar/to do list/iPod/camera/emails/internet/games all rolled into one so I figure it'll be earn it's keep over the time I have it.

I thought I'd share a couple of tips I have picked up to make my iPhone even more awesome...

  1. Did you know if you put your iPhone into a ceramic bowl when it's playing music it amplifies? It's basically like adding an extra speaker to the phone! I have a collection of ceramic bowls sitting on my kitchen counter to look pretty and have discovered my Cornishware bowl is the perfect size to amplify my music so I can sing and dance and be silly while tidying the kitchen and prepping food.
  2. You can take screenshots of what's on your phone screen (which is how I get pictures of my Project 365 mosaics so I can print them for my document 2012 project). If you press and hold the Home button (at the bottom of the screen), then press the Sleep/Wake button  (at top right) your screen flashes and the picture appears in your Camera Roll.
  3. If you press the Home button twice it brings up a shortcut menu along the bottom of your screen - if you scroll to the left there's a button at the end with a curly arrow. Click this and you have locked Portrait Orientation on the phone. So basically if you are laying down looking at your phone it won't try and rotate the screen based on it's position. Very handy for lazy weekends when I am catching up on Google Reader in bed!

Anyway - that's just a few useful tips and tricks I have found. There is also a list of heaps more here on the Apple website so if you have an iPhone why not head over and have a look and see if you can learn something you didn't know how to do :-)

I'm also trying to put together a post of my favourite apps so look out for that coming soon.

And if you have any iPhone tips, tricks or awesome apps to share do let me know in the comments.

Saturday, March 10, 2012

{Help Wanted} Please share your tips for travelling with children!

In the next few months I am going to be travelling from New Zealand over to the UK with my husband and my toddler son. He will be around 20 months of age when we are travelling.
We will be on a flight for 24 hours (with a short stopover each way for a couple of hours) and then will be doing a far bit of long distance driving when we are in the UK.
I am so looking forward to finally introducing my son to his extended family and our friends from the UK. His grandmothers are also each desperate to get their hands back on him too :-)
But I have to be honest and say that with the excitement comes a dose of nervousness as well. My son is usually reasonably behaved in public but stuck on a plane for 24 hours? Is he going to turn into a screaming, unhappy boy? I really hope not and this is where I hope YOU can help me...

I'm really keen to pick up tips and hints from parents who have been there so if you have any wisdom to share  on travelling with kids (generically and also specifically toddlers) please get in touch :-) You can leave me a comment here or email me at katie(at)mummy-adventures(dot)com

Ideally what I'd like to do is collate these tips (with links back to you if you have a blog/web space) as well as adding my own (once I've been there and done that) into a blog post here at Mummy Adventures later on so let me know if you'd be keen for that too :-)

And I'll select one of the contributors to get a wee something from the UK (perhaps some Scottish Tablet or English seaside rock or something similar!)

And now I am hoping to sit back and watch the advice flooding in....please help me :-)....

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Summer awesomeness

palm trees at the Esplanade December 2011

I thought I'd continue my list of things I love about summer from last year with some specific things we have done this year...

16. Riding the train at the Esplanade
17. Eating strawberries and cherry tomatoes that we have grown ourselves in the garden
18. Mr. Mischief's love of being outside (I imagine this will continue after Summer but Summer makes it easier to take him outside!)
19. Mowing the lawns - I always saw this as a chore before but this Summer I took on the task as my own and got out with the mower regularly. I can now whizz round the front garden in 10 minutes and it takes about another 20 to do the back - much easier when you're not having to empty the catcher every 2 minutes!
20. Chalk paint and decorating the boring and ugly concrete :-)
21. Family fun washing the car
22. Ditto the dog
23. The Christmas Parade in Feilding
24. Riverside walks
25. Lots of time spent at the park
26. Lots of public holidays and long weekends so we can spend time as a family
27. Zoo trips

That's all I can think of for now but I'm hoping I can carry on updating these lists each year. It feels like summer is already a fond memory - we've had heaters on and extra blankets on the beds recently. I must admit I was hoping for a mild Autumn but so far the nights have been chilly. I'm sure it's not normally this cold this early but nevermind - I will just have to concentrate on finding more things I love about Autumn :-)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Scrapbooking: Document 2012: February

I think I have Project Life envy. There are so many famous scrapbookers doing Project Life this year and as every week in February went by I wished I was doing a weekly round-up rather than a monthly one. But at this point in time I have to accept that I probably don't have time to keep up with weekly recording so I am sticking with monthly updates to my album. I might still add more pockets in for certain busier months if need be later on in the year.

So here's how my February pages look...
On the first pocket page we have...
A 3-photo feature on Valentines, my 2 Project 365 photo a day photos, news on our citizenship applications, coffee group, the printout that came with my stickygram order (that reminds me to show off the Stickygrams here at some point) and my favourite photo of hubby and Mr Mischief from the month...

I am taking heaps of photos of Mr Mischief with my phone so had more than enough photos to do a layout featuring my favourites as well as an update on what he is doing, saying and loving aged 18 months...

At the back of the 18 month layout is this one that I shared recently. The photos were taken in February and the page made and journalling written within the month too so I thought it would be a great addition to the album.

And in my other pocket page we have...
photos and journalling of the 2 Hunger Games books I read in February, some miscellaneous photos and journalling of events without photos, a picture of the treadmill (I'll need to talk about this in a blog post soon too!), pancake day!, a photo hubby snapped of me with some text about what's current with me, my current indulgences (cake and hot chocolate on a Saturday while hubby and Mr Mischief go swimming and Words with Friends), swimming lessons, February's post and another great photo of hubby and Mr Mischief...

Here's a close-up of the post pocket. Some of the Project Life Inspiration must be rubbing off on me because I have been keeping memorabilia as well as photos. I kept a letter that came in a parcel from my Mum so that's tucked away in a glassine envelope...

You can see all my Document 2012 pages here and 2011 here.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

A photo a day : : February

I am pleased with myself for keeping up with taking a photo a day throughout February. 
I'm still using Project 365 on my phone to choose one photo for each day. The plan is to continue using screen-shots of the photo mosaic in my Document 2012 album.
Here's a look at my February photos...


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